IceDogs import winger selected by Sharks
Danil Gushchin has yet to play a game for the Niagara IceDogs but he is already a National Hockey League draft pick.
Gushchin, who was selected by the IceDogs in the 2020 Canadian Import Draft, is now a member of the San Jose Sharks after being selected in the third round (76th overall) of the National Hockey League draft Wednesday.
“This is an extremely exciting day, for not only Danil, but our whole organization,” IceDogs general manager Joey Burke said. “I think San Jose is the perfect home for Danil and he will fit in with them immediately. They will love having him with us to further his development.”
The IceDogs selected the 5-foot-8, 165-pound winger with the fourth overall selection. Gushchin is the highest pick in IceDogs history in the CHL Import Draft. Previously, the highest selection had been 13th overall in 2017.
Gushchin played the past two seasons with the United States Hockey League’s (USHL) Muskegon Lumberjacks. In the 2018-19 season, he scored 16 goals and collected 20 assists in 51 games. This past season, he was more than a point-per-game player, scoring 22 goals and collecting 25 assists in 42 games.
“Danil has worked extremely hard to get to this point and he should be very proud of himself — everyone in Niagara certainly is,” Burke said. “This further puts a stamp on what a high-end player he is. We can’t wait to get started with Danil playing a massive role for us come December.”
The 2002-born Russian, from Yekaterinburg, has represented his country several times: at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge (2017), Hlinka-Gretzky Cup (2018 – bronze medal; 2019 – gold medal), International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) U18 World Championship (2019 – silver medal), World Jr. A Challenge (2019 – gold medal).
Niagara forwards and Cam Butler and Jake Uberti were not selected in the draft which consisted of seven rounds and 217 players being chosen.
Butler, an 18-year-old Ottawa native, was ranked 138th overall for North American skaters while Uberti, an 18-year-old Toronto native, was ranked 147th.
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