From local kid to history books: Brock McGinn

A look at Brock McGinn’s road from small-town kid to one of the best players to pull on a Guelph Storm uniform. 

Steph Coratti, — 

It only took a 25-kilometre drive north for Brock McGinn to make a name for himself in the hockey world. 

Yet, the same could be said for the Guelph Storm – finding the hard-hitting, natural offensive talent in the neighbouring town of Fergus, Ontario.

In 2010, following the 1994-born winger’s 56-point (22 goals, 34 assists) effort as a member of the Guelph Jr. Storm, the Storm welcomed McGinn as a third round, 46th overall pick in the OHL Priority Selection.

Four years later, that pick would become a vital part in bringing a third OHL Championship to the Royal City.

The first step to cementing himself in Storm history, though, came in the transition into major junior as a rookie for the 2010-11 campaign. Appearing in all 68 games, McGinn registered 10 goals for 14 points, while playing in all six games in Guelph’s first-round, six-game playoff exit dealt at the hands of the Saginaw Spirit. 

The following season saw No. 21 earn a letter, named an assistant captain heading into his second year with the club. Although, a wrist injury suffered in December kept the feisty forward out of the line up for over two months, concluding the 2011-12 campaign with 18 points (12 goals, six assists) in 33 games.

With two seasons in the books, McGinn, compiling 33 points in 101 career games, was ranked 49th among North American skaters in Central Scouting’s final rankings – a standing that the Carolina Hurricanes stood by, selecting the Storm forward in the second round, 47th overall in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft. 

Now with transition and injury out of the way, McGinn moved into his third major junior season poised as one of the most talented offensive threats in the league, posting 54 points (28 goals, 26 assists) in 68 games – a total good for second highest on the Storm. 

Moving into the postseason, Guelph was dealt another first-round exit, this time falling to the Kitchener Rangers in five games. McGinn, appearing in three games due to suspension, continued his offensive prowess, tallying two goals for four points.

Next up was a professional hockey debut for the six-foot, 180-pound winger, joining Carolina’s AHL affiliate, the Charlotte Checkers, as a 19-year-old.

McGinn went pointless in four regular season and two postseason appearances, but that trend certainly didn’t last long. 

Returning to the Storm for the cap on his four-year major junior tenure, McGinn was one of the pillars in the offensively dominating roster that would go on to raise the J. Ross Robertson cup as league champions. In a career-high season, McGinn solidified himself as the team’s third-leading scorer with 85 points (43 goals, 42 assists) in 58 games, missing nearly a month after wrist surgery in December.

Despite the injury, McGinn was still classified as one of the league’s biggest threats, finishing second in the Western Conference in four categories of the 2013-14 OHL Coaches Poll, including the smartest player, hardest worker, best-body checker, and best shootout scorer.

Moving into the playoffs where the Storm downed the Plymouth Whalers, the London Knights, the Erie Otters, and finally the North Bay Battalion, the fourth-year veteran strung together a point-per-game production with 12 points (six goals, six assists) in 12 games played, missing eight games of the run after receiving a suspension for a hit-to-the-head in the first round.

Following the 2014 Memorial Cup tournament in London, in which McGinn posted five points (one goal, four assists) in five games, the once-small-town kid from Fergus, Ontario who never strayed from his physical, naturally offensively controlled game, earned team MVP honours on a roster where talent was no question.

Now, less than two complete seasons removed from his major junior career, the former Guelph Storm threat moved to making waves in the National Hockey League, debuting on Oct. 16, 2015 in Detroit, doing exactly what the Royal City had witnessed for four years. On the first shift of his first game, McGinn followed up his own rebound to put the Carolina Hurricanes up early on the Red Wings, putting his name in the franchise record books with the fastest goal to begin a career at the 0:55 mark.

On a league scale, McGinn potted the fastest first goal for a rookie since Buffalo’s Alexander Mogilny scored 0:20 into his debut on Oct. 5, 1989.

Rest assured, Guelph Storm fans know there’s plenty more where that came from for their former No. 21.

Brock McGinn

  • Guelph Storm, 2010-2014
  • OHL Totals: 227 games played, 93 goals, 79 assists, 172 points
  • Playoffs: 27 games played, nine goals, nine assists, 18 points
  • Named Guelph Storm MVP for the 2013-14 season
  • Voted 23rd all-time player in Guelph Storm history
  • Selected in the second round (47th overall) by the Carolina Hurricanes in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft
  • NHL Totals (to date): 14 games played, two goals, one assist, three points
  • NHL Team: Carolina Hurricanes
  • Scored the fastest goal to begin an NHL career in franchise history at 0:55 on October 16, 2015 at Detroit, and the fastest since Buffalo’s Alexander Mogilny scored 0:20 into his debut on Oct. 5, 1989 
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