Tuesday, July 2, 2013

More on Williams and the NHL draft

PucKato talked to Stephon Williams on Monday, the day after he was drafted by the New York Islanders. The third time was indeed the charm for him, as he was passed over during his first two years of eligibility. While Williams' had an unprecedented season for an MSU goalie (at least at the D1 level), he credited the entire team's accomplishments for getting him noticed:

"All of this is due to the fact that our team was successful last year," he said. "None of this would have happened if I wasn't part of that team last year, with coach Hastings coming in and the guys buying in on the deal and playing the way they did ...

"Look at Eriah Hayes and where he's going [Hayes signed a free-agent deal with the San Jose Sharks after the season]. I feel a lot of credit has to go to the team we had."

Williams is the first MSU goaltender to get drafted and the 13th Mavericks player since 2001 to get taken. But getting drafted is no guarantee of future (or current) success. Here's a look at Minnesota State-related draft picks:

Tim Jackman (2nd rd, 2001, Columbus) ... 390 NHL games, last season: Calgary Flames
Jake Brenk (5th rd, 2001, Edmonton) ... 0 NHL games ... last season: pro linesman
David Backes (2nd rd, 2003, St. Louis) ... 494 NHL games ... last season: St. Louis Blues
Chad Brownlee (6th rd, 2003, Vancouver) ... 0 NHL games ... last season: out of hockey
Travis Morin (9th rd, 2004, Washington) ... 3 NHL games ... last season: Texas (AHL)
Andrew Sackrison (5th rd, 2006, St. Louis) ... 0 NHL games ... last season: South Carolina (ECHL)
Jon Kalinski (6th rd, 2007, Philadelphia) ... 22 NHL games ... last season: Hershey (AHL)
Justin Jokinen (4th rd, 2008, Buffalo) ... 0 NHL games ... last season: out of hockey
Tyler Pitlick (2nd rd, 2010, Edmonton) ... 0 NHL games ... last season: Oklahoma City (AHL)
Max Gaede (3rd rd, 2011, San Jose) ... currently at MSU
Teddy Blueger (2nd rd, 2012, Pittsburgh) ... currently at MSU
Zach Stepan (4th rd, 2012, Nashville) ... currently at MSU
Stephon Williams (4th rd, 2013, NY Islanders) ... currently at MSU

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