The BC Hockey League saw four players selected in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft in Los Angeles, including one in the first round. It was the lowest number of players drafted directly from the league in four years but wound up being two more than were selected in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.
Although the Columbus Blue Jackets selected former Penticton Vees forward Ryan Johansen in the first round, 4th overall, he was a member of the Western Hockey League’s Portland Winterhawks at the time. As a result, Johansen doesn’t count as one of the four players chosen directly from the BCHL.
The Port Moody, BC product’s jump from 17 points in 47 games with the Vees as a 16-year-old to 69 points in 71 games as a 17-year-old with the Winterhawks came as a surprise to some. However, Johansen’s play in the 2009 BCHL playoffs foreshadowed what was to come as he put up seven points in 10 games. Regardless, he counts as a draft pick from the WHL, not the BCHL.
The first BCHL player off the board in the 2010 NHL Draft was Vees forward Beau Bennett. He was selected in the first round, 20th overall by the Pittsburgh Penguins.
2009-10 was Bennett’s lone season in the BCHL and he tied for the league lead in scoring with 120 points in 56 games. For his efforts, the Gardena, California product was named as the 2010 Interior Conference rookie of the year.
In the two seasons after being picked by the Pens, Bennett played at the University of Denver and had 38 points in 47 games. He turned pro for the 2012-13 season and split the year between Pittsburgh and the American Hockey League with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins.
Bennett played most of the 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons with the NHL Penguins but also had a handful of AHL games sprinkled in as well. He was a full-timer with Pittsburgh in 2015-16 and won a Stanley Cup despite only appearing in one playoff game.
He was nabbed by the New Jersey Devils via trade at the draft in 2016 and played in a career-high 65 games in 2016-17. Bennett finished 10th in Devils scoring with 19 points that season.
After being an NHL regular in 2016-17, Bennett found himself in the minors again in 2017-18 after signing with the St. Louis Blues as an unrestricted free agent. He played 60 games for the Chicago Wolves of the AHL and averaged nearly a point per game.
In 2018-19, Bennett took his game overseas and signed with Dinamo Minsk of the Kontinental Hockey League. He couldn’t get on track in Belarus and was released after five games and just one assist.
The Arizona Coyotes signed Bennett to a one year, two-way deal last summer and he spent the 2019-20 season with their AHL affiliate in Tuscon. In 55 games, he put up 40 points.
At 28-years-old, Bennett hasn’t lived up to the billing of a first round draft pick but has carved out a decent NHL career, playing in 200 games and amassing 64 points. He’s also a veteran of 21 Stanley Cup playoff games.
Ninety-three spots after Bennett was drafted, the Montreal Canadiens selected Alberni Valley Bulldogs forward Mark MacMillan in the fourth round. The Penticton native had 26 goals and 54 assists in 59 games for the Bulldogs during the 2009-10 season and was named BCHL Coastal Conference rookie of the year.
During the summer of 2010, MacMillan requested a trade closer to home and was dealt from Alberni Valley to the Vees in a blockbuster. The following season, he put up 57 points in 40 games with Penticton as he battled injury.
MacMillan was off to the University of North Dakota in 2011-12 and spent the next four seasons with the now-Fighting Hawks. He finished his NCAA career with 99 points in 151 games and signed a two-year entry level contract with Montreal.
He turned pro for 2015-16 and played 62 games for the Canadiens’ AHL affiliate in St. John’s, Newfoundland. MacMillan ended up with 17 points with the IceCaps. He also got into six ECHL games with the Brampton Beast and put up five points.
In 2016-17, MacMillan spent the entire season in the American League but his point total dropped to 13 on six goals and seven assists. He wasn’t re-signed by the Habs and joined the Witchita Thunder of the ECHL as a free agent.
A stint in the ECHL brought back MacMillan’s scoring touch and he posted 53 points in 65 games for the Thunder in 2017-18, good enough for second in team scoring.
He signed in Europe for the first time in his career for the 2018-19 season, joining Tingsryds AIF of Sweden’s Allsvenskan. MacMillan had one assist in 11 games with Tingsryds AIF before moving on to the EC Kassel Huskies of the DEL2, which is the second highest level of pro hockey in Germany.
After just two games with the Huskies, MacMillan was back in the ECHL with Witchita. He signed a standard pro contract with the Thunder in November 2018 and wound up with 41 points in 52 games.
This past season, MacMillan journeyed to Denmark to play with the Herning Blue Fox. He notched 33 points in 42 games in 2019-20 and signed a one year contract extension with the Blue Fox in late July to return to the team for 2020-21.
Just a season removed from playing junior B with the Nelson Leafs of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League, defenseman Isaac MacLeod had his name called by the San Jose Sharks in the fifth round, 136th overall in the 2010 NHL Draft.
MacLeod, who’s from Nelson, BC, was coming off a rookie season with the Penticton Vees which saw him put up 23 assists in 56 games. He also played in 14 playoff games with the Vees in 2010 and chipped in one assist.
He jumped from Penticton to the NCAA with Boston College in 2010-11 and had three assists and a -4 plus/minus rating in 22 games as a freshman. MacLeod improved to six assists in 44 games and a plus-13 rating in 2011-12.
— San Jose Sharks (@SanJoseSharks) June 26, 2010
The blueliner played two more seasons with the Eagles, wrapping up his NCAA career as an alternate captain for Boston College and setting a career high in points with 11 assists in 2013-14.
The Sharks didn’t sign MacLeod and he turned pro with the Springfield Falcons of the AHL. The Falcons assigned him to the Kalamazoo Wings of the ECHL for 2014-15 and posted four points in 13 games in an injury-filled season.
MacLeod tore both his Achilles’ tendon and the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee within a month of each other while playing with the K-Wings in the fall of 2014. As he was rehabbing from the ACL injury, he injured his right knee in August 2015, effectively ending his playing career.
Many had visions of Vernon Vipers twin forwards Kellen and Connor Jones being drafted to the same NHL team like Daniel and Henrik Sedin were 11 years earlier but it wasn’t meant to be for the pair from Montrose, BC.
Despite leading the Vipers in scoring with 81 points, Connor wasn’t drafted. Kellen, however, was selected by the Edmonton Oilers in the seventh round, 202nd overall after scoring 53 points in 41 games with the Vipers in 2009-10. He also led the RBC Cup tournament in scoring and was named most sportsmanlike player as Vernon won the national championship.
Jones headed to Quinnipiac University in 2010 and spent four seasons with the Bobcats, including the last two as an alternate captain. He signed an amateur tryout contract in 2014 with the AHL’s Oklahoma City Barons after his NCAA career came to an end and played five games.
The following season, Jones scored 15 points in 49 games with Oklahoma City in his first year as a full-time pro. He also spent 27 games with the Oilers ECHL affiliate in Bakersfield and posted 25 points.
2015-16 saw Jones sign with the Missouri Mavericks of the ECHL. He played 23 games with the Mavs before joining Bakersfield (now a member of the AHL) for 12 games, where he had three points. Later that season, Jones was signed to a pro tryout by the Utica Comets, which is the Vancouver Canucks AHL affiliate.
In 2016, the left winger inked an AHL deal with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers and spent the next 1.5 seasons with them, scoring 24 points in 88 games. He also played half of the 2017-18 season as an alternate captain with the Worcerster Railers of the ECHL and posted 22 points in 35 games.
Jones ventured overseas for the first time in his career for 2018-19 to join Västerviks IK of the Allsvenskan. He ended the season with 30 points in 52 games. This past season, Jones played 36 games with HC Thurgau of the Swiss League, which is the second tier of pro hockey in Switzerland.
Late last month, the 29-year-old signed a one year contract to return to Västerviks IK for the 2020-21 season.