June 26, 2009
Montreal, Que. – Freshman right wing Kyle Palmieri (Montvale, N.J.) was selected in the first round of the National Hockey League Entry Draft on Friday night at the Bell Centre when the Anaheim Ducks called his name with the 26th overall pick of the draft. He becomes the second Notre Dame player ever selected in the first round of the NHL’s Entry Draft, joining junior defenseman Ian Cole (Ann Arbor, Mich.) who was selected in the 2007 draft with the 18th overall pick by the St. Louis Blues. Rounds two through seven of the draft will be held on Saturday, beginning at 10:00 a.m.
Palmieri was Anaheim’s second pick in the first round as they selected Guelph’s Peter Holland with the 15th pick of the draft. The 26th selection was acquired in a trade with the San Jose Sharks.
A 5-10, 191-pound right wing, Palmieri is a product of the U.S. National Team Development Program based in Ann Arbor, Mich. With the USA Under-18 team last season, he played in 33 games, scoring 15 goals with 15 assists for 30 points and 51 minutes in penalties. Three of his goals came on the power play, one was short-handed and four were game winners. He was a member of both the gold medal winning teams at the Four Nations Tournament in November and the Five Nations Tournament in February where he had a had trick in the championship game. Ranked 20th among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting in their final draft rankings, Palmieri signed a national letter-of-intent to attend Notre Dame in November of 2008 in the early-signing period.
In 2007-08, the speedy right wing split time between the Under-17 team and Under-18 teams. In 66 games between the two squads he had 29 goals with 19 assists for 48 points. With the Under-17 game, Palmieri played in 39 games, scoring 20 goals and adding 10 assists for 30 points with five power-play goals and two game winners. After moving up to the Under-18 team, he saw action in 27 games, scoring nine goals with nine assists for 18 points. Two goals came on the power play with two being game winner. While with the Under-18 team he was a member of the bronze medal winning team at the Under-18 World Championships where he had two goals and two assists for four points in seven games.
An offensively skilled player with excellent hockey instincts, the Montvale, N.J., native is a fearce competitor who makes things happen on the ice. Prior to joining the U.S. National Program, he played his high school hockey at St. Peter’s Prep and was a member of the New Jersey Devils Under-16 team. During the 2006-07 season, he had 22 goals and 36 assists for 58 points with St. Peter’s and was selected all-state by the Newark Star-Ledger.
What They Are Saying About Kyle Palmieri: NHL Central Scouting’s Jack Barzee on Palmieri:
“I think Kyle’s got a little bit of Chris Drury in him. I look at his passion, his natural skills and his tenaciousness, and that’s what I saw in Chris. He’s a lot of fun to watch because he has that vision along with a wicked shot. He very seldom passes up the opportunity to make the right play — he’s in position to shoot the puck and has that insight into whether to freeze and dish or just let it go.” U.S. Developmental Program head coach Ron Rolston:
“He’s put together and real strong on his skates, He’s got good speed and he takes it to the areas he needs to score goals. He does everything for us and he’s a lot of fun to watch.”
Red Line Report
“Really fast and slick laterally. Great effort level — always keeps his feet moving in traffic and outworks opponents for loose pucks. Ultra competitive. Creates lots of offense off a heavy, persistent forecheck, Controls puck well in tight quarters and can kick passes in his skates up to his blade in one motion. Plays like a pit bull who locks onto your ankle and won’t let go. Aggressive and abrasive agitator who gets under opponents’ skin. Always involved in scrums and traffic — very chippy and likes getting dirty. Gritty and a big hitter despite average size. Very intelligent — thinks and diagnoses plays quickly. Higher skill level than generally given credit for with a very quick stick and hands — shows some slick moves that he makes at top-end speed.”