Hockey World Blog

Teams take straightforward approach during first round of NHL draft

While rumors were spreading across the net ranging from the incredibly plausible to the out-right laughable in regards to how the 2010 NHL Entry Draft would sort itself out, in reality things seemed to occur in a fairly straightforward fashion last night for most teams – beginning with the number one overall selection by the Edmonton Oilers.

Taylor Hall, of the Windsor Spitfire in the Ontario Hockey League, became the number one overall selection of the 2010 draft last night. There was certainly a lot of speculation regarding who Edmonton would select, but in the end they saw an incredibly passionate and intelligent player in Hall that they couldn’t pass up.

“He’s such an imposing young man,” said Oilers general manager Steve Tambellini. “I don’t think I’ve ever met a more focused, competitive athlete. He was the best player on a good team for a long time.”

Despite recent struggles for the Oilers, Hall is happy to be joining an organization with such a rich hockey history and hopes to lend a hand while the team looks to rebuild.

“They’re such a great franchise with so much history behind them,” Hall said. “With the five (Stanley) Cups they won, it will mean a lot to me to join their organization and hopefully bring another one up there.”

The Boston Bruins, with the second overall selection, took Tyler Seguin of the Plymouth Whalers of the Ontario Hockey League. Seguin has drawn several comparisons to players like Steve Yzerman and Joe Sakic and will certainly be a huge asset to the Bruins organization.

The Florida Panthers were also a busy team during the first round of the draft. Not only did they select defenseman Erik Grudbranson as the third overall selection, but they traded away defenseman Keith Ballard and prospect Victor Oreskovich to the Vancouver Canucks in exchange for Steve Bernier, Michael Grabner and the 25th pick in the draft.

In case you missed it, here are the rest of the draft results from the first round last night:

PICK NHL TEAM PLAYER POSITION 09-10 TEAM
1 EDM TAYLOR HALL LW WINDSOR (OHL)
2 BOS TYLER SEGUIN C PLYMOUTH (OHL)
3 FLA ERIK GUDBRANSON D KINGSTON (OHL)
4 CLB RYAN JOHANSEN C PORTLAND (WHL)
5 NYI NINO NIEDERREITER LW PORTLAND (WHL)
6 TAM BRETT CONNOLLY RW PRINCE GEORGE (WHL)
7 CAR JEFF SKINNER C KITCHENER (OHL)
8 ATL ALEXANDER BURMISTROV C BARRIE (OHL)
9 MIN MIKAEL GRANLUND LW HIFK HELSINKI (FINLAND)
10 NYR DYLAN McILRATH D MOOSE JAW (WHL)
11 DAL JACK CAMPBELL G U.S. NAT’L DEV. TEAM (USHL)
12 ANA CAM FOWLER D WINDSOR (OHL)
13 PHX BRANDON GORMLEY D MONCTON (QMJHL)
14 STL JADEN SCHWARTZ C TRI-CITY (USHL)
15 LOS DEREK FORBORT D U.S. NAT’L DEV. TEAM (USHL)
16 STL VLADIMIR TARASENKO RW NOVOSIBIRSK (KHL)
17 COL JOEY HISHON C OWEN SOUND (OHL)
18 NSH AUSTIN WATSON RW PETERBOROUGH (OHL)
19 FLA NICK BJUGSTAD C BLAINE HS (MINN.)
20 PIT BEAU BENNETT C PENTICTON (BCHL)
21 DET RILEY SHEAHAN C NOTRE DAME (CCHA)
22 MTL JARRED TINORDI D U.S. NAT’L DEV. TEAM (USHL)
23 BUF MARK PYSYK D EDMONTON (WHL)
24 CHI KEVIN HAYES RW NOBLES/GREENOUGH (MA HS)
25 FLA QUINTON HOWDEN LW MOOSE JAW (WHL)
26 WSH EVGENY KUZNETSOV LW CHELYABINSK (KHL)
27 PHX MARK VISENTIN G NIAGARA (OHL)
28 SAN CHARLIE COYLE RW SOUTH SHORE (EJHL)
29 ANA EMERSON ETEM C MEDICINE HAT (WHL)
30 NYI BROCK NELSON C WARROAD (MN HS)

A few interesting notes on the draft selections:

– While rumors hit the net hard regarding Kaberle moving for a first round pick, or perhaps even Ottawa moving Spezza on draft day, none of those rumors came into fruition. In fact, Toronto was not able to obtain a first-round draft choice after trading it to Boston (2nd overall) in the Phil Kessel trade last summer.

– Defenseman Cam Fowler fell to Anaheim at the 12th pick. Two defenseman were chosen ahead of Fowler. Many believed Fowler to be a top-5 draft pick this year and expect him to have an incredibly successful career.

– Typically left with low draft selections, the Wings usually resort to taking small, speedy forwards who they can bulk up and add size and strength to during stints in the minors. This year, the Detroit Red Wings were able to add a forward with some size and grit in Riley Sheahan as they drafted at the 21st position – their second-highest selection in 19 years. “I’m a big player and I like to use my size to my advantage,’’ Sheahan said abut his abilities, which the Wings organization echoed. “I’m a pass  first, shoot second kind of player. I like to make my teammates better. I can be responsible in my own end. I think I can be a leader in the dressing room and that I have the respect of my teammates.’’ (Note to Red Wings brass: Please learn how to say the last name of your selections before making said selection).

– Goalie Jack Campbell went to the Dallas Stars as the 11th choice. He was pegged a sa mid-round draft choice, but there appeared to be no real immediate need for many teams to grab a goalie in the first round. Dallas seems like a good fit. The Stars will part ways with longtime franchise goaltender Marty Turco this summer as he is an unrestricted free agent, and with goaltender Kari Lehtonen signed for an additional three years, this gives Campbell time to get acclimated to the pro game in the minors and perhaps come and serve as a backup or even compete with Lehtonen for the starting job depending on how his development comes along.

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