UConn Hockey - NHL Entry Draft 2020 Recap

Three Huskies Taken in the 2020 NHL Draft

STORRS, Conn.–UConn sophomore defenseman Yan Kuznetsov(Murmansk, Russia) and freshmen forwards Artem Shlaine(Moscow, Russia) and Nick Capone(East Haven, Conn.) were all selected on day two of the 2020 NHL Draft.

Kuznetsov was the first Husky off the board on day two as he was selected 50thoverall in the 2ndround by the Calgary Flames. The sophomore defenseman, the youngest player in the NCAA last year, is the fourth highest draft pick in program history.

A pair of Husky newcomers followed Kuznetsov’s selection with Shlaine going in the 5thround (130thoverall) to the New Jersey Devils and Capone following in the 6thround (157thoverall) to the Stanley Cup Champion Tampa Bay Lightning.

The Huskies have now had 18 players taken in the NHL Draft since head coach Mike Cavanaugh took over the program in 2013-14. The 2020-21 UConn roster features eight players who are NHL Draft picks in juniors Kale Howarth (2017/Columbus/5thRD), Tomas Vomacka (2017/Nashville/5thRD), and Jachym Kondelik (2018/Nashville/4thRD), sophomores Vladislav Firstov (2019/Minnesota/2ndRD), Yan Kuznetsov (2020/Calgary/2ndRD) and Carter Berger (2019/Florida/4thRD) and freshmen Artem Shlaine (2020/New Jersey/5thRD) and Nick Capone (2020/Tampa Bay/6thRD).

With three Huskies being selected, it matches the program’s previous highs of three players taken in the 2016 and 2019 drafts.

The 2020 NHL Entry Draft is the 58th NHL Entry Draft, being held from October 6–7, 2020. It was originally scheduled for June 26–27, 2020 at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, but was postponed on March 25, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the conclusion of the 2020 Stanley Cup playoffs.

Yan Kuznetsov – Sophomore – Defenseman – Murmansk, Russia

Calgary Flames – 2ndRound – 50thOverall

  • 4thhighest draft pick in UConn history. Behind Tage Thompson (2016/1st RD/26th overall/St. Louis), Ruslan Iskhakov (2018/2nd RD/43rd overall/New York Islanders) and current teammate Vladislav Firstov (2019/2ndRD/42nd overall/Minnesota).
  • 7thUConn defenseman drafted in program history.
  • 1stHusky to be drafted by the Calgary organization.
  • 4thRussian born player in program history to be drafted.
  • Was the youngest player (3/9/02) in college hockey last season.
  • Played in all 34 games as a freshman, finishing with 11 points coming on two goals and nine assists. He also had 20 blocked shots.
  • Off the ice, was a Hockey East All-Academic team member.

Artem Shlaine – Freshman – Forward – Moscow, Russia

New Jersey Devils – 5thRound – 130thOverall

  • 4thUConn player to be selected in the 5thround of the draft.
  • 8thUConn forward drafted in program history.
  • 1stHusky to be drafted by the New Jersey organization.
  • 5thRussian born player in program history to be drafted.
  • Comes to Storrs afterplaying two seasons at Shattuck-St. Mary's Prep.
  • Last year, was the team’s leading scorer with 78 points in 48 games including 26 goals. 

Nick Capone – Freshman – Forward – East Haven, Conn.

Tampa Bay Lightning – 6thRound – 157thOverall

  • 2ndUConn player to be selected in 6thround of the draft.
  • 9thUConn forward drafted in program history.
  • 1stHusky to be drafted by the Tampa Bay organization.
  • 1stConnecticut born player in program history to be drafted.
  • Will make his collegiate debut for the Huskies this season after spending last year with Tri-City of the USHL.
  • In 34 games, he totaled 19 points on seven goals and 12 assists. He had three power play goals and six power play assists.

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