On this date 17 years in the past, the primary spherical of the 2005 NHL Entry Draft was held on the Westin Hotel in Ottawa. It was the league’s first main occasion because the lockout that price them the whole 2004-05 season ended simply over every week prior, and contemplating the draft’s high prize, there was added intrigue.
With the dearth of regular-season standings to find out the draft order, the league applied a snake draft system to make issues extra equitable for groups in later rounds that didn’t fare so properly within the draft lottery. One workforce that did fare properly that night time, although, was the Pittsburgh Penguins, who cemented a 15-plus yr run of success by drafting future captain Sidney Crosby with the primary general decide.
Five gamers chosen that night time went on to look in not less than 1,000 NHL video games, together with Crosby. One was 2022 Stanley Cup Champion Jack Johnson, taken third general by the Carolina Hurricanes. Johnson by no means performed a single recreation for Carolina, although, as he was traded the next offseason to the Los Angeles Kings together with defenseman Oleg Tverdovsky in trade for defenseman Tim Gleason and middle Eric Belanger.
Johnson wasn’t the one participant from the primary spherical to play significant video games for the Kings, although. The workforce chosen two-time Stanley Cup champion and future captain Anze Kopitar with the eleventh general choice. Another thousand-gamer was chosen immediately after him when the New York Rangers picked defenseman Marc Staal twelfth general, whereas Johnson’s teammate on the 2022 Avalanche, ahead Andrew Cogliano, was chosen twenty fifth by the Edmonton Oilers.
One title from that night time who might nonetheless be a part of the 1,000-game membership was St. Louis Blues choice and present Washington Capitals ahead T.J. Oshie. Taken twenty fourth general, he wants solely 100 extra appearances to hit the mark.
Future Stanley Cup-winning skaters weren’t the one future legends drafted that night time, although. Two of the best goalies in latest reminiscence have been drafted that night time, with the Montreal Canadiens deciding on Carey Price with the fifth general decide and the Toronto Maple Leafs deciding on Tuukka Rask with the twenty first general decide, after all previous to buying and selling him to the Boston Bruins the next season.
Just three gamers chosen that night time, all taken inside 4 picks of one another, would by no means make an NHL look. Slovak ahead Marek Zagrapan, drafted thirteenth general by the Buffalo Sabres, performed simply three years within the group with two totally different AHL associates, scoring 20 objectives there simply as soon as. At 35 years outdated, Zagrapan continues to be energetic, enjoying the 2022-23 season within the French Ligue Magnus.
Directly after him, the Washington Capitals took Canadian defenseman Sasha Pokulok with the 14th general decide. The first overage participant taken within the draft, he’s arguably the largest bust of the night time. He by no means spent a full season within the AHL, bouncing up and down between there and the ECHL for 4 seasons after turning professional in 2006. He didn’t make a notable impression in Europe, too, solely lasting one season within the DEL (2010-11) earlier than floating round varied lower-level leagues in Eastern Europe and Quebec.
Lastly, there’s Canadian winger Alex Bourret, taken by the Atlanta Thrashers at sixteenth general. A brief however sturdy energy winger, Bourret had a really profitable junior profession within the QMJHL that simply didn’t translate. His North American profession fizzled out rapidly after a powerful begin within the AHL, however after being traded twice (first to the Rangers, then to the Coyotes), he had simply 14 factors in 48 AHL video games throughout his remaining season there in 2008-09.