Team USA earned its first win of the 2023-24 World Junior championships in Sweden. It was a 4-1 victory over Norway. Honestly, most people assumed that the US would win even bigger than that. Hockey usually doesn’t go according to plan though.
One player who was a key contributor to the win was Gavin Brindley. He scored two incredible goals which helped the US pull away in the contest. He is showing that he has a game that will translate to the NHL.
In 2023, Brindley slipped down the draft boards and ended up being taken in the early stages of the second round by the Columbus Blue Jackets. That is a bad break for the player but awesome luck for the team.
Of course, Adam Fantilli was the first-round pick (third overall) of the Blue Jackets in 2023. Fantilli and Brindley were linemates at Michigan in 2022-23 before both were drafted by the same NHL team. Now, Brindley is having a great year at Michigan hoping to be in the show soon.
Team USA has a lot of talent and Gavin Brindley is at the forefront of it all.
Team USA is loaded with talent. Because of this, Brindley is a bit overshadowed but he shouldn't be. This is one of the top players on the team and in the tournament. He showed it in just his first game with the two goals.
Both of Brindley’s goals were of the beautiful variety too. He is expected to be a sweet offensive player and so far so good. The rest of this tournament is a good way to keep showcasing his skills.
As long as Brindley keeps developing, he should find his way to the NHL sooner than later. He should also find himself on a line with his good friend Adam Fantilli as well. If the Blue Jackets were smart, they'd make that one of their top priorities.
As mentioned before, Team USA is very deep right now. It is loaded with good players who will be stars in the NHL within the next handful of years. Gavin Brindley is one of them.
He fell in the draft because of his size a little bit. That is bad. Size doesn't matter much in the NHL anymore as tons of smaller players create offense at an elite pace. Brindley is going to be the next one to prove every team that passed on him wrong.
Team USA will next showcase Brindley on Thursday when they take on Team Switzerland.