OHL Clubs Select 25 Players in 2017 CHL Import Draft
Toronto, ON – The Canadian Hockey League today announced the final results of the 2017 CHL Import Draft.
The 26th annual CHL Import Draft included a total of 72 players consisting of 50 forwards and 22 defencemen selected from 11 different countries featuring a draft-high 19 players from Russia.
Of the 72 players selected, 25 were chosen by 19 different Ontario Hockey League teams.
The two-round draft took place online with the order of selection rotating through each of the CHL’s three leagues using an inverse order of final regular season standings within each league from the 2016-17 season.
The Barrie Colts used the first overall pick to acquire Russian forward Andrei Svechnikov, a 2018 NHL Draft prospect who recently earned bronze at the 2017 IIHF World Under-18 Championship. His international hockey success this season also included a MVP performance at the World Junior A Challenge, and a bronze medal at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge where he led the tournament in points. The Moncton Wildcats used the second overall pick to select fellow Russian forward and 2018 NHL Draft prospect Alexander Khovanov who was an Under-17 teammate of Svechnikov capturing bronze in Sault Ste. Marie last November. At third overall the Kootenay ICE selected Switzerland’s Gilian Kohler, a forward also eligible for the 2018 NHL Draft. The Guelph Storm were the next OHL team to select at number four and used their pick on St. Louis Blues prospect Alexei Toropchenko.
The 2017 CHL Import Draft featured 11 players previously selected by NHL teams in 2016 and 2017 drafts, with six of those players headed to OHL teams. Of that group, three were selected in the first round this past weekend in Chicago including first round picks Martin Necas (12th, Carolina) chosen 10th overall by the Saginaw Spirit, Timothy Liljegren (17th, Toronto) chosen 13th overall by the Niagara IceDogs, and Filip Chytil (21st, New York Rangers) chosen seventh overall by the North Bay Battalion.
A total of 37 players selected in the 2017 CHL Import Draft are first-year eligible for the 2018 NHL Draft including 10 among OHL picks, while four players selected are not eligible for the NHL Draft until 2019 including two OHL picks.
Each team in the CHL is permitted to dress and play a maximum of two import players each season who are selected annually through the CHL Import Draft.
OHL at 2017 CHL Import Draft Summary:
Draft Picks by Position:
Forward – 15
Defence – 10
Draft Picks by Country:
Russia – 7 (BAR, FLNT, GUE, OTT, PBO, WSR, WSR)
Sweden – 6 (KIT, LDN, LDN, NIAG, SAR, SSM)
Czech Republic – 4 (MISS, NB, SAG, SBY)
Finland – 2 (HAM, SSM)
Switzerland – 2 (ER, OSH)
Belarus – 1 (OS)
Denmark – 1 (OTT)
Germany – 1 (SAG)
Slovakia – 1 (KIT)
Draft picks by Birthdate and NHL Status:
2000-born late and 2019 NHL Draft eligible – 2
2000-born and 2018 NHL Draft eligible – 9
1999-born late and 2018 NHL Draft eligible – 1
1999-born and 2017 NHL Drafted – 5
1999-born early and NHL Undrafted – 6
1998-born and NHL Drafted – 1
1998-born and NHL Undrafted – 1
NHL Draft picks by OHL teams in CHL Import Draft:
4. Alexei Toropchenko (Guelph – 4th round to St. Louis in 2017)
7. Filip Chytil (North Bay – 1st round to NY Rangers in 2017)
10. Martin Necas (Saginaw – 1st round to Carolina in 2017)
13. Timothy Liljegren (Niagara – 1st round to Toronto in 2017)
28. Joni Ikonen (Hamilton – 2nd round to Montreal in 2017)
49. Jesper Bratt (London – 6th round to New Jersey in 2016)
Five OHL players from the 2016 CHL Impoart Draft were 2017 NHL Draft selections including defencemen Eemeli Rasanen of the Kingston Frontenacs (59th, Toronto) and Dmitri Samorukov of the Guelph Storm (84th, Edmonton), along with forwards Maksim Sushko of the Owen Sound Attack (107th, Philadelphia), Adam Ruzicka of the Sarnia Sting (109th, Calgary), and Marian Studenic of the Hamilton Bulldogs (143rd, New Jersey).
Last season OHL teams selected a total of 30 players from eight different countries led by eight players from Finland and consisting of 20 forwards and 10 defencemen.