Penguins draft player from Hollidaysburg
PITTSBURGH (AP) – Following an eventful first day of the 2014 NHL Draft, the Pittsburgh Penguins selected a local product with their first pick of the second day Saturday.
The Penguins selected RW Sam Lafferty, 19, in the fourth round with the 113th overall pick. The 6-0, 176-pound forward scored 95 points and 38 goals in three season at Deerfield Academy. Lafferty scored 55 points and 21 goals for Deerfield last season.
He was born in Hollidaysburg, near Altoona. Lafferty will play at Brown University in 2015-16.
The Penguins selected forward Kasperi Kapanen 22nd overall Friday after trading forward James Neal to the Nashville Predators in exchange for forwards Nick Spaling and Patric Hornqvist.
“To get an elite young forward in Kapanen and then today, getting some players that will be on more of a longer term, but four prospects in the system, we’re very excited,” Penguins associate general manager Jason Botterill said. “We’ve talked about the young defensemen in our system for a while now, and it’s time for a Brian Dumoulin, a Scott Harrington to get an opportunity here.”
Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford said he expects to acquire at least two players to fill holes throughout the lineup when free agency begins Tuesday.
Pittsburgh selected its third forward of the draft when it chose Anthony Angello, 18, from the Omaha Lancers of the United States Hockey League in the fifth round (145th overall). The 6-foot-4, 190-pound forward tallied 21 points and 11 goals for the Lancers in 2013-14. Angello, who is committed to Cornell University, earned one assist in four postseason games.
The pattern of drafting forwards continued when the Penguins selected RW Jaden Lindo, 18, from the Owen Sound of the Ontario Hockey League in the sixth round (173rd overall).
The 6-foot-1, 203-pound forward scored 18 points and nine goals in 40 games with the Sound in 2013-14.
“The one thing that we wanted to do, the fact that we had as many young defensemen as we did, we wanted to draft some forwards and we were fortunate we did,” Rutherford said. “The guys we got, we liked. Especially the guy we got in the first round (Kapanen), where we got him at 22. So, all-in-all, we feel pretty good about the weekend.”
The Penguins drafted forwards with the first four picks of a draft for the first time since 1988, when they chose Darrin Shannon, Mark Major, Daniel Gauthier and Mark Recchi.
Pittsburgh strayed from selecting a forward with its final pick (203rd overall), instead choosing defenseman Jeff Taylor from Union College in the seventh round. Taylor (6-foot-0, 170 pounds) scored 16 points in 41 games last season.