Ty Smith of the Spokane Chiefs, Evan Bouchard of the London Knights, and Charle-Edouard D’Astous of the Rimouski Oceanic are the 2019 finalists for the Superstore Defenceman of the Year Award.
Smith is this year’s winner of the Bill Hunter Memorial Trophy as the WHL’s Defenceman of the Year after recording seven goals and 62 assists for 69 points in only 57 appearances to finish second in Chiefs team scoring and fourth among defencemen league-wide. He then added another nine points in 15 playoff contests to help the Chiefs advance to the WHL Western Conference Final.
A first-round pick by the New Jersey Devils in last year’s NHL draft, Smith has spent the past three seasons with Spokane, accumulating 26 goals and 150 assists for 176 points in 194 career appearances.
A native of Lloydminster, Sask., Smith was originally chosen first overall by the Chiefs in the 2015 WHL Bantam Draft.
Although he was limited to 45 appearances in 2018-19, Bouchard made the most of his time with the Knights in collecting 16 goals and 37 assists for 53 points to finish tied for fourth in team scoring, while his 1.18 points per game finished second league-wide among all rearguards.
With the 2019 postseason underway, Bouchard was named the CHL Player of the Week after he notched seven points, counting two goals and five assists, in a pair of quarter-final wins versus the Windsor Spitfires. In all, the Oakville, Ont., native wraps up his four-year career with the Knights with 54 goals and 147 assists for 201 points in 223 appearances.
Bouchard was selected 17th overall by the Knights in the 2015 OHL Priority Selection. Three years later, he was again a first-round selection as the Edmonton Oilers chose him 10th overall in the 2018 NHL Draft.
D’Astous was presented with the Emile Bouchard Trophy as the Defenceman of the Year after leading all QMJHL blue-liners with 66 points, counting 14 goals and 52 assists. He also led the way with 25 helpers on the man advantage.
Across four seasons with his hometown Oceanic, D’Astous has registered 49 goals and 132 assists for 181 points in 244 career games. In April, the 21-year-old inked a two-year contract with the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins, the minor-league affiliate of the Detroit Red Wings.
D’Astous was originally selected by the Oceanic in the fourth round of the 2015 QMJHL Entry Draft.