2017-18 Stats: 1G, 3A, 4P (22 NHL Games with Isles)
Cap Hit: $770,000 | 2 Years
Sebastian Aho was drafted in the fifth round of the 2017 NHL draft. He’d already been to the dance a number of times. His first trip to the draft was in 2014 where he went undrafted until the Isles took him three years later.
Being 21-years-old when the draft occurred in the summer of 2017, Aho was already physically a step ahead of the 18-year-olds in the draft.
But still, fifth-round picks, regardless of their age when they are drafted don’t make the NHL in the first year after their draft. Sebastian Aho did. He didn’t make it right out of training camp. He made it because Calvin de Haan and Johnny Boychuk picked up significant injuries. The injuries forced the Isles to bring him up after looking solid in the AHL.
The relatively under-sized defender, who stands 5’10” and 170lbs, had a shaky start to his NHL career. He just looked a step slower than everyone else on the ice. But as the game progressed and his time with the Islanders grew longer, Aho got better.
Aho would stay with the Isles for 22 games and sit on their bottom pair. He looked perfectly at ease on the Islanders third pair. Offering the team a good solid option when called upon.
But just like Toews, who knows if he makes the team this year. The team could use one more defender to keep numbers at a typical NHL seven blueliners. But he’ll have to prove he deserves the spot over the more offensively minded Devon Toews.
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The position to watch at training camp will be what the Isles do with that last seventh spot on defense. With Nick Leddy, Adam Pelech and Thomas Hickey the Islanders have enough to stock their three pairs