Many expected the Bruins to go after a defenseman in the first round of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. What was surprising about the Bruins pick is that they got a great opportunity to select a star in the making. Boston had the ninth overall pick this year as a result of the left-over offer from the Phil Kessel trade a couple of years ago. With that pick, Boston selected defenseman Dougie Hamilton.
The 18 year old prospect played his junior hockey in the Ontario Hockey League for the Niagara Ice Dogs. In the 2010-2011 season, he led Niagara and finished fourth in the OHL in scoring among defensemen with 58 points. He is said to have all of the skills to be an all-around defenseman. He can skate well, he can hit, he can pass, and he can contribute offensively. Many draft experts expected him to go in the top five, so the Boston Bruins were lucky to have this kid fall in their laps.
The intention of drafting younger and developing players in the minor leagues will benefit Boston tremendously. Teams around the NHL are scrambling around and shaking up their lineups with the hope of something happening immediately. The core of the Bruins is solid and they have the talent in the waiting. If they want to go out this offseason and trade for another forward or a defenseman, then they could do that. However, they do not need to as they have several players at each position who are ready to play at the next level. I have already mentioned specific names of these players in previous blog entries.