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NHL Draft 2011 Prospects: Will Penguins Focus On Wingers?

The Trib names a few potential first-round NHL Draft picks for the Penguins, who will be picking with the No. 23 overall pick Friday night. The Trib focuses on wingers, including Tyler Biggs and local products Brandon Saad and J.T. Miller.

This isn't to say the Penguins won't pick these guys, and it's certainly possible the Trib has inside information here, but I wonder if the focus on wingers in particular is premature. Yes, the Penguins need wingers right now, but new draftees are unlikely to make an immediate impact, and the Penguins have repeatedly said that they won't be drafting for need in the first round. And I don't expect them to particularly care whether a particular player came fromt he area or not. Pens director of amateur scouting Jay Heinbuck does say that if they consider two prospects to have the same level of talent, they would rather pick the forward. If someone like Saad falls to them, it would be ridiculous to say that the Pens won't consider him. But I also wouldn't put it past the Penguins to pick a defenseman if they feel he's the best talent available at that time.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.