By Ty Anderson, 985TheSportsHub.com
Bruins prospect Jack Studnicka's first full year of pro hockey was formally recognized by the AHL on Tuesday, as the league named the 21-year-old to the 2019-20 AHL All-Rookie Team as voted by the league's coaches, players, and media.
Making the jump to the pro ranks after a four-year OHL career, Studnicka led all Providence skaters in goals (23), assists (26), and points (49) in 60 appearances before the league's suspension (and eventual cancellation), and his seven shorthanded goals not only led the AHL, but tied the league's rookie record.
His 49 points also were the third-most among all AHL rookies in 2019-20, trailing just the Belleville Senators' Alex Formenton and Josh Norris, who were named the other two forwards on this year's All-Rookie Team.
The 6-foot-2 Studnicka wowed even his own coaches.
"Studnicka, for all intents and purposes, had a terrific year," P-Bruins head coach Jay Leach said on Monday. "21-year-old kid jumps right in, plays every real scenario. Down the stretch, I was really leaning on him and Cameron Hughes as the guys to seal some games out for us. His competitiveness, his speed, his hockey sense really shone through and was able to be very productive on both sides of the puck and I think he had a terrific year."
Studnicka is the first P-Bruins skater to be named to the AHL All-Rookie Team since Frank Vatrano in 2016. Current Boston Bruins skaters Zdeno Chara (1998) and Jaroslav Halak (2007) are former AHL All-Rookie Team honorees.
If the league is able to restart their season, it's believed that Studnicka, who had an assist during his two-game NHL cameo this season, would be among those added to the Boston roster as part of their "Black Aces" crew.