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B's Happy With Draft

by Abigail Seaver / Boston Bruins -- Late last Saturday, with the selection process behind them, Boston Bruins General Manager Peter Chiarelli and Director of Amateur Scouting Wayne Smith were able to take a look back at the 2010 NHL Entry Draft in Los Angeles and give a quick evaluation of their take.

"We got some very, very exciting people that are going to pull people out of their seats,” said Smith. "We have a solid goal of winning the Stanley Cup and the theme throughout the draft was character.

"They’re exceptional people."

The Bruins walked away with eight players: Tyler Seguin, Jared Knight, Ryan Spooner, Craig Cunningham, Justin Florek, Zane Gothberg, Maxim Chudinov and Zach Trotman.

Obviously, the biggest fanfare was saved for Seguin, the second pick of the entire draft.

A 6'1", 172-pound forward, Seguin has spent the past two seasons playing with the Plymouth Whalers in the Ontario Hockey League (OHL). In 2009-2010 Seguin led the OHL in scoring, sharing the title with fellow top prospect and the NHL's number one pick in 2010, Taylor Hall, after notching 48 goals and 58 assists for 106 points in 63 games while compiling 54 penalty minutes.

"Tyler Seguin is a special person," said Smith. "It’s hard to group him in with anybody because he just has god given abilities, the ability to break a game wide open at any shift."

Chiarelli was also impressed with the London's Knight (2nd Round, 32nd overall), the Bruins second pick of the draft.

The 18-year-old Battle Creek, Michigan native stands 5’11”, 186 lbs. and tallied 36 goals and 21 assists for 57 points last season for the Knights while appearing in 63 games. In 2008-2009, he recorded 15-15-30 totals in 67 regular season games and added 3-0-3 totals in 13 postseason contests.

"Knight - he’s a pure scorer this kid," said Chiarelli. "He got diabetes [and] dropped off the charts.

"But they were able to treat the diabetes and he just got stronger and stronger and we...brought him in to test him.

"He was off the charts strength wise and it was terrific to see."

Due to injury, Spooner was also availabel for the B's to grab him (2nd Round, 45th overall) -- a bargain according to the GM.

The 5’10”, 172-pound Kanata, Ontario native played in only 47 regular season games last season for the Peterborough Petes after suffering a broken collarbone on January 23. The 18-year-old Spooner recorded 19-35-54 totals, which was only four points shy of his previous season’s 30-28-58 totals in 62 games.

He then went on to add one assist in three postseason games.

"Spooner was maybe one of the highest rated kids going into the year," said Chiarelli. "He struggled a little bit due to injury but in the last half he got stronger and he has high-end skill."

Chiarelli said that a Bruins player reccomended the B's fourth round pick (97th overall).

The 19-year-old native of Trail, British Columbia skated in 72 games for the Vancouver Giants in 2009-2010, posting 37-60-97 totals and 44 penalty minutes. He then appeared in 16 postseason games and tallied 12-12-24 totals. The 5’10” 184-pound winger was named to the WHL West First All-Star Team in 2010 and won a Memorial Cup with Vancouver during his rookie season in 2006-2007.

He has spent portions of the last four summers training in Vancouver with Bruins forward, and former Giant, Milan Lucic.

"We got Cunningham, who is highly, highly recommended by Luch," explained Chiarelli. "He's got a...story behind him, too.

"His father passed away and [former NHLer] Ray Ferrero kind of helped him along the trail and sponsored him.

"He's a skill guy, with some grit...[and] he's ready to turn pro."

Smith said he wanted to make sure the Garden's goal mouth would be covered for the team in the coming years. So, the Bruins chose Gothberg (5th Round, 135 overall).

The 6’1”, 177-pound goaltender appeared in 25 games last season for his hometown school of Thief River Falls in Minnesota, and recorded three shutouts on his way to a 1.84 goals against average and .922 save percentage. His performance earned him the 2010 Frank Brimsek Award (named in honor of the B's former puck-stopper) as the state's top senior goalie.

The 18-year-old has committed to the University of North Dakota, but will first play for the Fargo Force of the United States Hockey League (USHL).

"Zane, first of all is a natural talent," said Smith. "You know he’s still raw and instinctive in his goaltending form which was exactly what we were looking for - someone who was going to be bankable which next year.

"He won’t be going to college right away he will be playing a year in the USHL."

Smith continued, "With the recent success of our players, our goaltenders, in our minor system with having [big] years and still looking like NHL prospects we were really lucky to get someone coming up behind them so that was great."

The Bruins took a chance on drafting a Russian, Chudinov, from the KHL (7th Round, 195th overall).

The 5’11”, 187-pound native of Cherepovets, Russia scored his first career points with Cherepovets last year, registering 6-7-13 totals in 47 games, adding 30 penalty minutes. He has also appeared in four postseason games with his hometown club.

While playing with Cherepovets, Chudinov played along side fellow Boston Bruins prospect Yuri Alexandrov.

"There is always a risk of getting involved with Russians but this player is very close in being NHL ready and he’s already played in the KHL," explained Smith. "He’s been a star at the last two world juniors and he’s an outstanding talent.

"We’ve been given word that he’s going to come here and he wants to be a Boston Bruin."

Last, but certainly not least, was Zach Trotman (7th Round, 210th overall) - the last pick of the 2010 draft.

The 6’4”, 202-pound native of Novi, Michigan played in his freshman season last year for the Lake Superior State Lakers, registering 2-6-8 totals in 36 games. During the 2008-2009 season, the 19-year-old appeared in 47 games for the Wichita Falls Wildcats of the North American Hockey League (NAHL), tallying 2-4-6 totals and 79 penalty minutes.

"One of the things we didn’t have was a puck moving defensemen with size at 6’3” which is Trotman," said Smith. "We asked Peter again to go to the floor and find that pick for us.

"We didn’t want to leave the draft without him and we were fortunate to be able to acquire him."

In addition to their draft picks, and thanks to the trade of Vladimir Sobotka, the Bruins also took home the rights to a Boston University Terrier -- David Warsofsky.

The 20-year-old Warsofsky is currently a junior defenseman at Boston U. and is a native of Marshfield, Massachusetts. He has played in 79 career games during his first two years at BU, registering 15 goals and 31 assists for 46 points and 75 penalty minutes.

Last season, he played in 34 games and scored a career high 12 goals while tying his career high with 23 points. He has scored 23 points in each of his first two collegiate seasons, registering 3-20-23 totals during his freshman campaign.

Warsofsky also played for the United States National Development team in 2007-2008, recording 4-2-6 totals while skating in 15 games.

The 5’9”, 170-pound Warsofsky was originally drafted in the fourth round (95th overall) of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft by the St. Louis Blues.

"Well he's a good player," said Chiarelli who specifically referenced David's work at the World Junior Tournament. "He sees the ice, he moves the puck. He's almost 190 pounds.

"We see him a lot, we like him."

The draft ended on a positive note with the GM and scout very happy.

"I’m excited - I’m really excited," said Smith. "I almost wish development camp was tomorrow.

"I think all of our boxes were checked when we left the floor today."
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