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22 Minnesotans in final NHLCS rankings

By Peter Odney , 05/27/21, 5:00PM CDT


20 skaters and two goaltenders make the final round of NHL Central Scouting North American Rankings.

Lucius highest-rated Minnesotan, Michigan's Power No. 1 overall

NTDP U-18's Chaz Lucius, center, is the highest-rated Minnesotan prospect for the 2021 NHL Draft by NHL Central Scouting. Lucius is ranked No. 12 among all North American skaters.

NHL Central Scouting has produced its final rankings heading into the 2021 NHL Entry Draft, and 20 Minnesotan skaters have found a home among the top 224 North American skaters, along with two goaltenders in the top-20 North American goaltenders.

The 20 skaters ranked in the final pre-draft iteration is two more than the original 18 skaters highlighted by NHLCS last fall.  

Gentry Galaxy AAA and National Team Development Program product Chaz Lucius heads the list at No. 12 overall, followed by Grand Rapids defenseman Jack Peart at No. 27 and Fargo Force forward Tristan Broz at No. 28, rounding out the Minnesota skaters in the top-50. Broz played two seasons with The Blake School before making the jump to the USHL.

Goaltenders Anton Castro, another member of the 2003 Gentry Galaxy team, is ranked as the No. 14 North American goalie in the draft class, while former Hill-Murray standout Remington Keopple is ranked No. 19. Castro spent last season with the Northeast Generals of the NAHL, while Keopple manned the crease for the USHL's Des Moines Buccaneers. 

University of Michigan defenseman Owen Power is the No. 1 overall North American prospect. The 6-foot-6, 213-pound Mississauga, Ontario native registered three goals and 16 points in his freshman season with the Wolverines, earning All-Big Ten Freshman honors. 

Rounding out the top-five North American skaters are Mason McTavish, Kent Johnson, Luke Hughes, and Dylan Guenther. McTavish spent last season playing in Switzerland, but put up 29 goals and 42 points during the 2019-2020 season with the OHL's Peterborough Petes.

Like Power, Johnson impressed in his freshman season at Michigan, tallying nine goals and 27 points in 26 games. Hughes racked up 28 assists and 34 points in 38 games with the NTDP U-18 team, and Guenther recorded 24 points in just 12 games with the WHL's Edmonton Oil Kings.

A pair of Swedes top the European skater rankings, with William Eklund No. 1 and Simon Edvinsson No. 2. Aatu Raty of Finland and Russians Nikita Chibrikov, and Daniil Chayka make up the Nos. 3-5 ranked skaters. 

Grand Rapids defenseman Jack Peart is the second highest-rated Minnesotan among North American skaters at No. 27.

Minnesotans on Final NHLCS 2021 Draft Rankings

Eden Prairie's Carter Batchelder (No. 199) is one of three Eagles to make NHLCS's final rankings.

Rank Player Hometown Last Amatuer Club League
12 Chaz Lucius Grant USA U-18 NTDP
27 Jack Peart Grand Rapids Grand Rapids High School HIGH-MN
28 Tristan Broz Bloomington Fargo USHL
52 Jackson Blake Eden Prairie Eden Prairie High School HIGH-MN
78 Kyle Kukkonen Maple Grove Maple Grove HIGH-MN
81 Charlie Lurie Minnetonka Shattuck-St. Mary's Prep HIGH-MN
91 Jack Harvey Stacy Chicago USHL
96 Henry Nelson Maple Grove Maple Grove HIGH-MN
98 Luke Mittelstadt Eden Prairie Eden Prairie HIGH-MN
109 Joe Palodichuk Cottage Grove Hill-Murray HIGH-MN
112 Luke Levandowksi Rosemount Rosemount HIGH-MN
118 Joey Pierce Ely Hermantown HIGH-MN
121 Bennett Schimek Mendota Heights Sioux City USHL
128 Justin Janicke Maple Grove USA U-18 NTDP
140 Cameron Berg White Bear Lake Muskegon USHL
176 Cade Ahrenholz Lakeville Lakeville South HIGH-MN
178 Brody Lamb Kasson Dodge County HIGH-MN
199 Carter Batchelder Eden Prairie Eden Prairie HIGH-MN
203 Connor Kurth Elk River Dubuque USHL
211 Jacob Martin White Bear Lake USA U-18 NTDP
14 Anton Castro Mendota Heights Northeast Generals NAHL
19 Remington Keopple Hudson (WI) Des Moines USHL

Remington Keopple backstopped Hill-Murray to the 2020 Class AA state championship as a senior. Keopple spent last season with the USHL's Des Moines Buccaneers.

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