Chicago, IL - The United States Hockey League (USHL) finished the 2021 NHL Draft with 50 total players after 41 USHL ties were selected on Day Two of the Draft. This marks the fourth-straight NHL Draft that has seen 50-plus players with USHL ties taken, including the 900th overall NHL Draft pick all-time from the USHL.
“This has been an exciting two days for the USHL and we’re incredibly proud of the amount of players with league ties we saw drafted this year,” said USHL President and Commissioner Bill Robertson. “The 2020-21 season was unlike any other we’ve seen and we were beyond excited to be able to play a full season and give our players an opportunity to continue to develop on and off the ice.”
This is the fourth-straight NHL Draft the USHL has had 50-or-more players selected
This is the 10th-straight NHL Draft the USHL has had 40-or-more players selected
Over the last eight NHL Drafts, the USHL has had an average of 51 players selected each Draft, with five of those Drafts having 50-or-more players selected
Seven members of the 2020-21 Clark Cup Champion Chicago Steel were selected during the 2021 NHL Draft and nine members of the Final were taken total
Shai Buium - Detroit Red Wings (36th Overall)
Josh Doan - Arizona Coyotes (37th Overall)
Scott Morrow - Carolina Hurricanes (40th Overall)
Jack Peart - Minnesota Wild (54th Overall)
Evan Nause * - Florida Panthers (56th Overall)
Matthew Knies - Toronto Maple Leafs (57th Overall)
Tristan Broz - Pittsburgh Penguins (58th Overall)
Sean Behrens - Colorado Avalanche (61st Overall)
Sasha Pastujov - Anaheim Ducks (66th Overall)
Carter Mazur - Detroit Red Wings (70th Overall)
Ayrton Martino - Dallas Stars (73rd Overall)
Brent Johnson - Washington Capitals (80th Overall)
Andrei Buyalsky - Colorado Avalanche (92nd Overall)
Aidan Hreschuk - Carolina Hurricanes (94th Overall)
Roman Schmidt - Tampa Bay Lightning (96th Overall)
Josh Lopina * - Anaheim Ducks (98th Overall)
Guillaume Richard - Columbus Blue Jackets (101st Overall)
Brody Lamb - New York Rangers (104th Overall)
Jackson Blake - Carolina Hurricanes (109th Overall)
Red Savage - Detroit Red Wings (114th Overall)
Ryan Ufko - Nashville Predators (115th Overall)
Cameron Berg - New York Islanders (125th Overall)
Dylan Duke - Tampa Bay Lightning (126th Overall)
Jack Bar - Dallas Stars (138th Overall)
Ty Murchison - Philadelphia Flyers (158th Overall)
Cameron MacDonald * - Tampa Bay Lightning (160th Overall)
Kyle Kukkonen * - Anaheim Ducks (162nd Overall)
Liam Gilmartin - San Jose Sharks (167th Overall)
Cal Thomas - Arizona Coyotes (171st Overall)
Nate Benoit - Minnesota Wild (182nd Overall)
Chase Clark - Washington Capitals (183rd Overall)
Alex Gagne - Tampa Bay Lightning (192nd Overall)
Justin Janicke - Seattle Kraken (195th Overall)
Connor Kelley * - Chicago Blackhawks (204th Overall)
Arsenii Sergeev * - Calgary Flames (205th Overall)
Owen McLaughlin - Philadelphia Flyers (206th Overall)
Hank Kempf - New York Rangers (208th Overall)
Andre Gasseau - Boston Bruins (213th Overall)
Daniel Laatsch - Pittsburgh Penguins (215th Overall)
Ty Gallagher - Boston Bruins (217th Overall)
Sam Lipkin - Arizona Coyotes (223rd Overall)
The Second Round of the NHL Draft started out quick with three of the first eight picks in the round, starting with Sioux City Musketeers defenseman Shai Buium going 36th overall to the Detroit Red Wings, who traded up to select the USHL All-Rookie Second Team member from the 2020-21 season. Chicago Steel forward Josh Doan was taken with the next selection by the Arizona Coyotes, a selection with a lot of history as his father Shane Doan played his entire 21-year NHL career with the franchise. Scott Morrow, a defenseman who played in the Clark Cup Playoffs for the Fargo Force last season, went 40th overall to the Carolina Hurricanes.
USHL ties picked up in the back half of the Second Round as players with league ties were selected with the 54th, 56th, 57th, 58th, 61st and 66th overall picks. Jack Peart started the run as this year’s Minnesota Mr. Hockey was taken by the Minnesota Wild after appearing for the Fargo Force in the Clark Cup Finals. Matthew Knies was next as the Tri-City Storm forward went to the Toronto Maple Leafs with the franchise’s first pick of the Draft. With the selection, Knies became the 900th USHL player selected in the NHL Draft. Fellow Force skater Tristan Broz was picked next by the Pittsburgh Penguins, making it five players from the 2021 Clark Cup Final taken in the first two rounds of the Draft as Broz joined teammate Peart as well as Clark Cup Champions Doan and First Round selections Matthew Coronato (13th Overall, Calgary Flames) and Mackie Samoskevich (24th Overall, Florida Panthers). The USA Hockey National Team Development Program (NTDP) rounded out the USHL’s eight Round Two selections as Sean Behrens was selected by the Colorado Avalanche.
Round Three featured another seven USHL players selected, bringing the league’s total to 24 picks in the 2021 NHL Draft. Ayrton Martino, who played with the Omaha Lancers during the 2020-21 season, was named to the USHL All-Rookie First Team as well as the All-USHL Second Team after leading all rookie skaters with 56 points (18-38-56) in 38 games. With Martino being selected, the Lancers continue a rich history in the NHL Draft, now having 31-straight Drafts with at least one player taken by an NHL team. Seven picks later, the Washington Capitals made a selection that excited former Sioux Falls Stampede and current Capitals forward T.J. Oshie, Brent Johnson was picked with the 80th overall selection. The University of North Dakota commit earned a spot on the USHL All-Rookie First Team and All-USHL Second Team after collecting 32 points (11-21-32) in 47 games with the Sioux Falls Stampede. The next two selections, USA Hockey NTDP skaters Aidan Hreschuk and Roman Schmidt, were both part of the Team USA squad that took home a Silver Medal at the Under-17 World Hockey Championships during the 2019-20 season.
Round Four saw another eight USHL players come off the board, beginning with Josh Lopina, a former Lincoln Stars forward who is coming off an NCAA Championship with the University of Massachusetts. The Anaheim Ducks picked the Minooka, Ill. native who registered 62 points (24-38-62) in 106 career USHL games 98th overall. Lopina was named to the Hockey East All-Rookie Team and won the Hockey East Rookie of the Year after finishing his first collegiate season with 23 points (9-14-23) in 29 games. The fourth round also saw Clark Cup Champions Jackson Blake (Carolina Hurricanes, 109th Overall) and Ryan Ufko (Nashville Predators, 115th Overall) selected, as well as USA Hockey NTDP skaters Red Savage (Detroit Red Wings, 114th Overall) and Dylan Duke (Tampa Bay Lightning, 126th Overall) who were both members of the Team USA Silver Medal-winning Under-17 World Hockey Championships in the 2019-20 season. Duke was also named a Top-3 player on Team USA during the Under-18 World Junior Championships last season. Cameron Berg, who played for both the Muskegon Lumberjacks and Omaha Lancers, rounded out the fourth round by being selected by the twice-defending-Stanley Cup Champion Tampa Bay Lightning.
Jack Bar was the first of three USHL selections in the Fifth Round and marked the sixth selection from the defending Clark Cup Champion Chicago Steel roster. Bar was also the eighth member of the 2021 Clark Cup Final rosters to be selected in the 2021 NHL Draft.
Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, the 2020-21 season will be the USHL's 19th season as the nation's only Tier I junior hockey league. The USHL had 51 players selected at the 2020 NHL Draft, marking the third-straight season with 50-or-more USHL players selected in the Draft. More than 800 league alumni are currently on NCAA Division I rosters, further establishing the USHL as the world’s foremost producer of junior hockey talent.
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