The night opened with me spilling a good bit of beer down the back of a Penugins fan. It was Brandon’s beer, not mine. But seriously, overflowing? I know you charge a ton for your beers but seriously.
During role call, the Penguins fans were nauseatingly loud when it was the team’s turn to check in but were even louder when the Washington Capitals checked in. However the loudest sounds came when they announced the Toronto Maple Leafs. Soon after, Moorhouse addressing the crowd and thanking the fans and members of the NHL community and we waited. For a LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOONG time before the Draft actually began.
According to my ticket, we were “starting” at 6:45. The Edmonton Oilers weren’t put on the clock til 7:00, so glad I rush over to make sure I didn’t miss anything.
First up for the Atlantic Division was the New York Islanders, 4th overall. Alex Galchenyuk, Ryan Murray, and Nail Yakupov had already gone at this point, so the Islanders selected Griffin Reinhart. A strong two way defenseman (how many times have we read this for this draft class), the Islanders walk away with another strong selection in the first round.
The Pittsburgh Penguins made a move to send Jordan Staal to Carolina in exchange for Brandon Sutter and Brian Dumoulin plus the 8th pick of the draft, and then selected Derrick Pouliot. This gives Staal a very awkward wedding surprise, as he was married earlier today. The Canes are now one shy of having all the Staals in one system. Only Marc is left. Let’s keep him please.
Over almost deaftening boos the Philadelphia Flyers selected Scott Laughton. Holy cow that was loud. Laughton is noted as being good on the PK and skating. And with #HartnellDown a thing, the Flyers could really use someone who can stay on their feet. On a team of characters, he might be lost as he is labeled by Eliteprospects as a player who isn’t flashy.
Olli Maatta was selected by the Penguins 22nd overall. I had him being selected by the Calgary Flames over on Flame For Thought, so it’s a bit crushing to see him go to a team so hated. Maatta is a solid player, good hockey sense, and will be a dangerous force with the Penguins in the near future.
New York Rangers made the right move and did not draft Matteau’s kid, but rather Brady Skjei, a two way defensemen. Awesome. Really. Just what the New York Rangers need. More defensemen. But I guess I should be happy. I got my wish. The Rangers didn’t cling to 1994 and have moved forward. The only downside is his lack of physicality, the Rangers have a hard grinding game and according to reports. He’s not exactly one to crash bodies.
This wraps up the first night of the 2012 NHL Draft. Check in tomorrow for all your updates on the New York Rangers for day two. Tomorrow’s posts will only be on the New York Rangers, not the whole Atlantic Division. Hope you’re happy with Brady Skjei and the rest of the selections!
Lets Go Rangers!