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The Noon Number: Western Flavor

A look at how the Caps’ drafting has been skewed towards one developmental league in particular

2018 NHL Draft - Round One Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

4 - Number of players the Capitals selected from the WHL in this weekend’s draft, with Alexander Alexeyev (31st pick; Red Deer), Riley Sutter (93rd; Everett), Alex Kannok-Leipert (161st; Vancouver) and Eric Florchuk (217th; Saskatoon) all joining the prospect pool.

While that’s the highest number the Caps have drafted from the WHL since 2002 (when they selected five), it remains one of the developmental leagues from which the organization has long drawn for homegrown talent. In fact, only six times in the last 20 years has the Caps’ draft haul not included someone from out west, and the WHL has supplied the Caps with 43 of their 163 total picks (26.4%) over that span.

Some notable WHL graduates that have come up through the Caps organization include Boyd Gordon, Jeff Schultz, Mike Green, Karl Alzner, Madison Bowey, Chandler Stephenson, and Braden Holtby.