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NHL Draft 2014: Florida Panthers draft grade

With the first overall pick in the NHL Draft, the Florida Panthers took Barrie Colts defenseman Aaron Ekblad.

Ekblad, who was the number one ranked player in the FanSided NHL prospect rankings, is expected to come right into the Florida Panthers lineup this season. At 6’4, 216 lbs, Ekblad is a major presence on the blue line, and should no doubt contribute both offensively and defensively for the Panthers.

He’s a young man who is very mature for his age. He’s a player can do everything asked of him at a top level, if not, an elite level. Ekblad should be a man that the Panthers will have no problem building around for the next decade-plus.

If I were to compare him to a current NHL star, it would be Shea Weber of the Nashville Predators.

[Related: NHL Draft 2014 live tracker]

He’s been number one on my board since day one, and should prove everyone right for years to come. At the very worst, Ekblad should become a very good NHL defenseman within the next couple of seasons, max.

Final Grade: A+

Sound of Panthers fans. What do you think of the selection of Ekblad to your team? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

Tags: 2014 NHL Draft Aaron Ekblad Florida Panthers NHL

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