Meet the Prospects: Islanders, Rangers, Devils Top Picks

by Nolan Silbernagel
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Meet Ryan Pulock (Isles), Steven Santini (Devils), Adam Tambellini (Rangers), and Anthony Duclair (Rangers)

Nolan Silbernagel introduces the top selection for the Islanders, Devils, and Rangers in the 2013 NHL Draft. Hear what all three players had to say after they were selected at the Prudential Center.

Islanders get area's top pick, choose Pulock:

The Islanders have had the best of both worlds in recent months; they made the playoffs for the first time in six seasons and still maintained a high ranking draft choice.

Things certainly seem to be turning around for the Isles.

They chose Ryan Pulock for the 15th overall pick of the 2013 NHL Draft to help them continue their climb in being one of the better Eastern Conference teams. 

Pulock is a 6 foot defenseman who recently played for the Brandon Wheat Kings in the Western Hockey League.  He is a gifted scorer for a defensive player, recording 105 points over his last 2 seasons with the Wheat Kings.

The Islanders continued their trend of picking talented defenseman early in the draft as Pulock joins Travis Hamonic, who also played for Brandon, and Griffin Reinhart, the fourth overall pick last year out of the WHL's Edmonton squad.

Devils select local product after trading out of their first two picks:

The first time it was announced that the Devils had traded their draft pick there was intense booing at “The Rock”, and then intense cheering when the crowd realized they got NHL goalie Cory Schneider in the deal.

The second time it was announced, there was more of a groan from the New Jersey fans that sounded like “just let us see our team make a pick.”

However, moving from the 39th pick to the 42nd while gaining the 73rd selection, was a slight fall the fans accepted.

The Devils decided to take a local kid, Steven Santini, with their first pick of the 2013 NHL Draft after trading away their 9th pick to the Canucks for Schneider and 39th pick to Phoenix.

Born in Bronxville, N.Y, Santini grew up a Rangers fan but made it clear to the media that he would be all about the Devils moving forward.

Santini is a lockdown defenseman from the under-18 USHL developmental program.  The 6-2, 208 pound 18 year old had no goals with 13 assists in 56 games last season.  He won a Silver Medal with Team USA at the 2013 IIHF World U18 Championships where he was named the tournament’s best defenseman.

Rangers go high risk, high reward with three third round selections:

Many hours went by before the Rangers officially joined the 2013 NHL Draft by making their first pick of the draft with the 65th overall selection.

Any excitement that the Blueshirts might have missed out on by not having a pick in the first, or even second, round has been made up by the type of players they selected in the third round.  All in all, they chose three players, the most out of any teams in the third round.

Their first pick was Adam Tambellini.  The Center’s biggest weakness is his body – even though he is 6’2” he only weighs 158 pounds, so bulking up will be a big target of his in upcoming years.  However, he is a big playmaker as he scored 36 goals and recorded 30 assists in 52 BCHL games and was ranked 42nd among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting.

If Tambellini can put on some weight while at school (University of North Dakota) then he could become a great scoring threat.

The Rangers second pick, and 75th overall selection of the draft, was probably their riskiest as they went after Russian winger Pavel Buchnevich.  At only 18, Buchnevich was playing in the KHL with grown men, including some of the best skaters in the world.  He has first round talent which would make this a steal for the Rangers.

However, his stock fell dramatically because he has a reputation of being lazy and unmotivated on the ice at times and because of “The Russian Factor”.  What that means is since the KHL is becoming a more respected and competitive league, Buchnevich might end up preferring to play in his homeland Russia instead of venturing to the U.S.  If he never puts on the New York sweater, it will be a bust of a pick, but if Buchnevich can flourish, he will be a huge pick up for the Rangers.

And last, but certainly not least on the intriguing factor, is 17 year old Anthony Duclair.  As a 16 year old, the left winger scored 31 goals and overall recorded 66 points in 63 games for the Quebec Rempart of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.  He was named to the all-rookie team that season, but his production fell off a bit this past year, causing him to fall in the rankings.

Scouts listed him as one of the fastest skaters in the league with great hands that can provide electrifying offense.  However, his lack of consistency to defense, small size, and step back of a season were all reasons why he fell to the 80th selection.

Hear what Pulock, Santini, Tambellini, Duclair had to say after being welcomed to the New York area:

 

Listen

Pulock on going to the Islanders... Pulock on being "NHL ready"... Pulock on adjusting to the Big Apple... Pulock thanks his parents... Santini on going to a local team... Santini on his plans going forward... Santini on what makes him a good hockey player... Tambellini on being drafted... Tambellini on what makes him a good hockey player... Tambellini on the Rangers organization... Duclair on being shocked to go to New York... Duclair on his offensive game... Duclair on the Rangers being his dad's favorite team... Duclair on his stock falling in the draft...

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