A former captain of the Amherst Ramblers is set to make his NHL debut on Monday as the Vancouver Canucks host the San Jose Sharks. Zack MacEwen was recalled from the AHL’s Utica Comets on Sunday.
The 22-year-old from Stratford, P.E.I. has posted 17 goals, 25 assists, and 49 penalty minutes in 49 games this season, and has a career AHL total of 27 goals, 48 assists and 105 penalty minutes in 115 games in Utica. The call-up comes on the heels of a career high four-point game (one goal and three assists) on Saturday against Rochester.
MacEwen was selected by Amherst with the first selection of the fifth round, 45th overall, in the 2013 draft. He went on to score nine goals and added five assists in 50 games in the 2013-14 season with the Ramblers. His breakout second season, however, saw MacEwen finish second in team scoring with 29 goals and 23 assists in 46 games.
He also got a taste of the QMJHL that season, playing in nine games with the Moncton Wildcats where he scored once and also had an assist. With Amherst missing the playoffs that season, MacEwen was back with the Wildcats, where he posted two goals and two assists in nine games. Up with Moncton for good in 2015-16, MacEwen impressed with ten goals and 30 assists in 66 games, adding another four goals and four assists in 17 playoff games.
In August of 2016, MacEwen was traded to the Gatineau Olympiques for a fifth-round pick in the 2017 QMJHL Entry Draft. As Moncton’s Director of Hockey Operations Roger Shannon said at the time of the trade, “Zach was great for us last season, had a terrific playoff run, and was a key member of our team. Unfortunately, there are only 54 spots in the league for twenty-year-old players and only three on each team. We would have loved to given Zack one of those spots, however, we want to ensure he gets a chance to play as a twenty-year-old in the league. We wish him all the best in Gatineau, a team that will remember him well from the 2016 playoffs, good luck Zack!”
MacEwen responded with his best season yet, putting up 34 goals and 43 assists in 66 games with the Olympiques, and another six goals and three assists in seven playoff games.
In March 2017, the Canucks announced they had signed McEwen to a three-year Entry Level Contract. It was rumoured by Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman a month earlier than Ottawa, Tampa, and Toronto were all believed to be among those interested.
The Maritime Hockey League would like to congratulate Zack on his hard work and perseverance as he prepares to make his NHL debut.