New Jersey Devils Ty Smith
Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Find out what you need to know about the New Jersey Devils No. 17 overall selection in the 2018 NHL Draft, Ty Smith. 

New Jersey Devils fans only had to wait a mere 10 minutes during last year’s NHL Entry Draft to see the Devils make their first selection when the team drafted forward Nico Hischier. At this year’s draft, Jersey’s Team had to be patient and wait about two hours into the draft for the team to make its first selection during the first round.

The Devils selected defenseman Ty Smith from the Spokane Chiefs of the Western Hockey League (WHL) with the No. 17 overall pick.

Smith, 18, became the first defenseman drafted in the first round by New Jersey since the Devils selected Adam Larsson back at the 2011 draft. The Lloydminster, Saskatchewan native dressed in 69 games for the Chiefs in the WHL last season. Smith found the back of the net 14 times and added 59 assists for a total of 73 points on the year. His 73 points ranked second in the WHL among defenseman, as did his 59 helpers.

In seven WHL playoff games, the 5-foot-11 defenseman was a point-per-game skater, after he recorded seven points (2G-5A).

The 175-pound blueliner played in parts of three seasons with Spokane and was projected by the NHL’s Central Scouting to go at No. 14 during this year’s draft for North American born skaters. Though, he was the sixth defenseman taken in the draft.

Entering the 2018 NHL Draft, this hockey enthusiast was keen on the Devils selecting a defenseman with the team’s first selection. The Devils need to acquire more depth and talent on the team’s blueline, as it’s been a weak point on the team for a handful of seasons now.

The left-handed shooting defenseman isn’t an overpowering player, but he’s quick on his feet and should be a solid playmaking defenseman once he’s progressed to the NHL level.

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Kyle McKenna is a freelancer who covers the NHL for Elite Sports New York, Hooked On Hockey Magazine & Fansided. Follow him on Twitter @KMcKenna_tLT5 and use the hashtag #McKennasDigest to have your NHL questions featured in an article or answered over his weekly NHL podcast.