Archive for the ‘2012 Draft Profiles’ Category

The face that launched a thousand rumors.
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Classy

And so it has come to this. We have reached the end of my time throwing profiles of young, more talented people than myself. It’s been a blast.

Taking us home is the latest in a long line of Super Swedes, Filip Forsberg. In a draft filled with relatives of former NHL greats, you would not be remiss to think that Filip is related to Peter (I know I did). Sadly, he’s not. That aside, Filip is pretty damn good at hockey in his own right. Though Forsberg has only played one full year amongst the big boys in his home country, this is not any knock on his skill level or his potential. In his first and only full season in the AllSvenskan league for Leksands, Forsberg scored 8 goals and 9 assists to go along with 33 penalty minutes and a plus/minus rating of of plus-3. In the qualifying tournament for the Elitserein, Forsberg put up two goals and one assist in the ten games Leksands played – failing to qualify for the higher league.

Forsberg also comes with plenty of big game experience at the international level as well. He was a member of the gold medal winning Swedish team at the 2012 U20 World Junior Championships, though he only contributed 1 assist to the stat sheet. He was team captain of the silver medal winning U18 team, where he scored five goals with two assists in six games. Forsberg has also taken part in the 2011 Ivan Hlinka tournament as well as playing for the 2011 U18 World Junior team where his team once again finished with the silver medal.

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The above picture is essentially a live action shot of Grigorenko playing in the Quebec League this year. A man amongst boys, truly.
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When it comes to lock-top 5 picks, it’s hard to get any lockier than Ryan Murray. Skill, experience, Murray’s got it all. He’s been playing full seasons in the WHL since 2009 and hasn’t disappointed in any of them. For the 2011-2012 season, Murray was named a team captain for the Everett Silvertips, at just 18-years-old mind you, and more than lived up to expectations. Though his season got off to a rocky start due to an injury, Murray suited up in 46 games for the Silvertips putting up 31 points in 46 games and finishing with a plus/minus rating of even to go along with 31 penalty minutes. In the Silvertips’ 4-game playoff series against the Tri City Americans,  Murray scored three goals and added 2 assists with a rating of minus-2.

Murray was also named to Team Canada’s U20 World Junior team last season. Murray played in all six games for Canada, contributing three assists on the tournament. The real indication of Murray’s skill and potential, however, may be the fact that he was also invited to Team Canada’s training camp for the 2012 IIHF World Championships, one of only two junior players to receive that honor.

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The second highest defenseman from the WHL checks in at number five on this list, confirming what everyone knew – this is a scary good year for defensemen.
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Credit: Moose Jaw Warriors

Hoo boy, we’re so close to the top 5 I can smell it. And to guide us into the top 5 is the soon-to-be former Moose Jaw Warrior, Morgan Rielly. In a draft full of highly touted defensemen, Rielly is one of the few that are touted most highly (totally made sense). Rielly looked to be on pace to having a big 2012 before a torn ACL derailed his season. Rielly had 18 points in 18 games for the Warriors before the injury would end his regular season but would return for the playoffs for the Eastern Conference finals against Edmonton. In five games, Rielly would notch 3 assists with a minus-1 rating.

Rielly’s international experience was limited to his 2010-2011 season due to his injury. Rielly skated for Canada at the U18 World Championships, despite being just 16-years-old at the time, and would also skate for Canada Pacific in the U17 World Hockey Challenge. In the U18 tourny, Rielly would score 2 goals and add an assist in 7 games on Canada’s path to a fourth place finish. For Canada Pacific he put up 5 points in six games to go along with 4 penalty minutes.

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The second highest member of the Sarnia Sting on this list checks in at number seven.
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