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Coloration of Hockey: Montgomery showcased forward of 2021 NHL Draft

William Douglas has been writing The Coloration of Hockey weblog for the previous 9 years. Douglas joined NHL.com in March 2019 and writes about folks of colour within the sport. Right this moment, he profiles Bryce Montgomery, a defenseman for London of the Ontario Hockey League who ranked No. 146 amongst North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting forward of the 2021 NHL Draft.

Bryce Montgomery was thrilled to make a shock video saying that his youthful brother, Blake, was chosen by London within the ninth spherical (No. 176) of the 2021 Ontario Hockey League Precedence Choice draft, doubtlessly making them teammates sometime.

“It was actually cool for me to announce Blake into the London household,” mentioned Bryce, who signed with London in 2019. “It meant the world to me, and he is actually excited to be a part of the group now and I can not wait to see the place his path takes him.”

Bryce Montgomery cannot wait to study extra about his personal path. He’s No. 146 in NHL Central Scouting’s closing rating of North American skaters for the 2021 NHL Draft. The primary spherical is July 23 (8 p.m. ET; ESPN2, SN, SN NOW) with rounds 2-7 on July 24 (11 a.m. ET; NHLN, SN, SN NOW).

“It is undoubtedly been loads the previous few weeks with me touring, Blake having his draft happening, and the upcoming NHL Draft,” he mentioned. “I am actually humbled and grateful and I might be grateful wherever I land.”

Montgomery (6-foot-4, 215 kilos) has barely been house within the months resulting in the draft. He was on the street showcasing his expertise as a result of the OHL did not have a 2020-21 season resulting from considerations surrounding the coronavirus.

He traveled to Massachusetts in Might to play 10 video games within the Pandemic Hockey League, a four-team operation for gamers whose seasons have been impacted by the pandemic.

Then it was off to Erie, Pennsylvania, later that month for 10 extra video games on the PBHH Invitational showcase, a six-team, two-week occasion organized by a number of OHL gamers to offer gamers the chance to play in entrance of NHL scouts earlier than the draft.

“That is in all probability essentially the most scouts I’ve ever performed in entrance of, from NHL groups, ever,” Montgomery mentioned. “These showcases, they have been my season. That is how vital they have been as a result of I did not have an opportunity to have an everyday season.”

A product of the Washington Little Caps and Staff Maryland AAA applications and Cushing Academy prep faculty hockey, Montgomery had two assists in 33 video games for London in 2019-20.

NHL Central Scouting’s Joey Tenute mentioned the showcases ought to serve Montgomery effectively for the draft.

“He did some stuff that he wanted to do to get seen, so he is undoubtedly on the radar,” Tenute mentioned. “He is an enormous defenseman that skates effectively. He is acquired good vary. He is acquired good offensive instincts. He is a man that appears to leap up and be a part of the frenzy and turn into that trailing possibility. It seems like he is acquired a great shot. Within the Erie match, he scored a few good targets.”

Billy Sullivan, a London scout who first seen Montgomery as a 6-foot, smooth-skating 13-year-old, mentioned there’s nonetheless extra upside to faucet.

“He acquired nice teaching his first yr, however he was a rookie, and we have been a really deep staff,” Sullivan mentioned. “This yr, (2021-22) he is actually going to be given the ball just a little bit. The place he will be on the finish of this yr and on the finish of 4 years is simply going to be, in my view, is worlds away from the place he’s now.”

Montgomery comes from an athletic and historic background. His father, Matthew, was an All-American defenseman at St. Mary’s College of Minnesota, an NCAA Division III faculty in Winona. He holds the college’s document for many targets by a defenseman in a season, 20 in 1988-89.

“My dad, he is our rock,” Montgomery mentioned. “He is a hockey man, a hockey guru. Ever since I used to be just a little child, he was like my private coach.”

Montgomery’s mom, Kimberly Robinson, performed basketball for the College of California-Berkeley. His grandmother, Debbie Montgomery, was a civil rights activist, the primary feminine officer for the St. Paul, Minnesota, police division in 1975 and a founding father of the Mariucci Internal Metropolis Hockey Starter Affiliation in 1984. A St. Paul road bears her identify.

Montgomery’s 16-year-old brother Blake, a ahead, was chosen within the OHL draft due to his talent and household hockey pedigree.

“His talent and hockey IQ are perhaps much more so than the place Bryce was, or not less than in the identical ballpark,” Sullivan mentioned. “Bryce may do some extra due to his pure means, however Blake actually understands the sport and he has nice hands-on prime of that.”

Blake Montgomery (6-foot-2, 165 kilos) mentioned he’ll play for Seacoast Efficiency Academy in New Hampshire in 2020-21. He is already studying the ropes of taking part in for London and the OHL from his huge brother and potential future teammate.

“I am studying from him off-ice self-discipline, managing my time higher, as a result of he is superb with that, work ethic normally as a result of he works very exhausting,” Blake mentioned. “It is superior that he is there. I do know what to anticipate there.”

Pictures: Matt Hiscox Images

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