Johnny Beecher discusses on-ice return at Michigan


ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – The waiting is the hardest part.

Elmira standout hockey player Johnny Beecher, a first-round NHL Draft selection by the Boston Bruins in 2019, knows that sentiment all too well. Beecher, now a junior forward at the University of Michigan, will have to wait at least a few more weeks to play for the Wolverines.

After last year’s season was stopped due to eventual shoulder surgery, Beecher is now dealing with another undisclosed injury (according to Michigan head coach Mel Pearson) that will keep him out of games for a few more weeks. Michigan (2-0) started their season with a two-game series sweep of Lake Superior State this past weekend. For Beecher, everyday is an opportunity to get back to peak shape.

“I’m feeling good, just got cleared, starting skating a little bit,” Beecher told 18 Sports via Zoom.

“I’m just trying to get out a couple of a days a week and just get my legs moving again,” added Beecher.

Johnny is primed to get back as soon as possible and play at the highest level. But, he knows patience is key.

“(I) can’t do anything with puck yet, just pretty much up and down the ice…It feels good to get out there and try and get ready.”

With patience and persistence, Beecher is set to make a big return for the Michigan, who’s currently ranked third in the country in D-I (USCHO Rankings). Michigan will next play Friday night in The Ice Breaker Tournament at 7:37 pm at Minnesota Duluth, who’s currently ranked fifth in the nation.

Beecher, a member of the United States World Junior Team, was a member of the Big Ten Conference All-Freshman team in 2020 after playing in 31 games and had 16 points (9 goals and 7 assists). Johnny racked up four goals and securing four assists in just 16 games before season-ending surgery last year.

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