While Quinn Hughes has decided to head back to the University of Michigan for another year, he won’t be joined by brother Jack Hughes this season. The younger of the two, Jack, is expected to be the first-overall selection next June and according to Mike Morreale of NHL.com will spend his draft year playing with the US National Team Development Program once again. That likely means he’ll never be heading to the collegiate ranks, as he’s widely expected to step right into the NHL for the 2019-20 season given his incredible talent.
The two will get a chance to play together on a big stage at the World Junior Championship in late December, as both are basically locks for a team that is exploding with talent. The pair are currently playing at the World Junior Summer Showcase in Kamloops, British Columbia before Quinn returns to Michigan and Jack takes his place with the NTDP.
- Ryan Poehling meanwhile won’t play in any of the Summer Showcase games according to Morreale, after he underwent surgery on July 7th. Poehling had tonsilitis and a deviated septum dealt with, and instead is skating on his own at the tournament getting ready for his junior year at St. Cloud State. The Montreal Canadiens draft pick will likely be a returnee for the US World Junior squad, after recording three points in seven games during their bronze medal run last time around. Poehling is another one of the Montreal center prospects that will try to solve their lengthy struggles down the middle, and could easily be playing professional hockey by the end of the 2018-19 season.
- The Philadelphia Flyers have named Barry Hanrahan Vice President, in addition to his current title of Assistant General Manager. Hanrahan has been with the club for more than two decades filling various roles, and is a key part of their front office.
- Mark Hunter is now eligible to be hired by any team in the league, after the Toronto Maple Leafs deal with him ended on July 15, but as Craig Custance of The Athletic (subscription required) writes, it makes sense that he’s taking his time. Custance spoke to one of Hunter’s former colleagues in Lindsay Hofford—recently hired by the Arizona Coyotes—who extolled the virtues and successes of Hunter over the years. There’s an obvious desire from Hunter to become an NHL GM, something even Maple Leafs GM Kyle Dubas explained when he was given the job, but no clear openings right now. Whether he’ll accept another role as an assistant isn’t clear, but he remains a strong candidate.