The NHL Draft is coming up July 23-24 as the most condensed of NHL offseasons gets underway. It’ll be a matter of mere weeks between 18-year-olds getting drafted and then reporting to their various professional and collegiate assigments.
The highest-profile incoming Boston College hockey player heading into this year’s draft is defenseman Aidan Hreschuk.
Hreschuk is a 5’11’’, left-shot, two-way defenseman from Long Beach, California, who will step into a blue line corps that should be one of BC’s strengths this season.
Like several of his future BC teammates, Hreschuk has come through the ranks of the US National Team Development Program, spending this past season with the U18 team and putting up a total of 54 points in 83 games.
Prior to becoming part of the national team program, Hreschuk was part of the Los Angeles Jr. Kings youth program.
Hreschuk was the alternate captain of the US team at this year’s U18 World Championships, posting two assists in five games.
The 2nd-3rd round is probably when to look out for Hreschuk’s name being called.
From The Hockey Writers:
Though the blueliner has shown flashes of superb offensive prowess, Hreschuk’s defensive skillset still has room for growth. His above-average skating ability is a definite asset, but he tends to rely more on his physical presence, not always something that translates well into the more advanced leagues. He’s aggressive offensively but sometimes gets caught pinching in the zone, leading to opportunities for the opposition.
Hreschuk can have a huge impact on any team’s power play, possessing the shot, hockey sense, and quarterbacking ability to help generate chances from the point. His skating and stickhandling abilities allow him to effectively move around create chances, but he can turn on a dime if he needs to disrupt a counter-attack.
... Without question, Hreschuk has the raw NHL-type talent, but there’s work to be done to help hone his defensive prowess. Time spent at the NCAA level will allow him to develop further and potentially work his way into a top-4 role when it’s all said and done.
Some video review:
Hreschuk finished the year ranked 42nd in the North American skater rankings from NHL Central Scouting, and was 60th on Bob McKenzie’s TSN draft board.
Whether he goes in the second or third round will likely depend on if a team loves his skillset enough to draft him early, knowing that he’s still early in his development and will need some time at BC to round out his game.
Either way, he’ll come in to the 2021-22 season as one of BC’s most intriguing pro prospects.