2012 NHL Draft
 
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Good View From The Back

Thursday, 05.31.2012 / 1:52 PM ET / 2012 NHL Draft
By Adam Kimelman  - NHL.com
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Good View From The Back
Forward Jonathan Huberdeau was selected with the third pick overall in the 2011 NHL Draft. The Panthers will pick 23rd in the 2012 NHL Draft.

TORONTO -- Florida Panthers GM Dale Tallon said the best part of being at the draft is sitting in the back row on the draft floor.

With the 23rd pick in the first round of the 2012 NHL Draft, the Panthers will sit near the back of the room at Consol Energy Center for the first time in Tallon's tenure with the team -- Florida had the third pick of the draft the last two years.

However, he's quick to say getting to the back of the room is nice, but staying there is the key.

"It feels great," Tallon told NHL.com. "That's the goal, to stay back there. It's out of necessity you stay in the front row. To be good, you have to be bad. You've got to make the best of the opportunities when you're there. Hopefully the result is a back-row position for a long time."

The Panthers selected defenseman Erik Gudbranson two years ago, and he emerged as a solid player as a rookie in 2011-12. Jonathan Huberdeau, the third pick in 2011, almost made the team in training camp, then went back to Saint John of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and had another outstanding season that resulted in a second straight trip to the Memorial Cup. It's likely Huberdeau starts the 2012-13 season in Florida.

Tallon said despite picking lower down in the opening round, nothing changes as far as the team's approach to the draft.

"Nothing changes for us -- for me, anyway," Tallon said. "We'll take the best player that we can possibly get at 23 and go with our formula that's worked in the past and keep at it."

For Tallon, meeting the kids at the Scouting Combine is a process he really enjoys.

"These interviews … the kids are a lot more in-tune now, they're more comfortable," he said. "They're not as forced as they used to be. I'm enjoying the give-and-take with some of these kids. I try to get them relaxed and off-guard a little bit, have fun with them. It's not easy for a young 17-, 18-year-old to be talking to 10, 12 people [who are] strangers. They walk into a bee's nest there and I try to make them relax and try to enjoy the process."

Tallon said he didn't plan on locking into one particular position, but did say he was impressed by the high number of talented defensemen in this year's draft class.

"Lot of good defensemen, especially in the first round," he said. "You don't know what's going to happen, but there's a lot of good, young defensemen in this draft. There are 10 [real] good ones. I like a lot of them."

However, he said the Panthers will stick with the plan that Tallon put in place when he joined the franchise.

"We're going to go with the best athlete probably at the first pick and then we'll start to look at our depth chart again," he said. "That's what we've done in the past and we'll continue to do the same thing."

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Jagr 79 27 39 23 66
J. Jokinen 81 18 42 25 60
A. Barkov 66 28 31 18 59
J. Huberdeau 76 20 39 17 59
V. Trocheck 76 25 28 15 53
R. Smith 82 25 25 19 50
A. Ekblad 78 15 21 18 36
N. Bjugstad 67 15 19 -8 34
B. Campbell 82 6 25 31 31
B. Pirri 52 11 13 -4 24
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
R. Luongo 35 19 6 .922 2.35
A. Montoya 12 7 3 .919 2.18

 
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