CBJ Top-20 Prospects Primer

Apr 28, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets center Kent Johnson (13) waits for the face-off against the Tampa Bay Lightning in the second period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 28, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets center Kent Johnson (13) waits for the face-off against the Tampa Bay Lightning in the second period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports /
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Sillinger
(Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images) /

As we approach the 2022 NHL Draft, there is a lot of excitement around the Columbus Blue Jackets as they look to add to their already-strong prospect pool. With two additional first round picks (#6 and #12 overall), the club will look to match its success from 2021, where they landed Kent Johnson (5th) and Cole Sillinger (12th).

Over the next two weeks, we’ll take a look at the club’s top-20 prospects, with a deep dive into each player ranked in our own top-10, beginning tomorrow with #10, and working in reverse order until we get to #1. We will be re-ranking this list after the draft, and adding in each new player selected by the Blue Jackets. We will also provide a report on each pick made at next month’s draft, with some thoughts on their upside and potential.

The Rules

  • We are only listing prospects who are aged 23 or under, prior to the start of the 2022-23 season. Unfortunately, this excludes Nick Blankenburg, who would have been on this list.
  • To qualify for this list, players have to have fewer than 10 NHL games played. This excludes players such as Liam Foudy from the list.

With those rules in mind, here are the prospects we ranked #11-20, with a couple of additional players to keep an eye on.

Honorable Mentions (no particular order)

RW Ben Boyd, Charlottetown Islanders (QMJHL), 6th round, 165th overall, 2021 NHL Draft

G Jet Greaves, Cleveland Monsters (AHL), signed as a free agent February 2022

Prospects #20-11:

20. D Nikolai Makarov, CSKA Moscow (KHL), 5th round, 132nd overall, 2021 NHL Draft

19. D Tim Berni, Cleveland Monsters (AHL), 6th round, 159th overall, 2018 NHL Draft

VICTORIA , BC – JANUARY 2: Tim Berni #21 of Switzerland skates against Sweden during a quarter-final game at the IIHF World Junior Championships at the Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre on January 2, 2019 in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. (Photo by Kevin Light/Getty Images)
VICTORIA , BC – JANUARY 2: Tim Berni #21 of Switzerland skates against Sweden during a quarter-final game at the IIHF World Junior Championships at the Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre on January 2, 2019 in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. (Photo by Kevin Light/Getty Images) /

18. LW Martin Rysavy, Moose Jaw Warriors (WHL), 7th round, 197th overall, 2021 NHL Draft

17. D Aidan Hreschuk, Boston College (NCAA), Acquired via Trade March 2022

16. C Josh Dunne, Cleveland Monsters (AHL), signed as a free agent March 2021

15. D Eric Hjorth, HC Vita Hästen (Allsvenskan), 4th round, 104th overall, 2019 NHL Draft

14. D Ole Bjorgvik-Holm, Mississauga Steelheads (OHL), 5th round, 145th overall, 2020 NHL Draft

13. D Guillaume Richard, Providence College (NCAA), 4th round, 101st overall, 2021 NHL Draft

12. C Mikael Pyyhtia, Cleveland Monsters (AHL), 4th round, 114th overall, 2020 NHL Draft

11. D Samuel Knazko, Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL), 3rd round, 78th overall, 2020 NHL Draft

Feb 19, 2022; Beijing, China; Team Slovakia defender Samuel Knazko (22) celebrates winning the bronze medal menÕs ice hockey game against Sweden during the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games at National Indoor Stadium. Slovakia won the game 4-0. Mandatory Credit: George Walker IV-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 19, 2022; Beijing, China; Team Slovakia defender Samuel Knazko (22) celebrates winning the bronze medal menÕs ice hockey game against Sweden during the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games at National Indoor Stadium. Slovakia won the game 4-0. Mandatory Credit: George Walker IV-USA TODAY Sports /

Stay tuned tomorrow for prospect #10 on our list, and a deep dive into his production, upside, and potential future with the club. What are your thoughts on the list so far? Any surprises, or changes you would make? Let us know in the comment section below!