Columbus Blue Jackets first pick, seventh overall, in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft is Jakub Voracek. Below are some statistics on Voracek, who was born in the Czech Republic, and video/quotes from Friday.
When asked how he felt: I feel unbelievable right now in front of all the fans. It's a treat being picked in front of all of the (Columbus) fans.
When asked about today and being drafted: "It was my dream to be drafted by an NHL team. I think it is the first step of five steps to play in the NHL, so I have to work hard and become a better person each day and we'll see what happens."
Asked about playing in Columbus: I think it's a really nice city and a nice rink. I hope I can be here next year.
When asked about his work ethic: "I work hard and try hard, and play well under pressure.
NHL Central Scouting Rank: No. 7 North American Skater
Weight: 187 lbs
Position: Right Wing
Last Team: Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)
Central Scouting Report: A skilled forward that possesses good speed... attacks with his feet moving and can execute plays at high speeds... has good passing ability and can play in traffic... shows something new on each rush... attempts risky plays that sometimes result in turnovers... needs to improve his consistency.
2006-07 Season: Scored 86 points (23g-63a) in 59 games with Halifax this season... set a new franchise record with 63 assists, besting Ladislav Nagy's mark of 55 from 1998-99... won the 2007 Michel-Bergeron Award as the QMJHL's Top Offensive Rookie... was the team's Rookie of the Year, shared Team MVP honors and won the Fan's Choice Award.
What they're saying: "Another player with a high hockey IQ who finds his teammates and creates offense. His development has been good, and by coming to North America this year, he has expedited the transition that all European players have to go through." – Mike Seidel (ESPN.com - 3-16-07)