Former ND prep boys hockey standout Luke Johnson nets first career NHL goal
April 8, 2021 8:00 am
By Tom Mix
NDHSAA Media Specialist
VALLEY CITY, N.D. – Grand Forks native Luke Johnson hit a career milestone skating for the Minnesota Wild on Wednesday night (April 7).
Johnson, a 2013 graduate of Grand Forks Central High School, scored his first NHL goal during the first period of Minnesota’s 8-3 win over the Colorado Avalanche at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minn.
Johnson has played in 30 career NHL games with the Chicago Blackhawks and the Wild.
Johnson played at both Grand Forks Red River and Grand Forks Central before leaving to play junior hockey and later playing collegiately at the University of North Dakota. Johnson was a member of UND’s 2016 NCAA Division I National Championship team.
As an eighth grader, Johnson scored nine goals and 17 assists for the Roughriders during the 2008-09 season that saw Red River win the NDHSAA boys hockey state championship.
Johnson would transfer to Central for his freshman season and finished the 2009-10 campaign with 17 goals and 29 assists helping the Knights to the 2010 NDHSAA boys hockey state championship.
Johnson finished his prep career with 43 goals and 71 assists (114 points). He would play two seasons with the Lincoln Stars of the USHL before playing at UND.
According to a Grand Forks Herald article, Johnson is believed to be the fourth Grand Forks native to score a goal in the NHL, joining Fido Purpur, Ryan Potulny and Johnson’s cousin, Paul LaDue.