Photo: Columbus Blue Jackets prospect Mike Reilly capped off a strong 2011-12 season with an invite to USA Hockey's WJC camp (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images Sport)
As the Columbus Blue Jackets continue the process of converting the team from cellar dweller to playoff contender, one area they could definitely look to improve is their offensive attack. One Blue Jackets' prospect that could eventually aid that cause would be defenseman Mike Reilly.
Photo: San Jose Sharks prospect Sean Kuraly turned in a strong showing at the 2012 USA Hockey National Junior Evaluation Camp (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
The USHL is considered by most to be the top junior development league in the United States. In recent years, the league has been producing what seems to be an ever growing crop of NHL draftees, some of whom have flown somewhat under the radar even after being drafted.
Photo: While not a homegrown product, Pittsburgh Penguins draft choice Ted Blueger of Shattuck St. Mary's was the top Minnesota high school pick at the 2012 NHL Draft (courtesy of Aaron Bell/CHL Images)
While high end talent wasn’t there this season in the NHL Draft from the Minnesota high school ranks, there was certainly a quality of depth to be found. With that in mind, here is a look at the picks coming out of the State of Hockey.
Photo: The Ducks added more hometown flavor to their team with the selection of forward Nicolas Kerdiles from the USNTDP program (courtesy of Ken McKenna/HF)
While the Anaheim Ducks scoured Sweden to draft Hampus Lindholm, they only needed to meander fifteen minutes down I-5 to discover second-rounder and Irvine product Nicolas Kerdiles.
Photo: The Winnipeg Jets added some physicality to their future defensive corps with the selection of Jacob Trouba (courtesy of Ken McKenna/HF)
The U.S. NTDP program has been prolific in recent years in terms of producing high-end NHL Draft prospects, and the 2012 NHL Draft is no exception. Three players from this program were chosen in the draft's first round, with Winnipeg Jets selection Jacob Trouba being the highest at ninth overall.