The Boston Bruins selected Boston University prospect Charlie McAvoy with their #14 overall pick in the 2016 NHL Draft. While he’s likely a few years away from throwing on the black and gold, McAvoy, who is ranked the #6 skater prospect in North America by NHL Central Scouting, has quite a few assets that can provide some hope for Boston’s future defense.
McAvoy is a smart and speedy defenseman who possesses a solid offensive threat. He’s a powerful skater who makes use of his speed and isn’t shy to turn the play around and lead the rush up the ice, despite his role as a defender. As a true freshman at Boston University last season (and the youngest player in all of NCAA Division I hockey), McAvoy tallied 3 goals and 25 assists in 37 games for the Terriers.
Prior to his time at Boston University, McAvoy played minor hockey with the New Jersey Rockets before entering the United States Development Program. He recorded four assists in seven games while helping the United States win gold at the U18 World Juniors Championship in 2015, and recently helped the U.S. take home Bronze from the 2016 U20 World Juniors Championship.
Boston Univeristy coach David Quinn was all praise when it came to McAvoy, and even called him one of college hockey’s best defenseman, despite his youth.
“Charlie has been an elite player for a long time,” said Quinn, per NHL.com. “He’s got the great skills and vision and he’s a big, strong kid that skates well. He’s one of the top freshman defenseman in college hockey.”
With three seasons of eligibility remaining with the Terriers, McAvoy has plenty of time to fine tune a few parts of his game. As an already exceptional offensive defenseman, McAvoy wants to focus on upgrading his defensive game in the coming years.
“My offensive game is there, but defense comes first,” said McAvoy, per SB Nation. “I want to sharpen up my defensive skills. I want to be responsible in my own zone and be trusted to be on the ice at the end of the game.”
With only one year under his belt at Boston University, McAvoy has quite a bit of time to develop for the Bruins. The Bruins will surely keep a close eye on him as he continues to develop into one of college hockey’s elite defensemen, and you should too.