Bruce Bennett - Getty Images
Can this reclamation project find a long-term role with the Anaheim Ducks organization? Jordan Hendry sure hopes so.
Name: Jordan Hendry
Hometown: Nokomis, Saskatchewan
Draft Story: After going undrafted in 2002, Hendry caught on with your very own Norfolk Admirals after playing four years collegiality at the University of Alaska-Fairbanks.
How did he become a Duck? On July 1st, he was signed to a one-year, two-way contract.
Where is he playing this season?: For the AHL's Norfolk Admirals. Back to his roots.
2011-2012 Team: HC Lugano of the National League A in Switzerland. He was a teammate of ex-Duck Rob Niedermayer.
Other hockey ventures: Hendry spent four years with the Chicago Blackhawks organization, where he helped them win the Stanley Cup in 2010. A large portion of his latter years were with their AHL affiliate, the Rockford Icehogs.
Key Stats from last season: In 29 games with HC Lugano, Hendry registered 1 goal and 9 assists, to go along with 18 penalty minutes. He is largely considered to be a two-way defenseman with shutdown ability. In this clip, current Duck Daniel Winnik checks Hendry hard in a matchup between Winnik's Avalanche and Hendry's Blackhawks. (Warning: typing Hendry's name into the Youtube search bar may lead to a large amount of videos that feature Hendry getting demolished)
Scout's Take: Hockey's Future wrote a glowing review of him, "Hendry has proven to be a safe and reliable player, so he will likely find his calling as a third-pairing defenseman." HF graded Hendry as an "A" probability of succeeding at the NHL level - higher than any current Ducks prospect.
Is he a Work-in-progress, Future trade-bait, or Keeper?: If anything, I would label him as a work-in-progress. Considering defensemen do take longer to develop (as Daniel has alluded to), Hendry might be worth keeping if he flourishes in a familiar environment. If he continues to clean up and strengthen his game under current Admirals head coach Trent Yawney, maybe he could end up in a Kent Huskins or Joe Dipenta-like role down the road for the Ducks. He still has potential, meaning this is not, or should not be, a one-and-done player for the organization.
Should we be excited?: Yes, because we'll all be watching a ton of Norfolk Admirals hockey this season!