June 25, 2011

2011 NHL Draft - Live Coverage of Day 2

By Kirk Luedeke

Minnesota takes Harvard-bound Michalek

ST. PAUL- Goaltender Steve Michalek (Glastonbury, Conn.) of Loomis-Chaffee, who will be at Harvard in the fall, was the 161st overall pick to the Minnesota Wild at the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.

He posted a .919 save percentage despite allowing an average of about four goals per game.

Michalek backstopped the USA Team to the silver medal at the 2010 Eight Nations (Ivan Hlinka) tournament in August and has some interesting long-term potential as an athletic goaltender with size.

Bruins bring O'Gara into fold in 5th round

ST. PAUL- The Boston Bruins added Milton Academy defenseman Robby O’Gara with the final pick of the fifth round in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.

O’Gara was a member of the 2011 NEPSIHA prep championship Milton Mustangs squad, assisting on Sean Okita’s game-winning goal against Kent School.

He’s a big (6-foot-3, 195-pounds) shutdown defender with some offensive potential as a crisp outlet passer. A steady and smart defensive player, O’Gara often had to stay at home while skilled defense partner and Vancouver prospect Pat McNally would rush the puck.

O’Gara is a native of Nesconset, N.Y. on Long Island and also played lacrosse at Milton

Paliotta, Noonan first New Englanders off the board

ST. PAUL- Defensemen Mike Paliotta (Westport, Conn.) and Garrett Noonan (Norfolk, Mass.) were the first two New England natives drafted in 2011.

The Chicago Blackhawks took Paliotta, a standout with the US NTDP, in the third round, 70th overall, with a pick acquired from Toronto. The big (6-foot-3, 195-pound) defender is a fluid skater with a long stride and hard shot. He doesn’t possess a lot of offensive upside, but is a shutdown player who is a big hitter and keeps things simple. He is bound for the University of Vermont next season.

Noonan became the first player from Massachusetts taken, in the fourth round, 112th overall to Nashville, just two spots after Colin Jacobs became the third Texas native to be picked in the draft (Stefan Noesen, Blake Coleman).

Noonan is a 1991 birthdate originally eligible for the 2009 NHL draft, and who spent the 2009-10 in the BCHL with the Vernon Vipers. He played this season as a freshman at Boston University. In 38 games, Noonan scored four goals and 15 points with 89 penalty minutes.

Bruins go toughness in 3rd round with Camara

ST. PAUL- The Boston Bruins selected Saginaw left wing Anthony Camara in the third round, 81st overall in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.

Camara is a native of Toronto who plays with a physical edge despite not having a lot of size.

He scored eight goals and 17 points for the Spirit this season as another young (Sep. 1993) birthdate player that the Bruins snapped up.

With his hitting and fighting prowess, he is an interesting if limited in terms of potential player for the B’s to develop in the coming years.

Bruins select Alexander Khokhlachev in 2nd round

ST. PAUL– The Bruins made their first choice of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft’s second day at the Xcel Energy Center Saturday on skilled Russian forward Alexander Khokhlachev out of the Windsor Spitfires.

The smallish but talented forward is one of the youngest players in the draft, having made the Sep. 15 cutoff by six days.

He scored 34 goals and 76 points for the Spits this season.