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2012 NHL Draft

Defensemen dominate top 10 in CSS midterm rankings

Wednesday, 01.11.2012 / 10:00 AM / 2012 NHL Draft

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

Everett Silvertips' Ryan Murray is the highest ranked defenseman for the 2012 NHL Draft. (Photo: Frank Deines III)
If defense really does win championships, then NHL scouts and general managers should feel rather fortunate since the 2012 Draft will be loaded with high-caliber prospects along the back end.

The last time as many as five defensemen were among the top 10 players selected in the opening round of the draft was 1996, when six were chosen. There's a good chance that could be equaled in Round 1 this June 22 at Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh.

At least that's what NHL Central Scouting believes based on its midterm release Wednesday, as seven of the top 10 North American players listed happen to star along the blue line.

Central Scouting will offer one final release in April prior to the draft.

Subban projected as top goalie in North America

Wednesday, 01.11.2012 / 10:00 AM / 2012 NHL Draft

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

Belleville goalie Malcolm Subban is the top rated North American goalie eligible for the 2012 NHL Draft. (Photo: Aaron Bell/OHL Images)
As it turns out, Malcolm Subban was much more than an admirable fill-in between the pipes whenever he and his brothers got together for a little pickup hockey.

It was Malcolm who always volunteered to play the position of goalie in a family full of defenders. When he turned 12-years-old, it stuck for good, despite the fact older brother, P.K., and youngest sibling, Jordan, preferred the blue line.

"When you're on the ice, in the backyard or in the hallway, I always volunteered to be the goalie," the native of Rexdale, Ont., told NHL.com. "I was a defenseman until I was 12 and I always wanted to play goalie. I love both positions. I wish I could play both, but I just had a passion for goalie watching all the Don Cherry tapes. My dad let me play when I was 12 and I've been happy ever since."

Injured Galchenyuk still considered top talent

Wednesday, 01.11.2012 / 10:00 AM / 2012 NHL Draft

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

Just because Sarnia Sting center Alexander Galchenyuk doesn't have a number beside his name on NHL Central Scouting's midterm rankings for North American skaters, doesn't mean he won't be a top-five selection at the 2012 NHL Draft in Pittsburgh on June 22.

Galchenyuk had season-ending surgery on Oct. 27 to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee and hasn't played a single minute all season in the Ontario Hockey League. He suffered the injury in a preseason game against the Windsor Spitfires on Sept. 16.

"I'm just trying to support our guys from the sidelines, although I can't describe how hard it is to watch," Galchenyuk wrote in a recent blog for NHL.com. "I would much rather be out there with them, but at least I get to spend more time at the rink now. I guess sometimes life throws out these challenges for you and you start appreciating things a lot more after you don't have them for a while. Right now I'm making the most of my situation and I'm hungrier than ever to get back out on the ice. I know that when I do go back that I will appreciate my time on the ice and being with my teammates even more."

Top prospect Yakupov won't require surgery

Monday, 01.09.2012 / 3:38 PM / 2012 NHL Draft

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

Nail Yakupov, considered by many to the be the top player available in the 2012 NHL Draft, will not require surgery after suffering a knee injury playing for the Russian National Junior Team in the gold-medal game of the 2012 World Junior Championship last week.
Yakupov underwent an MRI on Sunday to determine the extent of his injury. According to Mark Glavin, assistant general manager of the Sarnia Sting, surgery is not required.
"The MRI indicated no significant damage," Glavin told NHL.com via email. "He will continue therapy both with Dr. John Vargo here in Sarnia and at the Fowler Clinic in London. His return is expected in three-to-four weeks."

Top '12 Draft prospect Yakupov out with knee injury

Friday, 01.06.2012 / 2:26 PM / 2012 NHL Draft

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Nail Yakupov, considered by many to the be the front-runner to be the top choice of the 2012 NHL Draft, will be out indefinitely after suffering a knee injury playing for Russia in the gold-medal game of the 2012 World Junior Championship on Thursday.

The full extent of the injury won't be known until Yakupov returns to Sarnia, where he plays for the Sarnia Sting of the Ontario Hockey League.

In his second OHL season, the 5-foot-10.5, 189-pound right wing is fifth in the league with 53 points. Last season, he broke Steven Stamkos' Sarnia records for a first-year player with 49 goals and 101 points.

Moller knows what the Hamiltons are in store for

Sunday, 12.18.2011 / 2:03 PM / 2012 NHL Draft

Alain Poupart - NHL.com Correspondent

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Welcome to the club. And enjoy the ride.

That was Randy Moller's reaction when he learned that brothers Dougie and Freddie Hamilton would be teammates for Team Canada at the 2012 World Junior Championship.

The Hamiltons will be the second set of brothers to play for Canada at a WJC when this year's tournament is held Dec. 26 to Jan. 5, 2012 in Edmonton and Calgary.

The first brother combination to play for Canada's national junior team was Randy and Mike Moller 30 years ago, at the 1982 WJC.

Hearing about the Hamiltons has brought back great memories for Randy Moller, a long-time NHL player who is in his 12th season as the radio voice of the Florida Panthers.

Coach: Dumba better for WJC camp experience

Friday, 12.16.2011 / 9:00 AM / 2012 NHL Draft

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

Red Deer Rebels coach Jesse Wallin thought top 2012 NHL Draft prospect Mathew Dumba was playing some of the best hockey he's seen from his star defenseman all season during an intra-squad scrimmage Monday at Hockey Canada's National Junior Evaluation Camp.

Sometimes, however, your best isn't good enough -- a message Dumba received loud and clear this week.

Dumba was one of seven players released Tuesday as Hockey Canada began the process of paring down the 42-player group brought to Calgary for the evaluation camp to the final 22-player roster that will go to Edmonton and Calgary for the 2012 World Junior Championship.

Forty invites sent for CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game

Thursday, 12.15.2011 / 1:16 PM / 2012 NHL Draft

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

The Canadian Hockey League on Thursday announced the 40 top 2012 NHL Draft-eligible players who will participate in the 17th annual Home Hardware CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game on Feb. 1 at Prospera Place in Kelowna, B.C.

"The top prospects game is an event that all NHL scouts look forward to attending," NHL Central Scouting Director Dan Marr said. "The 40 players competing in this game were chosen by the 30 NHL clubs with the game being a unique opportunity to evaluate 40 of the top draft-eligible prospects on a single stage in what has annually become an intense competition."

'Canes not ready to decide on Faulk release for WJC

Wednesday, 12.14.2011 / 12:40 PM / 2012 NHL Draft

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

Carolina Hurricanes general manager Jim Rutherford confirmed on Wednesday that no decision would be made on the availability of defenseman Justin Faulk for the U.S. National Junior Team selection camp until next week.

Faulk was one of eight returning players invited to U.S. selection camp in Camrose, Alta., beginning Dec. 17. He helped the U.S. National Team win a bronze medal at the 2011 World Junior Championship in Buffalo, N.Y. Faulk had 1 goal, 4 points and a plus-2 rating at last year's event. This year's tournament will be held in Edmonton and Calgary.

Faulk was chosen in the second round (No. 37) of the 2010 Entry Draft by the Hurricanes. Less than a week after celebrating a national championship as a freshman at Minnesota-Duluth in 2010-11, Faulk was already inking an entry-level deal with Carolina in April. He led Bulldogs defensemen in goals (8), assists (25) and points (33) in 39 games in helping UMD to its first NCAA championship.

Rutherford told NHL.com via email that "no decision will be made [on whether the Hurricanes release him to USA Hockey] until the final possible date of Dec. 20."

Canucks prospect Jensen to lead Denmark at WJC

Tuesday, 12.06.2011 / 5:23 PM / 2012 NHL Draft

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

After winning the 2011 World Junior Championship Division I tournament last year, Denmark is ready for big time.

The Denmark Ice Hockey Association released its 23-man roster that will arrive in Airdrie, Alta., on Dec. 17 to commence its pre-tournament schedule. The country's initial preliminary-round matchup with the U.S. National Junior Team is slated for Dec. 26 at Rexall Place in Edmonton.

The 2012 WJC will be held Dec. 26 to Jan. 5, 2012 in Edmonton and Calgary.

Denmark will compete in Group B with the U.S., Canada, the Czech Republic and Finland. Group A will consist of Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, Slovakia and Latvia. It's Denmark's first time at the top level of international under-20 hockey since a 10th-place finish at the 2008 WJC.

Denmark's team enters the tournament averaging 18.17 years of age. The top player listed on the roster is Nicklas Jensen, who was taken with the 29th pick of the 2011 Entry Draft by the Vancouver Canucks. In 27 games with the Oshawa Generals of the Ontario Hockey League this season, Jensen has 15 goals and 32 points.
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2012 NHL Draft