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NHL Draft

Tkachuk excited to be drafted by Flames

Forward 'couldn't be happier' Calgary selected him with No. 6 pick

by Matthew Tkachuk / Special to

Matthew Tkachuk was selected by the Calgary Flames with the No. 6 pick in the 2016 NHL Draft at First Niagara Center on Friday. Tkachuk, No. 2 on NHL Central Scouting's final ranking of North American skaters eligible for the draft, finished his first season with London of the Ontario Hockey League. The 6-foot-1, 195-pound left wing had 30 goals and 107 points in 57 regular-season games. He had 20 goals and 40 points in 18 OHL playoff games, and five goals, including in overtime in the championship game of the Memorial Cup. He filed his final draft blog for

The big moment finally came and I couldn't be happier.

I spent a lot of time with my friends and family, so I didn't get a whole lot of sleep last night. But I had a good nap today, treated it like a game day.

When I walked into the building, you see all the teams, all the general managers, and you think where could I possibly be going.

I wasn't really getting nervous as the picks were made. You don't get too ahead of yourself. You know what team needs are.

Video: Flames draft F Matthew Tkachuk No. 6

Then my name got called by the Calgary Flames. The first thing I did was stand up and give my parents, and my brother and sister a hug. They all said they loved me and how proud they were of me.

I think it really sunk in when I was walking up on stage and seeing the Flames management staff there.

When I got up on stage, I shook hands with Commissioner Gary Bettman. He said, "I would say welcome to the NHL but you've been here for many years with your dad." That was cool to hear.

Standing up there with the Flames management group was really cool. I gave them all a big smile and thanked them for this opportunity. I'm definitely not going to take this opportunity for granted because Calgary was a team I had circled on my list and I want to play for them.

I'm going to enjoy this tonight with family and friends, and get back to work Monday.

Thanks for following the blog this season.

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