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Lightning Round: 2021 NHL Entry Draft results

And other news around the league

2021 NHL Draft - Round One Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The 2021 NHL Entry Draft was completed on Friday night and was held for the second year in a row via video conference due to COVID-19 restrictions. As expected, the Buffalo Sabres selected defenceman Owen Power from the University of Michigan as the first overall pick. The Tampa Bay Lightning traded their first-round pick earlier this year to the Columbus Blue Jackets in a three-team deal, which resulted in acquiring defenceman David Savard, and will have to wait until the second day of the 2021 NHL draft to make their first pick. Here’s the full results of the first round:

Matthew Beniers was selected second-overall, becoming the Seattle Kraken’s first ever draft pick. Power and Beniers also became the first teammates to be selected as the first two overall picks.

Several picks later the Blue Jackets drafted another Michigan player Kent Johnson as the fifth overall selection, making it the first time in history three players from the same NCAA team were selected not only among the top five picks of the same year, but in the first round in general.

The New Jersey Devils selected defenceman Luke Hughes with the No. 4 pick, uniting him with his brother Jack Hughes, who was the Devils’ first overall pick in the 2019 NHL Draft.

Swedish forward William Eklund, who was considered as potential first overall pick in this draft by some experts, goes to the San Jose Sharks as the 7th overall.

One of the top defencemen of this draft class Brandy Clarke went to the Los Angeles Kings.

Sebastian Cossa became the highest selected goaltender this year, leaving behind Swedish goaltender Jesper Wallstedt, who went to the Minnesota Wild as the 20th selection. Two goaltenders were selected in the first round for the first time since 2012, when Andrei Vasilevskiy and Malcolm Subban were selected as the 19th and the 24th picks respectively.

The Montreal Canadiens made the most controversial selection of the first round, drafting a Canadian defenceman Logan Mailloux, who was charged in Sweden for distributing a sexual photo without consent and withdrew from the NHL draft earlier this week.

The 2021 NHL Draft will continue today at at 11 a.m. EST when the second-round will start. The Lightning have six selection in this draft, including selections in the 3rd, 5th, 6th and three selections in the 7th round. Here’s the list of notable players still available in this draft:

Trade News

Several big trades happened ahead of the first-round yesterday. As the first one, Rasmus Ristolainen went to the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for first round pick in the 2021 NHL Draft, a second round pick in the 2023 NHL Draft and defenceman Robert Hagg. The Sabres used this 13th overall pick to select winger Isak Rosén last night.

The New York Rangers have traded signing rights for Pavel Buchnevich to the St. Louis Blues for forward Sammy Blais and a second round pick in the 2021 NHL draft. Buchnevich is a pending restricted free agent and projected at 5x$6.27 AAV according to Evolving-Hockey.com.

The biggest trade of the Friday was the deal between the Vancouver Canucks and the Arizona Coyotes, as a result of which the Canucks acquired defenceman Oliver Ekman-Larsson and forward Conor Garland, sending forwards Loui Eriksson, Jay Beagle and Antoine Roussel amongst with three draft picks, including this year’s 9th overall selection, the other way. As the 9th pick the Coyotes selected forward Dylan Guenther. The Coyotes will also retain 12% of Ekman-Larsson’s $8M contract.

The Blue Jackets traded defenceman Seth Jones, a 32nd overall pick in the 2021 NHL draft, which they acquired from the Lightning at the previous trade deadline, and the 6th round pick to the Chicago Blackhawks in exchange for defenceman Adam Boqvist, 12th overall draft pick in 2021, a 44th overall pick in 2021, and a first round pick in 2022.

The Chicago Blackhawks and Seth Jones reached an agreement to sign an eight-year deal with $9.5M AAV on July 28, when the RFA & UFA signing period begins.

The Carolina Hurricanes traded signing rights for defenceman Jake Bean to the Columbus Blue Jackets for a 44th pick in this year’s draft.

Meanwhile the Boston Bruins signed forward Taylor Hall to a four-year contract.

Lightning Links

Reportedly the Lightning are focused on trading forward Tyler Johnson.

The Syracuse Crunch released the schedule for the 2021-22 AHL season.