By: Brian Lombardo
June 22nd was a special day for the Boston University Terriers men’s hockey team.
The NHL held their 2018 entry draft and like usual, the Terriers were well represented. The program had two players selected in the top half of the first round. Rising sophomore Brady Tkachuk was drafted 4th overall by the Ottawa Senators and incoming freshman Joel Farabee was selected 14th overall by the Philadelphia Flyers.
Tkachuk told reporters at the draft that he hadn’t decided whether he would turn pro or return to BU.
However, on Saturday morning, just weeks away from the start of the school year, ESPN’s John Buccigross tweeted that Tkachuk reached out to new BU head coach Albie O’Connell, informing him that he intends to sign a professional contract with the Senators, ending his BU career.
In his lone season with the Terriers, Tkachuk led the team in assists (23) and shots while being a key component on the power play. He was named to the Hockey East All-Rookie Team and helped the Terriers win a Hockey East Championship. He also represented Team USA and won a bronze medal in the IIHF World Junior Championship.
The program knew when recruiting Tkachuk, whose father Keith played for BU and was a first round pick in 1990, that he was going to be a highly touted prospect for professional teams. Brady’s brother, Matthew, was also first round pick (6th overall) in 2016 by the Calgary Flames.
Brady followed a similar BU career path as Jack Eichel. Eichel played one season at BU in 2015 before being selected by the Buffalo Sabres second overall and turning pro.
Buccigross tweeted Friday night that Tkachuk’s decision “has been a very difficult decision where a player sees the positive in both choices.”
Tkachuck’s decision is a major blow for this year’s Terrier team. The 6-foot-3-inch forward was slated to play on the first line and become one of the premier players in the country.
He’ll now either play in the NHL, AHL, or the OHL’s London Knights, who hold his CHL rights.