The 2011 NHL Draft completed on June 25th 2011 and General Manager Ray Shero and his staff scouted out five young prospects to add to the Penguins’ organization. Despite the Penguins’ arguable need for young forwards in the system, Shero used his early picks to select two up and coming defensemen before picking up three forwards in the latter three rounds of the draft. Although many were surprised by Shero’s focus on defense first, given the organizational depth at that position, The following is a quick look at the Penguins’ latest prospects:
Defensman Joseph Morrow – Selected Round 1, 23rd Overall
Ranked 12th by NHL Central Scouting, 19 year old Joe Morrow is a Canadian born defenseman who brings good size, great instincts, and excellent skating abilities to the ice. He is a an offensively minded puck-moving defenseman who is not afraid to join the rush. The 6′ tall 197 pound blue-liner helped the WHL Portland Winterhawks advance to the 2011 WHL Finals by scoring 20 Points (6G, 14A) in 21 playoff games. During the 2010-11 WHL regular season, he led all Portland defensemen with 49 points (9G, 40A) in 60 games, surpassing his prior season stats by 18 points (7G, 24A, 31 Points).
Defenseman Scott Harrington – Selected Round 2, 54th Overall
Ranked 98th by NHL Central Scouting, 18 year old Scott Harrington is a Canadian born defenseman who possesses a great work ethic, good hockey sense, an edgy style, and sound defensive skills. He possesses a strong shot, but won’t be confused for an offensive defenseman (like Morrow) as he tends focus more on his defensive responsibilities. At 6′ tall and 200 pounds, the left shooting defenseman put up 22-points (6G, 16A) for the under-performing OHL London Knights in 2010/11.
Center Dominik Uher – Selected Round 5, 144th Overall
Ranked 167th by NHL Central Scouting, 19 yearDominik Uher is a Czech born forward who brings good speed, size, and skill to the ice. The hard charging forward is still adapting to the North American style of play, but has tremendous upside potential as a skilled forward in the NHL. Uher had 60 Points (21G, 39A) in 65 games for the OHL London Knights in 2010/11, including 16 multipoint games. He was a +19 and garnered 60 minutes in penalties. He picked up another 11 Points (2G, 9A) in 17 playoff games.
Winger Josh Archibald – Selected Round 6, 174th Overall
17 year old Josh Archibald is a right handed Canadian born winger who finished as a finalist for Minnesota’s 2011 “Mr. Hockey Award”, given to the state’s top high school senior hockey player. He has natural hockey instincts and can move across the ice at high speeds. His offensive game is his forte, while his defensive game requires continued development. Archibald was selected out of Brainerd High School in Minnesota where he picked up 78 Points (30G, 48A) in his senior year, including 7 power play and 4 short-handed goals. At 5’10″ and 170 pounds, the speedy forward is headed to the University of Nebraska-Omaha where he will play hockey this coming year.
Center/Left Winger Scott Wilson – Selected Round 7, 209th Overall
19 year old Scott Wilson is a Canadian born forward who Captained the OJHL Georgetown Raiders in 2010/11. A tenacious and hard working leader, Wilson scored 61 Points (20G, 41A) in 42 games with the Raiders this past season. It was his third full year with Georgetown, where he collected a career total of 129 Points (44G, 85A) in 104 games. During those three years he also added 20 Points (10G-10A) in 16 postseason games. At 6′ tall and 170 pounds, Wilson is headed to the University of Massachusetts-Lowell where he will play hockey this coming fall.