Not content with Simon Nemec, Seamus Casey, and Daniil Orlov, the New Jersey Devils picked another defenseman. The Devils’ third fourth round pick at 126th overall was used to take United States National Team Development Program defenseman Charlie Leddy.
Leddy is not related to Nick Leddy. He is a teammate of Casey’s and the Devils clearly got to see plenty of him when scouting Casey. Per Elite Prospects, Charlie Leddy was born in Fairfield, Connecticut; born on January 11, 2004; and is listed at 6’1” and 185 pounds. He is a right-shooting defenseman, which makes him the third RHD the Devils have picked at this year’s draft. Leddy spent the last two seasons with the USNTDP along with Casey and also played at the World U-18s where they won Silver. Unlike Casey, Leddy was not particularly productive at all. He had one goal and 12 points in USNTDP play with the U-17s in 2020-21 and zero goals and 17 assists last season with the U-18s. At the World U-18s, he put up just two assists. In other words, do not expect Leddy to have a whole lot of offense in his game. As Leddy is done with the USNTDP, the next step is college; Leddy is committed to join Boston College next year.
When the pick was made, the NHL Network broadcast did describe him. The phrase “simple game” was used quite a bit. The broadcast pointed out his lack of production points to someone who is not going to score a lot but can be steady in his own end. That does not really excite me. Players who do not produce at a younger level do not typically pick it up at higher levels and it limits what they can do. To that end, the broadcast noting he is a future #6 or #7 defenseman is appropriate. This is backed up by the short profile Ary M put together at Silver Seven about the USNTDP players. He strikes me as a player who can play all four years at college, possibly get signed to play in the AHL, and then who knows if he can go any further than that.
This general observation about his projection agrees with the observation Nick Richard made about the player at Dobber Prospects. Here is what Richard wrote about Leddy that stood out to me:
He rarely gets caught out of position, maintains a solid gap in defensive transition, uses his stick efficiently to disrupt opposing possessions, and doesn’t shy away from using his body to shut down plays along the wall. There isn’t much offensive upside in Leddy’s game and he can occasionally over-extend himself with a low-percentage pass attempt but for the most part, he displays good poise with the puck. ... A big thing for Leddy will be continuing to stay within himself and make the safe play rather than forcing something that isn’t there.
Again, this is consistent with what the broadcast initially stated about the Leddy pick. This is a player that, if he makes it to the pro level, then he is expected to be a one-way defender - and that way is in their back end.
This is a late fourth round pick, so the pickings are slim in terms of players with upside. I cannot really list any players I would have further preferred. After taking three defensemen and a goalie, why not take a flyer on a forward? That is my general feeling about the player. It is a guy the Devils can let grow in college. Yet, his USNTDP body of work is not particularly enticing for the future; and I really do not think the Devils needed to draft a third RHD after taking two more prominent and better prospects in Nemec and Casey. But, sure, it is what it is.
Now I want your initial reactions to the pick. Please vote in the poll and leave your thoughts about Leddy being drafted. Do you like the pick? Do you think the Devils needed to take another RHD here? Please leave your answers in the comments; thank you for reading.
The Devils drafted Charlie Leddy at 126th Overall. What do you think of the pick?
This poll is closed
I love it!
I like the pick.
I don’t know / I’m in the middle.
I don’t like the pick.
I hate it!