The 2018 NHL Draft was filled with high-end defensemen, with five blueliners going in the first 12 picks. This year’s draft is looking to be the opposite of that, with few high-end defenders available. However, one player who would be considered one of the best defensemen in any draft year is Bowen Byram. He was the third overall pick in the 2016 WHL Bantam Draft. The Cranbrook, British Columbia native led the WHL in goals by a defender with 26 this season. He also scored 71 points in 67 games for the Vancouver Giants. He’s kept up that pace in the playoffs, with three goals and eight points in six games so far.
Byram has represented Canada on the international stage. He put up four points in six games, helping them to gold at last summer’s Hlinka-Gretzky Cup. Last season he put up five points in six games, helping Canada Red to the silver medal at the Under 17 World Hockey Challenge. He also played in five games as an underage player at the IIHF Under-18 World Championship.