Leading up to the 2011 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 SKINNY: Joseph Morrow led the Portland defense this season with 49 points, surpassing his total from last year by 18 points, helping him to a 12th place ranking C.S.S.'s final rankings for North American skaters. In the postseason, Morrow finished second among all defenseman with 20 points in 21 games.
Morrow’s father Dave was drafted by Vancouver in the 1977 amateur draft and played in the World Hockey Association. Joseph’s brother Josh was drafted by Nashville in 2002, and his uncle played hockey at the University of Denver.
NHL Central Scouting's B.J. MacDonald: "He might be one of the most overlooked defensemen in the draft this year because everyone is so busy watching the top forwards in Portland. He's a very smart player. He recognizes when to jump into the play and almost does it effortlessly, so that's a nice little component to his game that I think is overlooked. He's a smart player and the puck is always on the tape. He'll surprise a lot of people in the draft."
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Don't overlook the Portland Winterhawks of the Western Hockey League. In addition to forwards Sven Baertschi and Ty Rattie, defenseman Joseph Morrow is a prime candidate to hear his name announced in the opening round of the 2011 Entry Draft, on June 24, at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minn.