Hurricanes First Rounders of the Nineties: Where Are They Now?

By pbadmin

The Carolina Hurricanes franchise had nine first round picks from 1990 to 1999. Here is a look at who was picked by the Whalers and Hurricanes and where they ended up.

The Picks
1990 Mark Greig was chosen 15th by the Whalers
1991 The Hartford Whalers picked ninth and chose Patrick Poulin
1992 Robert Petrovicky was chosen number 9 for Hartford
1993 The Whalers chose Chris Pronger with the number 2 pick
1994 Jeff O’Neill was the number 5 pick by Hartford
1995 The Hartford Whalers chose Jean-Sebastien Giguere 13th
1996 No pick in first round
1997 With the 22nd pick of the draft, the Canes selected Nikos Tselios.
1998 Selecting number 11, Carolina picked Jeff Heerema.
1999 The Hurricanes selected David Tanabe 16th.

Who is still with the organization.
Four of these picks remain with the Hurricanes. Two are presently on the NHL club. Jeff O’Neill is currently the Canes second line center. He jumped right onto the parent club. This is his fifth season in the NHL and he has only played one minor league game since being drafted. The second Hurricanes starter is David Tanabe. The most recent first rounder chosen by the Hurricanes, David, like Jeff, made the jump right into the NHL. Tanabe celebrated his first NHL game, by scoring a powerplay goal. The 1997 pick, Nikos Tselios, has begun his ascent in the pros with Cincinnati of the IHL. In his first year with the Cyclones, Nikos has been described by Bill Ballou of as,”one of the best prospects in minor-league hockey.” Jeff Heerema, the 1998 pick, is currently honing his scoring skills with the Sarnia Sting of the OHL. He is probably two years away from cracking the NHL roster.
Who is gone.
The most recent departure is Jean-Sebastien Giguere. The highly touted goalie, left with Andrew Cassels, in a trade for Gary Roberts and Trevor Kidd. Since leaving, he played fifteen games in the NHL with the Flames, posting a 3.21 GAA. He has also spent time with their AHL affiliate.
Prior to that departure, the Whalers traded Chris Pronger to the St. Louis Blues. Since joining that team, he has achieved All-star status and captaincy of the Blues. The player traded for Pronger was Brendan Shanahan. He has also been traded by the organization. That trade involved the acquisition of Keith Primeau, who is no longer playing for the Hurricanes organization, while embroiled in a contract dispute.

Mark Greig played in 74 games with the Whalers, before being shipped off to Toronto in 1994. In 1994 he was again on the move, this time to Calgary. From 1995 to 1998 he spent time on numerous IHL teams, before joining the Philadelphia organization in 1998. The 1998-99 season saw him play 7 games for the Flyers. He is still with that organization this season. He has appeared in 102 NHL games for four different teams.

Patrick Poulin played one game during the 1991-92 season for Hartford. The next year he came back for 81 games and had career highs in goals, 20, assists, 31 and points, 51. He played 91 games as a Whaler until being shipped to Chicago in 1993. From there he traveled to Tampa Bay in 1996 and to Montreal in 1998. He has accumulated 82 goals in 472 NHL games. Like O’Neill he has only played in one minor league game since joining the league.

Finally Robert Petrovicky. He played in 77 games for the Whale over three seasons. Overall, he has played in 154 NHL games, netting 20 goals. His career high was 7 goals for St. Louis in 1996-97. During his career he has made stops in Dallas and Tampa Bay.

Having learned from the loss of Chris Pronger, the organization has kept four of their last five first rounders and is working on developing them as home grown talent.