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 SHINNY: The fifth ranked North American skate according to C.S.S., Nathan Beaulieu is one of nine Saint John Sea Dogs ranked on the list. The defenseman led his fellow blue liners in scoring with 45 points (12-33-45) during the regular season while finishing with a plus-44 ranking.
Beaulieu, who's father is the assistant coach of the OHL's London Knights, works out in the summer with several pros, including Sam Gagner, John Carlson, Cody Hodgson and Drew Doughty.
NHL Central Scouting's Chris Bordeleau: “He'll be an offensive-defenseman … he's a good skater, good puck-mover. He has a good shot and is very poised with the puck. He's a veteran who has a lot of responsibilities for Saint John."
Saint John coach Gerard Gallant: “He's gotten better, bigger and stronger, he’s playing a lot better defensively but he's pressing for his points. He's a guy who gets a lot of opportunities because he jumps into the rush very well.”
NHL Team: Washington Capitals NHL Player: Drew Doughty Shootout Move: "Come in fast, slow down, sweep the puck, then shoot" Video Game: NHL '10 Book: ‘Talent Is Never Enough’ by John. C. Maxwell Pump-Up Song: ‘Sleep Now in the Fire’ by Rage Against the Machine Home-cooked meal: Spaghetti
The list included No. 7 Dougie Hamilton of the Niagara IceDogs in the Ontario Hockey League, No. 9 Nathan Beaulieu of the Saint John Sea Dogs in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and No. 10 Ryan Murphy of the Kitchener Rangers in the OHL.