The National Hockey League’s Central Scouting Service announced their final draft rankings for the 2015 NHL Entry Draft on Wednesday and three Lethbridge Hurricanes cracked the list as Andrew Nielsen, Giorgio Estephan and Kade Jensen all were listed among North American skaters.
Nielsen, the highest ranked of the three ‘Canes, came in a 52nd – a 17 spot jump from the midterm rankings where he was ranked 69th. In his rookie season with the Hurricanes, Nielsen appeared in 59 games collecting 24 points (7g-17a) finishing second in scoring among defenseman. The Red Deer product, who was listed by the Hurricanes after not being selected in the WHL Bantam Draft, is ranked sixth among Western Hockey League rearguards.
Estephan is the only Hurricanes forward to be ranked coming in at 144th. The Edmonton native, who was left off the midterm rankings, exploded in the second half of the season collecting 47 points (22g-25a) in his final 43 games of the season. Estephan finished third in ‘Canes scoring only behind Jamal Watson and Tyler Wong and more than doubled his previous career high of 24 points set during the 2013-2014 campaign.
Jensen was the final Hurricane listed at 184th. The Calgary product was ranked 164th in the midterm rankings. The sophomore blue liner set career highs in goals, assists and points picking up 19 points (4g-15a) in 64 games this season while asserting himself well as a power play quarterback picking up 12 of his 19 points on the man advantage.
The NHL Entry Draft takes place June 26-27 in Sunrise, Florida.