Leading up to the 2010 draft, Flordiapanthers.com will be highlighting some of the top prospects to look out for. At number 3, the Panthers have a lot of players to choose from. What direction and who will they pick?
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THE SHINNY: Seen as a good combination of power with finese, the Swiss phenom can do it all. He can play physical, hence his 68 penalty minutes and he can score at will, with his 36 goals as a WHL rookie.
Nino Niederreiter had a fantastic 2010 World Junior Championships where he led Switzerland with 10 points (six goals) in seven games. That earned him a spot on the tournament all-star team.
Director of NHL Central Scouting's E.J. McGuire: "Plays in Portland but showed the world how good he could be in the (World Junior Championship) playing for the Swiss National Team. And after that tournament he kept getting better. He's shifty, he's skilled, he has a good stride and he loves battling in the corner."
Niederreiter On Niederreiter: "I think I try to make something special on the ice, like probably a good move, nice goal or just something special I try every time."
NHL Team: Chicago Blackhawks NHL Player: Ilya Kovalchuk & Vincent Lecavalier Shootout Move: "Every time is different, but likes forehand and backhand" Movie: Cool Runnings, I Can Do Bad All By Myself Website: facebook.com, youtube.com Activity Away From The Rink: Bowling & Hanging Out With Friends
Niederreiter, a 6-foot-1, 205-pound right wing, had a star tournament for his native Switzerland at the WJC, scoring the tying and winning goals in the stunning quarterfinal upset of Russia, and finishing with 6 goals, 10 points and a spot on the tournament all-star team.