The Silvertips’ Gianni Fairbrother meets with the media after being selected by the Montreal Canadiens in the third round of the 2019 NHL draft on June 22, 2019, in Vancouver, B.C. (Screenshot from Josh Horton video)

The Silvertips’ Gianni Fairbrother meets with the media after being selected by the Montreal Canadiens in the third round of the 2019 NHL draft on June 22, 2019, in Vancouver, B.C. (Screenshot from Josh Horton video)

NHL draft: Tips’ Fairbrother taken in 3rd round by Montreal

The Everett defenseman is taken No. 77 overall by the Canadiens.

VANCOUVER, B.C. — A cool, calm and collected Gianni Fairbrother approached one of the seven media podiums in the cavity of Rogers Arena to meet with a robust Montreal media corp, answering each question with poise and aplomb.

The Everett Silvertips defenseman was nabbed 77th overall in the third-round by the Canadiens, prompting a noticeable applause from fans strewn throughout the arena, and the moment, one he’s waited all season for, didn’t overwhelm him.


“Obviously I didn’t really know what to expect, but for me to put on this Montreal jersey, it’s a really special feeling,” Fairbrother said. “I’m really happy with it.”

Fairbrother evolved into a bona fide top-four WHL defenseman, posting 36 points (10 goals, 26 assists) in 64 regular-season games for the Silvetips. His howitzer of a slapshot and evolved puck-moving abilities earned him time on the power play as the season progressed and he was relied upon plenty on the penalty kill.

He’s also been lauded for his physicality and hard-nosed approach to the game, which has earned him the respect of his teammates and coaches in the dressing room.

The North Vancouver native said he had an inkling the Canadiens could take him in the spot that they did, but tried to keep his expectations free.

His premonition eventually came true.

“I felt like out of all the teams they probably were the most interested in me, but like I said, I didn’t really know what to expect,” Fairbrother said.

What attracted the Canadiens to Fairbrother? He suspects it’s his “hard-nosed playing style and compete.”

“I’m always hard on the puck and make it difficult for teams on our end,” he said.

Fairbrother, who was joined by a small group of immediate family, said it was a special feeling to be drafted inside the closest NHL rink to where he grew up.

“It’s a really cool feeling for me and my family,” he said.

Fairbrother is the second Silvertips defenseman to be taken high in the draft by the Habs in the last five seasons. Noah Juulsen was taken in the first round, No. 26 overall, by Montreal in the 2015.

The 6-foot, 194-pound defenseman missed a good chunk of his 17-year-old season with a separated shoulder sustained in a fight. Before that, Fairbrother didn’t crack Everett’s roster as a 16-year-old, playing most of 2016-2017 season in midget.

But Fairbrother evolved from an unknown commodity quickly, rocketing up draft boards in 2018-2019. He progressed from a ‘C’-ranked prospect, to the 88th-ranked skater according to NHL Central Scouting to the 50th by their final rankings.

“He’s very deserving of it,” Silvertips general manager Garry Davidson said. “He’s faced a little adversity … He just continued to plug away and get better and did a good job of growing and developing the last couple of years.”

The defenseman credited Everett with helping guide him along in his development.

“It’s been huge,” Fairbrother said. “Coaches and management there have been really beneficial for me and my teammates push me. It’s not the best development league in the world for no reason. It’s been huge for me.”

Fairbrother isn’t eligible to play in the American Hockey League, due to an agreement between the CHL and NHL, and barring him making the Canadiens roster next season, he must return to Everett.

“I think with at least two of our guys moving on, there should be an increased role in ice time and what not,” Fairbrother said. “I’m looking forward to the challenge and seeing what we can do down in Everett.”

Talk to us

More in Sports

The AquaSox' Noelvi Marte hits a double against the Spokane Indians at Funko Field on Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021 in Everett, Washington. The Mariners promoted Marte from Low-A Modesto to High-A Everett on Monday. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Top-prospect Marte heating up in 2nd half for AquaSox

After some early struggles, the young shortstop batted .350 with three homers and 13 RBI in the past 11 games for Everett.

Washington's Steve Emtman leaves the field displaying the numberone sign after Washington's 34-14 win over Michigan in the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif., Jan. 1, 1992. Emtman and Washington's quarterback Billy Joe Hobert were named co-MVPs of the game. (AP Photo/Bob Galbraith)
The Pac-12 will never be the same — and that’s sad for many

The dismantling of the conference hurts for those that have been fans for a long, long time.

Seattle Mariners infielders react after the Mariners defeated the San Diego Padres 6-2 in a baseball game Tuesday, July 5, 2022, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Mariners sweep Padres, move within 1 game of .500

Seattle beats San Diego 6-2 for its 12th win in its past 15 games.

Seattle Seahawks owner Jody Allen stands on a balcony at CenturyLink Field after she raised the 12th man flag before the team's NFL football game against the Los Angeles Rams, Thursday, Oct. 3, 2019, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Stephen Brashear)
Jody Allen: Seahawks, Blazers not for sale at this time

The statement came amid growing speculation about the future ownership of the teams.

FILE - Germany's assistant coach Jessica Campbell stands behind players on the German bench during the group A Hockey World Championship match between France and Germany in Helsinki, Finland, Monday May 16, 2022. The Coachella Valley Firebirds have hired Jessica Campbell as the American Hockey League’s first female assistant coach. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, File)
Kraken AHL team hires 1st female assistant in league history

Jessica Campbell will be behind the bench for the Coachella Valley Firebirds next season.

U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen of Everett poses with a soccer ball in front of the U.S. capitol building in Washington, D.C.. (Provided photo)
How Rep. Rick Larsen helped Seattle secure its 2026 World Cup bid

The longtime congressman isn’t solely responsible, but he played a small role in bringing the event to the Pacific Northwest.

Dream pull away in 3rd to beat Storm

Seattle never leads in a 90-76 loss to Atlanta.

AquaSox's manager, Louis Boyd, Funko Field at Everett Memorial Stadium in Everett on July 28, 2019. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
AquaSox fall to Canadians

Everett musters just two hits as Mariners outfielder Kyle Lewis makes a rehab appearance.

Kevin Clark / The Herald

***Silvertips Special Sections*****
Yan Khomenko signals for substitution Sunday night at Xfinity Arena in Everett, Wa on September 6th, 2015

Sports:  Silvertips Special Section
Shot on: 09/06/15
Silvertips add pair in CHL import draft

Everett selects Czechian forward Dominik Rymon with pick 57 and Swiss goalie Tim Metzger 117th overall.

Most Read