International Ice Hockey Federation

Draisaitl makes history

Draisaitl makes history

German Worlds debutant drafted third overall

Published 13.08.2014 16:20 GMT+2 | Author John Sanful
Draisaitl makes history
A few weeks after debuting with the men’s national team at the 2014 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship in Minsk, Leon Draisaitl was drafted 3rd overall by the Edmonton Oilers. Photo: Andre Ringuette / HHOF-IIHF Images
The 2014 NHL Entry Draft produced few surprises but history when German forward Leon Draisaitl was picked third overall by the Edmonton Oilers.

Draisaitl became the highest drafted German player even after the Florida Panthers had picked Aaron Ekblad and the Buffalo Sabres Sam Reinhart.

“I didn't know it for sure, but I mean, I think I knew they were interested,” Draisaitl said after being drafted. “I'm kind of speechless right now. This is just incredible. They've had so many great players on their team, Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier, (General Manager) Craig MacTavish.”

Draisaitl emerged as a top-five pick this season thanks in large part to his play with the Prince Albert Raiders where he led his team in scoring with 105 points. Then the big centre made his senior men’s national team debut at the 2014 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championships in Minsk, Belarus, showing his abilities to play with men.

Draisaitl becomes the highest player drafted from Germany. Previously, Marcel Goc held the distinction. The San Jose Sharks took him 20th overall in 2001. In 2013/2014 there were six Germans playing in the NHL.

The German was not the only teenage player who had the opportunity to play top-level senior hockey in Minsk. Switzerland’s Kevin Fiala was picked in 11th position by the Nashville Predators where he will join his fellow countrymen Roman Josi and, if he re-signs, Simon Moser.

Fourteen Canadians, five Americans and 12 Europeans were drafted in the round. The Czech Republic, Finland, Russia and Sweden produced two draft picks apiece in the round.

Some of the players were sons of former national team players. Draisaitl’s father Peter, who was born in Czechoslovakia, also represented Germany, and also William Nylander (SWE), Nikolaj Ehlers (DEN) and Kasperi Kapanen (FIN) come from prominent hockey lineage.


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