Ryan Zuhlsdorf

Tampa Bay Lightning
Matt Dewkett

Fantasy Summary

Defensive-minded blueliner with decent smarts and passing ability. However, he has limited offensive upside which may hinder his ability to become anything greater than a depth pro-level defenseman.

Fantasy Upside 3.5
NHL Certainty 3.0
Country USA
Position D
Roster Type System
Shoot/Glove Left
Date of Birth July 1, 1997
Height 6‘0”
Weight 192 lbs
Drafted 2015 Round 5; Overall: 150


March 2019 – It was more of the same of what we’ve come to expect from Zuhlsdorf in his Junior year with the Golden Gophers, as he posted another single digit season in points with eight in 34 games. Zuhlsdorf’s bread and butter is the defensive side of the game, where he’s become a reliable piece for Minnesota at both evens and on the penalty kill. Zuhlsdorf has also improved his discipline this season, as he’s finding ways to defend attackers in more effective ways without taking obstruction penalties and even posted a career low in penalty minutes in 2018-19. Zuhlsdorf’s ceiling as an offensive contributor is very limited and, barring a massive leap during his Senior year, I’m doubtful at this time he projects beyond a depth defensive defenseman. Brandon Holmes

March 2018 – The University of Minnesota sophomore defender concluded his season goalless in Big-10 competition, and racked up a substantial 40 minutes in penalties through 38 games. A year removed from finishing the regular season atop the B1G standings, the Gophers struggled to maintain a sub-.500 record, despite an enormously talented lineup. The Division I Men’s Ice Hockey Committee will announce the remaining 10 teams to compete in the NCAA tournament on March 18th, The Gophers season could be extended should they be selected. Brayden Olafson

November 2017 – In his second season with the Gophers, Zuhlsdorf has pushed his puck distributing skills a half step higher, a month into the NCAA season. The former fifth-round-pick will almost certainly play out his degree at The University of Minnesota while he continues to work on rounding out his game. Zuhsdorf is one of the few players that seems to stray from the typical Lightning drafting theme of being a two-way player first, though he does play an important role as a set-up defender. The puck-moving rearguard has physically developed since being drafted, however, his puck distribution ability seems to be his only tool as he turns the half-way point of his college career – in his combined five seasons between the USHL and NCAA, he’s scored only five goals in 151 games. If you’re looking for a defender who can contribute in multiple categories, Zuhsdorf is not your man – in a strictly points league, he’s a blip on the radar. Brayden Olafson  

June 2017 – The undersized defenseman attended the University of Minnesota in his draft+2 season. After finishing the previous season with the Dubuque Fighting Saints of the USHL, Zuhlsdorf committed to the NCAA where his completion was thoroughly upgraded, both in terms of skill and size. The adjustment was evident for Zuhlsdorf, who in his days in the USHL had carried the reputation of an offensive defenseman. He carried his weight as a freshman though, finishing his freshman campaign with positive indications of defensive responsibility, and leaving himself with room to improve offensively as he earns more ice time in the future. Brayden Olafson  

August 2016 – Ryan Zuhlsdorf is a small, skilled, quick, and offensively minded defender looking to make a splash in his first year at the NCAA level this upcoming season. At Minnesota, Zuhlsdorf will be able to finesse his game due to the faster pace, as well as build his body in order to adapt to the professional game. Max Marko


 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2012-2013 Edina Bantam AA Bantam - - - - - |          
 2013-2014 Edina High USHS-MN 25 1 11 12 6 | Playoffs 2 0 2 2
  Team Southwest UMHSEHL 2 0 0 0 0 | Playoffs 1 0 0 0
  Edina High MN State 3 0 2 2 0 |          
  Team Northeast UMHSEHL 2 0 1 1 0 | Playoffs 1 0 0 0
  Team Southeast UMHSEHL 12 2 3 5 10 | Playoffs 3 0 1 1
 2014-2015 Team Black USA-S17 5 1 0 1 - |          
  Sioux City Musketeers USHL 56 3 19 22 58 | Playoffs 5 0 2 2
  Sioux City Musketeers JCWC 6 0 1 1 2 |          
  USA U19 WJAC-19 4 0 2 2 2 |          
 2015-2016 Sioux City Musketeers USHL 30 0 23 23 51 |          
  Dubuque Fighting Saints USHL 16 0 5 5 8 | Playoffs 12 0 4 4 12 
  USA U19 WJAC-19 5 0 2 2 0 |          
 2016-2017 Univ. of Minnesota NCAA 37 2 3 5 35 |          
 2017-2018 Univ. of Minnesota NCAA 38 0 9 9 40 |          
 2018-2019 Univ. of Minnesota NCAA 35 1 7 8 23 |