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A dream comes true for Strome

Ryan Strome thrilled to be picked fifth overall by the Isles

Saturday, 06.25.2011 / 12:24 AM ET / News
By Katrina Doell
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A dream comes true for Strome
St. Paul, MN - There isn’t much more to be said about the kind of hockey player that Ryan Strome is than what Islanders General Manager Garth Snow said after making the Mississauga, ON native the fifth overall pick in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft Friday night.

“He’s a very gifted hockey player,. He sees the ice extremely well. He’s a high character kid and we feel he’s going to fit in very well.”

But Snow did say more.

“He’s a self motivated kid, who is offensively dynamic. He makes the players around him better.”

Add to that Strome’s penchant for getting into the dirty areas to put pucks in the net and there you have the newest member of the Islanders. 

It’s these qualities that Snow touted, which led him to be voted the Most Improved Player and Best Playmaker this season in a poll of coaches in the OHL's Eastern Conference.

Strome finished last season with 106 points (33 goals, 63 assists) for the Niagara IceDogs, good for third in the Ontario Hockey League. He average 1.63 points per game.  

“Since I was traded there (Niagara) last January, I've gotten consistently better each day,” Strome said. “I can't thank them enough, the coaching staff, Marty Williamson, Mike Van Ryn, Billy Burke, and the owners are second to none.”

What else has helped the 17-year-old center get to this level? Working out with Islanders stars John Tavares and Matt Moulson.

The two players called their new teammate from the draft party on Long Island.

While what was said on the other end of the line could not be heard by the public, Strome told Moulson “I’m ecstatic. Wow.”

Strome appears to fit the mold of other recent Islanders draft picks like Tavares, Nino Niederreiter, Josh Bailey, Kyle Okposo, Tavis Hamonic; a smart, hard working, solid character type that is looking to be a part of the Islanders now established core of young skilled players.

He also said that he knew that the Islanders were interested in him.

"They did a psychological test,'' he said. "They came to Niagara, and I met with them (again) at the combine and went down to New York. I knew the interest was there and I knew where they were selecting so it was a very good possibility. Things worked out.”

Is there anybody Ryan Strome doesn’t know? - Don La Greca
It’s quite a whirlwind that a first round draft pick goes through from the moment his name is announced. But the genuinely happy and excited Strome was well aware of his surroundings, walking the halls of the Xcel Center greeting all the draftees with fist bumps and congratulations. Don La Greca even called after Strome, “Is there anybody Ryan Strome doesn’t know?”

When Strome and fellow Ice Dog Dougie Hamilton (Selected by Boston with the ninth pick) met waiting to shoot with NHL Images for their first trading cards, the two players were beaming. “You’re gonna be on the blue line with Chara,” Strome said. To that Hamilton chuckled and congratulated his friend and teammate in return.

Strome is ready for what’s next. He plans on making a splash at rookie camp and working to make the NHL.

He told Versus after being selected: "I love the colors and I think I'll fit in great there,'' Strome said. "I couldn't be happier right now.”

And for good measure, as a real Long Islander, he added, “Vote yes on August 1st.”

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 8 6 5 2 11
K. Okposo 8 1 6 2 7
F. Nielsen 8 3 2 0 5
B. Nelson 8 1 4 -3 5
A. Quine 8 1 4 1 5
R. Strome 6 1 3 3 4
T. Hickey 8 1 3 -3 4
S. Prince 8 3 0 2 3
R. Pulock 4 1 2 -3 3
N. Leddy 8 0 3 2 3
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
T. Greiss 5 3 0 .937 2.06
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