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The NHL is a Family Affair

Brothers and cousins playing in the NHL at the same time are not uncommon. There are plenty of examples throughout history as well as currently. There are the Tkachuk brothers, the Subbans, the Schenns, the Staals, the Benns, and many, many more. My point is, hockey is used to having family members playing opposite each other. But brothers on the same team are rarer. The Sedins are the only example that immediately comes to mind, and that was wild. Brothers playing together may be a coming trend, though. Here’s a look at the most recent examples of brothers in the same organization.

Jack & Luke Hughes

The 2021 NHL Draft was no doubt exciting for all families involved. But I don’t think anyone could have been more excited for their sibling than Jack Hughes was for younger brother Luke. Luke was drafted 4th overall by Jack’s own New Jersey Devils. This year, he is committed to playing for the University of Michigan with fellow 2021 draftees Owen Power (1), Matthew Beniers (2), Kent Johnson (5), Mackie Samoskevich (24), Dylan Duke (126). (Please note that there are 7 other draft picks from 2020 and 2019 on the team, 2 of whom were from the first round.)

He may be a year or two out of playing in the NHL, but the hype for a second Hughes is real in the Devils fanbase. On the surface, Jack’s numbers from the US Development Program and US World Junior teams are better. However, Luke is a defenseman like Quinn, not a center. His numbers reflect his time spent on powerplays and his ability to make good passes. He’s been praised for his skating ability, not just speed.

I hope we see Luke and Jack together in New Jersey by 2023, because I have a feeling the bond between the two will translate beautifully to the ice. And hey, I don’t think Devils fans would be mad if they happened to sign Quinn too.

Seth & Caleb Jones

The Chicago Blackhawks must have had a vision this summer. They snapped up stellar defenseman Seth Jones from the Blue Jackets, then signed a monster 8 year, $9.5mil extension. This move alone was a great move for Chicago. But they wanted to go above and beyond.

The Hawks scooped up brother Caleb Jones in a trade with the Oilers. Caleb has historically been a player that bounced between the AHL and the NHL, so whether they saw potential or if Seth asked management for him, I can’t say. But for a $850k contract, there really wasn’t a lot of risk for the team. In that sense, I don’t see much of a downside. If Caleb doesn’t do well, they aren’t wasting a ton of money. On the other hand, if he has a ton of success working with his brother or other teammates, he’s a steal.

At the very least, I think having both Jones brothers on the team could be a real morale booster for each other and the team.

Kirby & Colton Dach

It seems to me that Chicago is really aiming to be a family-friendly team. In addition to the Joneses, Chicago took a page out of the New Jersey playbook and drafted a team member’s brother. Kirby Dach had a rough year, thanks to a rough wrist injury during the World Juniors tournament. Despite that, he’s still projected to be a great player when he comes back. The Hawks must believe it runs in the family because they drafted his younger brother Colton in the second round, 62nd overall.

He wasn’t a first round pick, but clearly, there’s something that Chicago sees in him. He’s had 49 points in 82 WHL games in the last 2 seasons; not the most impressive numbers, but not bad. Scouts said he had a great shot from a mechanical and technical perspective, but beyond that, I haven’t seen much said about him.

We may see a lot of him soon enough, it seems. Maybe not in a Blackhawk jersey on the ice, but at least around the United Center; the NHL posted this picture of the Dach brothers painting Chief Black Hawk.

-Heidi Thomas (@DamselOnDrums)

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Heidi Thomas

Armchair hockey coach, passive horse racing fan, full-time dog referee.

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