2023 NHL Draft Preview
Kennewick, WA – The 2023 NHL Draft is set for June 28 and 29 at Bridgestone Arena, home of the Nashville Predators, and a number of Tri-City Americans players are hopeful to hear their names called.
NHL Central Scouting released their final rankings for the 2023 NHL Draft on April 18 with Lukas Dragicevic, Deagan McMillan and Tomas Suchanek being listed.
Dragicevic tops the list by coming in at 18th amongst North American Skaters. The Richmond, B.C. native had a stellar 2022-23 campaign as he led the Americans in scoring with 75 points (15-60-75). He was the only defensemen to lead his team in scoring across all 60 Canadian Hockey League teams.
The 6-foot-1, 194-pound Dragicevic also set an Americans franchise record with a 27-game point streak that stretched from October 14 to December 30, registering 37 points (7-30-37) over that span. In the playoffs against the Prince George Cougars Dragicevic added four assists in six games.
For the second year in a row Dragicevic represented Team Canada on the international stage as he was named to Hockey Canada’s team for the World U18 Hockey Championship, which took place in Switzerland from April 20-30. In seven games at the event Dragicevic recorded four points (2-2-4), helping Canada win a bronze medal.
McMillan was ranked 108th amongst North American skaters after a breakout 2022-23 season. As a rookie in 2021-22 McMillan picked up seven points (3-4-7) in 45 games before exploding for 47 points (17-30-47) this past season.
The Vernon, B.C. native did the majority of his damage at even strength with just 10 (2-8-10) of his 47 points coming on the power play.
Suchanek was ranked ninth amongst North American goaltenders on Central Scouting’s final rankings. The 2003-born Czechia native took major strides in his second season with the Americans.
Posting a 27-14-1-2 record, Suchanek won more than twice as many games as he did in 2021-22 (12) while improving his save percentage to .912 and lowering his goals against average to 3.05 compared to .901 and 3.87 the year before.
The 6-foot-2 Suchanek gained international recognition for his performance during the 2023 World Junior Championship, helping Team Czechia reach the gold medal game against Canada. In seven games Suchanek went 5-2 with a .934 save percentage and 1.52 goals against average, backstopping Czechia to their best finish at the event since they won gold in 2001.
Parker Bell was the lone member of the Americans selected in the 2022 NHL Draft, going 155th overall to the Calgary Flames. In the history of the Americans franchise since they relocated to Kennewick, 66 players have been drafted into the NHL.
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