Tuesday, June 27, 2017

CHL Import Draft takes place Wednesday

SAINT JOHN - The CHL Import Draft, arguably the strangest draft in sports, takes place on Wednesday.

While the Saint John Sea Dogs are not in prime picking location - they own the 53rd and 113th overall picks - it often doesn't matter a whole lot with many picks prearranged. Saint John's picks will come sooner than where they are currently placed because several teams will pass on their picks.

The Sea Dogs plan on using both of their selections in Wednesday's draft, which begins at noon Atlantic time. Defenceman Jakub Zboril is likely to graduate to the professional ranks for this coming season while the status of defenceman Oliver Felixson for 2017-18 is certainly unclear at this point. There's definitely a chance both of Saint John's import spots will be open.

The Sea Dogs haven't had great luck with the Import Draft in recent years with Zboril, who Saint John drafted fifth overall in 2014, turning into the best player. All-time, Saint John has struggled to find impact players when they aren't among the top teams selecting.

Here's who the Sea Dogs have selected in the Import Draft in past years:

2005: 5th overall - Martin Bartos
2005: 41st overall - Felix Schutz

2006: 4th overall – David Stich

2007: 3rd overall - Robert Mayer

2009: 1st overall – Stanislav Galiev
2009: 4th overall – Tomas Jurco

2012: 34th overall – Jurij Repe
2012: 52nd overall – Jakub Izacky

2013: 9th overall – Juraj Siska

2014: 5th overall - Jakub Zboril
2014: 65th overall - Nikita Li

2015: 25th overall - Oliver Felixson
2015: 85th overall - Frantisek Hrdinka

2016: 42nd overall - Alexander Vdovenko

The OHL's Barrie Colts will select first overall followed by the QMJHL's Moncton Wildcats and WHL's Kootenay Ice.
Svechnikov played in the USHL this past season, just like Galiev did when the Sea Dogs picked him first overall in 2009.

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