2009-10: John Hayden was the fourth leading scorer for Connecticut’s Brunswick School as a freshman. In 28 games he scored 15 goals with 14 assists. He attended USA Hockey’s Select 15 Player Development Camp in the summer.
2010-11: Hayden scored a team-leading 21 goals for Brunswick School as a sophomore and committed to playing college hockey at Yale in either 2013-14 or 2014-15. He had 9 assists in 26 games for Brunswick, which reached the quarterfinals of the New England Prep School Large School tournament, falling to Westminster, 5-3.
2011-12: Hayden joined the USA National Team Development Program in Ann Arbor, Michigan, skating for the NDTP’s U17 team. In 55 games he scored 11 goals with 15 assists with 65 penalty minutes and he had two assists in the NDTP U17 team’s two-game USHL playoff series with Dubuque. In five games at the 2012 U17 World Hockey Challenge he had 1 assist and in four games at the Four Nations Tournament in Russia he had 2 assists. Hayden had 2 goals with 1 assist in three games as the USA U17 team finished first in the 2012 U18 Vlad Dzurilla Tournament.
2012-13: Hayden skated for the NTDP’s U18 team after recovering from an early season injury and skated for the USA’s silver medal team at the 2013 U18 World Junior Championship. In 53 games he scored 17 goals with 17 assists, tying Tyler Motte for the team lead with six game-winning goals. Hayden was third on the team with 80 penalty minutes. In seven games at the WJC he scored 1 goal with 1 assist and was plus-three with 6 penalty minutes. The USA lost to Canada, 3-2, in the gold medal game. After being ranked 59th amongst North American skaters in Central Scouting’s mid-term rankings, Hayden was ranked 29th in the final rankings and was selected by Chicago in the third round (74th overall) in the 2013 NHL Draft.
2013-14: Hayden played in all 33 games for Yale University in his freshman season. Playing right wing for the Bulldogs most of the season, he scored 6 goals with 10 assists and was minus-3 with 18 penalty minutes. Yale finished sixth in the regular season and was swept by Quinnipiac in two games in an ECAC Hockey quarterfinal series.
2014-15: Hayden skated in 29 of 33 games for Yale University in his sophomore season — missing time while skating for the USA at the 2015 World Juniors and receiving a one-game suspension in February for a hit on Union’s Jeff Taylor. He scored 7 goals with 11 assists and was +2 with 10 penalty minutes skating for Yale. The Bulldogs finished third in ECAC Hockey in the regular season, receiving an at-large bid to the NCAA Northeast Regional after a 3-2 loss to Harvard in double overtime in the decisive third game of their ECAC Hockey quarterfinal series. Yale lost to Boston University, 3-2 in overtime, in the regional semifinals. An assistant captain for the USA U20 team at the WJC, Hayden scored 1 goal and had an even plus/minus with 2 penalty minutes in five games. The USA finished fifth, losing 3-2 to Russia in the quarterfinals.
Hayden has the size, skills, and aggressive temperament to develop into a top-nine power forward. Drafted as a center by the Blackhawks in 2013, he has played primarily on the right wing in his two seasons at Yale. He is equally comfortable carrying the puck or finishing the play and is especially effective around the net. Hayden does not shy away from throwing his weight around and has the capacity to be a force in the physical game. Skating is still an area in need of improvement for him and he continues to develop his overall game.
Hayden is entering his junior season at Yale University in 2015-16. The Bulldogs returned to the NCAA tournament last spring after struggling in Hayden's freshman season and are once again expected to be among the top teams in the ECAC Hockey league. Long-term he projects as a high-skill forward with size and some offensive ability.