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2000 NHL ENTRY DRAFT TOP PROSPECTS

by Staff Writer / Carolina Hurricanes

2000 NHL ENTRY DRAFT TOP PROSPECTS

University of Wisconsin's Heatley Top Rated Prospect for 2000 NHL Entry Draft

NEW YORK – TORONTO- Left wing Dany Heatley of the University of Wisconsin, who was the top rated draft eligible player at mid-season, has maintained his status as the #1 rated skater in North America in the final rankings compiled by the National Hockey League’s Central Scouting Service. The 6’1”, 200-pound Heatley completed his freshman year with Wisconsin, finishing second in team scoring with 52 points (27-25-52 in 35 games), fourth in the league. Heatley was named the WCHA’s Rookie of the Year and was a member of the Bronze Medal-winning Canadian team in the 2000 World Junior Championships in Sweden.

The Central Scouting list includes the top 210 skaters and 30 goaltenders in North America, as well as the top 100 skaters and six goaltenders from Europe. The entire list is available by contacting the NHL Public Relations Department in New York (212-789-2000) or Toronto (416-981-2777).

Rostislav Klesla, a defenseman with the Brampton Battalion (OHL), is ranked second in North America. The 6’2”, 198-pound native of the Czech Republic was recently selected to the OHL’s First All-Rookie Team.

The top five positions are rounded out by right wing Scott Hartnell of the WHL’s Prince Albert Raiders; Brooks Orpik, a defenseman with Boston College (Hockey East), and center Brad Boyes of the Erie Otters (OHL).

Brent Krahn of the WHL’s Calgary Hitmen is the number one ranked goaltender in North America, a position he has maintained since the mid-term rankings. The 6’4”, 200-pound native of Winnipeg posted a 33-6-0 record and a 2.38 goals-against average as a rookie this season.

The top rated European skater is Russian-born Pavel Vorobiev, a right wing with Yaroslavl in the Russian senior league. He is followed by fellow Russian natives, center Mikhail Yakubov (Togliatti) and left wing Alexei Smirnov (Dynamo). Slovakia’s Marian Gaborik, a left wing for Trencin, is the fourth rated European, while Russian defenseman Ilya Nikulin (Tver) completes the top rated European talents.

Goaltender Ilja Bryzgalov (Togliatti) is the top rated goaltender in Europe. The 6’3”, 196-pound Russian native played for the Russian team in the 2000 World Championships.

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