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Storming the NHL Entry Draft

The 2009 NHL Entry Draft wrapped up on Saturday afternoon with 211 players selected including five current Storm players in addition to a sixth player that is Storm property but Notre Dame bound in September.

On Friday night, Peter Holland became the ninth Storm player in the last 17 NHL Entry Drafts to be selected in the first round.  The Caledon, Ontario native was scooped up by the Anaheim Ducks with the 15th pick.  Later in the night, the Ducks selected American standout Kyle Palmieri with the 26th pick of the draft.  An exciting player that has been terrific internationally for his native United States, Palmieri is committed to Notre Dame beginning in the fall.

On Saturday, rounds two through seven took place at the Bell Centre in Montreal.  Beginning with the selection of winger Taylor Beck 70th overall, four different Storm players were selected in the next 61 picks.  Like Beck, Michael Latta was taken by the Nashville Predators (72nd overall).  Ben Chiarot would be the next to hear his name called when the Atlanta Thrashers picked the big blueliner in the 4th round (120th overall).  Matt Kennedy would be the last Storm player chosen.  Last year’s captain was taken by the Carolina Hurricanes in the Round 5 (131st overall).

Guelph Storm NHL Draftees

 Year

Player 

Round 

Team 

 1993

Todd Bertuzzi 

1st, 23rd overall 

New York Islanders 

 1993

Mike Rusk 

9th, 232nd overall 

Chicago Blackhawks 

 1994

Jeff O’Neill 

1st, 5th overall 

 Hartford Whalers

 1994

Rumun Ndur 

3rd, 69th overall 

Buffalo Sabres 

 1994

Jamie Wright 

4th, 98th overall 

Dallas Stars 

 1994

Mark McArthur 

4th, 112th overall 

 New York Islanders

 1994

Ryan Risidore 

5th, 109th overall 

Hartford Whalers 

 1994

Jeff Williams 

7th, 181st overall 

New Jersey Devils 

1994 

Eric Landry 

8th, 193rd overall

San Jose Sharks 

1995

Brian Wesenberg 

2nd, 29th overall

Anaheim MIghty DUcks 

1995

Dwayne Hay 

2nd, 43rd overall 

Washington Capitals 

1995 

Todd Norman 

5th, 120th overall 

Vancouver Canucks 

1995 

Joel Cort 

5th, 124th overall 

Washington Capitals 

1995 

Michael Pittman 

9th, 227th overall 

Chicago Blackhawks 

1996 

Chris Hajt 

2nd, 32nd overall 

Edmonton Oilers 

1996 

Mike Lankshear 

3rd, 66th overall 

Toronto Maple Leafs 

1996 

Andrew Long 

5th, 129th overall 

Florida Panthers 

1996 

Brian Willsie 

6th, 146th overall 

Colorado Avalanche 

1996 

Mike Vellinga 

7th, 184th overall 

Chicago Blackhawks 

1996 

Nick Bootland 

9th, 220th overall 

Dallas Stars 

1997 

Kent McDonell 

9th, 225th overall 

Carolina Hurricanes 

1998 

Manny Malhotra 

1st, 7th overall 

New York Rangers 

1998 

Ian Forbes 

2nd, 51st overall 

Philadelphia Flyers 

1998 

Eric Beaudoin 

4th, 92nd overall 

Tampa Bay Lightning 

1998 

Chris Madden 

4th, 97th overall 

Carolina Hurricanes 

1998 

Kevin Mitchell 

9th, 234th overall 

Calgary Flames 

1998 

Charlie Stephens 

2nd, 31st overall 

Washington Capitals 

1999 

Kent McDonell 

6th, 186th overall 

Detroit Red Wings 

2000 

Peter Flache 

9th, 262nd overall 

Chicago Blackhawks 

2000 

Brian Passmore 

7th, 199th overall 

Minnesota Wild 

2001 

Craig Andersson 

3rd, 73rd overall 

Chicago Blackhawks 

2001 

Colt King 

4th, 130th overall 

Colorado Avalanche 

2001 

Charlie Stephens 

6th, 196th overall 

Colorado Avalanche 

2001 

Andrew Archer 

7th, 203rd overall 

Montreal Canadiens 

2002 

Daniel Paille 

1st, 20th overall 

Buffalo Sabres 

2002 

Dwight LaBrosse 

9th, 265th overall 

Pittsburgh Penguins 

2003 

Dustin Brown 

1st, 13th overall 

L.A. Kings 

2003 

Ryan Callahan 

4th, 127th overall 

New York Rangers 

2004 

Danny Taylor 

7th, 221st overall 

L.A. Kings 

2005 

Ryan Parent 

1st, 18th overall 

Nashville Predators 

2005 

Matt D’Agostini 

6th, 210th overall 

Montreal Canadiens 

2006 

Mike Caruso 

4th, 103rd overall 

Florida Panthers 

2007 

Corey Syvret 

6th, 181st overall 

Florida Panthers 

2008

Drew Doughty

1st, 2nd overall

L.A. Kings

2008

Thomas McCollum

1st, 30th overall

Detroit Red Wings

2008

Anthony Nigro

6th, 155th overall

St. Louis Blues

2009 Peter Holland 1st, 15th overall Anaheim Ducks
2009 Taylor Beck 3rd, 70th overall Nashville Predators
2009 Michael Latta 3rd, 72nd overall Nashville Predators
2009 Ben Chiarot 4th, 120th overall Atlanta Thrashers
2009 Matt Kennedy 5th, 131st overall Carolina Hurricanes

Below is a pre-draft preview of the Storm players that were selected in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.

Peter Holland is projected to go the highest of the Storm’s current crop. Expected to be selected late in the first round by most pundits, the Caledon native would be the Storm’s ninth first round NHL pick in history.

Holland’s Rankings:
The Hockey News: 19
International Scouting Services: 15
Red Line Report: 24
McKeen’s Hockey: 25
CS: 19 NAS
TSN: 24

HockeyProspect.com
He’s figuring out how to use his size better to his advantage, is protecting the puck very well and has a hard and accurate shot. Has learned to use his linemates much more effectively this year. A solid presence on the defensive side of the puck and should only progress in that area even further. Not a very physical player, but we feel that will develop a little more in time and more growth in his frame. We like his upside and think he’s got power forward written all over him.

Hockey’s Future
A power forward prospect, Holland’s stock has slipped a bit from the combine, particularly the interview portion. On the ice, his hockey sense is not as good as those above him. However, his size, offensive talents, and willingness to play in front of the net make him an option for teams who miss out on Zack Kassian. Holland is not as big as Kassian but still has time to grow and room on his frame to add weight. He has shown solid hands around the net and is noted for his ability to disrupt defensive sides with his forecheck.

NHL Central Scouting’s Chris Edwards: “When he is competing, he is very noticeable and effective. He is used both on the power-play and penalty-kill units, and at times he has been used at the point on the power-play. He skates very well, smooth, and he generates good speed. He has a very good shot.”

Click here for Holland’s draft profile

Michael Latta is the second Storm player ranked for tonight’s draft. The St. Clement’s native jumped from 45th to 42nd in the final rankings. Excelling at the Combine, Latta placed among the top 10 in several categories.

Michael Latta’s Rankings:
The Hockey News: 48
International Scouting Services: 60
Red Line Report: 58
McKeen’s Hockey: 77
CS: 45 NAS
TSN: not rated

HockeyProspect.com
He has also learned to use his line-mates more effectively than in the past. Is getting first line ice time in Ottawa and is blossoming under the tutelage of legendary coach Brian Kilrea. Does need to build up a little more strength in his upper body, but he’s a slick passer, with good hands in tight and a willingness to work hard. He’s a player that will be a fan favourite wherever he goes.

Hockey’s Future
Latta may not have ideal size for an NHLer, but he has shown that he has ample heart. He’s displayed a willingness bordering on zeal for competing in the corners and in front of the net, which is why the Storm paid a heft price in obtaining him from Ottawa in the Anthony Nigro trade. Latta’s an effective playmaking center who improves his linemates both through skill and by setting an example on how to pay attention to the intangibles that separate winning teams from the mediocre ones.

NHL Central Scouting’s Chris Edwards
“Michael has shown good playmaking ability and he sees the ice well. He moves the puck well.”
Ranked three players after Michael Latta is Storm forward Taylor Beck. Beck is currently ranked 48th, up two spots from his midterm ranking. Also impressing at the combine, the Niagara Falls native placed among the top 10 in a number of categories.

Click here for Michael Latta’s draft profile

Taylor Beck’s Rankings:
The Hockey News: 67
International Scouting Services: 53
Red Line Report: 130
McKeen’s Hockey: 66
CS: 48 NASH
TSN: 67

Hockey’s Future
Beck made a huge jump in his progression this season and showed scouts that he’s a viable long-term power-forward type of prospect. He has good size and has shown an increasing willingness to drive to the net and camp in the tougher areas of the ice. Beck showed that his scoring and playmaking abilities were increasing, although he still has a long way to go in terms of his stride and skating ability.

International Scouting Services: “It is always good to watch Taylor; he is not the most skilled guy, but he has a great work ethic. He needs to continue to work on his first few strides. He is very aware of his defensive responsibilities and is always going to the wall to pick up pucks. He is not afraid to drive the net and looks for rebounds. Skating stride looks awkward and he lacks first step quickness, but once he gets going builds up a decent amount of speed – improved first couple of strides would help with overall speed. During neutral zone play does a good job of steering and angling puck carrier. Beck won a Gold medal as a member of Team Ontario at the 2008 World U-17 Challenge.”

Click here for Taylor Beck’s draft profile

Storm defenceman Ben Chiarot is the last ranked Storm player. Starting the year off ranked 100th, the Hamilton native made some ground and finished the season 79th. Scouts certainly took notice of his solid play on the Storm blueline this season as Chiarot is one of top OHL defenceman eligible for the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.

Chiarot Scouting Report — First and foremost, Chiarot is a no-nonsense, stay-at-home defenseman. He has raised his draft stock in the second half by playing a simple, all-purpose game. Has learned to settle down the puck and use his size advantageously to buy some time to make a play; will still occasionally make a poor decision with the puck when under pressure, but his vision and on-ice awareness is improving. A decent skater with sound positional awareness on defense, Chiarot will use his agility to eliminate passing lanes. Stays with his man defensively and utilizes his reach to pry away loose pucks. Physical and aggressive, he lacks top-end speed but uses his body to take as much room on the ice as possible. An excellent character guy with an ideal frame for an NHL defenseman.

Click here for Ben Chiarot’s draft profile

Storm captain Matt Kenendy has been eligible and passed over the past two NHL drafts. With an impressive breakout year last season, the 19 year old has certainly improved his chances with a number of NHL teams expressing interest throughout the year.

Last season, the first four selections at the 2008 NHL Entry Draft were OHL players. The first round of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft begins at 7:00 pm on Friday June 26, 2009, with rounds two through seven commencing Saturday June 27, 2009, at 10:00 am.

A full recap of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft will be available at www.ontariohockeyleague.com

For more information and up-to date, in-depth analysis regarding the 2008 NHL Entry Draft visit TSN.ca. Storm fans can follow the draft live on TSN starting on Friday, June 20 from 7-10pm et.

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