Los Angeles, CA – The Canadian Hockey League today announced that 17 CHL players were selected in the first round of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft including the first eight overall picks.
“The Canadian Hockey League is very proud of all 17 CHL players that were selected in the first round of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft,” said CHL President David Branch. “The CHL continues to be the number one provider of talent to the NHL and the number one option for players wishing to achieve their hockey and academic goals. The CHL would like to congratulate the players and their families on this very special day and wishes all of these players the best of luck in their professional careers.”
The 17 CHL players selected include nine from the Ontario Hockey League, seven from the Western Hockey League, with Brandon Gormley of the Moncton Wildcats representing the lone pick from the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League selected 13th overall by the Phoenix Coyotes.
“I couldn’t be happier right now,” Gormley said. “It was definitely a roller coaster night but you want to be chosen by a great organization and I am happy to be in Phoenix. Playing in the Quebec League was great, as soon as I entered the league I had a chance to play with great players. I need to thank the coaching staff and my whole team, I couldn’t be happier playing in Moncton and in the Quebec League and now hopefully on to bigger and better things.”
The first round featured a record-tying 10 US born players including Austin Watson of the Peterborough Petes selected 18th overall by the Nashville Predators, and California-born Emerson Etem of the Medicine Hat Tigers who was selected 29th overall by the Anaheim Ducks.
“I’m just lost for words,” said Etem. “I’m a California boy and hockey player, I just have so much opportunity coming into this organization, not only growing the game of hockey in California, but also what I present to the Ducks organization it couldn’t be a better fit for me. The whole Medicine Hat Tigers organization, they present such class. It was a blessing playing for that organization and I have learned so much playing for Willie Desjardins.”
The 17 players selected in the first round represents an increase from 2009 when 16 CHL players were chosen. 22 CHL players were picked in the first round of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft.
The 2010 NHL Entry Draft continues on Saturday with rounds two through seven at the Staples Centre.
2010 NHL Entry Draft First Round:
1. Taylor Hall (Windsor Spitfires) – Edmonton Oilers
2. Tyler Seguin (Plymouth Whalers) – Boston Bruins
3. Erik Gudbranson (Kingston Frontenacs) – Florida Panthers
4. Ryan Johansen (Portland Winterhawks) – Columbus Blue Jackets
5. Nino Niederreiter (Portland Winterhawks) – New York Islanders
6. Brett Connolly (Prince George Cougars) – Tampa Bay Lightning
7. Jeff Skinner (Kitchener Rangers) – Carolina Hurricanes
8. Alexander Burmistrov (Barrie Colts) – Atlanta Thrashers
10. Dylan McIlrath (Moose Jaw Warriors) – New York Rangers
12. Cam Fowler (Windsor Spitfires) – Anaheim Ducks
13. Brandon Gormley (Moncton Wildcats) – Phoenix Coyotes
17. Joey Hishon (Owen Sound Attack) – Colorado Avalanche
18. Austin Watson (Peterborough Petes) – Nashville Predators
23. Mark Pysyk (Edmonton Oil Kings) – Buffalo Sabres
25. Quinton Howden (Moose Jaw Warriors) – Florida Panthers
27. Mark Visentin (Niagara IceDogs) – Phoenix Coyotes
29. Emerson Etem (Medicine Hat Tigers) – Anaheim Ducks
Photo by Aaron Bell/CHL