ANN ARBOR, MI – The 2021-22 NHL season got underway on Tuesday, with the Seattle Kraken playing their first game as a member of the league.
However, there’s a different NHL team that the city of Elmira is going to need to start to embrace in the near future.
Elmira native Johnny Beecher was a first round draft pick of the Boston Bruins back in 2019.
Now, Beecher is a junior at the University of Michigan, with his eyes set on an NHL roster.
However, playing in general currently on hold.
Having just recovered from a shoulder procedure that cut his previous season with the Wolverines short, Beecher is now out with another upper body injury.
Despite the set back, Beecher says he’s making progress and is hopeful to find his way back on the ice in Ann Arbor soon.
“You know I just got cleared, starting skating a little bit, couple days ago. I’m just trying to get out a couple of a days a week and just get my legs moving again. Can’t do anything with puck yet, just pretty much up and down the ice. It feels good to get out there and going to try and get ready,” he says.
While Beecher will certainly be a welcomed edition to the Wolverines lineup when he returns, this Michigan squad should be just fine without him.
The #3 team in the nation is coming off a two-game sweep of Lake Superior State, and features 13 NHL draft picks, 7 of which are 1st rounders, including the top pick from April’s draft, Owen Powers.
Michigan is set to play in the Ice Breaker Tournament this weekend, with their opening game coming on Friday against host school, fellow powerhouse 5th-ranked Minnesota Duluth.