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Pittsburgh Hosts 2012 Entry Draft

NEW YORK (October 27, 2011) – The Pittsburgh Penguins® have used Draft Day expertise to build two generations of championship teams, one of the NHL’s most passionate fan bases and one of North America’s most robust youth hockey communities. In June, all those elements will be on display when the Penguins and the City of Pittsburgh host the 2012 NHL Draft™ at the CONSOL Energy Center.

The 2012 NHL Draft will be held over two days. Round One, on Friday, June 22, will begin at 7:00 p.m. ET, and Rounds 2-7 will be conducted on Saturday, June 23, starting at 10:00 a.m. ET.

“The NHL is extremely pleased to be able to host this outstanding event in an outstanding city and venue—CONSOL Energy Center,” said NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman. “The Penguins and the City of Pittsburgh have hosted many terrific NHL events, including last year’s Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic®, and I have no doubt this will be another exciting endeavor. Young players seem better-prepared than ever to take prominent roles on their new teams, and the Draft offers the opportunity for our fans everywhere to watch our prospects take the next dramatic step toward their NHL careers.”

The 2012 NHL Draft will be the first held in Pittsburgh since 1997 and the first League event at CONSOL Energy Center—the state-of-the-art building that opened in 2010 and is one of the most luxurious arenas in the NHL. The 1997 NHL Draft saw forward Joe Thornton selected first overall, followed by his current San Jose teammate Patrick Marleau second overall. Olli Jokinen, Roberto Luongo and Eric Brewer rounded out the top five selections in 1997.

“On behalf of the City of Pittsburgh and the hockey fans of Western Pennsylvania, we’re excited to be hosting the 2012 NHL Draft at CONSOL Energy Center,” said David Morehouse, CEO of the Penguins. “Pittsburgh again will become the center of the hockey universe for one of the most important weekends on the NHL calendar, as our teams select the next generation of NHL stars. Much as we did with the 2011 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic®, we look forward to turning the week leading up to the draft into a celebration of hockey – especially youth hockey here in Pittsburgh.”

The Pittsburgh Penguins, Stanley Cup® Champions in 2009 and perennial Eastern Conference contenders, have a strong nucleus of players selected high in previous NHL Drafts. They have six first-round draft picks on their current roster – including captain Sidney Crosby (first overall, 2005), Marc-Andre Fleury (first overall, 2003), Evgeni Malkin (second overall, 2004), Matt Niskanen (28th overall, 2005), Brooks Orpik (18th overall, 2000) and Jordan Staal (second overall, 2006).

The impact of the Penguins’ success—both in winning consecutive Stanley Cup Championships in 1991 and 1992 and the club’s on-ice resurgence, which started in 2006—has spurred enormous growth of the game at the grass roots level in Pittsburgh. Since Mario Lemieux was drafted by the Penguins in 1984, the number of indoor ice arenas has quadrupled, while minor hockey participation among 5- to 8-year-olds has increased by 61 percent since 2006.

At the 2011 Draft, four players from the Pittsburgh area were selected in the first 64 selections. Forward J.T. Miller became the highest-drafted Pittsburgh amateur hockey player in NHL Draft history when the New York Rangers made him the 15th overall selection of the 2011 Draft. He was followed by goaltender John Gibson (Pittsburgh, PA, 39th by Anaheim), forward Brandon Saad (Gibsonia, PA, 43rd by Chicago) and forward Vincent Trocheck (Pittsburgh, PA, 64th by Florida). Prior to moving on to junior hockey, Miller, Gibson and Saad all competed for the Pittsburgh Hornets organization.

The NHL Draft offers the opportunity for hockey fans to get a glimpse of the next wave of NHL stars.  Recent overall No. 1 picks currently starring in the League include Alex Ovechkin (Washington, 2004), Sidney Crosby (Pittsburgh, 2005), Erik Johnson (St. Louis, 2006), Patrick Kane (Chicago, 2007), Steven Stamkos (Tampa Bay, 2008), John Tavares (NY Islanders, 2009), Taylor Hall (Edmonton, 2010) and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (Edmonton, 2011).

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, NHL Talk, NHL Entry Draft, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: nhl+entry+draft

Comments

bezukov's avatar

So….... at what point does the NHL stop rotating around the state of Pennsylvania?  In four out of the five Winter Classics a team from Pennsylvania has been involved.  Now they get the draft?  I suppose next year’s All-Star game will be in Pitt?  Call the ambulance before I gag to death.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/27/11 at 05:34 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Btw I know the newest arena in the league typically gets to host the draft, but for God’s sake, spread it around a little.  Have it in Winnipeg.  Set Pennsylvania on the shelf for a few years for crying out loud.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/27/11 at 05:37 PM ET

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Dude, does is really matter where the draft is?

Posted by kk-downing on 10/27/11 at 05:37 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Posted by kk-downing on 10/27/11 at 03:37 PM ET

No it doesn’t really matter so much, but with all the struggling franchises in this league maybe it wouldn’t hurt to let someone else participate for a change.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/27/11 at 05:39 PM ET

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I would use this media event to pump the game where attendance struggles Dallas, Phoenix, Florida,

Posted by Cubanpuckstopper on 10/27/11 at 05:50 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

So this article points out the obvious; after ten years of good teams thanks to drafts, the Pens fall back to sucking and the fans bail.  smile

Posted by mrfluffy from A wide spot on I-90 in Montana on 10/27/11 at 05:57 PM ET

Primis's avatar

If this had been anywhere but PIT nobody would care.  Thus it’s the league deliberately thumbing its nose at the fan everywhere.

Posted by Primis on 10/27/11 at 06:04 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

If this had been anywhere but PIT nobody would care.  Thus it’s the league deliberately thumbing its nose at the fan everywhere.

Posted by Primis on 10/27/11 at 04:04 PM ET

You’re not wrong man, but cmon.  Aren’t you getting tired of Pitt and Philly all the time?  Its not nose thumbing, its just redundant, and other fan bases (not the Wings), could stand to have their egos stroked a little bit.  We get it, the league really wants us to like Pitt and Philly.  Great. We got it.  Just sayin.’

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/27/11 at 06:12 PM ET

Lindas1st's avatar

Now if the NHL can fix it (and I know they can) so the Pens end up with Nail Yakupov.

Posted by Lindas1st from New England on 10/27/11 at 06:23 PM ET

awould's avatar

This “new arena” argument is just not true. I looked it up. There have been 10 new arenas in the NHL since 1997.  Pittsburgh is the ONLY city to host the draft the 2nd year their new arena opened.

Florida is the only other team that may fit the bill, but they held the draft 3 years after the arena opened and it probably had more to do with marketing the sun belt teams than anything else.

But Phoenix, Washington, Colorado, Columbus, Carolina, Dallas and New Jersey all have had new arenas open since 1997 and have never had the draft.

I really don’t care where the draft is held, just gets old having Crosby and Pittsburgh shoved down our throats at every opportunity. My take on this Crosby/Ovechkin thing is that the NHL is trying to market itself like the NBA does - with the stars, instead of the game. The game is good enough on its own, and the two stars we have to endure on every poster are only seen once every two years at any one arena west of the mississippi.

Posted by awould on 10/27/11 at 07:11 PM ET

Evilpens's avatar

Call the WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAMBulance !


Good Lord Take some midol !! it’s a *#$%@& Draft !


I really am starting to believe some of the RW Fans are really Blackhawks fans determined to make Red Wings fans look foolish

Posted by Evilpens on 10/27/11 at 07:16 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Posted by Evilpens on 10/27/11 at 05:16 PM ET

... deciding whether to call that one an “oldie but goodie” or “clever and orinigal”... (I’m joking).

That attitude is all fine and good when your team is in the limelight all the time.  I would think Pens fans more than anyone else (maybe other than Winnipeg or Minnesota) ought to know what it feels like when Commissioner Gary leaves you out in the cold (no I’m not talking about the Wings here).  You guys are lucky you had Mario to keep your team out of Kansas.

And let me say to some of you, it wasn’t like this ruined my day.  No, I don’t think its a conspiracy.  Its just another predictable eye roller from the NHL marketing team, and since half of us put childish crap on this site…. you know the rest.  So give me a break, if you had time to post here it isn’t as if your life has so much more going on…

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/27/11 at 07:53 PM ET

Evilpens's avatar

UMMM Huh?

you complain about the draft being in Pgh. like all the other owners Let the guy they PAY favor the Pens all the time, If that was the case do you think Sid & Geno would have been lost for the season last season? & Sid is still out now & Geno has missed a bunch of games Orpik wasn’t ready to start the season Dustin Jeffrey has been out since he blew his knee out last season & Michalek is out 4-6 weeks with a broken finger

Posted by Evilpens on 10/27/11 at 08:19 PM ET

awould's avatar

If that was the case do you think Sid & Geno would have been lost for the season last season

?? There’s clearly no favoritism shown to Pittsburgh because if there were, they would never get injured ??  Talk about a tinfoil hat.

Evilpens, normally, you make some good points. This is not one of them.

Posted by awould on 10/27/11 at 08:34 PM ET

Evilpens's avatar

awould Exactly !!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was showing how Ridiculous this BULLSHIT is that the League & especially Bettman favors the Pens

Posted by Evilpens on 10/27/11 at 08:45 PM ET

awould's avatar

I don’t think really think you made your point. Your caricature of the common complaint about Pittsburgh has zero bearing on reality - it literally could never happen. Yet in support of what you call ridiculous bullshit, we can all just turn on the TV and watch Sid the Kid’s face plastered all over everything, or point to the two Winter Classic games that have featured the team, and on and on and on ....

I think the league, and Bettman, have chosen a specific marketing strategy that starts and ends with Sidney Crosby, and includes Ovechkin, but mostly just as a contrast to Sid. I think that permeates most of the PR, news and marketing from posters to commercials to where to host the draft. I understand why they do it - Pittsburgh is a good sports city, it’s a good “all-american” city, Sid the Kid makes an easy image to market, etc.  Some speculate Stamkos might be the next golden boy, but I don’t see the NHL hyping up Tampa Bay because a sun belt team just isn’t good material to get people excited.

Anyways, it gets old and this draft is just one more “eye-rolling” thing in a long list. You don’t see it because it’s about your team. I can’t get enough Red Wings so I wouldn’t be a good gauge for how much is too much. But it’s not just Red Wings fans who get sick of it anyways, it’s pretty much most fans who aren’t fans of Pittsburgh. I even have friends who couldn’t care less about hockey ask why they only hear about Sidney Crosby.

Posted by awould on 10/27/11 at 08:59 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

UMMM Huh?

you complain about the draft being in Pgh. like all the other owners Let the guy they PAY favor the Pens all the time, If that was the case do you think Sid & Geno would have been lost for the season last season? & Sid is still out now & Geno has missed a bunch of games Orpik wasn’t ready to start the season Dustin Jeffrey has been out since he blew his knee out last season & Michalek is out 4-6 weeks with a broken finger

Posted by Evilpens on 10/27/11 at 06:19 PM ET

awould pretty much covered everything I would say here, except I don’t see where I made any comments about on-ice issues or the players.  I’m only questioning the marketing choices, or more accurately expressing my fatigue with them.  I hope you’ll also go back and read where I said I don’t think there is a pro-Pens conspiracy.  The Pens have earned all of their success.  I’m just tired of the broken record during every commercial break, every other Winter Classic, and so on.  You don’t have to be wearing red and white to get tired of being told that the NHL would just love it if you became a Capitals or Penguins fan every time you turn on the game.  There are over twenty five other teams that play hockey in this league too, which is the point I was making about the draft.  So take of the black and gold glasses before you get defensive again dude.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/27/11 at 09:31 PM ET

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I’m pretty pumped about it.  I got to go to the one in 97 and it was a blast.  Hoping the Pens pick last in the first round but that’s a ways to go.

Posted by pens fan in baltimore on 10/27/11 at 11:01 PM ET

scotts0's avatar

Man, I can only imagine what kind of under the table dealings Bettman and Mario have.  It’s gotta be something unimaginable.

Posted by scotts0 from New York on 10/27/11 at 11:41 PM ET

Evilpens's avatar

UMMM Yeah It’s not RW’s fans huh? when something posted about the Pens there are More RW fans then Pens fan half the time

Posted by Evilpens on 10/27/11 at 11:57 PM ET

Avatar

Paul,

Any updates on when I’ll be able to block certain users that lower the average IQ of the website and consistently derail conversation?  I am anxiously (but patiently) awaiting the feature.

-Greg

Posted by GregAnnapolis on 10/28/11 at 12:10 AM ET

bezukov's avatar

UMMM Yeah It’s not RW’s fans huh? when something posted about the Pens there are More RW fans then Pens fan half the time

Posted by Evilpens on 10/27/11 at 09:57 PM ET

Sure its Wings fans posting about Pens topics, I won’t dispute that.  We’re as exhausted with it as everyone else.  But least half the users on this site are Wings fans though (and thats probably a conservative figure), so the phenomenon you speak of shouldn’t strike you as remarkable.  I think that points more towards a natural probability rather than some nebulous characteristic of Red Wings fans.

Posted by GregAnnapolis on 10/27/11 at 10:10 PM ET

Greg-

I’ve got no quarrel with you sir, but if you have something to say to certain users…  Say it.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/28/11 at 02:33 AM ET

redxblack's avatar

I’m also tired of the lack of originality or inspiration in the NHL marketing machine. A draft in Columbus makes more sense, especially since they’ll likely get a very good draft pick. I wonder if the pittsburgh visitors and convention bureau (or whatever the local version is called) is really THAT good at their jobs or if the NHL is really that bad at theirs.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 10/28/11 at 09:46 AM ET

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bezukov: It’s definitely not you, don’t worry.  The reason I haven’t addressed them personally (recently, anyway) is that I have nothing to say to them; I want to not see their posts anymore, that’s all.  I have tried communicating with them in the past, and they have demonstrated themselves to be incapable of thoughtful/effective communication (or unwilling to give it a chance?).  Just as they have the freedom to spew stupidity, I’d like the freedom from that stupidity.  I may have to just stay away from the comment pages until the feature is implemented—but that would definitely be throwing out the baby with the bathwater.  This site is a much better source for hockey news than most.  And I’m not even a Red Wings fan (though I do enjoy watching their games on Center Ice!)

The comments on this site often contain perspectives/opinions/etc that I had not considered, and I appreciate the exposure to others’ ideas.  There is just one specific troll on the site that I could do without.  I’ll be sure to ask Paul about it in private in the future.  I certainly didn’t intend to offend anyone, and I hope you didn’t mistakenly think I was referring to you.  To be honest, I don’t know you well enough to know what to think of you! smile  (I hope you won’t take that as an insult, it is not intended as one!)  You seem like you value openness, and that is certainly a good trait to have.  I value honesty, but perhaps a little more discretion from me would have been more appropriate for this situation.

For what it’s worth, I agree with virtually every point you have made in this thread. smile

Posted by GregAnnapolis on 10/28/11 at 05:05 PM ET

Avatar

Btw I know the newest arena in the league typically gets to host the draft, but for God’s sake, spread it around a little.  Have it in Winnipeg.  Set Pennsylvania on the shelf for a few years for crying out loud.

Posted by bezukov from Wings Fan in exile: Columbus, OH on 10/27/11 at 03:37 PM ET

See when I think “spread it around a little” my immediate concern is with where that event has been, not any other events.  The draft is a unique event that fans can only see once a year.  It may piss you off that the Pens got to be in two Winter Classics already, which I get, but that has nothing to do with this.

If you want to keep the draft spread out my first concern is between Canada and US.  Despite making up only 6 franchises this is their game and you don’t want to see them getting events assigned to their cities proportionally.  So if you look at the most recent drafts:

2011-Min
2010-LA
2009-Montreal (part of their centennial celebration)
2008-Ottawa
2007-Columbus
2006-Vancouver
2005-Ottawa
2004-Carolina
2003-Nashville
2002-Toronto

I want to empathize with your point because I can only imagine how tiresome the one-track promotion is but this isn’t really an issue that it should apply to.  How does an American city on the eastern coast not fit in at 2012 on that list perfectly?

A draft in Columbus makes more sense,
Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 10/28/11 at 07:46 AM ET

Columbus had it in 2007.  Five years is a bit soon again even if they’re lower in the standings don’t you think?

If this had been anywhere but PIT nobody would care.  Thus it’s the league deliberately thumbing its nose at the fan everywhere.

Posted by Primis on 10/27/11 at 04:04 PM ET

Or it demonstrates the bias against one team that opposing fans with a vested interest have.  It’s not a big deal, I mean I hate the Flyers guts but I don’t have think that Sidney Crosby’s presence on their team or an annoying marketing campaign would cloud my judgment so badly that I thought a city hosting a yearly event it won’t see again for probably at least another decade is somehow the league deliberately thumbing it’s nose at all fans of the game.

Posted by JBM on 10/28/11 at 05:42 PM ET

awould's avatar

I value honesty, but perhaps a little more discretion from me would have been more appropriate for this situation.

If someone’s a troll, call them a troll. In public.  But I don’t see anyone on this particular thread that I think of as a troll. I see a couple names who routinely make points I disagree with, but usually they at least have some seemingly rational reason for their claims. A troll has a pretty specific meaning, and is a harsh charge to level against someone.

Maybe it’s me you’re referring to, though I don’t think so because I don’t recall ever seeing your name and definitely haven’t ever heard from you in the past.

As for blocking users - I think this site’s population does a fairly good job of filtering out the real trolls, and heated debates are just part of the deal around here. It’s what makes it interesting, to me. I do agree that some people do like pushing buttons, but that doesn’t rise to the level of trolling. Blocking a user’s posts would likely leave you confused as to what is being discussed since you’d have no way of knowing what is being discussed or responded to…. I wouldn’t use the feature if it were available.

Posted by awould on 10/28/11 at 05:46 PM ET

Avatar

awould, it’s not you—in fact, I rather enjoy some of your posts, including the one I’m replying to!

I do realize it’s a lofty charge, and I did think twice before using it.  Perhaps it was a bit of an emotionally charged description: I don’t think they’re intentionally partaking in the behavior for the purpose of irking people, I think it’s just a part of their online persona that rubs me very much the wrong way.  There are seven billion people on this planet; it would be silly of me to think that I wouldn’t occasionally stumble upon one that I don’t like.  smile  Troll does imply that the person is knowingly doing what they do for the purpose of annoying others, and it is unfair for me to assume that it’s purposeful.  I try to give the benefit of the doubt, but eventually that runs out.  I can honestly say though that I have no interest in reading further posts from them, and I truly believe that this website will become even more valuable to me when their posts are no longer visible on my end.

I understand what you are saying about blocking users, and I don’t mind heated debate at all.  On other forums (non-hockey) where a block function is available, I do find myself using it very judiciously.  Generally, the feature leaves some indication that a comment has been blocked, so at least I see where a discontinuity lies.  (Message by ____ not displayed because user is on your ignore list.  Click here to unhide.)  It’s a trade off I’m willing to make, in this particular case.  I do realize I’ll see excerpts of their comments if people choose to quote the user in their replies.

Now that I think about it, I can only think of one other person that I have blocked on any of the forums I participate in, either as a lurker (read-only) or an active participant.  So don’t worry, I’m not one of those people that goes around ignoring/blocking anyone who I disagree with.  smile  One of the reasons I like this place is the variety of opinions.  My goal is to eliminate the noise so I can focus on the signal.

Posted by GregAnnapolis on 10/28/11 at 06:56 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

The comments on this site often contain perspectives/opinions/etc that I had not considered, and I appreciate the exposure to others’ ideas.  There is just one specific troll on the site that I could do without.  I’ll be sure to ask Paul about it in private in the future.  I certainly didn’t intend to offend anyone, and I hope you didn’t mistakenly think I was referring to you.  To be honest, I don’t know you well enough to know what to think of you!   (I hope you won’t take that as an insult, it is not intended as one!)  You seem like you value openness, and that is certainly a good trait to have.  I value honesty, but perhaps a little more discretion from me would have been more appropriate for this situation.

I appreciate your words Greg.  The thing I love about Kuklas are the varying perspectives; most of them delivered thoughtfully and without too much homership.  There has just been folks around the site lately playing cute, and its getting old.  Thats the main reason I said that fyi.  There isn’t any reason for people not to say what they mean.  It is goddammed interwebs after all lol.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 10/28/11 at 10:54 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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