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Grading the Maple Leafs’ 2020 NHL Draft Class: John Fusco

Here’s my analysis and scouting report for Leafs draftee John Fusco. If you’re interested, check out the full article here.

John Fusco

Drafted: Round 7, 189th overall
Age: Turned 19 on June 13th
Height: 5’11
Weight: 181 lbs
Position: RD
2019-20 Season: 10g/21a/31p in 24 games with Dexter Southfield School (USHS-Prep) 
2020-21 Season as of October 7th: Set to start the season with Harvard University (NCAA)
Projected Draft Position: Late Round Shot

After picking Nicholas Abruzzese last year, it seems the Leafs are confident in picking overage players who are set to play at Harvard.

Honestly, I don’t know much about John Fusco.

I do know this, he comes from a hockey family. His father, Mark Fusco, won the Hobey Baker in 1983 and played for the Hartford Whalers. His uncle, Scott, played hockey with Mark at Harvard, won the Hobey Baker in 1986, and they’re both members of the United States Hockey Hall of Fame. Harvard is a family affair, his cousin Bradley played for Harvard, his brother Matt isn’t old enough yet, but is a Harvard commit, and John Fusco has been attending Harvard Zoom classes this year.

From what I can tell, he’s a smooth-skating defenseman who is mobile and can make plays. However, it’s hard to evaluate how successful he could be, considering that he played high school hockey as a fairly developed 18-year-old.

The Leafs likely believe he has the tools, but they’re looking to see how he performs with Harvard once their season starts. They hope that he can continue the success that his father and uncle had at the university.

Fusco is an intriguing prospect because you never know what a guy like him can do at the next level.

Grade: B-

I think there were higher-reward picks available, but Fusco isn’t a terrible pick. I’m just curious about what he can do at the college level.

If he does perform well, I think he could be a solid #5 defenseman in the NHL as his ceiling. He’s a bit of a longshot, but I’m interested to see how a guy like him develops.

Fusco considers himself to be an offensive defenseman with a rugged game but says he’s pretty solid defensively. We’ll see how that carries over to the next level.


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Spencer White
Spencer White is a Managing Editor of Hockey and MMA at Overtime Heroics. He writes about hockey, covering the Toronto Maple Leafs, Toronto Marlies, Newfoundland Growlers, and the Toronto Six. Spencer is also the Director of Gaming at Overtime Heroics. You can find him on Twitter at @klapanen, @SpencerWhiteOTH, and @LeafsMoves.
http://overtimeheroics.net

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