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Record 5 Firebirds on NHL Draft Final Rankings

April 16, 2018 - Ontario Hockey League (OHL) - Flint Firebirds News Release

Flint, Mich. - NHL Central Scouting released their final rankings for the upcoming 2018 NHL Draft, which takes place June 22-23 in Dallas, Tex., and a record five Flint Firebirds were listed in the rankings report. With 31 teams in the NHL, Flint's Ty Dellandrea was the highest Flint Firebird recognized, listed at #25 among all North American skaters eligible for the draft. Connor Roberts (#146), Hunter Holmes (#148) and Riley McCourt (#161) were also listed in the final rankings, while Dennis Busby was one of three players labeled LV for 'limited viewing' due to a season long injury this campaign.

"Having five Firebirds' recognized by NHL Central Scouting is a testament to the hard work and dedication of the players," said Flint Firebirds Vice President of Hockey Operations & General Manager Barclay Branch. "It's a strong reflection of the Firebirds' program and our commitment to player development."

Since the Flint Firebirds' inception three season ago in 2015, the club has had 13 drafted or NHL signed players on its roster consisting of Will Bitten (Montreal), Nick Caamano (Dallas), Connor Chatham (New Jersey), Fedor Gordeev (Toronto), Kyle Keyser (Boston Bruins), Nick Mattinen (Toronto), Brent Moran (Dallas), Alex Nedeljkovic (Carolina), Alex Peters (Dallas), Vili Saarijarvi (Detroit), Kole Sherwood (Columbus), Jalen Smereck (Arizona) and Josh Wesley (Carolina).

Around the Ontario Hockey League, 61 OHL players have been listed in the final rankings.

The 61 players includes 56 skaters of the 217 ranked by NHL Central Scouting in North America while five of the 31 goaltenders ranked are also from the OHL. In total, nearly 25% of all players ranked by NHL Central Scouting are currently competing in the OHL.

Eleven of the top 31 ranked North American prospects are from the OHL led by top-ranked skater Andrei Svechnikov (Barrie Colts). Also included are fourth-ranked Evan Bouchard (London Knights), ninth-ranked Barrett Hayton (Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds), 10th-ranked Serron Noel (Oshawa Generals), 11th-ranked Rasmus Sandin (Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds), 15th-ranked Akil Thomas (Niagara IceDogs), 16th-ranked Ryan McLeod (Mississauga Steelheads), 19th-ranked Liam Foudy (London Knights), 25th-ranked Ty Dellandrea (Flint Firebirds), 26th-ranked Blade Jenkins (Saginaw Spirit) and 29th-ranked Kevin Bahl (Ottawa 67's).

In goal, netminders in 11th-ranked Christian Propp (North Bay Battalion), 13th-ranked Jacob Ingham (Mississauga Steelheads) and 15th-ranked Jordan Kooy (London Knights).

The Ontario Hockey League's 61 players ranked were part of a total of 143 CHL players included on the list. The Ottawa 67's led OHL clubs with seven players ranked followed by the London Knights with six and the Flint Firebirds with five.

Each of the OHL's 20 member teams had at least one player included in the rankings.

61 OHL players were listed in NHL Central Scouting's Midterm Rankings released in January, while 42 players from the OHL were selected in the 2017 NHL Draft including five players selected in the first round.

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Ontario Hockey League Stories from April 16, 2018

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