The Phase Two USHL Draft took place last night, coming it at just over seven hours of drafting amateur hockey prospects from across North America and Europe. Western Michigan recruit and likely NHL Draft pick this summer, Aidan Muir was the first overall pick of the draft, but what may have been the best pick came hours later, in the 28th round of the draft.
On the Monday night prior to the draft, Jack Jablonski, a high school junior that was paralyzed by a check in a high school hockey game last year, sent out the following Tweet:
Dear USHL teams, Just thought I'd let u know I am eligible for tomorrow's draft. Sincerely Jack Jablonski— Jack Jablonski (@Jabs_13) May 7, 2013
In the 28th round, with pick #411, their last of the draft, the Chicago Steel obliged Jablonski's request by selecting him. By being drafted, Jablonski is placed on Chicago's protected list, though obviously he won't be skating at Chicago's tryout camp this June for a spot on the team. Jablonski's courage in fighting his injury and passion for the game of hockey have been tremendously inspiring across the world of hockey, however, and it was an incredible gesture by the Chicago Steel organization to honor Jablonski in that way.