Weight: 185 lbs
Hometown: Hopkins, MN
With their sixth round selection (177th), the Washington Capitals selected Travis Boyd of the U.S. National Development Team Program (NDTP). In 60 games this past season with USA, he scored 13 goals and 25 assists for a total of 38 points. His discipline is beyond compare with just 16 PIMs in those 60 games. He also participated in April's IIHF U18 tournament, with six points in six games, earning a gold medal with the USA team.
Boyd is committed to attending the University of Minnesota beginning next year.
Boyd began drawing buzz as an 8th grader playing on his high school's hockey team in Hopkins, Minnesota. After leading his team in scoring with 46 points his first year, he was invited to join the U.S. NTDP. He couldn't turn down the invitation, considering the opportunity to play for his country the chance of a lifetime.
In post-selection interviews, Boyd compared himself to Claude Giroux. Scouting reports wouldn't disagree, saying he's a "shifty player that has great hands and a keen ability to read the play in front of him." While he doesn't have a very heavy shot, it is accurate. He has good vision, great playmaking ability, and is a skilled passer.
He showed off those exact talents in one game during the U18 tournament, an 8-1 USA win over Slovakia. Boyd scored a shorthanded goal during the game, and one observer marveled at the play that led to it.
Travis Boyd’s shorthanded tally was a thing of beauty. He out-raced a defenseman to the puck in the Slovakian zone, out-muscled said defender, put the puck to his backhand, and with one hand on his stick let it glide right into the net. It was a great goal and that was probably the straw that broke the Slovakian camel’s back.
As he prepares to head to Minnesota, Boyd says his main focus is getting stronger and faster. One weakness scouts see is his skating. While he does have maneuverability on the ice, his speed could use some work. He needs to put some weight on his relatively small frame, and he plans to work on skating with training coaches to improve his speed.
Minnesota coach Don Lucia agrees with Boyd's conditioning plans. "He can play on the power play on the half wall and can kill penalties," Lucia says. "I think as he adds strength that he will be able to play in any situation that we have going into the next few years."
When his name was called on Saturday, Boyd was thrown for a loop. "I didn't really expect Washington, I never talked to them." Not that he's not happy to come to DC and be a part of the Capitals organization. "It's awesome because Washington's a great place, good team, I'm happy to go there."