Incoming freshman defenseman Robbie Russo is the highest ranked Notre Dame player in this year's NHL Entry Draft.  The defenseman was ranked 55th in Central Scouting's final rankings.

Irish Hockey Players Expected To Hear Names Called At 2011 NHL Entry Draft

June 22, 2011

Notre Dame, Ind. – The National Hockey League will hold its annual Entry Draft this coming weekend, Fri.-Sat., June 24 and 25th at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minn. The first round of the draft – on Friday night – will start at 7:00 p.m. (EDT) and will be televised by Versus in the United States and TSN and RDS in Canada. Rounds 2-7 will be held on Saturday, beginning at 11:00 a.m. (EDT) and will be televised on the NHL Network.

Five players with ties to the Notre Dame hockey program, including three who will play for the Irish in the 2011-12 season, could hear their names called this weekend. Among the group are current sophomore T.J. Tynan (Orland Park, Ill.) and incoming freshmen Robbie Russo (Westmont, Ill.) and Austin Wuthrich (Anchorage, Alaska). Steven Fogarty (Edina, Minn.) and Andy Ryan (Brighton, Mich.) who also have signed national letter-of-intents to attend Notre Dame are eligible for the draft. Both players will play this coming season in the United States Hockey League (USHL) – Fogarty for the Chicago Steel and Ryan for the Green Bay Gamblers. All five players could be drafted on Saturday during rounds two through seven.

Russo, Wuthrich and Fogarty were all ranked in NHL Central Scouting’s Final Rankings with Russo leading the way as he was ranked 55th among North American skaters. Wuthrich followed as he was ranked 81st and Fogarty was 90th overall. Ryan was ranked 188th in Central Scouting’s mid-term rankings but not on the final list. Tynan, who is in his second year of being eligible for the draft, was not ranked in this year’s rankings.

Players born between Jan. 1, 1991 and Sept. 15, 1993 are eligible for selection in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. Additionally, undrafted, non-North American players over the age of 20 are eligible for the draft and those players who were drafted in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, but not signed by an NHL team and who were born after June 24, 1991, are also eligible to re-enter the draft.

For Tynan, the sophomore-to-be is coming off a remarkable rookie year for the Irish in 2010-11 that culminated in his being selected as the Hockey Commissioner’s Association (HCA) national rookie of the year. He led all freshmen in the country in scoring with 23 goals and 31 assists for 54 points, including 16 games with two or more points. He had five power-play goals, two short-handed and a pair of game winners. The 5-8, 170-pound center led the Irish to a 25-14-5 overall record and a trip to the NCAA Frozen Four.

A four-time CCHA rookie of the week, he was selected to the CCHA all-rookie team and was the CCHA rookie of the year. A second team all-CCHA selection, Tynan was the CCHA rookie of the month for November, the RBC Financial Group CCHA player of the month in December and captured Notre Dame’s Monogram Club team most valuable player award, along with the team’s offensive player of the year and rookie of the year honors.

Tynan finished the season ranked seventh in the nation in scoring with 54 points and was just the third Notre Dame freshman to score 50 or more points in a season with his final total being just five points off the school record of 59.

Russo will start his Notre Dame career this September and joins the Irish after playing this past year with the USA National Team Developmental Program’s Under-18 team. There he finished sixth on the team in scoring with four goals and 26 assists for 30 points while picking up 27 minutes in penalties. In international play, Russo helped the national program to gold medals at the Four Nations, the Five Nations and the 2011 IIHF World Under-18 Championships. The 5-11, 189-pound defenseman was fourth in scoring among blue liners at the World Under-18 Championships with a goal and seven assists for eight points in six games and set up the overtime game winner in the gold medal game against Sweden. The tournament’s coaches selected him as one of the USA’s top three players.

Wuthrich, a 6-0, 185-pound right wing, joins the Notre Dame roster after playing the 2010-11 season with the U.S. National Team Development Program’s Under-18 team. The Anchorage, Alaska native had his season cut short by an injury as he suffered a broken right leg in the second game of the season. The injury required surgery and sidelined Wuthrich until late February when he rejoined the U.S. program. In five games with the Under-18 team, he had one goal and one assist for two points and also saw action with the Under-17 team, playing in 13 games on his return, scoring twice with four assists for six points and 36 minutes in penalties.

Fogarty is a 6-2, 195-pound right-handed center who played last season for the Edina High School Hornets in Edina, Minn., and the USHL’s Chicago Steel. A 2011 finalist for Minnesota’s “Mr. Hockey” Award, Fogarty helped lead Edina to fourth-place in the Minnesota State playoffs with 26 goals and 25 assists for 51 points in 30 games. He had four power-play goals and two short-handed tallies to go with 12 minutes in penalties. Following the end of the 2010-11 high school season, Fogarty joined the Steel for the final six games of the season, where he scored two goals. Chicago selected him in the fourth round, 47th overall of the 2010 USHL Entry Draft.

Ryan is a 6-1, 185-pound defenseman who was a teammate of Russo and Wuthrich for the U.S. National Team Development Program’s Under-18 Team. He is the brother of graduated Irish center Ben Ryan `11. He missed parts of the 2010-11 season due to injuries and played in 34 games, picking up three assists with 10 minutes in penalties. He saw action in eight international games for Team USA and had no points. Ryan was selected in the third round, 44th overall by Green Bay in the 2011 USHL Entry Draft in April.

Since 1969, teams in the National Hockey League have drafted 65 Notre Dame players, including four first round selections – defenseman Ian Cole in 2007 (18th overall by St. Louis), center Riley Sheahan in 2010 (21st overall by Detroit), defenseman Jarred Tinordi in 2010 (22nd by Montreal) and right wing Kyle Palmieri in 2009 (26th overall by Anaheim). Tinordi never played at Notre Dame.

The Irish currently have eight players on their roster who have heard their names called at the NHL Entry Draft – junior Nick Larson (Calgary, fourth round in 2008), senior Sean Lorenz (Minnesota, fourth round in 2008), sophomore Jeff Costello (Ottawa, fifth round in 2009), sophomore Anders Lee (New York Islanders, sixth round in 2009), sophomore Riley Sheahan (Detroit, first round in 2010), sophomore Stephen Johns (Chicago, second round in 2010), sophomore Bryan Rust (Pittsburgh, third round in 2010) and Kevin Lind (Anaheim, sixth round in 2010).