The initial NHL All-Star Draft took place Friday in Raleigh and Sharks blueliner Dan Boyle
was definitely happy not to be the final player chosen. By selection rules, the defensemen had to be chosen by a specific round, so there really was not a possibility of Boyle being selected last.
“We’re all competitive guys, but nobody wanted to be last,” Boyle said. “There are so many great defensemen, to see a great defenseman like Yandle get picked later (showed the talent in the room).”
Boyle was tabbed in the ninth round and that fell in line with where the prognosticators had him going. Not bad for a player who wasn’t even picked in the NHL draft during his eligible years.
“It was pretty much where the (mock drafts) said I was going to be,” Boyle said. “It was the first time I’ve ever been picked, so it was nice. Somebody asked me about it and I had not thought about it. It was cool.”
Being selected by Team Staal provided one early benefit for Boyle.
“It is what it is and for me. I get to be in the home lockerroom which for me, that is a nice pick,” Boyle said. “I haven’t seen the inside of it, but I assume (it is pretty plush).”
With Staal choosing both of his Carolina teammates, there is no doubt who the Carolina Caniacs will be supporting Saturday and Sunday.
“We definitely will have the home crowd advantage with the Carolina boys on our side,” Boyle said.
HIS PICKLogan Couture
was chosen along with Taylor Hall to be one of two rookie captains. There was a “puck” toss between the two to decide who would have the option of selecting who they would play for in the skills competition. Hall won the toss and took the option way from his rival for the Calder Trophy. However, the question was, would Couture have chosen to be on Boyle’s roster had the puck bounced his way.
“No, we had decided with the blue team, Lidstrom’s team,” Couture said. “As soon as it was over I told Dan, ‘I was picking you all the way bud.’ I think he knew we were going with the blue team.”
With 12 rookies participating in the skills event, Couture knew he was tabbed to be a captain for a reason.
“It was great. I just found out walking through the media line earlier (from a TSN reporter),” Couture said. “They said it when we had our little meeting before. It is a great honor. There are a lot of great rookies in the league this year and to be named the captain was pretty cool.”
Couture may not be an actual All-Star (yet), but the magnitude of the event was sinking in a bit.
“A little bit. We are the rookies, but we are still part of it,” Couture said. “Walking around with these guys is great.”
And the plans for the big night with the game’s elite?
“Enjoy the night with the family,” Couture said.
IN FRENCHDan Boyle
has the normal round of interviews to do, but as a proud French speaker, he doubled his workload by taking the time to visit with the Quebec media.
In the NFL, the last player chosen in the NFL Draft is dubbed Mr. Irrelevant. In the draft among the NHL’s best, Toronto’s Phil Kessel won the dubious honor. He shouldn’t take it too hard as it’s a guarantee that the hundreds of players who weren’t picked for the All-Star Game would trade places with him in a second.
Plus, he was awarded a car and was allowed to donate $20,000 to his favorite charity.
As the players were chosen, they were handed the already numbered and lettered jersey of the team they were on, meaning the NHL had one prepared for each player for each team.