2022 NHL Draft Preview

Photo credit: Jack Murray (Hopkins) Garrett James Photography (Jugnauth, Dyck)

The 2022 NHL Entry Draft starts tomorrow with Round 1 and continues with Rounds 2 through 7 on Friday.

Like every year at the draft, there are several BCHL players expected to be taken. Today, we will take a look at the top prospects from the league.

The BCHL’s 2022 NHL Draft coverage is presented by Chevrolet.

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Tyson Jugnauth (D) – West Kelowna Warriors

Ranked #66 among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting

The winner of the BCHL’s Top Defenceman Award and a First-Team All-Star, Jugnauth enjoyed an excellent sophomore season in the league. The 18-year-old finished second in defencemen scoring with 50 points in 52 games on nine goals and 41 assists on a Warriors team that finished third in the Interior Conference with a record of 37-16-1-0. He is committed to play at the University of Wisconsin in the fall.

Quote:

“I’m an offensive defenceman who is a smart player and a good skater. I like to move the puck. I’m good on the power play. My two-way game has been getting better. It’s still something I’m working on, but my offensive instincts are my main strong point.”

Click here to read his NHL Draft Q&A.

Ryan Hopkins (D) – Penticton Vees

Ranked #101 among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting

Hopkins was the Vees second-highest scoring defenceman during the regular season, putting up 31 points in 47 games and also leading the team in goals from the blueline with seven. At the end of the year, he was recognized as a member of the league’s All-Rookie Team. He was also a key part to Penticton’s Fred Page Cup championship run, helping the team capture their first league title since 2017. He is returning the Vees in the fall, but is committed to the University of Maine once his junior career is over.

Quote:

“I play a strong two-way game. I like to play physically in the corners and everywhere else on the ice. I like to battle as hard as I can. I can also be an offensive threat. I focus on my defensive-zone details. There are a lot of things I try to work on through my communication and making sure I’m always talking.”

Click here to read his NHL Draft Q&A.

Tyson Dyck (F) – Cranbrook Bucks

Ranked #110 among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting

Dyck tied for fourth in league scoring with 75 points in 54 games. His 34 goals and 41 assists were also top-five in the league. As a result, he was voted as a First-Team All-Star, a member of the All-Rookie Team and a finalist for the league’s Rookie of the Year Award. Dyck kept up his impressive pace during Cranbrook’s inaugural playoff run, scoring four times and adding an assist in six games. He recently announced his commitment to the University of Massachusetts where he will play this fall.

Quote:

“I think my biggest asset is my hockey IQ. I use that to allow me to maneuver in and out of areas and find pucks in scoring positions. I love to compete. There’s no one on the ice that out competes me. When you put those two together, I’m really excited for the future because they’re not physical attribute, they’re attributes that are hard to teach.”

Click here to read his NHL Draft Q&A.

Cade Littler (F) – Wenatchee Wild

Ranked #187 among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting

Littler was voted to the league’s All-Rookie Team and was a finalist for the Rookie of the Year Award. Playing for his hometown team in Wenatchee, the 17-year-old finished as the team’s leading goal scorer with 20 and second-leading points getter with 45 in 50 games. His breakout came in December when he piled up 11 points in just six games and was awarded the High School Player of the Month. Littler will return to Wenatchee this fall, but is committed to Minnesota State University when his time in the BCHL is done.

Quote:

“I’m a big centre that plays 200 feet. I’m smart on the ice and can help the team win by playing well defensively and offensively.”

Click here to read his NHL Draft Q&A.

Hobie Hedquist (G) – Alberni Valley Bulldogs

Ranked #27 among North American goaltenders by NHL Central Scouting

Hedquist had five shutouts during the regular season, which was second most in the league. He also finished with a .909 save percentage, a 2.53 goals-against average and a record of 28-9-4, while playing by far the most minutes of any goaltender in the league. He was named a Second-Team All-Star and a finalist for the BCHL’s Top Goaltender Award. The Heron Lake, Minn. native boosted those numbers in the postseason, finishing with a .920 save percentage and a 1.98 goals-against average. He is committed to the University of North Dakota.

Quote:

“My style of game is dependent on my skating. I’m not really a structured type of goalie. I just rely on my skating for the most part and find a way to get hit with pucks.”

Click here to read his NHL Draft Q&A.

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Several players committed to BCHL teams next season are also ranked by NHL Central Scouting.

#50 North American Skater – Ben MacDonald (F) – Noble & Greenough School (West Kelowna Warriors)
#171 North American Skater – Liam Steele (D) – Stanstead College (Chilliwack Chiefs)
#202 North American Skater – Luke Devlin (F) – Stanstead College (West Kelowna Warriors)
#206 North American Skater – Duncan Ramsay (D) – Kimball Union Academy (Chilliwack Chiefs)
#214 North American Skater – Nolan Joyce (D) – St. Sebastian’s School (West Kelowna Warriors)

There are also numerous BCHL players that were on NHL Central Scouting’s radar throughout the year, but did not make the final rankings.

Michael Abgrall (F) – Surrey Eagles
Eli Barnett (D) – Victoria Grizzlies
Ethan Bono (F) – Alberni Valley Bulldogs
Emanuelson Charbonneau (D) – Alberni Valley Bulldogs
Parker Murray (F) – Wenatchee Wild
Josh Niedermayer (D) – Penticton Vees