Murray ranked second
April 10, 2012
Regina Pats forward Dominik Volek.
Photograph by: Don Healy, Leader-Post Files , Leader-Post
A solid rookie campaign in the Western Hockey League landed Regina product Graham Black in the top 100 skaters when the final rankings by NHL Central Scouting were unveiled on Monday.
The Swift Current Broncos' forward sits 83rd among all North American skaters and 11th among WHL forwards. Black recorded 17 goals and 33 assists in 71 games this past season. He finished the season ranked 10th among rookies in the WHL in points with 50.
Black is a former Regina Pat Canadians star who, during the 2010-11 Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League season, recorded 47 goals and 76 points in 43 games.
Coda Gordon, Black's teammate in Swift Current, is ranked 61st among all North American skaters. The Cochrane, Alta., product, netted 30 goals for the Broncos this past season, his first in the WHL. He also led all WHL rookie with 15 power-play goals.
Ryan Murray, a product of White City, is ranked second overall among North American skaters. Listed at 6-foot-0 and 195 pounds, the former Canadian world junior standout and Everett Silvertips defenceman netted nine goals and tallied 39 points this past season, his third full year in the WHL.
Regina Pats forward Chandler Stephenson cracked Central Scouting's top 40 for North American skaters. Ranked 33rd overall, the Saskatoon product enjoyed a breakout season with the Pats in 2011-12. He tallied 22 goals and 42 points in 55 games.
Stephenson's teammate, Dominic Volek, is ranked 163rd overall. The 6-foot-0, 175-pounder from the Czech Republic scored 14 goals and had 32 points in 70 games in his rookie season with the Pats.
Moose Jaw Warriors defenceman Morgan Rielly, despite dressing for just 18 games this season, is ranked fifth among North American skaters. The 5-foot-11, 190-pounder from Vancouver still managed to average one point per game with the Warriors in 2011-12. He had three goals and 18 points in limited action.
Portland Winterhawks blueliner Derrick Pouliot, a product of Weyburn, is ranked 12th overall. Damon Severson of Melville, a 6-foot-2, 200-pound defenceman with the Kelowna Rockets, was ranked 48th.
The Saskatoon Blades had four players make the final list. Andrey Makarov was ranked seventh among European goalies after a 2011-12 season that saw the Russian star post a 3.01 goals-against average and a .913 save percentage. Defenceman Dalton Thrower was ranked 26th, forward Lukas Sutter was 39th and forward Ryan Olsen was 178th.
The Prince Albert Raiders landed two players in the top 30. Forward Mike Winther was ranked 21st and goalie Cole Holowenko was 29th.
Nail Yakupov, a 5-foot-10, 190-pound forward with the OHL's Sarnia Sting, is ranked the top North American skater after he tallied 31 goals and 69 points this past season.
The NHL entry draft is slated for June 22-23 in Pittsburgh.
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