Avalanche Draft Bios
AVALANCHE 2006 DRAFT PICKS
Rd (Pick) · Player · Pos · Team (League)
1 (18) Chris Stewart, RW, Kingston (OHL)
2 (51) Nigel Williams, D, US NTDP (USA)
2 (59) Codey Burki, C, Brandon (WHL)
3 (81) Michael Carman, C, US NTDP (USA)
4 (110) Kevin Montgomery, D, US NTDP (USA)
7 (201) Billy Sauer, G, Univ. of Michigan (CCHA)
Kingston · OHL
6'1", 228 lbs., Right Wing, shoots right
Born: October 30, 1987 in Toronto, Ontario
Central Scouting Service Final Ranking: 8 · Mid-Term Ranking: 8 · North American Skater
Central Scouting Report: A power forward who possesses a long, powerful stride ... is solid on his skates with good agility, has good balance - very good acceleration and speed and drives hard to the net ... is tough to move in front in the slot and is used on the powerplay with good success ... fights through checks, sees ice well and has been getting better at moving the puck through traffic ... has made steady improvement over the course of the last two seasons ... is a solid competitor both at home and on the road who will not be intimidated and will stick up for teammates ... has a physical presence who is strong and is able to separate opponents from the puck ... is an aggressive forechecker who finishes his checks with authority and can hurt an opponent with a solid hit ... has a good shot which he needs to use more at times as he looks to pass instead of shooting ... a great competitor who needs to show it more consistently ... signed as a free agent by Kingston ... voted to the 2006 CHL Top Prospects Game in Ottawa ... voted to the 2005 OHL All-Star game in Belleville. Personal Profile: His brother Anthony plays for the Florida Panthers ... Nickname is Stewy ... favorite team is the Toronto Maple Leafs ... favorite player is Detroit's Brendan Shanahan ... wears #24 because it is his favorite number ... says that his brother has had the greatest influence on his career because he "always encouraged me to do my best and set good examples for me" ... patterns his game after Calgary's Jarome Iginla because he "will do anything to help his team win" ... outside of sports, most admires his mother for "raising seven healthy kids" ... most memorable hockey game watched was when Mark Messier held the Stanley Cup after the New York Rangers victory in Game 7 of the 1994 Final (vs. Vancouver) ... favorites include: Family Guy (TV show), Anchorman (movie), Will Ferrell (actor) and Green Day (musical group) ... if he could have dinner with any three people they would be: Wayne Gretzky - "greatest hockey player ever," Muhammad Ali - "best boxer ever," and Will Ferrell - "funniest guy ever."
U.S. National U-18 · USDP
6'4", 226 lbs. Defense, shoots left
Born: April 18, 1988 in Aurora, Illinois
Final Ranking: 13 · Mid-Term Ranking: 19 · North American Skater
Central Scouting Report: Is a very good wide-based skater with an excellent long stride who has very good balance and is strong on his skates with very good straightaway speed ... backward skating, agility, and pivots have shown improvement over the year ... an offensive defenseman who likes to join the rush as well as lead the offense by carrying the puck ... pinches well for scoring opportunities and has a very heavy hard shot from the point ... makes a hard, accurate first pass and uses his long reach effectively to check opponents or deflect passes ... is difficult to beat one-on-one ... a good shot blocker and is used in all game situations ... overall positional play and hockey sense has improved over the season ... plays with drive and determination with a mean streak and can be a very physical player who will punish his opponent ... stands the opposition up and delivers punishing open ice checks in the neutral zone ... works hard at improving his game ... will attend the University of Wisconsin in the fall of 2006 ... member of Team Illinois major midget team 2004-05. Personal Profile: Nickname is Nige ... favorite NHL team is the Chicago Blackhawks ... His parents have had the greatest influence on his career because "they have had to work for everything we have" ... patterned his game after Philadelphia's Derian Hatcher because he "uses his body well" ... Outside of hockey, most admires Muhammad Ali because he is "the greatest athlete ever" ... most memorable hockey game played was when he scored the winning goal with only 11.6 seconds left in his 10-and-under Roller Hockey championship game ... favorites include: CSI (TV show), Rocky (movie), Sylvester Stallone (actor) and Garth Brooks (musician) ... if he could have dinner with any three people, would invite Muhammad Ali, Lance Armstrong and Martin Luther King Jr., to find out "what drove them to success and what it feels like to be the best."
Brandon · WHL
6' 0", 190 lbs. Center, shoots left
Born: November 17, 1987 in Winnipeg, Manitoba
Final Ranking: 18 · Mid-Term Ranking: 26 · North American Skater
Central Scouting Report: A good skater who is strong on his skates ... has deceptive speed which enables him to beat defenders one-onone ... shows excellent vision, always finding the open man, has very good puckhandling skills and passes the puck well both forehand and backhand ... is very adept at making short passes in tight quarters - has good patience with the puck - doesn't panic in key situations and can play on both the power-play and penalty killing units ... possesses a good shot ... is strong on face-offs and displays a strong two-way game with good positioning in all three zones ... although more a finesse player he can deliver hits in all areas of the ice ... battles hard for position in front of the net and will take a hit to make a play ... has a tendency to look for a teammate for the perfect pass instead of shooting ... Brandon's 1st pick, 17th over-all, in the 2002 WHL Bantam Draft ... played in the 2006 CHL Top Prospects Game in Ottawa. Personal Profile: Nickname is Burks ... favorite player is Dallas' Mike Modano ...wears number 23 ... says both of his parents have had the greatest influence on his hockey career because "they have always been there for me in hockey and pushed me to become the player I am" ... patterns his style of play after Modano because "he's so fun to watch" ... most memorable hockey game played was game #7 vs. Prince Albert in last year's WHL playoffs because "it's the game that got us into the league finals" ... most memorable game watched was the Winnipeg Jets last playoff game ever ... favorites include: Lost (TV show), Wedding Crashers & Amityville Horror (movies), and Evangeline Lilly (actress) ... if he could have dinner with any three people they would be: Will Ferrell - "because he is hilarious," Mike Modano - "great player," and Evangeline Lilly.
U.S. National U-18 · USDP
6' 0", 180 lbs. Center, shoots left
Born: April 14, 1988 in Augusta, Georgia
Final Ranking: 63 · Mid-Term Ranking: 70 · North American Skater
Central Scouting Report: Has impressive speed with good balance and agility ... uses his speed effectively off the wing in driving to the net ... has very good lateral movement when challenging an opponent one-on-one - can turn a defender to the outside with ease ... a good playmaker who finds the open man with crisp and accurate passes ... has a quick release and uses his wrist shot most of the time ... plays a good two-way game ... a very dependable player who is aware of his defensive responsibilities ... a very good forechecker who aggressively pursues the puck ... used in all game situations ... smart, with good hockey sense ... is a steady, reliable player who is both hard working and unselfish ... not overly physical but plays the body and finishes his checks ... plays well in traffic going hard in the corners and in front of the net ... does not back down in physical games ... very good stamina ... will attend the University of Minnesota in the fall of 2006 ... was a member of U.S. Under-17 team in 2004-05.
U.S. National U-18 · USDP
6' 1", 185 lbs. Defense, shoots left
Born: April 4, 1988 in Rochester, New York
Final Ranking: 45 · Mid-Term Ranking: 37 · North American Skater
Central Scouting Report: Is a very smooth skater with very quick feet and outstanding lateral mobility and agility who can change direction effortlessly in gaining the offensive zone ... a strong offensive defenseman who will go end-to-end ... has excellent passing skills, moves the puck quickly with accurate passes and sees the ice well ... is very good on power play with puck handling and decision making ... has a good, low accurate shot from the point ... always keeps the puck in play at the blue line ... defensive play has improved over the season ... a quick stick helps him anticipate and read the play well ... has good hockey sense ... plays with poise and confidence ... plays hard every shift - not overly aggressive but will surprise opponents with a big hit from time to time ... stands up to the play at the blue line ... likes to use his skating and puck handling ability to gain advantage over opponent in defensive zone ... will attend Ohio State University in the fall of 2006 ... was a member of U.S. Under-17 team in 2005-06. Personal Profile: Nickname is Burns, because of the character Mr. Burns on The Simpsons ... favorite team is the New York Rangers and favorite player is former Ranger defenseman Brian Leetch ... wears jersey #17 because it was also his father's number ... says that his father has had the most influence on his career for "being my coach for three years and sacrificing so much time and effort" ... patterns his game after Ottawa's Wade Redden because "he is balanced offensively and defensively" ... outside of sports, most admires his parents because they have sacrificed so much for their family ... most memorable hockey game played was winning the Four Nations Cup against Russia "in front of my hometown" ... most memorable hockey game watched was the Rangers winning the Stanley Cup in 1994 ... favorites include: Deal or No Deal (TV show), Young Blood (movie), Denzel Washington (actor) and Dave Matthews Band (musicians) ... if he could invite any three people to dinner, they would be: Brian Leetch - "he is my favorite player," Bobby Orr - "he was one of the greatest defensemen of all time," and Wayne Gretzky - "he was the most exciting and knowledgeable player."
University of Michigan · CCHA
6' 2", 170 lbs. Goaltender, catches left
Born: January 6, 1988 in Walworth, N.Y.
Final Ranking: 13 · Mid-Term Ranking: 4 · North American Goalie
Personal Profile: Played his freshman season at the University of Michigan in 2005-06 ... Earned first career shutout on his 18th birthday, vs. Alaska Fairbanks, making 26 saves in 4-0 win on Jan. 6 ... Made career-high 42 saves Dec. 2 at Miami; 19 saves in second period set career period high ... Had a pair of three-game winning streaks (Oct. 7-14, Nov. 5-12) ... Had 25 saves for first career win in debut vs. Quinnipiac on Oct. 7 ... Recipient of the Roy H. and Helen M. Ziegler Scholarship for Men's Ice Hockey ... Enrolled in the Division of Kinesiology at Michigan ... Graduated from Lockport Township (Ill.) High School in 2005 after fast-tracking ... Helped the U.S. Under-18 Select team to a fifth-place finish at the 2005 Under-18 Junior World Cup in August, earning a record of 2-0-1 ... Played the 2004-2005 season for the Chicago Steel of the United States Hockey League ... Played 30 games, racking up 1,591:54 minutes ... Had a record of 12-12-0 with two overtime losses ... Posted a 3.05 goals against average (ninth in the USHL) and a .904 save percentage (tied-ninth in USHL) while earning two shutouts ... Was the youngest player on the Steel roster ... Garnered USHL Defensive Player of the Week honors on Oct. 4, 2004 and Nov. 15, 2004.