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Arizona Coyotes select Kevin Bahl in second round of NHL Draft

(Arizona Sports photo/Craig Morgan)

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.

He was ranked as the No. 29 prospect among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting and was deemed the No. 62 overall prospect on Craig Button’s “Craig’s List” on TSN.

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.

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