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Final Draft Preparation Begins for Canes

by Michael Smith / Carolina Hurricanes
The Carolina Hurricanes’ final preparations for the 2014 NHL Draft began this week, as scouts gathered for annual spring meetings at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort in Cherokee, NC.

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Tucked into the mountainous region of western North Carolina, Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort provides a picturesque backdrop to the proceedings.

“This is a great spot,” said the Canes Director of Amateur Scouting Tony MacDonald. “There’s great food, and it’s a great part of the country.”

But inside the meeting room it’s all business, as the Canes discuss and finalize their list of prospects. It’s the buildup of over a year’s worth of global travel, information-gathering and documentation, culminating in the 2014 NHL Draft in Philadelphia in just over three short weeks.

“Right now with our meetings, we’re trying to determine who the top players are. We run our list right from one through probably 200 players,” MacDonald said. “There’s a lot of discussion where everyone on the staff has input into the players that are on the list and they have evaluated over the course of the season. We try to come to some kind of consensus so that at the end of the day, when the final list is done, we have an order we’re comfortable with.”

Unpredictability seems to be a common theme as it relates to how the first round could shake out on June 27.

“In terms of who may go first, there are probably two or three players – maybe even four – that could fall in there,” MacDonald said. “And if Florida is shopping the first pick, and there could be a lot of movement in this year’s draft. We’ll be prepared for anything.”

Keep it locked on over the coming weeks. We’ll have much more written and video pre-draft coverage for you, including profiles on 10 prospects the Canes could potentially pick with the seventh overall selection. We’ll also bring you a look at Ricky Olczyk, the latest addition to the Canes revamped front office, and we’ll venture beyond statistics into the world of analytics with Video Scout and Hockey Operations Assistant Darren Yorke.

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