Monday, April 11, 2011

NINE DOGS MAKE FINAL RANKINGS

An incredible nine Saint John Sea Dogs appeared in Central Scouting’s final North American skater rankings for the 2011 National Hockey League Entry Draft. A total of 33 players from the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League made the cut for the 212 positions available.

Sea Dogs leading scorer Jonathan Huberdeau was the highest ranked, jumping into the No. 3 spot behind Ryan Nugent-Hopkins at No. 1 and Gabriel Landeskog at No. 2. It has been quite a climb for Huberdeau who was considered a late first round pick by many agencies at the start of the season.

Also on the rise is defenseman Nathan Beaulieu. The third-year Sea Dog jumped into the No. 5 slot, making him the second highest defenseman ranked behind Niagara IceDog Dougie Hamilton.

Drummondville Voltigeurs forward Sean Couturier, who played with Team Canada at the World Junior Hockey Championships and was considered the top player available by most a year ago, slipped all the way down to No. 6.

Two other Saint John forwards made the top-30 in Zack Phillips at No. 15 and Tomas Jurco at No. 20.

Also included in the rankings: forwards Scott Oke (No. 44), Ryan Tesink (No. 47), Aidan Kelly (No. 94), and Jason Cameron (No. 124), and defenseman Gabriel Bourret (No. 92).

Former Sea Dogs defenseman and current Chicoutimi Sagueneen Guillaume Cloutier was ranked at No. 137. Cloutier was involved in the Eric Gelinas trade that went down in January.

The NHL Entry Draft will be held this June in Minnesota. Of note, the NHL Draft Lottery, which will determine who selects first overall, will be held tomorrow night and can be seen on TSN.

Also of note, Victoriaville Tigres goaltender David Honzik, who has been beast-like in the playoffs so far, was ranked 13th amongst North American playing netminders.

Photo Credit: Marc Henwood/Station Nation

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