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Florek the latest forward to B’s

06.26.10 at 3:47 pm ET
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The Bruins continued their all-offense draft by selecting Justin Florek from Northern Michigan University with the 135th overall pick. In his sophomore campaign the 6-foot-3, 195-pound Michigan native totaled 35 points.

Florek spent his two years prior to Northern Michigan playing on the USA under-18 team, where he registered 27 points in 50 games. Like fourth-rounder Craig Cunningham, Florek was draft-eligable last year but went undrafted.

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Cunningham in the fourth

06.26.10 at 2:43 pm ET
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After not having a pick in the third round, the Bruins selected 5-foot-10 Vancouver (WHL) forward Craig Cunningham with the seventh pick in the fourth round of the NHL draft on Saturday. The pick was the 97th overall choice choice and was acquired from the Carolina Hurricanes in the Aaron Ward deal. The Bruins first three picks were centers Tyler Seguin (second overall), Jared Knight (32), and Ryan Spooner (45).

Now 19, Cunningham played four years of junior hockey. After winning a Memorial Cup in his first year with the Giants, his production increased significantly each year. His point totals in his four years were five, 25, 50, and 97. He scored 37 goals this past season.

A left-handed shot, the 5-foot-10, 184-pound Cunningham played center in the WHL but is believed to be a left wing at the next level.

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Bruins continue to add forwards

06.26.10 at 2:15 pm ET
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LOS ANGELES _ There should be no shortage of talented forwards in the Bruins future.

Having already selected Tyler Seguin, the top ranked center in the draft, with the second overall pick Friday, the Bruins continued the trend in the second round of the draft Saturday.

With the 32nd overall pick in the draft, which was obtained from Toronto in the Phil Kessel trade, the B’s chose center/winger Jared Knight, who had 36 goals and 21 assists in 63 games with the London Knights of the OHL this season.

The B’s had a sense that Knight was flying under the scouting radar. Although he was ranked as the 82nd top prospect by the NHL scouting combine, Knight scored ten goals in 12 playoff games after he was diagnosed with diabetes and began taking insulin late in the season.

“I did have a slow start because of that,” said Knight . “I was diagnosed in November and it’s all taken care of. It’s all under control. I’m taking four shots a day. I’m eating better; I’ve got my diet under control. Everything is under control. Obviously hindered me a little bit at the start but once I got in under control my game really took off.”

GM Peter Chiarelli agreed that the diabetes issue is not a concern.

“He’s been completely treated for that, he lost a bunch of weight and that’s when he started flying under the radar at the start of the season, then he lit it up for a long time,” said Chiarelli at the conclusion of Saturday’s draft.  ”He’s a shooter, this guys a shooter. He’s strong on the puck. This kid is a good player.”

Knight did not attend the draft. The 5-11, 186-pound right-shot center is the first player from Battle Creek, Michigan to be drafted in the NHL.

“I think, if you’re going to look at my play, I think [I’m] just a hard working player, a hard-nosed player who goes hard to the net, who’s not afraid to take the post off,” said Knight. “ I think I have a good skill set too and I think what really sets me apart is my work ethic and the way I work out there.

Knight is also sold on Boston.

“I was down there a couple weeks ago and we tested there at their practice facility and we went around town,” said Knight. “We went to Ray Bourque’s restaurant. It’s just a great city. I watch the games, I love the Boston Bruins. They’re one of my favorite teams to watch. Their fans are just unreal. They’re really passionate fans and its something I’m really looking forward to.

Spooner was the 39 ranked skater in the draft. A broken collarbone limited the 5-10, 172-pounder to playing just 47 games this season but he was not disappointed with the way things worked out at the draft.

“I was pretty nervous at first, but once I heard I went to Boston I was pretty happy,” said Spooner.”I couldn’t be any happier now.”

The first order of business will be for Spooner to bulk up.

“Obviously I’m a skill player, I’m going to work on that, but overall strength and getting a bit heavier, stuff like that,” said Spooner who has also played with wing on occasion.

“I’ve mostly played center, but when I played with Team Canada at times I played on the wing,” said Spooner. “So I guess I can do either.”

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Chiarelli: Oilers wanted Bruins pick

06.25.10 at 11:40 pm ET
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LOS ANGELES — With the first round of the NHL draft completed Friday Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli indicated that the Edmonton Oilers were interested in obtaining the Bruins second pick in the draft, but not in working a potential swap that would have provided the B’s the Oilers top pick.

According to Chiarelli, Edmonton GM Steve Tambellini hoped to obtain the Bruins pick as a stand alone proposition.

“Talks were more centered around (the Oilers) trying to get the number two pick from us,” said Chiarelli. “He told me early on he was going to try and get it and he didn’t give up.”

The Oilers used the first pick to select Taylor Hall. The Bruins in turn used the second pick to draft Tyler Seguin.

For his part, Chiarelli is happy with the Bruins being able to draft Seguin.

“He’s a terrific player, he’s got a terrific skill set,” said Chiarelli. “He’s still growing. His improvement was tremendous over one year to the next. Very smart, terrific hockey sense.”

Chiarelli has also wasted little time suggesting Seguin will play in the NHL next season.

“I expect he will make the team,” he said. “But you never know. You remember some of the parallels in the past sort of his age and body type, a guy like (Steve) Stampkos took a while to get used to it, took him a while to get his confidence and strength. I would anticipate that line of improvement as he comes into the league.”

Rounds 2-7 of the draft continue Saturday.

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Weymouth’s Coyle a Shark

06.25.10 at 10:49 pm ET
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Charlie Coyle, a right wing from Weymouth, became the highest EJHL player to ever be drafted in the NHL when the San Jose Sharks chose him with the 28th overall pick of Friday’s NHL draft. The 6-foot-2, 202-pounder is set to play for Jack Parker at Boston University next year. He is the cousin of Tony Amonte.

In 42 games for the South Shore Kings of the EJHL this past season, Coyle scored 21 goals and chipped in 42 assists for 63 points.

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Local kid Hayes goes to Blackhawks

06.25.10 at 10:31 pm ET
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The Blackhawks selected Massachusetts native Kevin Hayes with the 24th overall pick in Friday night’s draft. The right-winger, who hails from Dorchester, played his high school hockey at  Nobles in Greenough in Dedham. He is set to attend Boston College next season. The 6-foot-3, 205-pounder is the brother of Eagles sophomore forward Jimmy Hayes.

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Kessel deal coming full-circle as Leafs miss out on local star

06.25.10 at 9:53 pm ET
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There were a lot of things about the first round of Friday night’s NHL draft that seemed a little funny. Both league-wide and specifically to the Bruins, the first 30 picks were laced with irony and confusion. Some blatant examples: Two perceived top defenseman fell out of the top 10. The team that needed centers took winger Taylor Hall, which led to the team with too many centers taking Tyler Seguin.

Graig Woodburn photography

Graig Woodburn photography

A few storylines stand out with the Bruins’ new center, one of which is that he was the top-ranked player in the draft by NHL Central Scouting, yet went second. Just as fascinating, however, is the team he went to, and with which pick.

Every young hockey player’s dream is to play in the NHL, and with his selection Friday night Seguin will undoubtedly realize his lifelong goal. However, the path to Boston, a city he spoke about with excitement Friday night, ultimately went through the team he grew up admiring as a child.

Born in Brampton, Ontario, Seguin was close enough to Toronto to be a Maple Leafs fan. In addition to being an Original Six rival of the Black and Gold, the Maple Leafs were a trade partner in the move that would eventually bring Seguin to Boston. The Bruins acquired three picks from the Leafs last offseason in the Phil Kessel deal, including the first-rounder that became the pick used on the Plymouth Whalers center.

“Growing up I was the local guy,” Seguin said. “I liked watching the Leafs because they were the local team.  Now that it happened, I think it’s meant to be. I think things worked out throughout my life and anyone’s lives. It’s just where we were supposed to fall, and Boston was the team that was supposed to pick me.”

What makes it so interesting is the story the pick could have been if it stayed in Toronto. The hometown kid who grew up cheering on the Leafs goes to the historic franchise to give them a shot of both youth and scoring. Instead, he’s gone to the rival, a Bruins team that has seemed to be knocking at the door for two seasons now.

So does the team that will also see their second-rounder Saturday and first-round pick next year made by the Bruins regret the deal?

“We made this trade,” Leafs GM Brian Burke said at the draft. “We took our chance on how our team would finish. We talked about the possibility that it could be a lottery pick. … We said, ‘Well what if it is Taylor Hall? What if it is Tyler Seguin?’ and we said ‘We’re going to make that trade anyway.’ We got the player we wanted and I hope Boston got the player they wanted.”

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