The Columbus Blue Jackets first round draft pick has shown off his speed and skill in training camp.
Liam Foudy’s draft stock rose quickly as the NHL Entry Draft in Dallas drew closer to it’s Friday start. The center had come on strong during the back half of the OHL season and he blew away his fellow prospects at the NHL combine. The Columbus Blue Jackets jumped on the speedy center and drafted him 19th overall.
Foudy’s expectations for this season are rising just as fast as his draft stock. The 18-year-old has put forth a fabulous prospect camp, a solid showing at the Traverse City tournament, and now continues to impress during the preseason.
Foudy was 50% from the face-off dot over eight attempts in his first preseason game. Not bad for a rookie. Against Chicago, Foudy also scored his first professional goal late in the third period.
While he has played well and shown flashes during training camp, it wont be enough to keep him on the team. Foudy might get one more preseason game with the big club but he should head back to London to start training with his OHL squad.
The time in Columbus will certainly be a confidence boost to the young speedster. Knowing that he is close to being able to contribute to an NHL squad should propel him to a huge season with the stacked London Knights.
With the Knights during the latter half of the season Foudy really impressed. London trades left Foudy as the top line center and the extra ice time was all he needed to show his skills. This season, he should be the top line center again and will be on the top power play unit.
This year Foudy should be a point per game player, especially with the talent that will be surrounding him.
Foudy also should be expected to be a top contributor to Canada’s World Junior Championship squad in December. He will make the team and could compete for the top line wing role with the team that is looking to defend its 2018 title.
The future is bright for Foudy and while many want to see him with the Jackets this season, the best, and likely play, is to send Foudy back to London to dominate the OHL. Win a Gold medal with Team Canada, win a Memorial Cup, and come back and compete for a spot on the team in 2019.