By Dave Joseph for floridapanthers.com
|USA centerman Drew Shore was the Cats second selection at the 2009 NHL Draft (44th overall)
MONTREAL - Drew Shore
, a 6-2, 200-pound center who has made a name for himself on the United States National Team Development Program with his drive and determination, was the Panthers second-round selection (44th overall) Saturday here at the Entry Draft.
"He’s a big right handed centerman off to Denver Universirty next season," said Director of Scouting Scott Luce just after selecting Shore. "He’s starting to come into his own as a prospect. He had a good under-18 tourney this past april. He needs to work on strength and his battle down low. But he’s a driven guy and wants to be a hockey player. He going to to great program in Denver...more than likely he’ll turn pro before he graduates."
"I was really excited to have my name called. It's something I worked hard on for a long time. I'm going to a great city and a great team."
Another person who was particulary ecstatic about Shore being drafted by the Panthers was his mother. Sarah Shore is a native Floridian, born in Sarasota.
Shore, ranked 28th among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting, admitted he was disappointed his name wasn't called Friday evening during the first round.
"It was defnitely a disappointing night," he said. "It's definitely a tough situation...you watch the first round on television every year and it's definitely something you work for. But it doesn't matter where you're picked, it's what you do after that. So it motivates me to work harder."
Shore agreed with NHL scouts that his game got better last year as the season progressed.
"I really didn't have a good first half of the season," Shore said. "It was pretty disappointing for me. I think it was my consistency that I struggled with. I think I have a lot of good tools and I need to put them together on a nighly basis. I think it was attacking every game with the same mentality. It's really easy to get up for tbe big games, but you have to be the same player every night regardless of who you're playing."
A native of Denver, Shore was had 49 points (17 goals) in 62 games this past season for the U.S. National team and tied for first in scoring in international play with 17 points (six goals) in 17 games. Shore also helped Team USA to a gold medal at the 2009 Under-18 IIHF World Championships.
According to Central Scouting’s Jack Barzee, “I think this kid…his upside is so dangerous.”
“I think he always brings his best effort,” he told NHL.com. “I don’t think he leaves anything in the dressing room. His drive and determination are as good as anyone’s playing the game.”
Shore describes himself as an “offensive guy” who likes to “create offense and be a playmaker.”
“I try to emulate Joe Thornton,” he added. “I try to play like him in the sense that we’re both playmakers first. I just like the way he plays the game and his ability to create offense on a nightly basis.” TIDBITS
• In his second season with the U.S. National Team Development Program, Shore finished tied for third on the team with 32 assists (17-32-49) in 62 games and tied for first with 17 points (6-11-17) in 17 international games.
• Shore helped lead Team USA to a gold medal at the 2009 Under-18 IIHF World Championships, beating Russia 5-0 on home ice.
• There was no family history in hockey for the Shore family before Drew -- his dad played lacrosse in College and his mom played semi-professional tennis – but now he has three younger brothers following his footsteps. He was joined in Ann Arbor this season by his younger brother Nick, who played for the U.S. National Under-17, becoming the first sibling pair to play at the NTDP at the same time. His other brothers, Quentin and Baker also play hockey.
• Nicknamed “Shoresy”, the Denver, Colorado native will return home to attend the University of Denver (WCHA) in the fall of 2009.
• He played on his first hockey team in Littleton, Colorado and his childhood hockey idol was Peter Forsberg while he played for his hometown Avalanche.
• If he could have dinner with any three people he would choose: Lebron James, Sidney Crosby and Michael Phelps – “they all dominate their sport and are great leaders”.