Monday, July 19, 2004

Detroit Gladiators Entry Draft Selections

Free Agent Draft Day One: July 17
  1. Dany Heatley, RW (3)
  2. Drake Berehowsky, D (14)
  3. Mike Zigomanis, C (19)
  4. Chris Nielsen, C (30)
  5. Steve Kariya, LW (35)
  6. Patrick DesRochers, G (46)
  7. Alexander Perezhogin, RW (51)
  8. Michael Henrich, RW (62)
  9. Todd Elik, C (67)
  10. Dmitri Yushkevich, D (78)
  11. Brad Tiley, D (83)
  12. Jason Jaspers, C (94)
  13. Martin Kariya, LW (99)
  14. Darren Van Oene, LW (110)
  15. Chris Hajt, D (115)
  16. Beat Forster, D (126)
  17. Chad Wiseman, RW (131)
  18. Seamus Kotyk, G (142)
  19. Greg Jacina, C (147)
  20. Jeremy Stevenson, LW (158)
  21. Mike Schutte, D (163)
  22. Craig Anderson, G (174)
  23. Ryan Ready, LW (179)
  24. Chris Hartsberg, RW (190)
  25. Ted Drury, C (195)
  26. Bubba Berenzweig, D (206)
  27. Craig Mills, LW (211)
  28. Patrick Traverse, D (222)
  29. Serge Payer, C (227)
  30. Mike Brown, LW (238)

Amateur Draft Day Two: July 18

  1. Andre Benoit, D (3)
  2. Patrick Jarrett, C (14)
  3. Danny Richmond, D (19)
  4. Jonathon Lehun, C (30)
  5. Robert Nilsson, C (35)
  6. Robbie Schremp (to Toronto), C (46)
  7. Cory Stillman, C (51)
  8. Dominic Deblois, RW (62)
  9. Michael Knight (to Toronto), D (67)
  10. Mark Stuart, D (78)
  11. Patrick Ehelechner, G (83)
  12. Curtis McElhinney, G (94)
  13. Greg Moore, RW (99)
  14. Lee Falardeau, C (110)
  15. Mike Brown, G (115)
  16. Mark Heatley, RW (126)
  17. Jake Dowell, C (131)
  18. Matt Hunwick, D (142)
  19. Jason Ryznar, LW (147)
  20. Chris Murphy, F (158)
  21. Brian Lee, D (163)
  22. Magnus Akerlund, G (174)
  23. Richard Demen-Wuillaume, D (179)
  24. Paul Bissonnette, D (190)
  25. Mike Brown, RW (195)
  26. Oscar Hedman, D (206)
  27. Lukas Mensator, G (211)
  28. Matt Carle, D (222)
  29. Ryan Bowness, RW (227)
  30. Magnus Hedberg, F (238)

 Exemption Pick: Chris Chelios, D

It should be understood that these selections in no way entail membership of the Detroit Gladiators, especially for the NHL players.  In other words, do not expect Dany Heatley to be in a Gladiator sweater this fall just because he was their first selection of the draft.  After being drafted, players must sign with the Gladiators.

The Gladiators made a smart move in selecting Mark Heatley after they selected his brother, Dany Heatley, the previous day.  It is an obvious move to entice Dany to Detroit to play with his brother, Mark, who is currently playing for Wisconsin in the NCAA.  

Notable Selections 

Amateur Draft

1.  Sidney Crosby (#1 in WHA draft, then #1 in 2005 NHL draft?), Toronto

21.  Al Montoya (current UM goaltender), Dallas

40.  Derek Meech (Wings 2002 draft pick), Founders' franchise

126.  Mark Heatley (Dany Heatley's brother), Detroit

189.  Andre Deveaux (Devereaux without the "er"), Hamilton

217.  Matt Schneider (the other Mathieu),  Founders' franchise 

Free Agent Draft

1.  Simon Gagne (first pick overall), Quebec

3.  Dany Heatley (picked in lieu of trial), Detroit

6.  Todd Bertuzzi (picked despite goonish behavior), Founders' franchise

9.  Steve Shields (former UM goalie), Florida

20.  Theoren Fleury (picked despite substance abuse background), Hamilton

25.  Jamie Rivers (journeyman defenseman, Wings call-up), Florida

41.  Sean Avery (former Wing), Florida

43.  Jiri Slegr (8 game Wing), Founders' franchise

91.  Jamie Pushor (former Wing), Founders' franchise

111.  Anders Myrvold (Wings call-up), Halifax

140.  Steve Thomas (retiring Wing?), Toronto

148.  Marc Bergevin (former Wing), Hamilton

157.  Mike Keane (Wings still "gutless" and "heartless"?), Hamilton

217.  Bill Muckalt (former UM star), Florida

Exemption Pick: Brett Hull (former Wing, could join dad in WHA), Dallas

**Note:  Founders' franchise is a team to be named later.  The WHA draft was set up to accommodate eight teams, but only seven are set to play (Quebec, Halifax, Detroit, Hamilton, Toronto, Dallas, Florida).  So an eighth team will need to be established, or "Founders' franchise" players will be jobless.  Possible cities include Cincinnati or Winnipeg.  The Florida franchise remains homeless, with Orlando and Jacksonville dropping out, so there are only six confirmed franchises. 

Comments Check out the Detroit Gladiators' official site, which was unveiled on Friday.  There, you can check out the teams' draft selections and learn more about Detroit's new hockey team.   With a list of possible players finally cemented, I am a bit more hopeful of the WHA's success this fall.  My main concern is that many of the NHL players selected in the free agent draft will snub their WHA teams.  This would create a void in players, and the WHA would then have to move towards a new pool of hockey talent.     In regards to the Gladiators' pick of Chris Chelios as their exemption pick, Coach Moe Mantha has not spoken to Chelios or any other Wings, for that matter: 
"I have too much respect for the Red Wings and Mike Ilitch and Ken Holland.  I haven't contacted any Red Wings."
In other words, don't expect Chelios in a Gladiator sweater this fall. 


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