With the 30th overall pick in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft, the Boston Bruins selected center Johnny Beecher. Born on April 5th,2001, the Elmira, New York native was seen as a future top-six center for the Bruins as he has many attributes that should translate to the NHL level. The Bruins organization lacked center prospects, and the big-body Beecher’s selection excited many. While the Bruins have Patrice Bergeron, David Krejci, and Charlie Coyle at the NHL level, adding a player like Beecher to the pipeline was a must, as those three won’t be with the team forever.
Pre Draft Analysis
“Between his size and his balance, he likes to play in front of the opposing goaltender, where he can be near impossible to dislodge” McKeen’s Hockey 2019
“He has a really good understanding of how to use his body to shield pucks and win battles on the boards,” Hockeyprospect.com 2019
“Dynamic center who can skate, shoot and pass, he is good at reading the ice and recognizing where his teammates are,” Future Considerations 2019
After playing for the US National Development program, where he was on their U17 and U18 teams, Beecher enrolled at the University of Michigan. During his time as a Wolverine, Beecher experienced plenty of adversity as he dealt with multiple injuries. Recovering and overcoming these injuries molded Beecher into the player he is today. One of the biggest knocks surrounding Beecher is his lack of offensive production, as he only scored 19 goals and 39 points in 81 games. But those who didn’t watch Beecher play wouldn’t have known that his role wasn’t to be a 20-goal scorer. During his time at Michigan, Beecher played with a handful of elite stars, including three drafted in the top five of the 2021 NHL Entry Draft.
On May 16th, 2022, following three seasons at the Univeristy of Michigan, Beecher signed a three-year entry-level contract with an annual NHL cap hit of $925,000. While he has yet to make his NHL debut, he is knocking on the door. Heading into the 2022-23 season, Beecher was a name to watch during training camp as he appears to be NHL-ready. With his large 6-foot-3, 210-pound frame, he can certainly hold his own with NHL players. Until he makes his debut, he is enjoying his time in Providence with the Bruins AHL affiliate as he has appeared in 43 games, recording six goals and 17 points with a plus-12 rating. Due to the Bruins’ depth, Beecher was one of the last players sent down to Providence in the preseason. It’s only a matter of time until he becomes an NHL regular in the 2023-24 season.