Eleven (11) North American Hockey League (NAHL) players were recognized on the NHL Central Scouting Bureau's "Players to Watch" list for 2012 draft-eligibles released on Oct. 21.
The preliminary listing is comprised of players who have been identified by NHL Central Scouting using the following criteria: A Rating: A must-see player who is predicted to be a potential first- or second-round draft selection in the upcoming NHL Entry Draft; B Rating: A player to note if a scout is in the area, a potential selection in the third-to-fifth round; C Rating: A player that Central Scouting is tracking, a potential late-round selection in the upcoming NHL Entry Draft.
Players from the NAHL on the list include: Wichita Falls Wildcats forwards Dennis Kravchenko (a University of Vermont recruit) and Adam Wilcox; Corpus Christi IceRays defenseman Christopher Taff and goaltender Anthony Stolarz, who was featured on The Hockey News NHL Hot List last month after his performance at the NAHL Showcase.
The list also features Dawson Creek Rage defenseman Luke Ripley; Traverse City forward Kyle Schemmp; Aberdeen Wings forward Cory Ward; Coulee Region Chill forward Jakob Batcha; Michigan Warriors defenseman Derek O’Flynn; Alexandria Blizzard goaltender Jameson Shortreed, and Alaska Avalanche defenseman Chris Buchanan.
Buchanan played in the North American Prospects Hockey League (PHL) last season as a member of the San Jose Jr. Sharks 18U team, where he led the team in defensive scoring.
NHL Central Scouting will release its midseason rankings of 2012 draft-eligibles in January, followed by its final rankings in April.
The 2012 NHL Entry Draft will be the 50th NHL Entry Draft. The draft will be held on June 22-23, 2012 at the CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It is the first time Pittsburgh will host the draft since the 1997 NHL Entry Draft.