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Where are they now? The 2011 Winnipeg Jets draftees

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Photo credit:© James Carey Lauder-USA TODAY Sports
Goose
By Goose
29 days ago
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The NHL draft is just 38 days away! The Winnipeg Jets will pick 37th as they do not have a first-round pick this year, having traded it to the Montreal Canadiens for Sean Monahan on February 2nd.
As we count down the days to the 2024 NHL draft, let’s go through the history of the Jets and their draftees, and where they are now. I will only include players on this list if they either played for the Jets or were part of the trade package for the team.
The Atlanta Thrashers finished 25th overall in 2011 before being sold to True North Sport and Entertainment. They had a record of 34-36-12 and finished the season with 80 points.
Let’s start with the first Jets 2.0 draft pick, Mark Scheifele. The Ottawa Senators picked Mika Zibanejad just ahead of the Jets’ future face of the organization, and Sean Couturier was picked just after by the Philadelphia Flyers.
Scheifele played only 11 games and scored just one goal for the Jets in his first two seasons. He played in the OHL with the Barrie Colts during that time and had one playoff run with the St. John’s Icecaps in 2012, playing 10 games and scoring a single assist.
In 2013-14, Scheifele played his first full season with the Jets, playing 63 games and scoring 13 goals and 34 points.
Finally, after four seasons, the first draft pick by Jets 2.0 played a full 82 games with the club, racking up 15 goals and 49 points.
In 2015, the Jets made the playoffs for the first time; Scheifele scored just a single assist against the Anaheim Ducks in the four-game sweep.
In 13 seasons with the Jets, Scheifele has played 797 games, scored 297 goals, and tallied 717 points in the regular season. In the postseason, he has played 42 games, scored 21 goals, and recorded 38 points.
Overall, I don’t think the Jets could have made a better pick at seventh overall. Scheifele has embraced Winnipeg and the Jets culture, and he has been a solid leader for this team. (Don’t ask about Patrik Laine.)
He was coached by the greatest Jet, Dale Hawerchuk, and knows what the team and its leadership mean to the city. I don’t think we would have seen the same loyalty from JT Miller. You also can’t forget Scheifele’s longevity and durability. I don’t know if there is another star from that draft who would have been a better fit for Winnipeg.
Who would have guessed that the 67th overall draft pick from the Swift Current Broncos in the WHL would turn into the third captain of the Winnipeg Jets?
Adam Lowry was picked just before Nick Cousins. Lowry played pro hockey for the first time in his career in 2012-13, two seasons after being drafted by the Jets. He played for the Jets’ farm team, the St. John’s IceCaps, over two seasons, where he played 73 games, scored 17 goals, and tallied 34 points. The Jets’ power forward was a contributor to the IceCaps’ 2013-14 postseason run, playing 17 games, scoring two goals, and recording five points.
In Lowry’s first year with the Jets, he played 80 games, scored 11 goals, and tallied 23 points in the regular season. He was part of the Jets’ first playoffs at MTS Centre.
 

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He finished that series against the Ducks with a goal and two assists.
Overall, the first pick of the third round by the Jets was as perfect as they come. Lowry is now a stable and reliable third-line centerman who positively impacts just about anyone he plays with. Look at Mason Appleton and Andrew Copp when they play with Lowry. You kind of knew there were good qualities in the 2012-2013 Broncos’ captain, but I don’t think there was a soul on the planet who expected this kind of greatness from Lowry.
In 702 games with the Jets, 105 goals scored and 392 points, I don’t know if there is a more perfect player the Jets could have picked up in the third round. He might go down as the most important draft pick in the first ten years of the Jets 2.0.
The second pick in the third round for the Jets was not a successful one. The Jets would draft Brennan Serville 78th overall. The Pickering, Ontario native made it as far as the AHL, playing just 15 games for the Manitoba Moose in 2015-16 and played in the ECHL the same year, only playing 18 games for the Tulsa Oilers and scoring a single point as a defenseman.
Serville spent his first four years after being drafted playing at the same school as Rutger McGroarty, the University of Michigan, where he played 129 games and scored one goal and 46 points.
Just simply a draft bust in the third round. Some notable players who were drafted after Serville in the third round include former Jet Nicholas Shore, Josh Leivo, and Jordan Binnington.
No further information was found about Serville after his time in the ECHL.
I’m going to skip over the fourth-round pick Zach Yuen and move on to the fifth-round pick Austen Brassard. Brassard is a right winger from Windsor, Ontario. After being drafted in 2011, he would spend two more years in the OHL playing for the Belleville Bulls.
After playing junior hockey, Brassard would spend three seasons playing for the Jets’ AHL teams, the IceCaps and the first season of the Manitoba Moose 2.0. He played 179 games with the Jets’ farm team, scoring 24 goals and 59 points.
In 2016-17, he would join the Ducks organization and play for the Utah Grizzlies in the ECHL. His final hockey stats would come from the WOSHL; he played for the Tilbury Bluebirds as an alternate captain in 2022-23. He scored a goal and an assist.
Jason Kasdorf was the first Winnipegger and goaltender drafted by Winnipeg. He was the Jets’ sixth-round pick and is most remembered as the third piece traded in the Evander Kane package to Buffalo. He played just one game in the NHL with the Buffalo Sabres. He gave up four goals on 28 shots. He last played professionally in 2018-19 in the DEL-2 for the Lausitzer Foxes.
According to his LinkedIn page, he is now a project manager for Luxor Renovations.
Finally, drafted 187th overall in the seventh round by the Jets, we have Aaron Harstad. The left-shot defender was playing pro hockey up until 2021-22; he was in the ECHL with the Idaho Steelheads and played just three games with them that season. He would play two seasons for the Jets’ AHL teams, the Moose and the IceCaps; he played 31 games over those two seasons and scored just four assists.
According to his LinkedIn page, he is living in Raleigh, North Carolina, working as a Sales Development Rep., and also runs Harstad Hockey.

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