The goalkeeper of the France U20 team, Antoine Keller, was chosen in the seventh round of the 2023 NHL Draft. He is the 5th Frenchman to be chosen in an NHL draft.
—Washington Capitals (@Capitals) June 29, 2023
And five! After Yorick Treille, Cristobal Huet, Timothé Bozon and more recently Alexandre Texier, the Franco-Swiss Antoine Keller has become the 5th tricolor (6th if we count the Franco-Canadian André Peloffy) to be chosen during a Draft NHL. Aged 18 – he will be 19 on October 6, the goaltender was chosen by the Washington Capitals in the 7th round, with the 206th choice. This choice initially belonged to the San Jose Sharks, but Washington set up a trade to recover this selection and choose the Frenchman.
This season, Antoine Keller played with Servette Genève, winner of the Swiss championship. If the French did not play any meeting with the professional team, he played 25 with the U20 Elite, with an average of 3.40 goals conceded per game. The goalkeeper has also been seen five times with HCV Martigny, club of My Hockey League – Swiss third division – to which he was loaned and which won his championship. In addition, Antoine Keller was also seen with the French team during the World Junior Championshipwhere he played three games for 2.70 goals conceded per game and 92.1% saves.
NHL Draft: Antoine Keller in the footsteps of Cristobal Huet?
If he should not join the NHL right away and continue his training in Europe, on the side of Servette Geneva, Antoine Keller will hope to follow in the footsteps of the only other French goalkeeper chosen in the draft: Cristobal Huet. Also Franco-Swiss, he was chosen in 214th position in the 2001 NHL Draft by the Los Angeles Kings, before spending nearly eight years in the league and playing 272 games. During his career, he had notably played for the Kings, but also the Montreal Canadiens, the Chicago Blackhawks and… the Washington Capitals, a franchise which therefore recovered Antoine Keller this Friday, June 29.
Crédit image en Une : Plan de match