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PHN Extra 2018 NHL Draft Analysis: Why Fireworks Fizzled, Pens Got Steals

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NHL return, 2020 NHL draft lottery, Penguins Draft
2018 NHL Draft: Photo by DAN KINGERSKI

(DALLAS) — Max Pacioretty is still a Montreal Canadien. Phil Kessel is still a Pittsburgh Penguin. And the promised trade fireworks for the 2018 NHL Draft were more like snakes and sparklers than things that go boom.

In the midst of all eyes being trained on NHL All-Stars changing teams, the Pittsburgh Penguins quietly snared a pair of players in the second round who could be impact performers at the NHL level. Lethbridge Hurricanes offensive defenseman Calen Addison was the Penguins original pick at No. 53 overall, then the team traded up with Colorado to draft Swedish junior winger Filip Hallander at No. 58 overall.

Central Scouting rated Hallander the 12th best European skater. As odds go, Hallander seems a strong bet to skate on NHL ice, either as a bottom-six forward, or even a player able to contribute meaning offensive numbers. He won’t dazzle anyone with stickhandling or highlight reel plays. Instead, Hallander will crash and bang on his way to the net.

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Pittsburgh Hockey Now owner, formerly 93.7 The Fan, Sportsnet Hockey Tonight. Catch Dan tweeting @theDanKingerski and the official @pghhockeynow account.

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