Emerson Etem, a native of Long Beach, Calif., was selected in the first round (29th overall) by Anaheim in the 2010 draft. (Photo by Noah Graham/NHLI via Getty Images)
When you think of California, hockey isn’t the first sport that comes to mind. But if the Golden State continues to produce elite prospects like it has in the past few years that may change. Jonathan Blum was the first Californian taken in the first round of the NHL draft when the Nashville Predators called his name 23rd overall in 2007 and he seems to have started a trend.
This year California natives Beau Bennett and Emerson Etem were both chosen in the first round, while Jason Zucker and Taylor Aronson found homes in the second and third rounds. And next year’s crop looks just as promising.
Ryan Kennedy takes a closer look at the state of hockey on the Gold Coast.
REPORTER: Ryan Kennedy | PRODUCER: Ted Cooper
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