Boucher among 2021 NHL Draft picks whose fathers played in League


The right wing (6-foot-1, 205 pounds), selected No. 10 by the Ottawa Senators on Friday, is the son of former NHL goalie Brian Boucher, who works as a hockey analyst for ESPN. 

“I couldn’t be happier to end up in Ottawa,” Boucher said. “I think I’m a throwback style of player. I don’t give anybody an inch, play with an edge and I think I have a pretty dangerous shot. I think I can score from a lot of areas.”

Brian Boucher, chosen No. 22 by the Philadelphia Flyers in the 1995 NHL Draft, played 328 NHL games in 13 seasons with seven teams. He retired as a player in 2013.

“The Senators got some really good young players; they did a [heck] of a job last fall in the draft,” Brian Boucher said. “I think, drafting a guy like Tyler, he’s a complementary player, he’s a guy that has toughness, that sandpaper maybe that teams are looking for. I think, with the talent he’s acquired in the last couple of years, he’s going to fit in great there. 

“Look, you want to be on a team that’s strong and I think they’re a team that’s on the ascent and he’s going to be a big part of it. I’m happy he’s there. I’m proud that he put the work in, and I can’t wait to see him in a Senators jersey.”

Tyler Boucher could hardly hide his excitement after becoming the first forward from the USA Hockey National Team Development Program Under-18 team chosen in the draft. 

“[Ottawa general manager Pierre Dorion] asked me a bunch of questions (during the Zoom interview),” he said. “What will I be willing to do? What type of player am I? I played 12 games this year, so maybe they were a little iffy on if that was a little too high (a pick) considering the game I play. They did their research, though, and I couldn’t agree more with their pick.”

Boucher scored 11 points (six goals, five assists) and averaged 0.92 points per game with the NTDP under-18 team. He had a knee scope April 2 but returned to the ice in May to begin his training and preparation for his freshman season at Boston University in 2021-22. The forward was out six weeks with pneumonia before sustaining his knee injury. He scored 26 points (nine goals, 17 assists) in 43 games with the Under-17 team in 2019-20.

“It seems like yesterday he was just a little guy playing youth hockey and here we are at the at the draft, and I’m proud of him because he had a difficult year, injury wise, and had a lot of adversity but he stuck with it,” Brian Boucher said. “It’s a great lesson as a young player … if you stick with things and you keep a positive mindset you can get through it. Even though he didn’t have a lot of viewings from teams, I think when he did play, he played well and he showed what he’s capable of. 

“He’s got a pro game, so the future’s bright for him. I’m just thrilled for him.”

Here are other players with NHL fathers chosen in the 2021 NHL Draft (listed alphabetically):

Josh Doan, RW, Chicago (USHL): The son of former NHL forward and current Arizona Coyotes chief hockey development officer Shane Doan, was chosen in the second round (No. 37) by the Coyotes. The 19-year-old right wing (6-1, 183), who was passed over in the 2020 NHL Draft, scored 70 points (31 goals, 39 assists) in 53 games this season and helped Chicago of the United States Hockey League win the Clark Cup. He ranked fourth in the USHL in goals, third in assists and points and was tied for fifth with nine power-play goals. He’s committed to Arizona State University in 2021-22. His father is the Coyotes franchise leader in goals (402), assists (570), points (972) and games (1,540).

Video: A discussion on the Coyotes drafting Josh Doan

Mason McTavish, C, Peterborough (OHL): Selected No. 3 by the Anaheim Ducks, his father, Dale, played nine games for the Calgary Flames in 1996-97 and 14 seasons of professional hockey in Finland and Switzerland. Mason McTavish (6-1, 207) scored 11 points (nine goals, two assists) in 13 games this season on loan with EHC Olten in the Swiss League, the second-highest professional league in Switzerland. He also scored 11 points (five goals, six assists) in seven games to help Canada win the 2021 IIHF Under-18 World Championship.

Simon Robertsson, RW, Skelleftea (SWE): Robertsson (6-0, 190), selected by the St. Louis Blues in the third round (No. 71), scored four points (three goals, one assist) in seven games while serving as an alternate captain for third-place Sweden at the 2021 IIHF Under-18 World Championship. He’s the son of Bert Robertsson, selected by the Vancouver Canucks in the 10th-round (No. 254) in the 1993 NHL Draft, who played 123 NHL regular-season games with the Canucks, Edmonton Oilers and New York Rangers from 1997-2001. Simon Robertsson had a goal and an assist in 22 games with Skelleftea in the Swedish Hockey League, the top professional men’s league in Sweden, last season.

Cole Sillinger, C, Sioux Falls (USHL): Sillinger (6-0, 197), selected No. 12 by the Columbus Blue Jackets, was loaned to Sioux Falls in the United States Hockey League and led them in goals (24), points (46), points per game (1.48) and shots on goal (113) in 31 games and was named USHL rookie of the year. He’ll rejoin Medicine Hat of the Western Hockey League next season. Sillinger’s father, Mike, was a forward who scored 548 points (240 goals, 308 assists) in 1,049 regular-season games over 17 NHL seasons. He’s the only player in NHL history to play for 12 different teams.

Video: Kekalainen assesses Blue Jackets’ top picks

Chase Stillman, RW, Sudbury (OHL): Stillman (6-1, 180), chosen No. 29 by the New Jersey Devils, scored 16 points (nine goals, seven assists) in eight games with Esbjerg in Denmark’s junior league, and helped Canada win the U-18s with four points (two goals, two assists) in seven games. His father, Cory Stillman, was selected by the Calgary Flames with the No. 6 pick in the 1992 NHL Draft, played 1,025 NHL games and won the Stanley Cup with the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2004 and Carolina Hurricanes in 2006.

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