There were no pucks flying around Wells Fargo Center, but there were plenty of trade rumors involving the Panthers' overall No. 1 pick right up to 45 minutes before NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman walked onto the podium at 7:13 p.m. to a rousing chorus of boos from Flyers fans to begin the 52nd NHL Entry Draft Friday night. Panthers General Manager Dale Tallon was fielding offers all day from several teams, including a last-minute blockbuster by the host Flyers, who were desperately trying to make a splash by catapulting from No. 17 to No. 1. However, in the end, Tallon felt that the offers weren't enough to pass up projected NHL-ready defenseman Aaron Ekblad, so the 18-year-old Ontario native became the franchise's second No. 1 pick, joining new teammate and fellow defenseman Ed Jovanovski (1994's No. 1 selection).
Panthers keep No. 1 pick and select defenseman Aaron Ekblad
Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel | Jun 28