2009-10: Drafted by the Tri-City Americans in the fourth round (80th overall) of the 2009 WHL Bantam Draft, Chris Driedger skated for the Winnipeg Monarchs in the Winnipeg City midget AAA league and was selected to Team Manitoba in the 2009 U16 Western Canada Challenge Cup. In twelve games for the Monarchs he had a 1.75 goals against average. Driedger spent some time with Tri-City during the year but did not see any game action.
2010-11: Driedger appeared in 22 games for Tri-City in his first WHL season and played for Canada West in the 2011 U17 World Hockey Challenge. Backing up Americans’ starter Drew Owsley, Driedger saw the bulk of the action in February, when he played in eleven games and was 4-5 with one of the losses coming in a shootout. For the season, he was 6-7 with a 3.50 goals against and .811 save percentage. Tri-City finished third in the U.S. Division and reached the second round of the playoffs but Driedger did not play in any playoff games. He was 1-3 with a 3.26 goals against and .880 save percentage in four games for Canada West, which won a bronze medal at the WHC.
2011-12: Acquired by the Calgary Hitmen in a July 2011 trade, Driedger steadily saw increased time for the Hitmen after beginning the season in a three-man rotation. Appearing in 45 games he finished with a 24-15 record with three shutouts and had a 2.80 goals against and .896 save percentage. Calgary finished second behind WHL champion Edmonton in the Central Division. In the first round playoff series with the Brandon Wheat Kings, 19-year-old Brandon Glover saw the bulk of the action and in two playoff games Driedger was 0-2 with a 6.59 goals against and .813 save percentage. Ranked 13th amongst North American goaltenders in Central Scouting’s final rankings prior to the 2012 NHL Draft, he was selected by Ottawa in the third round (76th overall).
2012-13: Driedger took over as the clear number one starter for Calgary in his second season with the Hitmen and was one of the WHL’s top goalies. He appeared in 54 of 72 games in the regular season and was 36-14-4 with 2 shutouts, posting a 2.51 goals against and .915 save percentage. Calgary finished second in the Central Division and faced first-place Edmonton in the Eastern Conference Finals. Driedger was 11-6 in 17 playoff games and had 1 shutout with a 2.39 goals against and .931 save percentage.
2013-14: Driedger made his AHL debut with Ottawa affiliate Binghamton after signing a three-year entry-level contract with the Senators in April 2014 and played for the ECHL’s Elmira Jackals following his junior season with the Calgary Hitmen. He stopped 20 of 22 shots in 26 minutes of action in relief of starter Scott Greenham in a 4-2 win over Norfolk on April 19th in his only game with the Binghamton Senators. Driedger was 1-2 with a 3.92 goals against and .893 save percentage in four ECHL games with Elmira. He played in 50 of 72 regular season games for Calgary as the Hitmen finished first in the Central Division ahead of Memorial Cup champion Edmonton. Driedger was 28-14-7 with 3 shutouts and had a 2.64 goals against and .918 save percentage. The Hitmen lost to Kootenay in a first-round playoff series. Driedger was 2-3 with 1 shutout in six playoff games and had a 4.39 goals against and .870 save percentage.
2014-15: Driedger played in his first NHL game with Ottawa and was 6-0 in eight games for the AHL’s Binghamton Senators in his first pro season; spending most of the year with the ECHL’s Evansville Icemen. He stopped all 10 shots he faced in relief of starter Andrew Hammond in a 5-1 loss to the Rangers on March 26th in his only NHL appearance. Driedger made two cameo starts with Binghamton early in the year, winning both games, before re-joining the team in April. He finished with a 2.55 goals against and .923 save percentage during his stint with Binghamton. The Senators missed the AHL playoffs, finishing third in the East Division. Driedger was 8-27-4 with 2 shutouts and had a 3.78 goals against and .885 save percentage in 40 games for Evansville. The Icemen have yet to reach the ECHL playoffs in their three-year history.
Driedger has a calm demeanor between the pipes, and his low center of gravity keeps him balanced under pressure. He keeps movement to a minimum, and keeps his game simple. He is extremely strong positionally, and he lets the play come to him. He has great reflexes when tested.
Driedger had some rough games last season with the Evansville Icemen—the worst team in the ECHL. He did much better when he was called up to Binghamton later on, so expect him to start the year there, backing up new acquisition Matt O’Connor. Driedger has the potential to play in the NHL someday, but he is years away.