Columbus Blue Jacket Prospect Watch: Andrew Strathmann

Andrew Strathmann is a bit of a project on defense, but he has NHL upside and could be a nice mid-round find for the Blue Jackets.

2023 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Portraits
2023 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Portraits / Terry Wyatt/GettyImages

The first of two fourth round picks made by the Jackets last summer (#98 overall), Andrew Strathmann returned to the USHL this year and has been playing big minutes for the Youngstown Phantoms.

The Univeristy of North Dakota commit was named captain of the Phantoms almost immediately upon returning, and he has not disappointed this year as the team looks to defend last season's championship run.

Through 42 games, he has 6 goals and 28 assists for 34 points - along with a whopping 101 penalty minutes. He's tied for 7th amongst all blue liners in points, and 7th in the entire league in PIMs.

He also added 4 assists in 6 games for Team USA at the World Junior Championships this year.

Strathmann doesn't have any one particular trait that stands out, but he does everything at an above average level. He's a good skater, puck mover, shooter, and surprisingly physical for a guy who is listed at just 5'11" and 187 pounds.

While he doesn't separate himself from the pack with any one skill; his hockey IQ is very good, which is where he stands out. He times plays and knows when to jump into the rush, or make a pass across the ice.

In summary: he's a cerebral, competitive player that can affect the game on both sides of the puck. Seems like a solid find.

With that said, he is a bit of a project piece, which is to be expected of any player taken in this range of the draft. But the Jackets have the benefit of time here, with a player expected to head to the NCAA next season.

It will take him a little while to adjust to that level, but I have no doubt that Strathmann is going to be a solid contributor at North Dakota.

His development will be fun to watch over the next few years. He's an exciting player to watch, and I do think he has the potential to be an NHL player for the Blue Jackets.