Oliver Wahlstrom, a member of the U.S. men’s ice hockey team that won gold at the Winter Youth Olympic Games Lillehammer 2016, is headed for the NHL.
Wahlstrom was selected in the first round by the New York Islanders in the NHL Draft, which was conducted Friday and Saturday in Dallas. Wahlstrom, a forward from Quincy, Massachusetts, was the 11th pick overall.
Seven of Wahlstrom’s teammates on the 2016 Youth Olympic Games team were also chosen in the draft, including Jake Wise, who scored an open-net goal to finish off Team USA’s 5-2 win over Canada in the championship game of the Youth Olympic tournament. The win marked the first time a U.S. men’s ice hockey team won an Olympic or Youth Olympic Games since the 1980 Miracle on Ice.
“Nobody really knows how big the rivalry is until you play in it, but it’s amazing,” Wise told TeamUSA.org after the gold-medal game in Norway.
Wise was a third-round pick (69th overall) of the Chicago Blackhawks.
Ty Emberson, a defenseman, was the 300th player from USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program ever to be selected. He was selected in the third round (73rd overall) by the Arizona Coyotes. A total of 16 NTDP players were among the 52 Americans drafted this year.
Other members of that 2016 Youth Olympic team selected were: Mattias Samuelsson, second round, 32nd pick, Buffalo Sabres; Jonathan Gruden, fourth round, 95th pick, Ottawa Senators; Jacob Pivonka, fourth round, 103rd pick, Islanders; Tyler Weiss, fourth round, 109th pick, Colorado Avalanche; and Christian Krygier, seventh round, 196th pick, New York Islanders.
Paul D. Bowker has been writing about Olympic sports since 1996, when he was an assistant bureau chief in Atlanta. He is sports editor of the Cape Cod Times and a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.