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2022 MLS Draft: Orlando City Selects UCF Forward Nick Taylor at No. 74

The Lions make a local selection with their third and final pick in this year’s draft.

SOCCER: SEP 07 MLS - LAFC at Orlando City SC Photo by Joe Petro/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Orlando City went offensive with its final pick of the 2022 MLS SuperDraft, taking Nick Taylor out of UCF. The forward spent time with New Mexico and SMU before moving to Orlando for his fifth year.

In his sophomore year at New Mexico, Taylor started all 17 games, recording four goals and five assists. His number of goals that year ranked second on the team. Taylor transferred to SMU for his junior and senior seasons. In 2019, he made 19 appearances (10 starts) and recorded three assists. His senior season saw the forward start all 11 games of the postponed spring season and he scored two goals, both coming in the same match against USF.

Taylor took advantage of a fifth year after transferring a third and final time, this time to UCF. In his 16 appearances (all starts) for the Knights, he scored three goals and had nine assists. Eight of his 24 shots were on target.

The Coppell, TX native won the 6A Texas State Soccer Championship at Coppell High School before heading off to New Mexico. He scored 48 goals and 39 assists in his final two high school seasons.

The forward was named All-Conference USA during his sophomore season at New Mexico before jumping to the American Athletic Association. It was his lone honor during his collegiate career.

Here are Taylor’s highlights from his final collegiate season at UCF.

What It Means for Orlando

Third-round picks in the MLS SuperDraft rarely make the team, so there’s a good chance that Lions fans won’t see Taylor in purple. However, the local selection carries little risk as the team is short on attacking options with the departures of Nani, Daryl Dike. and Chris Mueller this off-season.

If Taylor does end up being signed by the club, expect him to be on Orlando City B during the 2022 season. The reemergence of the club’s developmental team is specifically for players like this.