Watchers of college hockey were waiting for this decision for some time and now Mark Divver of the Providence Journal has confirmed that Oliver Wahlstrom will indeed play for Boston College in 2018-19. Wahlstrom had been committed to Harvard and also linked to Michigan previously—and even committed to Maine when he was just 13 (before de-committing two years later)—but will be an Eagle for at least one season. The promising winger has drawn the eye of NHL scouts since the age of nine and his arrival at Harvard was much-anticipated; that excitement now belongs to BC fans, at least for the 2018-19 season.
Wahlstrom, 17, is considered one of the best pure goal-scorers eligible for this year’s draft and will almost certainly be selected somewhere in the first ten picks. The right-handed forward scored a ridiculous 70 goals in 88 games as part of the US Development program this year, and found incredible chemistry with potential 2019 first-overall pick Jack Hughes. A rare breed of size and skill, Wahlstrom is as close to a sure thing as an NHL prospect among forwards in this draft class.
Armed with a brilliant shot and excellent skating and puck-protection skills, Wahlstrom is expected to dominate at the college level and quickly grade out to the NHL. Playing for Boston College will prove to be a greater challenge, given the strength of the Hockey East Conference compared to Harvard in the ECAC, but will give him an excellent chance to experience team success with a top program and could persuade him to stay in the NCAA for more than one year. Still, whoever drafts him will want to get him into their system before long, as there is little that Wahlstrom can’t do on the offensive side of the puck.