Photo by: Tom Sorensen
The start of the hockey season is still months away, but 2016 NHL Draft eligible Chad Krys is uncommitted at to where he will be playing hockey next season. Like Auston Matthews, Chad Krys has outgrown the US National Development Team and is seeking a new challenge somewhere else.
Krys is a playmaking defender with a knack for finding open teammates. During his time with the US Development Team, Krys made great strides in his two-way game by becoming a bit more physical and hands-on. Krys is above average when it comes to breakouts and extended passes through multiple zones.
With still plenty of time left, Krys doesn’t have to choose right away. He also has many options and roads to go down.
Looking at where his rights are already held, the USHL and QMJHL have a bit of an advantage. The Green Bay Gamblers of the USHL and the Moncton Wildcats of the QMJHL hold the USHL and CHL rights to Krys respectively.
If Krys chooses to go to the USHL, the Green Bay Gamblers he will be going to a team that finished last in the Eastern Conference. With the Gamblers Krys will be looked at as the number 1 guy going into camp. He will certainly be looked at as a better player because of the lack of talent on Green Bay, but this also means he will have less talent to work with.
The best offensive talent Krys will start with in Green Bay is Sam Saliba. Things could have looked brighter if Sam Miletic was still with the team. He was committed to the Univeristy of Michigan before he de-committed for the OHL’s London Knights. The Gamblers could also lose Christopher Brown, Ryan Tait and Brian Bowen if their commitments to their respective schools hold up.
The increasing popularity of the USHL during for draft eligibles could be enough to persuade Krys. The USHL was one of the most popular leagues in the 2015 NHL Draft. Dating back to 2008, the USHL only produced 28 NHL Draft selections and only 1 went in the first round, which happened to be John Carlson of the Indiana Ice. This past draft, the USHL had more than 30 products drafted with 4 going in the 1st round.
If Chad Krys decides he would like to work with more talented teammates, the QMJHL may be a better option. Playing with the Moncton Wildcats, Krys will have offensive threats like Conor Garland and Ivan Barbashev to feed the puck to.
The Wildcats also have a well put together team. They finished 2nd in the league this past season and also clinched the Maritimes Division. With many players returning to the team, it is safe to say Moncton will be competing for a division lead once again.
Chad Krys will be in a better position to win in the QMJHL and he will be in an already proven league. The QMJHL had the most players drafted in 2015 with many going in the 1st round.
Another option that many US Development products choose is going to University. This gives Krys more flexibility to where he could play.
There haven’t been many rumors as to where Krys is leaning to going. One can only speculate as to which colleges would be interested in bringing in Krys and that could potentially be many.
With the departure of Noah Hanifin, Boston College could be a team who wants to re-fill that top tier defender. Chad Krys is from Connecticut so a hometown return to Quinnipiac could be a possibility. North Dakota is also looking to remain competitive after the departure of head coach Dave Hakstol and starting goaltender Zane McIntyre.