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2009 NHL Entry Draft - Live Draft Blog

by Sam Kasan / Pittsburgh Penguins

12:10 AM:

Here are some action shots, courtesy of the Saint John's Sea Dogs.

10:58 PM:
The Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins select defenseman Simon Despres of Saint John of the QMJHL with the 30th pick in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.

10:54 PM
The Penguins are on the clock!!!! Finally, after 3 1/2 hours of waiting it is Pittsburgh's turn to make their first selection of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft with the 30th overall pick.

The previous three picks were:
29. Tampa Bay - Carter Ashton
28. Chicago - D Dylan Olsen
27. Carolina - C Philippe Paradis

10:34 PM:
A quick update on the last three picks as we get closer and closer to Pittsburgh's spot at No. 30. Only three picks away!
26. Anaheim - Kyle Palmieri
25. Boston - F Jordan Caron
24. Washington - C Marcus Johansson

10:19 PM:
Penguins assistant general manager Jason Botterill at the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.

(Getty Images)

10:13 PM:
Vancouver Canucks captain/goalie Roberto Luongo announced the team's first-round selection, Jordan Schroeder. The Calgary Flames took Tim Erixon with the 23rd pick. Erixon is the sixth Swedish player to be selected in the draft so far.

10:01 PM:
Penguins assistant coach Mike Yeo takes in the draft experience from the Penguins' suite high above the Bell Centre.

10:00 PM:
The Blue Jackets also traded up, giving up their 26th and 37th selection to Anaheim in exchange for the Ducks' 21st pick. Then Columbus selects John Moore.

9:57 PM:
A few things have gone down since the draft began grinding to a halt. Atlantic Division rival New Jersey traded its first-round pick (23rd overall) and 84th pick to Calgary for the Flames' first-round pick (20th overall). The Devils traded up to grab Jacob Josefson.

Also a few other players selected were:
19. New York Rangers - C Chris Kreider
18. Montreal - C Louis Leblanc
17. St. Louis - D David Rundblad

9:25 PM:
Fletcher makes his first draft selection as general manager of the Minnesota Wild, taking Minnesota native defenseman Nick Leddy at No. 16.

9:23 PM:
Here is a shot of the Bell Centre jumbotron. It is absolutely massive with a clear picture. Hard to tell from the photo but Penguins fans will get a glimpse of this spectacle when the new Consol Energy Center opens in 2010.

9:19 PM:
A couple more selections have past as we inch closer and closer to the Penguins' 30th pick. The Florida Panthers took Dmitry Kulikov at No. 14 while Anaheim snatched Peter Holland at 15. We are halfway through the first round.

9:07 PM:
After acquiring Minnesota's pick, the Islanders grabbed Calvin De Haan. Also to catch up, Nashville chose Ryan Ellis at 11, and Buffalo chose Zach Kassian with the 13th pick.

9:05 PM:
Minnesota general manager Chuck Fletcher, formerly the Penguins assistant general manager, traded his first-round pick (12th overall) to the New York Islanders. In exchange, the Wid recieved New York's 16th, 77th and 182nd picks in the draft.

9:03 PM:
Two Pittsburgh legends are working the 2009 NHL Entry Draft for the Penguins. Team scout and two-time NHL Stanley Cup champion Kevin Stevens, left, poses with team consultant and long-time Penguin Eddie Johnston.

The 2009 draft will be the final piece to a brilliant career for Johnston, who is moving into a new role with the organization this summer. It was 25 years ago that Johnston, acting as the Penguins general manager, selected Mario Lemieux with the first-overall pick in 1984, essentially saving hockey in Pittsburgh.

8:36 PM:
The Oilers grab Swede Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson with the 10th pick in the draft. A nice pick up since a few experts thought that the forward would go in the top 5.

8:29 PM:
OK, let's play a little catch up since we've missed the last two picks. The Dallas Stars took winger Scott Glennie with the 8th pick. The Ottawa Senators selected blueliner Jared Cowen with the 9th pick. The Edmonton Oilers are on the clock.

8:27 PM:
Penguins defenseman and Montreal native Kris Letang stopped by the Bell Centre to take in the draft experience and support his team. caught up with the defenseman for a quick chat: Can you talk about being in your hometown and being able to take in this draft day experience?

Letang The reason I came was because it's my hometown but also because I never got to enjoy the draft. (The year I was drafted) was after the lockout and I was waiting at home for a phone call. I came here and I can see all the team's on the ground (floor) and all the players waiting. They are all exciting or nervous. It's pretty exciting to see that. What do you remember from your draft day?

Letang It was great to get drafted. I wish I could have been there. I've been watching the draft since I was really young. It's a great experience and you want to live through those. That's why I came today to live that.

(Penguins defenseman Kris Letang at the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. Behind him is former Penguins' first-round pick Angelo Esposito, who was traded last season for Marian Hossa)

8:12 PM:
The Canadiens fans fervently booed Toronto general manager Brian Burke before he announced the Maple Leafs' pick. The Bell Centre crowd chanted "67" - the last time Toronto won the Stanley Cup (1967). Burke paused to let the fans get it out of their system and then took forward Nazem Kadri.

8:05 PM:
The Phoenix Coyotes in a surprising move select Swedish defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson with the sixth-overall pick. Ekman-Larsson was projected by most experts to go in the middle or latter parts of the first round.

8:01 PM:
The Columbus Blue Jackets and New York Islanders swapped a plethora of draft picks, all from this season. Columbus sent its 16th overall pick in the first round and 77th pick to the Islanders in exchange for New York's 26th, 37th, 62nd and 92nd picks.

7:57 PM:
Before making their selection the Los Angeles Kings gave tribute to former King and Penguin Luc Robitaille. Then the team selects Brayden Schenn. Schenn's brother, Luke, was the No. 5 overall pick by the Toronto Maple Leafs in last season's draft.

7:46 PM:
Atlanta takes forward Evander Kane, who played for the Vancouver Giants in the WHL. Kane was a teammate of Penguins' prospect Casey Pierro-Zabotel.

7:43 PM:
The details on the Anaheim-Philadelphia trade are this: Anaheim sends defenseman Chris Pronger to the Flyers for Joffrey Lupul, Luca Sbisa and two first-round picks (21st overall this year and 2010).

7:41 PM:
Here is a shot of the Penguins' war table at the Bell Centre.

7:39 PM:
Colorado nabs forward Matt Duchene from Brampton of the OHL. Atlanta is on the clock.

7:34 PM:
Our first trade of the day! Bettman just announced it between the Anaheim Ducks and Philadelphia Flyers. I'll get you the details once they become available.

7:28 PM:
The Lightning take Hedman with the No. 2 pick and the top two players from the draft are off the board. Colorado is on the clock.

7:25 PM:
Here is a shot from the Penguins' draft table right after Tavares was selected first overall.

7:20 PM:
It's official. John Tavares was chosen as the first-overall selection by the New York Islanders. The speculation is finally over. And now let's see if Tampa Bay takes defenseman Victor Hedman.

7:15 PM:
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman is currently kicking off the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. It's almost time to find out who the New York Islanders and general manager Garth Snow will select with the No. 1 overall pick.

7:11 PM:
Some interesting notes on the Montreal Canadiens faithful that are filling the Bell Centre for the draft. Each team announced loudly whom their represenatives will be in making their draft selection. The crowd cheered loudly when it was Pittsburgh's turn to make the announcement. Then the giant scoreboard showed old highlights of former first-round picks. The crowd screamed again when Sidney Crosby and Vincent Lecavalier where shown from their draft day.

7:08 PM:
General manager Ray Shero spoke briefly with the media a few minutes ago. He said he hasn't recieved any offers to move up in the draft but has heard interested from other teams wanting the Penguins' first-round pick. Here are some of the highlights from that discussion:

On if he signed any free agents
"No I did not sign anybody today. We are concentrating on the draft right now. We have a number of guys we want to bring back but it's a matter of working within the salary cap. We've kept our core guys together and we'll have conversations up until July 1."

On the draft
"I think it's a deep draft and our scouts like it as well. We'll see what today brings. We're picking number 30th. If we don't trade back or trade up, we'll evaluate things. It's a good year to have all of our draft picks, including Tampa's third (pick). So we'll have back-to-back picks at the end of the second round."

6:30 PM:
We are approx. 30 minutes away from the start of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. Although the official beginning will probably be somewhere around 7:20ish.

The Penguins, by virtue of winning the Stanley Cup championship, wil lbe selecting last in the first round with the 30th overall pick. Unless the team trades up into an earlier spot in the opening round, Pittsburgh will likely be picking some time after 10 p.m.
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