It wasn’t who many expected, but the Dallas Stars made their first-round pick. At 13 overall, they selected Flint Firebirds center Ty Dellandrea.
Amidst a congregation of Buffalo Sabres fans chanting “No Goal”, the Dallas Stars management (along with Jamie Benn and Mike Modano) took the stage at the 2018 NHL Draft. And with the 13th overall pick, they selected center Ty Dellandrea.
“I was just super excited to hear my name there,” Dellandrea said. “It was an honor and I was full of excitement.”
The 17-year-old (he will turn 18 on July 21) spent the last two seasons playing for the Flint Firebirds in the OHL. And in this most recent season, he served as a major offensive source for a team that needed it. He finished the 2017-18 season with 27 goals and 59 points in 67 games with the Firebirds.
“I tried to take that responsibility and roll with it and leave it out there every night,” Dellandrea said. “I think that responsibility helped me and let me be a bigger contributor to the team.”
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The Dallas Stars had not been heavily rumored to be eyeing Dellandrea by any means, as many people had their sights set on Joe Veleno or Oliver Wahlstrom. On top of that, Dellandrea hadn’t met with the Stars organization very much, but had learned about the team through his roommate and teammate, Nick Caamano (who was drafted in the fifth round in 2016 by Dallas).
“At the combine and, like I said, Nick Caamano plays for Flint so you’d see guys around. But not a whole lot, no,” Dellandrea said about his knowledge and affiliation with the organization prior to the draft.
The question that came up with many Dallas Stars fans upon the announcement was what Dellandrea was all about. What is his game like? Who does he compare to? Considering he was lower than 13th on many mock drafts, was he worth “the stretch”?
“I think Dallas is getting an all-around forward who is extremely competitive and takes care of his own end and plays a strong offensive game,” Dellandrea said of his own game. “I’ve built a lot of character and a lot of passion and I think that comes first and my abilities follow that up. I leave it all out there.”
In addition, Dellandrea said that he has tried to model his game off of the play of Jonathan Toews as a 200 foot forward.
Dellandrea is a strong skater with speed and agility. He’s got terrific hockey IQ and uses his vision well on the ice to set up and make plays. He can play in multiple situations both on offense, defense, and on special teams. In terms of shooting, he knows how to score goals on the doorstep but also possesses a strong wrist shot.
Here is a scouting report on Dellandrea from Red Line Report:
Here’s the Red Line Report on Ty Dellandrea: pic.twitter.com/uHkdk3Bv0D
— Mark Stepneski (@StarsInsideEdge) June 23, 2018
This may not seem like an ideal pick (for those of you who were high on other people available), but this is a good pick for Dallas. Dellandrea has potential and is ready to give his all to the team, and that speaks volumes to Dallas general manager Jim Nill.
“It’s how he competes,” said Nill. “We like how he improved during the season. It was his attitude. He went to a team that was a mess and said, ‘I want to be part of this and help to change the culture and everything else.’ That was a big part. And then to watch him when he did go to the tournaments, he played with better players and he was an elite player and really showed his skill at prospects games and under-18’s. He really got to flourish in those situations.”
Dellandrea will attend the Dallas Stars Development Camp next week in Frisco (so get out there if you want to see a firsthand look at their newest prospect). In addition, Nill also expects him to compete for the Stars at the annual Traverse City Tournament and also attend training camp in September. But for now, he’s just enjoying the moment.
“It means everything,” Dellandrea said. “Just to share with my family because they’ve done so much for me. It’s their journey as well. I can’t thank them enough for everything they’ve done and to share it with my friends and family and extended family. It means the world to me to be there and share it with them.”
We’ll have more on Dellandrea and the rest of the Dallas Stars’ draft action in the coming days. Until then, round one is over and the Stars did well, drafting an underrated player that could turn out to be big.