It has been 13 years since a player that developed primarily in Germany was chosen in the first round of the NHL Draft. That drought seems as if it will come to an end at the 2014 edition of the draft when center Leon Draisaitl's name is called from podium.
Although Draisaitl has spent the past two seasons playing for the WHL's Prince Albert Raiders, he was born and raised in Germany and developed his game there until the 2012-13 season when he moved to North America. But regardless of where he is playing, Draisaitl's status as a top prospect for the 2014 NHL Draft should be a shot in the arm for a German hockey program that has struggled to develop top talent for the NHL.
Draisaitl cemented his top prospect credentials by finishing fourth overall in scoring in the WHL with 105 points (38G, 67A) in 64 games. The Cologne native's strong showing carried the Raiders to their second consecutive WHL playoff appearance, although the Raiders were swept out of the first round by the eventual Memorial Cup champion Edmonton Oil Kings.
Draisaitl took part in the 2014 NHL Combine that was held at the International Centre in Toronto, ON. He took time to speak with the media following his testing session, some of which is captured in this HF video.
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