Three Huskies had their names announced on Day Two of the 2019 NHL Draft, but in two very different situations. Huskies defensive recruit Jayden Struble heard his name announced as the 46th overall pick in the second round by the Montreal Canadiens, incoming freshman Aidan McDonough was selected 195th by the Vancouver Canucks, and former defenseman Jeremy Davies was traded from the New Jersey Devils to the Nashville Predators in a deal that saw P.K. Subban head to New Jersey.
Let’s first focus on Struble, who made some history with his selection as the highest-selected player for the Huskies since Jamie Oleksiak went 14th overall in the 2011 draft. The previous best for a recruit was Matt Filipe, who was 67th overall in 2016, while the previous highest-selected player to have played for NU since Oleksiak was Sam Kurker (56th, 2012). Struble also is the first player drafted from the state of Rhode Island since 2009 (h/t Mark Divver for that historical tidbit).
Struble is a gifted offensive defenseman who crushed the NHL Draft Combine, earning the top score in five of the combine’s events. A left shot who has committed to play for the Victoria Grizzlies in the BCHL next season before enrolling in 2020, Coach Madigan hinted during the Friends of Hockey meeting that there still exists a possibility that Struble accelerates and enrolls this upcoming season. We have adjusted him in our projection sheet accordingly, but we all should keep in mind that officially as of now, he is headed to Victoria next year.
The Huskies clearly have history with Montreal, as current sophomore Jordan Harris is a previous third round pick of the team (2018 Draft), and former Huskies goalie Cayden Primeau just signed his entry-level contract with Montreal at the end of last season.
Congratulations to Jayden! We are excited to see him develop as he approaches him time at Northeastern, whether that is this upcoming fall o next season. We are looking forward to seeing some photos of him and Harris at development camp, and look forward to seeing them on a Huskies blue line in the near future.
Aidan McDonough, an incoming forward this fall, was selected in the 7th round, 195th by the Vancouver Canucks, another organization Northeastern has had a close, symbiotic relationship with. McDonough is a 1999 birth year, so this is not his first time through the NHL Draft, but his hard work while playing for Cedar Rapids in the USHL was rewarded with this selection.
Longtime friend and Cedar Rapids scout/reporter Scott Herbst pinpointed McDonough as someone teams should take a shot on late in the draft before the draft even restarted today:
McDonough put up 42 points (21 goals) in 50 USHL games last season, and according to Coach Madigan has an excellent shot that sets him up for success both around the net and as far as 20 feet out. McDonough attended the Pittsburgh Penguins development camp last summer.
Congratulations to Aidan!
Jeremy Davies was one of the players who were sent to Nashville as the Predators unloaded All-Star defenseman P.K. Subban and his hefty contract to the New Jersey Devils. As a Devils fan myself, this is a bittersweet trade because Subban makes the Devils better immediately, but I was very excited to see Davies wear the sweaters of my two favorite hockey teams. Davies joined NU alum and Predators general manager David Poile in Nashville.
In a recent interview with Devils Insiders, assistant general manager Tom Fitzgerald (father of former BC players Ryan and Casey Fitzgerald) lauded Davies as a potential impact player at the NHL level with his offensive skills and instincts, particularly on the powerplay. Davies will certainly have room to grow and learn in Nashville from players like Ryan Ellis and Roman Josi, both of whom have excellent offensive capabilities, and Ellis, like Davies, is a smaller offensive defenseman.
We wish Jeremy the best of luck and look forward to seeing his career develop in the Predators’ system.