Blue Jackets Prospect Luca Del Bel Belluz On His Second Development Camp, Next Step In His Career

By Coby Maeir on July 4, 2023 at 10:15 am
Columbus Blue Jackets center Luca Del Bel Belluz (65) moves the puck away from Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Ty Smith (24) and forward Jonathan Gruden (45) during the first period at PPG Paints Arena.
Philip G. Pavely-USA TODAY Sports

Luca Del Bel Belluz, a center who the Blue Jackets drafted with the No. 44 overall pick in the 2022 Draft, is entering his second development camp and is eligible to make his professional debut this season with either the Blue Jackets or their AHL affiliate, the Cleveland Monsters.

Here's what he said Sunday about his second development camp, the next step in his career, and more.

Del Bel Belluz said that last year he was nervous at development camp and that led to him gripping his stick tighter but added that this year he's more comfortable.

"Coming here [in] my second year, I'm a little more confident and I know my way around," Del Bel Belluz said. "So that's definitely a lot different. And I feel good out there."

He also said he feels bigger this year.

"Last year I was a little bit smaller," Del Bel Belluz said. "I was weighing around 180 [pounds]. So since then, I've put on a couple of pounds and I feel a lot stronger."

Del Bel Belluz grew up with 2023 No. 3 overall pick Adam Fantilli and said Fantilli is a competitor.

"Ever since we were kids, he's [been] a winner," Del Bel Belluz said. "Let's just put it that way. He doesn't let anyone get in his way and he wants to win and he's really good."

After 2022's training camps, Del Bel Belluz said he entered the 2022-23 OHL season with more confidence. 

"Going back to Mississauga and then Sarnia, I just felt really confident," Del Bel Belluz said. "And [I] just wanted the puck on my stick and wanted to make plays."

Del Bel Belluz said that he hopes to make the Blue Jackets, but if not, he hopes to end up with the Monsters. He's excited about the chance to play at the professional level.

"It's pro hockey," Del Bel Belluz said. "You start to play against men and people who are married and have kids. So it's gonna be different but I'm super excited."

After a stellar season with the Mississauga Steelheads and Sarnia Sting where he posted 40-47--87 in 66 games, Del Bel Belluz will hope to make his pro debut in 2023-24. 

Luca Del Bel Belluz stats (via Regular Season Playoffs
Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM +/- GP G A Pts PIM
2019-20 Mississauga Steelheads OHL 58 1 5 6 8 -13          
2021-22 Mississauga Steelheads OHL 68 30 46 76 28 23 10 1 3 4 0
2022-23 Mississauga Steelheads OHL 34 20 21 41 10 -5 -- -- -- -- --
2022-23 Sarnia Sting OHL 32 20 26 46 4 15 16 8 7 15 4
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