PENS PROSPECT PROFILES: THIRD ROUND
Selected in the 3rd round (81st Overall) of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft
The 6-foot-3, 172-pound native of Boden, Sweden was selected by General Manager Ray Shero as the twentieth pick of the third round in this year’s draft. He was the ninth European player drafted by Shero in his six years as GM and third in the Penguins 2012 Draft Class, behind first-round selections, Finnish defenseman Olli Maatta, and second round Latvian product, Theodor Blueger.
Playing in 43 games in the junior ranks of the Swedish Elite League for Skelleftea AIK, Sundqvist put up 61 points with 26 goals and 35 assists and also racked up 132 penalty minutes. A power forward that wants to improve his explosiveness, Sundqvist enjoys being a factor, be it with his gloves on or off.
“I’m good at reading the play on the ice and always working hard. I try to give my all for the team and I like it when it gets a little ugly out there.”
The eighteen year old center is the lone pick from Skelleftea this year, as was New Jersey Devils’ defenseman Adam Larsson in 2011.
Selected in the 3rd round (83rd Overall) of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft
Ranked No. 18 in North American goalie prospects, the Pittsburgh Penguins selected Matthew Murray with their second pick in the third round. The 18-year old native of Thunder Bay, Ontario recently completed his second season with Dustin Jeffrey’s former OHL team, the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds. He has appeared in 64 games with the Greyhounds, posting a 21-30-4 record with a 3.96 goals against average and a .880 save percentage
Murray spent this past season playing alongside fellow Penguins draft pick, defenseman Joe Rogalski (sixth round - 2010) and split time in net with Jack Campbell, the Dallas Stars prospect and 2010 World Junior Championship winning goalie for the United States. The left-handed goaltender has long been an admirer of the Devils’ Martin Brodeur and, most recently, Carey Price of Montreal, but Murray is looking forward to perhaps learning from the Penguins’ number-one netminder, Marc-Andre Fleury.
“Marc-Andre Fleury has become one of the best goalies in the league. I think it speaks for itself. To be drafted to the same organization as Marc-Andre Fleury is quite an honor for me and I’m going to try to take away every little bit that I can from him.”
Murray was the first of three Sault Ste. Marie players to be drafted this year which included defensemen Colin Miller (LA – 5th round) and Gianluca Curcuruto (Columbus – 7th round). He will skate once again with the Greyhounds for the 2012-13 season.
Contributors: Mike O'Brien & Adam Williams