While first-overall pick Owen Power made his decision to return to Michigan official last week, he informed the Buffalo Sabres of his plans back in July.
A preview clip released Tuesday for "Buffalo Sabres: Embedded" shows Power informing members of the Sabres brass over Zoom in a pre-draft interview he wanted to compete for a NCAA championship with the Wolverines.
"Going back another year, I can get a lot of development, being able to dominate games at the college level," Power said. "And then how good the team's going to be next year, we're going to have a really good chance at winning a national title."
Power was the NHL’s Central Scouting Bureau’s top-ranked North American prospect ahead of the draft. After scoring three goals and adding 13 assists in 26 games during his freshman season at Michigan, Power cemented his draft stock by helping Canada win gold at the 2021 world hockey championship.
The 18-year-old defenceman could also join Team Canada's selection camp in December for the 2022 world junior championship, after being denied permission from Michigan to play at the tournament last year.
From Mississauga, Ont., Power was the third player drafted first overall directly out of college, joining Michigan State forward Joe Murphy in 1986 and Boston University goalie Rick DiPietro in 2000. And he became the 16th defenceman to go No. 1 since 1970, and first since the Sabres chose Rasmus Dahlin at No. 1 in 2018.