A lifelong dream realized for Brady Stonehouse.
The five-foot-nine, 182-pound forward, who turns 18 on August 6, notched 18 goals, 17 assists and 52 penalty minutes in 68 games this past season with the Ottawa 67s as a rookie in the Ontario Hockey League.
But Stonehouse, ranked 152nd among North American skaters in NHL Central Scouting’s final draft rankings, is ready to be called up to the big leagues.
“I’ve just been getting more eager now,” he stated. “I just can’t wait for the day. I’ve worked for this my whole life.”
Although Stonehouse is known for his imperturbable calm, he admits there is a profusion of nervous energy that accompanies the draft process. And that’s to be expected. But other than a quarter of mentors, including his father, who enjoyed a successful four-year NCAA Division I playing career at Harvard University, Stonehouse has one additional advantage — confidence.
“I feel like I’m a good two-way power forward, even though I’m not that big,” said Stonehouse. “I think I use my physicality pretty well, I go to the dirty areas, and I want to make things happen. I don’t want to wait for the play to come to me.”
Though adrenalized by the prospect of starting his NHL career, Stonehouse is also prepared to rejoin the 67’s for the 2022-2023 season should that scenario play out, and he’s confident of a triumphant campaign.
“I feel like we’ll be a contending team next year,” he said. “That’s the attitude we have. This is our year, we’re going for the Cup.”
The 2022 NHL Entry Draft begins Thursday night, at 7:00 pm ET.