2011 NHL DRAFT: EIGHT FIRST ROUND PICKS SUITED UP FOR ROCKFORD IN 2010-11

By: Nate Haeni
Rockford, Ill.- When the Chicago Blackhawks make their selection with the 18th pick in the 2011 NHL Draft on Friday, there is a possibility that in order for the selected prospect to fulfill his dream of playing in the National Hockey League, he will have to go through the American Hockey League and the Blackhawks Affiliate, the Rockford IceHogs.

Since the IceHogs joined the American Hockey League, 13 first round draft picks have worn an IceHogs sweater, including eight during the 2010-11 campaign (Kyle Beach, Hugh Jessiman, Nick Leddy, Dylan Olsen, Philippe Paradis, Jeff Taffe, Hannu Toivonen and Ivan Vishnevskiy).

Of the 13 first round draft picks to suit up for Rockford, four were drafted by the Blackhawks (Beach in 2008, Cam Barker in 2004, Olsen in 2009 and Jack Skille in 2005).

Barker is the highest draft pick to skate in Rockford as he was selected third overall by Chicago in 2004.

Below is a list of all the first round NHL draft picks to play in Rockford, along with facts about all the draft choices that have played for the IceHogs:

Cam Barker, 3rd overall (2004) by Blackhawks
Kyle Beach, 11th overall (2008) by Blackhawks
Nick Boynton, 21st overall (1999) by Bruins and 9th overall (1997) by Capitals
Dan Cloutier, 26th overall (1994) by Rangers
Hugh Jessiman, 12th overall (2003) by Rangers
Nick Leddy, 16th overall (2009) by Wild
Dylan Olsen, 28th overall (2009) by Blackhawks
Philippe Paradis, 27th overall (2009) by Hurricanes
Sergei Samsonov, 8th overall (1997) by Bruins
Jack Skille, 7th overall (2005) by Blackhawks
Jeff Taffe, 30th overall (2000) by Blues
Hannu Toivonen, 29th overall (2002) by Bruins
Ivan Vishnevskiy, 27th overall (2006) by Stars

Picks by draft year to play with IceHogs:
2009: 6 (Gilbert, Leddy, Morin, Olsen, Paradis, Pirri)
2008: 5 (Beach, Carlson, J. Hayes, Lalonde, B. Smith)
2007: 5 (Aliu, DiDomenico, Lavin, Tanguay, Torquato)
2006: 5 (Danis-Pepin, LeBlanc, Makarov, Palmer, Vishnevskiy)
2005: 11 (Bertram, Blunden, Brophey, Brouwer, Charlebois, Davis, Fallon, Hjalmarsson, Hobson, Skille, Turner)
2004: 13 (Barker, Berti, Bickell, Bolland, Brent, Dowell, Kontiola, Paiement, Pineault, Sarauer, Sawyer, Stephenson, Versteeg)
2003: 7 (Brodeur, Byfuglien, Crawford, Fraser, Jessiman, Potulny, Richmond)
2002: 2 (Toivonen, Wisniewski)
2001: 5 (Archer, Bois, A. Johnson, Keith, Petiot)
2000: 3 (Koci, McMorrow, Taffe)
1999: 2 (Boynton, Exelby)
1998: 2 (Fahey, Flinn)
1997: 1 (Samsonov)
1994: 2 (Cloutier, R. Johnson)
1991: 1 (Cullimore)
1988: 2 (Christian, Flaherty)

Number of Players Picked by Round:
First Round: 13 (Barker, Beach, Boynton, Cloutier, Jessiman, Leddy, Olsen, Paradis, Samsonov, Skille, Taffe, Toivonen, Vishnevskiy)
Second Round: 19 (Aliu, Bertram, Bickell, Blunden, Bolland, Christian, Crawford, Cullimore, Danis-Pepin, Davis, Hayes, Johnson, Keith, Makarov, Morin, Pineault, Pirri, Richmond, Stephenson)
Third Round: 9 (Berti, Bois, Brent, Brophey, Fraser, Johnson, Lalonde, Potulny, Tanguay)
Fourth Round: 4 (Hjalmarsson, Palmer, Petiot, Sarauer)
Fifth Round: 8 (Dowell, Flinn, Koci, Lavin, Sawyer, Turner, Versteeg, Wisniewski)
Sixth Round: 6 (Carlson, Charlebois, DiDomenico, Fallon, Smith, Torquato)
Seventh Round: 7 (Archer, Brodeur, Brouwer, Gilbert, Hobson, Kontiola, LeBlanc)
Eighth Round: 5 (Byfuglien, Exelby, Fahey, McMorrow, Paiement)
Ninth Round: 1 (Flaherty)

Draft picks by position:
Center: 17
Wings: 23
Defense: 25
Goalies: 7


Check out icehogs.com all week as we preview the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.
Monday: Impact the draft has had on the IceHogs
Tuesday: We’ll look at who the experts think the Blackhawks will choose in the draft
Wednesday: A breakdown of the 18th overall draft picks over the past 20 years
Thursday: A look at the 1st round draft picks who played for Rockford last season and overall
Friday: An update on the progress of all of Chicago’s draft picks from the 2009 and 2010 draft


Season Tickets On Sale For 2011-12: It'll be a long summer without IceHogs hockey and season ticket packages for the 2011-12 season are now on sale. To find a ticket package that quenches your hockey thirst, call (815) 847-6399.




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