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Kelowna Rockets forward Pavel Novak was taken in the fifth round of the NHL draft

Rocket pair drafted to NHL

Two Kelowna Rockets heard their name called Wednesday during the final day of the NHL draft.

Pavel Novak had to wait a little longer than expected before he was selected.

The Kelowna Rockets forward, a native of the Czech Republic, was selected in the fifth round, 146th overall, by the Minnesota Wild.

He was ranked 85th by NHL Central Scouting among North American skaters heading into the two-day draft.

Novak, who led the team in scoring during his rookie year, was the only Rocket selected during this year's draft.

A year ago, the Rockets led the CHL with four players taken, including two (Lassi Thomson and Nolan Foote), in the first round.

Defenceman Michael Kruitl was also selected. He was taken in the fourth round, 110th overall by Chicago.

Kruitl has yet to suit up for the Rockets after being selected 24th overall in this year's European draft.

He has been limited to just 70 games over the past two seasons due to injuries.

Two other players with ties to the team were also taken.

Kelowna native Jack Finley was selected in the second round, 57th overall, but the Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning.

Finley plays with Spokane in the WHL.

His father Jeff played for six teams during a 13 year NHL career.

He also spent two season as an assistant coach with the Rockets before turning his attention to scouting.

Ethan Bowen, a Rocket second round bantam selection, was taken late in the seventh round by Anaheim.



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