Third Round Produces Tough Crowd in 2013 NHL Entry Draft

| John Chandler

An eventful 2013 NHL Entry Draft concluded on Sunday with all 7 rounds and 211 selections being made in the course of a single day.  

It was a trio of forwards that kicked things off, with Nathan MacKinnon chosen by the Avalanche as the first overall pick, followed by Finnish import Aleksander Barkov Jr. heading to the Panthers and MacKinnon's teammate, Jonathan Drouin grabbed by the Lightning.  Despite being projected as the top selection in the class, Seth Jones fell down the board until the Predators brought him into the fold at number four overall.

Hard-nosed defenseman Darnell Nurse was drafted by the Oilers seventh overall, commencing the drafting of the grittier players in this year's crop.  The nephew of former NFL quarterback Donovan McNabb made it known that his tough-minded style of play won't be changing at the next level.

“I think I have a little bit of jam in my game.  I've always had it,” Nurse said following his selection.  “Like I said, it's better to give than receive.  It creates a lot more room for yourself in the corners.  Obviously with that said I'm going to get challenged based on the way I play, but I've never been scared to step up.”

Despite being ranked 171st overall by Central Scouting, Tyrell Goulbourne became a third round draft pick (72nd overall) of the Flyers.  Philadelphia GM Paul Holmgren has already dubbed Goulbourne as “Z2”, citing a similar style of play to that of Zac Rinaldo.  Kurtis Gabriel, who literally walked onto the Owen Sound Attack three years ago and entered the draft unranked as well, became another surprise story after also being selected in third (81st overall) by the Wild.