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Misha Song makes history as first Chinese-born player drafted into NHL – SportsUntapped.com
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Added June 29th, 2015 by Ian

Misha Song makes history as first Chinese-born player drafted into NHL
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Andong ‘Misha’ Song of Oakville, Ontario made NHL history on June 27 when he became the first-ever Chinese born player drafted into the league. The New York Islanders chose the 18-year-old defenceman in the sixth round with the 172nd overall pick. The 6-foot, 161-pounder was drafted out of Lawrenceville School in the state of New Jersey, USA, where he scored 10 points on three goals and seven assists last season in 26 games.

The school’s head coach Etienne Bilodeau told the media said Song has been a key player since arriving at the school a couple of years ago and was named the squad’s captain this year. Song was born in Beijing and learned English there while starting his hockey career in China. However, at the time there weren’t many teams in the nation and Song’s parents had to buy equipment for him from Russia. They also had to take two and three hour road trips just to take him to practice.

After a trip to Canada to watch a minor hockey tournament, the Songs realized it would be the perfect place for the 10-year-old youngster to pursue his passion. The family moved to Oakville after spending a few weeks in a hotel while Song tried out for a local minor team called the Oakville Rangers. Once he made the team the move was a permanent one and Song lived and breathed hockey. His grandparents were both professional athletes in his homeland and his parent said they tried to get him interested in other sports, but he always turned to hockey.

Song being drafted was actually a pretty big deal in China as a television crew was sent over to film the event and it was aired live back in the world’s biggest nation. In fact, the TV channel had been keeping tabs on him and filming some of his escapades for the past three years. A total of 2.5 million reportedly tuned in back in China to watch him being drafted. Song said there’s a lot of pressure on him due to his situation, but he feels it will make him a better hockey player in the long run.

Islanders’ owner Charles B. Wang of Shanghai, China, is familiar with Song since he played for a youth team that he sponsored. Song just graduated from high school and is scheduled to play next season in Andover, Massachusetts with Philips Academy as a as a post-graduate. After that he hopes to play himself onto an NCAA side. The teenager also plays for China. He captained his team at the IIHF Division II-B World Under-18 Championship in Serbia this year. If things go well for Misha, he’ll make history again in a few years’ time by becoming the first Chinese-born player in the NHL.

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