‘It’s pretty surreal’: Raider d-man Goldsmith thrilled to be drafted

Herald file photo by Nathan Reiter. Prince Albert Raiders defenceman Terrell Goldsmith prepares for a faceoff during WHL action at the Art Hauser Centre.

After three seasons in frosty cold of Hockeytown North, Prince Albert Raiders defenceman Terrell Goldsmith is preparing for the desert after being selected in the fourth round, 102nd overall, by the Arizona Coyotes.

Goldsmith was one of 10 players picked by the Coyotes on day two of the 2023 NHL Draft in Nashville. He’s excited to join the organization, and not just because of the weather.

“It’s pretty warm there, so I’m thrilled,” Goldsmith said with a laugh. “Honestly, I’m very excited. We’ll see what happens for me next, but it’s definitely different.”

Goldsmith spent the day watching the draft with his family. After being selected, he got a call from the Coyotes welcoming him to the team and sharing development camp details. He then hit the ice in the afternoon as part of his off-season workout.

He said Arizona was one of the teams who showed some interest in drafting him, especially towards the end of last season and at the combine.

“I was thrilled for sure. Obviously, it’s pretty surreal,” he said. “It took a bit to hit me.

“They definitely seemed like an interesting team to me,” he added. “I’m excited to see what happens.”

The 6’3, 220 pound defenceman from Fort St. John suited up for 58 games last season with the Raiders, scoring three goals and six assists along with 102 penalty minutes. Having reached the goal of getting drafted into the NHL, he’s reset his sights on an old one: helping the Raiders get back in the playoffs.

“(I want) to be playing on the penalty kill and shutting down the top line on the other team,” he said. “Obviously, making playoffs is a goal of mine this year. Just have a good year as a team.”

Goldsmith is the first Raider since Nolan Allan in 2021 to be drafted by an NHL club. He was the fifth WHL defenceman taken in the draft, and one of 33 WHL players drafted.

Regina Pats forward Connor Bedard was the top player picked going first overall to the Chicago Blackhawks.

The Coyotes selected 12 players in total during the two-day draft, including first round picks Dimitri Simashev (sixth overall) and Daniil But (12th overall). The 12 picks were the most the Coyotes have had since the NHL Draft contracted to only seven rounds.