True freshman center Brendan Brisson has yet to play a single shift for the Michigan Wolverines, but he is one step closer to his professional dreams after being selected by the Vegas Golden Knights with the 29th overall pick in the first round of the NHL Draft.
Brisson is the 25th first-round pick in the history of Michigan Hockey and 165th player taken from the Maize and Blue all-time, which extends the program’s streak to 25-straight years with a selection. Center Thomas Bordeleau is also expected to come off the board fairly early with the second through seventh rounds taking place on Wednesday.
“When I heard my name called by Vegas, I don’t even know the words to describe how I felt,” Brisson said after being selected. “My whole body went numb. I’m looking forward to waking up the next morning, getting better and wearing a Golden Knights jersey soon.”
Brisson was the rookie of the year in the USHL this season after 24 goals and 35 assists (59 points) in 45 games with the Chicago Steel. He has committed to at least playing this season with the Wolverines.
“He’s really shown improvement over the two years when our staff, who their job is to project who’s going to be the best players three, five years from now, they’re really excited for how high his ceiling could be,” Golden Knights general manager (and Michigan alum) Kelly McCrimmon said.
Michigan’s roster is loaded with NHL talent heading into the season with Brisson joined by a a pair of 2019 first round picks in defenseman Cam York and forward Johnny Beecher, who chose to return for their sophomore campaigns. Defenseman Owen Power and forwards Matty Benier and Kent Johnson are also projected to go high in next year’s draft.
Brisson’s father — Pat Brisson — is one of the most prominent agents in the NHL with a client list that includes Sidney Crosby and John Tavarres, among other players.
This is the latest of the good news for the hockey program this week, as the Big Ten announced that the puck will drop on the 2020-21 season as soon as Nov. 13, which is a month later than usual due to the coronavirus-altered sports schedules. The Wolverines are expected to be one of the teams in the mix for a Frozen Four berth.