The 2011 NHL Draft in St. Paul Minnesota certainly has an American flavor -- even if it isn't exactly a traditional one.
Of the first 21 U.S. born players selected in this year's draft, only one was born in the traditional power states of Minnesota, Michigan and Massachusetts. That would be Connor Murphy
, Phoenix's first round pick at No. 20. Murphy was born in Boston.
Pennsylvania had the largest representation with four players being selected from the Keystone State. The Pennsylvania bunch is led by J.T. Miller
, a Pittsburgh native, who was selected at No. 15 by the New York Rangers
Three players hail from New York while there are two players drafted each from Illinois, California, Connecticut, Missouri and Texas. In addition, there is one player from Alaska, Arizona and Ohio among the first 21 U.S. born players selected.
Fans at the Xcel Energy Center did have something big to cheer for -- albeit a little later on. The hometown Minnesota Wild
made a splash by swapping picks with the Canucks to obtain the No. 60 selection in the second round. The Wild used it to pick Mario Lucia
of Wayzata, who is the son of Unniversity of Minnesota coach Don Lucia. Lucia was the first player from the state picked in the draft.