DRAFT YEAR PRODUCTION: USNTDP (USHL) 12 GP, 13G, 5A, 18PTS; USNTDP (USDP) 13GP, 13G, 7A, 20PTS
RANKING: 12th, North American Skaters by Central Scouting
WHAT'S THE BUZZ
The most skilled forward on the NTDP, Lucius returned from a serious knee injury and somehow looked like a better skater than before. One of the best goal-scorers in the draft, his shot selection is impeccable. - Ryan Kennedy, The Hockey News
CUT TO THE CHASE
Considered the best goal scorer of the 2021 NHL Entry Draft, according to many experts, Chaz Lucius had a draft year full of trials. Suffering a lower-body injury in his draft year kept him off the ice and into the operating room before the start of the 2020-21 season. He returned to the ice on Feb. 19, 2021, with the U.S. National Team Develop Program, 30 games into the team's 2020-21 season. If there was any worry that he had lost a step, his first game would disprove any doubts. In his first game back, he scored two goals on the first two shots of the game against the Chicago Steel.
Committed to the University of Minnesota in the NCAA for next season, Lucius has a complete arsenal and dynamic ability when it comes to his shot and making them count. A wrist shot, slap shot, one-timer, and on his backhand, he can finish with them all, and often times in the blink of an eye. This is a goal-scorer, a natural finisher to look out for in the 2021 Draft, and has been identified by many scouts as a potential top-six player on an NHL team.
His skating is an area that most analysts say needs the most work, and that is not a knock on the player, it is just not up to the same elite standards as some in the draft when it comes to the explosiveness of the first couple of strides and speed.
DID YOU KNOW?
Chaz has been committed to the University of Minnesota since he was 14 years old. He committed under the previous rules of college hockey recruiting, which are no longer in place, that would allow players 14-15 years old to commit to a university.