Saturday, June 27, 2009

Mr. Looking Up At Everyone Else

In the National Football League, he is called, Mr. Irrelevant. He is the last player taken in the draft. On the rare occasion, Mr. Irrelevant has his place in the sun. Marty Moore (New England Patriots) and Jim Finn (New York Giants) have played in a Super Bowl.

In the NHL, the odds are long on the last pick taken to make it in the show. Since the entry draft was established in 1979, only eight players taken last have played in an NHL game, and only three of them have played in more than 100 NHL games (Kim Johnsson leading the pack with 679 NHL games played). Paul Maurice, taken last in 1985, did not make it as a player, but he's had a productive career as an NHL bench boss.

This year, it is Petteri Simila, a goaltender from Karpat-Jr. out of the Finnish junior league, taken by Montreal. Like a lot of goalies taken in this draft (six of them are 6'4" or taller), he's got some size -- 6'6", 189. He'll need to have the sturdiness such size suggests, because he's looking up at everyone else. Good luck to him and to all the draftees.

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