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Fantasy Summary

A smooth-skating defenceman who can play in all situations. Can rush the puck up the ice and jump up into the attack.


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August 2020 – Johnson’s freshman year with the Minnesota Golden Gophers was a good start for the smooth-skating defenceman. He was the co-winner of the Gophers’ Mike Crupi Most Determined Player Award. In June 2020, he was named to USA Hockey’s 2020 World Junior Summer Showcase, although that event was ultimately cancelled due to COVID-19. Johnson played in all 37 games for the Gophers and during the year saw opportunities to play in all situations. He scored just eight assists in those 37 games and recorded zero goals. As a capable puck-carrying defenceman, he can carry the puck out of his own zone and join the team on the attack. However, he has not proven to be a significant offensive contributor at this level. Kevin Wong


January 2020  – Johnson was invited to the US World Juniors preliminary roster, but was cut days before the tournament kicked off. Unfortunately, with the amount of defensive talent that the Americans had, there was not an open slot for Johnson. Aside from being cut from the World Junior roster, Johnson has tallied six assists in 22 games at the University of Minnesota. Given that Johnson does not possess a booming shot and is more of a two-way transitional defenseman, his offensive numbers are not concerning. Josh Tessler


July 2019 – Johnson can be a solid top-four defenseman in the NHL one day. He’s coming off of a great campaign with Sioux Falls and will be playing for the University of Minnesota next season. There is a chance that the 17-year-old could pay on his wrong side and play alongside Jackson LaCombe (Anaheim Ducks prospect). In terms of his skill-set, Johnson isn’t a physical specimen, but he’s dependable in all three zones. His skating is top-notch. Johnson’s edge-work is on par with defenseman who was taken higher than him in the 2019 draft (I.e. Bowen Byram, Philip Broberg). Sometimes, he’ll get out of position and create a pinch. It has worked out well in the USHL, but he’ll need to be a bit more cautious about how frequent he creates pinches in the offensive zone. Yet, when he creates a pinch, he moves right to the net and attempts to create scoring chance after scoring chance. On the blue-line, he shows stay-at-home tendencies. He’s always moving and ready for anything. He’ll shift back and forth across the blue-line in an effort to prevent a potential breakout. If there is one area in his game that needs further development it’s his physicality. Josh Tessler


June 2019 – Johnson has been drafted 31st overall by the Sabres. Josh Tessler

Fantasy Upside 6.5
NHL Certainty 7.5
Country USA
Position D
Roster Type System
Shoot/Glove Left
Date of Birth July 24, 2001
Height 6‘1”
Weight 175 lbs
Drafted 2019 Round 1; Overall: 31