June 22, 2007
Eleventh Hour at NHL Draft for Collegians

It was yet another great first round for players with college ties at the 2007 NHL Draft in Columbus. Eleven of the 30 first-round picks are affiliated with NCAA programs, though only one (Minnesota's Jim O'Brien, taken by Ottawa with the 29th over all pick) has played a college program.

Below is a rundown of the 11 prospects. For the complete list of picks, including major junior and European players, visit ESPN.com.

First Round


NHL Team

Player, Pos., 2006-07 Team (College)


Philadelphia Flyers

James van Riemsdyk, F, U.S. NTDP
(New Hampshire recruit)

U.S NTDP coach Ron Rolston says: "He's got great speed and size, and he's going to fill out even more, get stronger physically, and play a slashing game up front."


Phoenix Coyotes

Kyle Turris, F, Burnaby (BCHL)
(Wisconsin recruit)

NHL Central Scouting says: "A skilled forward with great playmaking ability ... has an accurate shot with a quick release ... a fluid skater that has a nose for the net and the ability to control the flow of the game ... not afraid of taking a hit and can perform under pressure ... has good on-ice awareness and a good work ethic."

Montreal Canadiens Ryan McDonagh, D, Cretin-Derham Hall (Minn.) H.S. (Wisconsin recruit)
Canadiens Director of Player Recruitment and Development Trevor Timmons: Physically, he's a horse — he's an outstanding skater, powerful, but he's also offensive. He's a two-way defenseman. He brings everything to the fold. I don't expect him to stay too long at Wisconsin before he dons one of our jersies."
Colorado Avalanche Kevin Shattenkirk, D, U.S. NTDP
(Boston University recruit)

U.S NTDP coach Ron Rolston says: "That's a great spot for him ... especially with the way Colorado likes to play. He's got good instincts as a defenseman, and he can change the course of a game offensively. I think he's one of the few guys in the first round with the ability to create offense from the blue line.

St. Louis Blues Ian Cole, D, U.S. NTDP
(Notre Dame recruit)
NHL Central Scouting says: "A stay-at-home defenseman with good hockey sense ... has good passing ability and likes to make the long stretch pass ... has quick feet and a good shot from the point."
Edmonton Oilers Riley Nash, F, Salmon Arm (BCHL)
(Cornell recruit)
Oilers Vice President of Hockey Operations Kevin Prendergast: "He's got great hockey sense ... and he shows up to play every night. He's all over the ice. He's going to a good hockey school. He's a kid, in our estimation, who will play for sure and he's got all the skills to develop into a solid NHL player."
Montreal Canadiens Max Pacioretty, F, Sioux Falls (USHL)
(Michigan recruit)
Canadiens Director of Player Recruitment and Development Trevor Timmons: "He's a powerful skater ... he's similar to McDonagh in that regard. He likes to play rough; he's got an edge. [He's a] player who brings size, strength, and grit to our lineup as well as skill."
Vancouver Canucks Patrick White, F, Grand Rapids (Minn.) H.S. (Minnesota recruit)
Canucks General Manager Dave Nonis: "We like his offensive instincts. He's very good with the puck and his vision is well above average. He's got some time [to develop]. He's going to a very good program at the University of Minnesota .. and it's a good place for him to continue to progress."
Detroit Red Wings Brendan Smith, D, St. Michael's (OPJHL)
(Wisconsin recruit)
Red Wings Assistant General Manager Jim Nill: "He's our type of player, and we like the time we have [with him] in college. He's got the skill set, and we like the environment he's going to be in. It's the total package."
San Jose Sharks Nick Petrecki, D, Omaha (USHL)
(Boston College recruit)
NHL Central Scouting says: "A stay-at-home defenseman with excellent speed and lateral quickness ... has a strong physical presence on the ice with the ability to make the big hit ... is quick to the puck and makes hard and accurate passes ... needs to improve the consistency of his decision-making and discipline."
Ottawa Senators Jim O'Brien, F, Minnesota
NHL Central Scouting says: "A skilled forward ... good on-ice awareness and handles the puck well ... has a good work ethic and a good wrist shot ... often comes up with the puck in traffic and along the boards ... needs to improve his mobility and speed ... needs to be more consistent in the face-off circle."