From a young age, it’s every hockey player’s dream to hear their name called at the NHL entry draft. For one Prince George Cougar’s player, that dream is now a reality.
Cats Defenceman, Josh Anderson is the newest member of the NHL, drafted 71st overall in the third Round by the Colorado Avalanche. Prince George Cougars GM Todd Harkins says he’s pleased to have another future NHLer on his side. “Josh is a big time, throwback stay at home defenceman, he’s very physical makes a good first pass, gets around the ice very well, hard to play against, you with with guys like that.”
Anderson was selected in the first round of the 2013 WHL Bantam Draft (third overall). He’s played 83 games with the club, scoring three goals and adding seven assists.
Coming off of an injury in January, Anderson suffered a cracked vertebrae ending his season with the Cougars. After rehab, he’s been given the go ahead to play again. Despite being unable to compete in the NHL scouting combine this past May in Buffalo, Anderson’s draft stock remained high as the 215 pound, six foot three D-man takes his game to the professional level.
Harkins says it’s a huge opportunity for Anderson to develop even further now that he’ll get the chance to train in an NHL setting. “There’s constant communication between the big club and our club with each individual player and their personal involvement on and off the ice,” Harkins said. “I think that’s a huge asset for our organization to have players drafted cause then they get that constant feedback for their development.”
Two big names from the Cougars weren’t called this weekend. Rookie Centerman, Brogan O’Brien and Right Winger, Kody MacDonald did not drafted, but Harkins is pleased with their style of play and knows they’ll have a bright future. “I talked to so many teams about their development and where they’re going. There’s still a lot of excitement about both players and I think they just have to use it, understand where they’re at, and continue to work off the ice and on the ice to get themselves drafted next year.”