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Jets tab Scheifele in first round

Saturday, 25.06.2011 / 10:54 AM / Feature
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Jets tab Scheifele in first round
Back in the NHL, the Winnipeg Jets used their first-round draft pick Friday night on Mark Scheifele.
ST. PAUL -- Mark Scheifele said he had a feeling the Winnipeg Jets might have more than a passing interest in selecting him during a meeting with the team Thursday.
 
"At the end of the Winnipeg meeting they said, 'How do you pronounce your last name?'" Scheifele told NHL.com. "So that gave me a feeling, but I didn't want to be crushed if they didn't pick me. I wasn't totally sure."
 
He's sure now.
 
The Jets, in their first draft since 1995, selected Scheifele with the seventh pick of the 2011 Entry Draft on Friday.
 
Last season with the Barrie Colts of the Ontario Hockey League, Scheifele was second on the team with 53 assists and 75 points. He followed that with a team-best 6 goals in eight games for Canada at the World Under-18 Championship.
 
"Mark protects the puck very well and will take it to the net while fighting through checks," NHL Central Scouting's Chris Edwards told NHL.com during the regular season. "He's got a great work ethic. His Barrie Colts have struggled this season and he has been relied upon to provide offense. He sees the ice very well and his playmaking ability is very good. He gets back quickly and works hard defensively."
 
Barrie finished with the fewest points in the OHL this past season, which makes Scheifele's numbers that much more impressive, as he had to play against the best defensive players in the OHL on a nightly basis.
 
"It's been tough having to go against players like (Avalanche first-round draft pick Joey) Hishon and defensemen like (Maple Leafs second-round pick Jesse) Blacker," Scheifele told NHL.com earlier this past season. "It's been tough, but you've got to take it as a challenge and this is going to make me better, it's going to help me become the best player I can be. It's definitely tougher to get points and tougher to get opportunities (but) it's a fun challenge. Sometimes it's harder when they're hitting you and stuff, but it's definitely a challenge I like to take."
 
Helping Scheifele hone his craft this season has been a player with his own ties to Winnipeg -- Barrie coach and legendary Winnipeg Jet Dale Hawerchuk.
 
"Dale was a great person to learn from because he knows the game so well," said Scheifele. "He's a great person to learn from. He helped me a lot. My hard work and determination really helped me throughout the year."
 
"One of the reasons our guys felt so strongly about that young man is largely to do with Dale's endorsement," Jets Chairman Mark Shipman said. "He coached him and thinks very highly of him. Our guys were ecstatic to get him."
 
Scheifele is just as ecstatic to be going to Winnipeg.
 
"All the guys were saying you're going to be on all these trivia questions," said Scheifele. "I'm kind of starting to soak it in. … To be able to go to Winnipeg and a franchise that's just starting, it's unbelievable."
 
As for when he gets to the Jets, that remains to be seen. At 6-foot-2 and 182 pounds, he needs to add weight. He also has just one season top-level junior hockey under his belt; he played for a Junior 'A' team in 2009-10 while deciding on playing in Barrie or going to Cornell University.
 
However, Scheifele believes his rapid ascent can continue with a spot in the NHL next season.
 
"With a good summer, getting stronger in my legs and getting stronger overall, I think I can be ready," he said.
 
Contact Adam Kimelman at akimelman@nhl.com. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK

Author: Adam Kimelman | NHL.com Staff Writer

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 NSH 62 41 14 7 188 147 89
2 ANA 63 39 17 7 186 176 85
3 STL 61 39 18 4 190 152 82
4 CHI 63 37 21 5 183 150 79
5 WPG 63 31 20 12 174 170 74
6 VAN 61 35 23 3 174 162 73
7 MIN 61 32 22 7 173 160 71
8 LAK 61 29 20 12 164 157 70
9 CGY 62 33 25 4 175 160 70
10 SJS 62 30 24 8 173 177 68
11 COL 62 27 24 11 166 179 65
12 DAL 62 27 25 10 195 207 64
13 ARI 62 20 35 7 137 210 47
14 EDM 62 18 34 10 142 206 46

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
B. Little 63 24 26 9 50
A. Ladd 63 20 30 12 50
B. Wheeler 61 16 28 12 44
D. Byfuglien 63 15 26 6 41
M. Perreault 56 18 18 3 36
M. Scheifele 63 10 25 4 35
M. Frolik 63 13 19 3 32
D. Stafford 57 10 17 -18 27
J. Tlusty 53 13 10 -17 23
E. Kane 37 10 12 -1 22
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
M. Hutchinson 18 7 5 .920 2.29
O. Pavelec 13 13 7 .909 2.60
 
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