Draft Day 2: Habs take five defencemen in 2011 Draft



On day two of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, the Montreal Canadiens traded down with the Winnipeg Jets, giving up their third-round pick (No. 78) for two fourth-round selections (Nos. 97 and 108).

With those picks, the Habs took Josiah Didier, a 6'3" right-handed defenceman from the USHL's Cedar Rapids Roughriders and winger Olivier Archambault from the QMJHL's Drummondville Volitguers.

It was the first of six players picked up by the Canadiens on Satrurday.

Didier, ranked 108th by Central Scouting,  is apparently committed to Denver University, following another season with Cedar Rapids.

Josiah Didier, D Cedar Rapids (USHL)- We're told that this kid is one of the bigger sleepers being mentioned in NHL circles and that someone could jump on him earlier than conventional thought. With good size, mobility and the raw tools to develop into a big league blue liner eventually, he's been under the radar for much of the season. Plays with an edge and will jump into the play/has puck-moving skills. He's got a lot to learn and may not have the instincts to be a two-way defenseman and regular in the NHL, but with his impressive physical attributes, is worth taking a chance on. - courtesy Bruins2011DraftWatch

Archambault was ranked by 65th Central Scouring and 69th, amongst skaters, by The Scouting Report.

He was traded from the Val D'Or Foreurs on June 4 for two players and the Volitgeurs first-round pick in 2012, and was the first overall selection by Val D'Or in the 2009 QMJHL Entry Draft.

Former top pick in the QMJHL Draft took some positive steps forward this season with an increased opportunity. Archambault isn’t an overwhelming player but does a lot of little things well to be a dangerous presence on the ice. Pretty strong for his size, and manages to find some space on the ice despite not having high-end speed. He does a good job of finding opportunities to create offense and should continue to develop over the next couple of years. - The Scouting Report

 

 

The Habs closed out their fourth-round picks by selecting Swedish rearguard Magnus Nygren 113th. The 21-year-old Nygren could be another offensive defenseman for the Canadiens, but  is under contract with Färjestad through 2013.

WHL defenseman Darren Dietz was selected 138th, and they looked to Eastern Europe with pick number 168 by selecting Czech center Daniel Pribyl. Some insight into Pribyl from Dan Sallows.

Colin Sullivan, out of Avon Old Farms High School, rounded out the Canadiens draft class for 2011, going 198th. Though bound for Yale, the defenseman from Connecticut made the trip to Minnesota to hear his name called.

 

 

"His skating and mobility is something that really jumps out at you," said a scout with an Eastern Conference NHL team recently when queried about Sullivan. "When you’re looking at defensemen who maybe don’t have that ideal size you’re looking for, they’ve really got to have the mobility, and he definitely does."

At about 6-feet and 200 pounds he’s solidly built, and Sullivan may have a little more growing to do. It’s his improved offensive zone presence that has also earned him some notice.

"I like Sullivan’s poise," the scout said. "He’s an intelligent, hard-working kid who sees the ice well and is asserting himself a lot more than I remember him doing last year." - courtesy HockeyJournal.com

Canadiens 2011 Draft Picks

17. D - Nathan Beaulieau (St. John)

97. D -Josiah Didier (Cedar Rapids)

108. LW - Olivier Archambault (Drummondville)

113. D - Magnus Nygren (Farjestad)

138. D - Darren Dietz (Saskatoon)

168. C - Daniel Pribyl (Sparta)

198. D - Colin Sullivan (Avon Old Farms)

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