Hamilton/By S. Bradley

The Bruins drafted Dougie Hamilton ninth overall last June with designs on him developing into a franchise defenseman.

His rise to elite status continued this season with the Niagara IceDogs of the OHL, and today he was rewarded for his efforts. Hamilton was revealed as the winner of the Max Kaminsky Trophy, which goes to the OHL’s Most Outstanding Defenseman of the Year. Hamilton was third in the voting for the award last season.

In 2011-12, Hamilton led all OHL defensemen in scoring with 72 points (17 goals) in just 50 games. He tied for third in the league with a plus-37 rating. In addition to skating for Canada at the World Junior Championship, Hamilton was named the OHL Defenseman of the Month four times.

Hamilton and the IceDogs are getting ready to compete for the OHL championship against Jared Knight, another Bruins prospect, and the London Knights starting later this week.

Upon signing Hamilton to an entry-level contract over the winter, Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli went on record in saying that Hamilton could compete for a NHL job in the fall. Hamiton was in Boston’s training camp in 2011 and hardly looked out place. It’ll be interesting to what Hamilton can do when the Bruins reconvene this September.