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2009 NHL Draft: Pittsburgh Penguins draft Ben Hanowski, 63rd overall

With the 63rd overall pick in the 2009 NHL Draft, the Pittsburgh Penguins select Little Falls, Minnesota native Ben Hanowski.  Ben put up a monster season at Little Falls high school last season.  Over 25 games he tallied 57 goals and 53 helpers for a 110-point total, the highest ever in the school's history.  Hanowski will go up against the stigma that he was merely the big fish in a small pond who still has a lot to prove on the next level of competition.  From his post-draft presser alone the kid couldn't have been more excited.  He even noted that he has an Evgeni Malkin jersey at home and now has a great chance to one day play with him. 

Hanowski is a right winger who now finds himself drafted by a team known for its scoring forwards and fast-paced style. He'll have plenty of time to work on his game at Minnesota's St. Cloud State where he hopes to work on his speed and overall strength.  In his own words, "You can never be too fast or too strong."

Hanow understands the depth of the Pittsburgh team but thinks it may help him push a little bit harder to crack the lineup. 

In all honesty he just struck me as a kid livin the dream, completely stoked to be a member of the Stanley Cup Champions.

Western College Hockey has more on Ben.

Check up on some of the other reports from today:

30th Simon Despres (Audio available)
61st Philip Samuelsson