Arizona Coyotes select Kevin Bahl in second round of NHL Draft
The Arizona Coyotes exhibit a philosophy of building their organization through centers and defense. And after taking a center with their fifth overall pick in the NHL Draft on Friday, the Coyotes got started on day two by taking a defenseman with the 55th overall pick in the second round.
Kevin Bahl, a left-handed blueliner from the Ottawa 67’s of the Ontario Hockey League, was the selection.
The British Columbia native will turn 18 years old on Wednesday and stands at 6-foot-6 and 231 pounds, according to the team website. He scored 1-17-18 in 58 games last season, playing on a blue line that also features the Coyotes’ fourth-round selection from last year’s draft, Noel Hoefenmayer.
"The intriguing and appealing aspect of Bahl's game are his skating and his hands," Director of NHL Central Scouting Dan Marr said. "For a big defender he's quite an agile skater with deceptive quickness and speed when he has the puck and when he's under forecheck pressure.
— Craig Morgan (@craigsmorgan) June 23, 2018
The 55th overall pick was the Coyotes’ only one in the second round, but it was not their own pick. Their second-round pick was traded to the Florida Panthers in the trade that brought Lawson Crouse to the Coyotes, and the 55th came to the Coyotes in the deal that sent Martin Hanzal and Ryan White to the Minnesota Wild in February of 2017.
Bahl marks the second OHL product the Coyotes have taken in as many picks in the 2018 draft. Ten of the Coyotes’ last 16 draft picks since the start of the 2016 NHL Draft have been defensemen.