The 2012 NHL Draft recently wrapped up and three Badgers were selected in Pittsburgh over the weekend. Sophomore-to-be Brendan Woods heard his name called on Saturday, when the Carolina Hurricanes made him their fifth round selection, #129 overall.
Woods, whose family has spent time in Hershey, PA and Fairfax, VA over the past few years is the son of current Ducks assistant coach Bob Woods.
Brendan was passed over in his first year of eligibility in the NHL draft largely due to the fact that he broke his leg and missed the majority of his season. In his 2011 draft year, Woods play was up and down, playing for a brutal expansion team in the USHL that struggled to score goals.
As a freshman at Wisconsin last season, Brendan recorded five goals and five assists in 34 games and saw his playing time increase exponentially as the season progressed. Woods two-way play is a big reason the Hurricanes selected him.
Tony MacDonald, Director of amateur scouting for the Carolina Hurricanes on Woods:
"Big strong guy who missed a year of hockey with an injury. He came back and played this year. He's a big, strong guy who likes to go to the net. Great upside."
MacDonald added that this was Woods' last year of draft eligibility, having been born in 1992; his injury last season is what prevented him from being picked then.
Woods, who chose the Badgers over WCHA rivals North Dakota and Minnesota as well as New Hampshire, Northeastern, and Colorado College played both center and wing for the Badgers last season but will likely see his pro future on the left side and that's where the Hurricanes drafted him.
The 20 year old Woods told PennLive.com that he had talked to the Tampa Bay Lightning and Winnipeg Jets leading up to the draft, but didn't expect to be picked. In fact, he was sleeping when he got the call to inform him that he had been selected.
"It’s something I’ve dreamed of my whole childhood," Brendan Woods told Tim Leone from PennLive.com. "It’s a day I’ll never forget."
Woods father Bob was excited to learn that his son had been drafted.
"It’s pretty cool," Bob Woods said. "We’re pretty excited about it. It’s a good organization. It should be a good opportunity for him down the road.
"It’s always a great honor in getting drafted, having somebody be interested in you. For him, being a ’92 [birth year] in a ’94 draft, it shows they must have pretty good interest in him."
After things settled down for Brendan late Saturday, Woods sent out a tweet expressing his gratitude towards those who have helped him along his journey so far.
Feel blessed to be in the spot I'm in today, couldn't have done it without my coaches and teammates and especially my family — Brendan Woods (@SkeeterWoods21) June 23rd, 2012
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