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2021 NHL Draft: Caps Select Brent Johnson

The Caps have selected the defenseman out of the USHL

2021 NHL Draft - Round One Photo by Zach Guerette/NHLI via Getty Images

With the 80th pick in the 2021 NHL Entry Draft, the Capitals have selected defenseman Brent Johnson from the USHL.

Here’s Johnson getting his first facetime with the media after his selection:

via Elite Prospects

Here’s how Johnson was ranked by various scouts heading into this draft:

From EP’s scouting report:

Without the puck, he’s always filling space, getting as deep in the zone as possible without letting his man slip behind him. He sneaks down the weak side. The transition deception translates to his playmaking, where he takes passes into a shooting stance, then immediately passes to a more dangerously positioned teammate. Simply put, Johnson wants to be a difference-maker — that mentality is tough to teach.

From SmahtHockey’s scouting report on Johnson:

Johnson really is a do-it-all defenseman. He can play with skill and confidence in every single zone. In Johnson, you’re getting a player who is excellent in transition, who can quarterback a power-play, and who isn’t afraid to jump into the rush at any given opportunity.

In transition, Johnson prefers to hit teammates with a breakout pass as opposed to carrying the puck into the offensive zone by himself, or dumping the puck in. He can hit teammates in stride with short and medium-range passes, but could definitely brush up on his passing at long distances, as he tends to struggle a little bit with accuracy.

[...] Johnson definitely isn’t afraid to jump into the rush, but perhaps more impressive, he can also backcheck with effectiveness and ease. It’s an uncommon occurrence to see him caught way out of position after charging up ice, as he’s usually made up the gap between the attacker and himself with his explosive backchecking speed.

DobberProspects dissects Johnson’s game in this video: