Thursday, June 17, 2004


Hockey's Future Draft Centre is up!

With the NHL Entry Draft fast approaching, be sure to check on Hockey's Future Draft Centre for updates, profiles, and other draft news. It's the best site on the 'net for your drafting needs.

I know the Slovakian section looks bare, but I'll be finished the profiles and preview some time this weekend.

ISS, the service I mention earlier, also released it's final Top 15 Rankings for the draft:

1. Alexander Ovechkin LW 6�2" 214 09.17.85 DYNAMO
2. Evgeni Malkin C 6�3" 185 07.31.86 METALLURG
3. Lauri Tukonen RW 6�2" 198 09.01.86 ESPOO BLUES JR.
4. Andrej Meszaros LD 6�2" 195 10.13.85 TRENCIN DUKLA
5. Robbie Schremp C 5�11.5" 200 07.01.86 LONDON
6. Cam Barker LD 6�3" 214 04.04.86 MEDICINE HAT
7. Alvaro Montoya G 6�1.5" 193 02.13.85 U. of MICHIGAN
8. Rostislav Olesz C 6�1.5" 204 10.10.85 HC VITKOVICE
9. Andrew Ladd LW 6�2" 200 12.12.65 CALGARY
10. Wojtek Wolski LW 6�3" 202 02.24.86 BRAMPTON
11. Drew Stafford RW 6�2" 200 10.30.85 NORTH DAKOTA
12. Marek Schwarz G 6�0" 180 04.01.86 SPARTA PRAHA
13. Boris Valabik LD 6�6" 210 02.14.86 KITCHENER
14. Ladislav Smid LD 6�3" 200 02.01.86 LIBEREC HV
15. A.J. Thelen LD 6�3" 205 03.11.86 MICHIGAN STATE

And a little blurb on Big Boris Valabik


For a tiny country, Slovakia sure has produced some big d-men in the past few years - Chara, Mezei, Kudroc, Stehlik, and Majesky. At 6�6" and 210 lbs, Boris Valabik is the latest �redwood� to come from the forests of Slovakia. He�s already wearing the unofficial crown as the best enforcer in the draft. Somewhat unheralded before this season, Valabik has shown major improvement in all facets of his game. Not flashy, he takes care of his own end, can chip in offensively, and doesn't back down from anyone. ISS Scout Mike MacPerson had this to say- "he uses his range well and with his size and skating, the range becomes a huge asset". Valabik won�t be a flashy scoring defenseman in the NHL, but will be a franchise cornerstone because of his intensity and character.

NHL Potential: The team that drafts him will do so with one thing in mind - he's scary to play against! His 278 penalty minutes confirm Valabik�s toughness.

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