BUFFALO – The Winnipeg Jets have their man.
To the surprise of very few, the Jets selected Patrik Laine with the 2nd overall pick in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft.
Ever since the Jets unexpectedly vaulted into the number two slot in the draft lottery, fans have been salivating at the potential of landing the high-powered Finnish winger, knowing the Maple Leafs would surely select Auston Matthews 1st overall.
After Laine tore up the World Championships and was named tournament MVP, some wondered if that would sway Toronto into taking him over Matthews.
But the Leafs need a centre, so they took the Arizona native first. That left the Jets to take the winger they so desperately coveted.
Of course, this isn’t the first time a Finnish winger has come to Winnipeg with the hopes of jump-starting a franchise. The original Jets took Teemu Selanne 10th overall in 1988, who recorded 132 in his first NHL campaign four years later.
While Laine likely won’t come up with that kind of production, the expectations will be high that the 18-year-old will help turn the Jets into a Stanley Cup contender.
Later in the first round the Jets traded up from 22nd to 18th and selected defenceman Logan Stanley, who played with the Windsor Spitfires of the OHL. The 6’7″, 225 pound Kitchener, Ontario native had 17 points and 103 penalty minutes in 64 games last season.
— 680 CJOB Sports (@CJOBSports) June 24, 2016