The first round of the 2021 NHL Draft took place on Friday night and for the fourth straight year the Wisconsin Badgers men’s hockey team had a player selected. Incoming freshman defenseman Corson Ceulemans (Beaumont, Alberta, Canada) was selected by the Columbus Blue Jackets with pick No. 25.
Ceulemans played last season for the Alberta Junior Hockey League’s (AJHL) Brooks Bandits, skating in eight games and notching four goals and 11 points. He only got to play in eight games because of, you know, the whole pandemic thing. He got to play internationally too last year, scoring a goal and totaling eight points in six games to help Team Canada to the 2021 International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) Under-18 World Championship.
With #CBJ third pick of the first round, 25th overall, the club has selected Corson Ceulemans.— CBJ Public Relations (@BlueJacketsPR) July 24, 2021
The defenseman posted 4-7-11 in eight games with the Brooks Bandits of the AJHL in 2020-21. pic.twitter.com/QekEoqTccT
The 6-foot-2 and 198 pound defenseman is a tantalizing prospect due to his size and skill with the puck. According to Corey Pronman of The Athletic ($), “Ceulemans is a complete defenseman as a 6-foot-2, right-shot blueliner who is mobile, hard to play against and has offensive ability.”
With the selection of Ceulemans, the Badgers have now had five players selected in the past four NHL Draft first rounds and seven in the past six (Luke Kunin, Trent Frederic, K’Andre Miller, Alex Turcotte, Cole Caufield, Dylan Holloway). It is also the 24th consecutive year that the Badgers have had at least one player drafted.
The Draft continues on Saturday morning at 10 a.m. CT on NHL Network and a couple more Badgers could be drafted in the later rounds according to their rankings by NHL Central Scouting for North American Skaters.
14 – Corson Ceulemans (D), already picked, duh
147 – Daniel Laatsch (D)
152 – Caden Brown (F)
211 – Jake Martin (D)
13 - Cameron Rowe (G), separate goalie rankings, so he is not listed as a better prospect that Ceulemans
And here are the current Badgers who have already been drafted.
Sam Stange (Detroit – 2020, 4th round, 97th)
Ryder Donovan (Vegas – 2019, 4th round, 110th)
Jack Gorniak (Montreal – 2018, 4th, 123rd)
Tyler Inamoto (Florida – 2017, 5th, 133rd)
Owen Lindmark (Florida – 2019, 5th, 137th)
Carson Bantle (Arizona – 2020, 5th, 142nd)
Jared Moe (Winnipeg – 2018, 6th, 184th)
Josh Ess (Chicago – 2017, 7th, 215th)
Of note, the Michigan Wolverines had four of the top five picks in the Draft which is...crazy good. Can’t wait to play them next season!