Photo: Zac Dalpe is one of three forwards the Hurricanes selected in the 2008 NHL Draft. Carolina used three of their five picks that year to select forwards. (courtesy of Andy Mead/YCJ/Icon SMI)
Headed into the 2008 off-season, there were two distinct trends in the Hurricanes' draft history under GM Jim Rutherford: they preferred not to draft defensemen or European forwards in the early rounds. For the most part, the Hurricanes elected to use their picks on forwards playing in North American leagues. The 2008 draft class was a very talented crop, but most of the better prospects were defensemen.