The Columbus Blue Jackets have signed their 2018 first-round pick, announcing a three-year entry-level contract for Liam Foudy. Foudy is still expected to return to the London Knights for the 2018-19 season, which would allow his contract to slide forward one year.
Foudy, the 18th-overall selection this year, is an incredibly talented athlete that still has work to do to reach his full potential. Not expected to be drafted so high early in the year, Foudy kept climbing up draft boards and impressed at the NHL Scouting Combine where he won several events and performed well in nearly all the others. Though he had just 40 points for the Knights, he showed enough to make a believer out of Blue Jackets’ GM Jarmo Kekalainen, who is known to take big risks in the draft for players he thinks can be top-end NHL talents.
That’s the ceiling for Foudy, who will try to take the next step on a London team that should be a contender for the Memorial Cup this season. If he’s given more offensive responsibility, he could find another level of production and prove the Blue Jackets right. At the very least the team will continue to work with him and try to turn his outstanding athleticism into outstanding hockey performance.