How former Michigan hockey players fared in their NHL debut

A pair of former Wolverines made their NHL debut Tuesday night. Owen Power and Matty Beniers started their NHL careers with the Buffalo Sabers and Seattle Kraken, respectively.

The Buffalo Sabers selected Owen Power No. 1 overall in the 2021 NHL Draft. Power returned to Michigan for his second season and is now officially saber after the end of the 2021-22 college hockey season.

Despite not getting a point in his first career game with the Sabers, Power had a very productive night in a win over the Toronto Maple Leafs. The 19-year-old spent 19:50 on the ice and finished with a +/- at 2. Power also recorded a blocked shot, a hit and a takeaway.

Power’s perhaps most impressive play came early in the first period when the rookie broke up a 2-on-1 Toronto rush.

Power was even honored in the locker room after the 5-2 win over the Maple Leafs.

The Beniers also had a successful debut. The Kraken lost, 5-3, to the Calgary Flames, but the Beniers were a bright spot.

The Kraken drafted the Beniers with the overall No. 2 in last year’s NHL Draft. Like Power, the Beniers returned to Michigan for their second season. With the end of the college season, the Beniers joined the Kraken.

The 19-year-old spent 17:10 on the ice, scoring his first NHL point ever. The Beniers were credited with the primary assist on the opening goal of the match.

The Beniers also noted a hit and a takeaway in the loss. He made up his mind after his debut.

Former Wolverines Kent Johnson and Nick Blankenburg make their Columbus Blue Jackets debut Wednesday night against the Montreal Canadiens.

Johnson was selected by the Blue Jackets with the overall No. 5 in the 2021 NHL Draft, and Blankenburg was signed to a one-year entry-level agreement. TMBR will have updates on Johnson and Blankenburg after their debut.

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