Kealty, now in his 12th season with the organization, has been managing the club’s amateur scouting operation as the Predators Chief Amateur Scout since July 25, 2007. In addition to monitoring the best draft-eligible talent around the globe, Kealty keeps an eye on the CHL, NCAA and other junior leagues in North America and Europe. Reporting to Assistant General Manager Paul Fenton, Kealty also spearheads the team’s annual efforts at the NHL Entry Draft.
Chief Amateur Scout
The Boston native has overseen Nashville’s past five drafts, helping to bolster the club’s depth across the board, selecting 24 forwards, 11 defensemen and four goalies since his first year running Nashville’s draft table in 2008. While much of the talent Kealty and his staff have selected the past five years is still developing, the future looks bright.
A seventh-round steal (207th overall) by Kealty’s staff in the 2008 Entry Draft, Anders Lindback outgrew the backup role in 2011-12 and will now get an opportunity to be an NHL starter with Tampa Bay, but not before Nashville received two second-round picks and a third rounder from the Lightning for him.
Promising 2008 second-round pick (38th overall) Roman Josi and 2008 first rounder (seventh overall) Colin Wilson are still developing, while the 2009 class may end up being the best in franchise history to date. Ryan Ellis (11th overall, first round), Craig Smith (98th overall, fourth round) and Gabriel Bourque (132nd overall, fifth round) became full-time NHLers in 2011-12, while others are on the verge, including Mattias Ekholm (102nd overall, fourth round), who will spend his first full season in North America in 2012-13 after winning the 2012 Börje Salming Award as the top defenseman in the Swedish Elite League and 2011 Swedish Elite League Rookie of the Year honors.
A former first-round pick (22nd overall) of the Quebec Nordiques in 1994, Kealty was signed by Nashville as a free agent in 1998 following a four-year college career at Boston University. The former defenseman played one pro season for the Milwaukee Admirals (International Hockey League) before his playing career was cut short due to injury.
Kealty, his wife Lynn, daughter Lydia and son James (twins) reside in Norfolk, Mass.