2003 NHL Entry Draft

2003 NHL Entry Draft

NHL Draft
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2003 NHL Entry Draft

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The 2003 NHL Entry Draft was held at the Gaylord Entertainment Center in Nashville, Tennessee on June 21, 2003.

Marc-Andre Fleury was selected first overall by the Pittsburgh Penguins, only the third goalie in NHL history selected as the first overall draft choice (Michel Plasse being the first and Rick DiPietro the second). Eric Staal was second, picked by the Carolina Hurricanes, and Nathan Horton was selected third by the Florida Panthers.

Many analysts have pegged this draft as one of the most talented groups, some even say better than the 1979 NHL Draft, ever selected in a single draft. Fleury, Staal, Horton, and Nikolay Zherdev all played significant time in the NHL immediately after they were drafted. Milan Michalek also made the San Jose Sharks out of training camp that year, but suffered a serious knee injury that cost him the season. Also, second-round draftee Patrice Bergeron also saw significant playing time with the Boston Bruins. As well, the Calgary Flames' first round selection Dion Phaneuf, scored 20 goals in his rookie campaign (the only other defencemen to do that were Brian Leetch and Barry Beck). Almost all of the top 10 selections played at least 10 games in the NHL in the 2005–06 season (Braydon Coburn is the only one to play less, at nine games). Every player selected in the first round has played a game in the NHL,...
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