The Drake Caggiula tour is a thing, and it could be coming to a city near you.
On Monday, TSN’s Frank Seravalli reported that Caggiula — the University of North Dakota standout named most outstanding player at the Frozen Four — has narrowed his list of NHL suitors to six: Philadelphia, Edmonton, Ottawa, Vancouver, Chicago and Buffalo.
Caggiula is expected to visit the Oilers sometime next week, where a tour of Edmonton’s new arena will likely be part of the game plan, followed by stops in Vancouver and Ottawa. It is believed he will make a visit to all of the teams on his list before making a decision.
Before Monday’s raucous game, Caggiula reportedly went to lunch with Flyers GM Ron Hextall and head coach Dave Hakstol.
Hakstol, of course, recruited Caggiula and coached him at North Dakota prior to taking the Flyers gig. So it’s easy to see the connection there.
Vancouver’s an intriguing landing spot too, because Caggiula’s running mates at UND — Brock Boeser and Troy Stecher — are both Canucks property. Vancouver took Boeser in the first round of the ’15 draft and Stecher, an undrafted free agent, signed an entry-level deal last week.
Chicago has the lure of playing with a number of talented forwards, and it’s worth noting another of Caggiula’s UND teammates, Nick Schmaltz, is Blackhawks property. Chicago took Schmaltz 20th overall in 2014.
Passed over at the draft because of his size (5-foot-10, 180 pounds), Caggiula progressed throughout his career at North Dakota and put forth a terrific senior season, scoring 51 points in 39 games. According to Flyers GM Ron Hextall, he’s a legit NHL prospect.
“He’s a talented player,” Hextall told TSN. “He’s got speed, he plays hard, he has a lot of good attributes. He’s got a shot at being a top six [player] based on his ability.
“He’s not the biggest player, but he plays hard.”