The 2016 edition of the NHL draft over the weekend turned out to be a historic one – at least from a Danish perspective.
It was a hat-trick of joy for Danish ice hockey as a record three Danes – Mathias From, Nikolaj Krag Christensen and Joachim Blichfeld – were drafted by NHL teams.
From was selected by the Chicago Blackhawks in the fifth round as the 143rd pick overall in the draft. The 18-year-old winger, who will continue lacing up his skates with Rögle in the top Swedish league next season, becomes the first player developed by Frederikshavn to be drafted and the 19th overall in Danish history.
Later on, with three picks left in the seventh and final round of the draft, it was looking like From would be the only Dane selected. But then things took off in a hurry.
The St Louis Blues picked the 17-year-old Rødovre Mighty Bull forward Nikolaj Krag Christensen – who will join From at Rögle next season – and with the very next pick the San Jose Sharks chose Joachim Blichfeld, 17, who currently plies his trade for the Malmö Redhawks.
Eller a Cap
In related news, Danish NHL star Lars Eller has been traded by the Montreal Canadiens to the Washington Capitals.
Eller, 27, was drafted by the St Louis Blues back in 2007 and has notched up 156 points over 442 NHL games for the Blues and Canadiens.