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The Oilers had three of the first 31 picks and six of the first 92, after taking left wing Taylor Hall first overall last year.

“This is the year where we have some great young talent. We don’t necessarily have to place these players on our roster now, but we know now that they’re there and they’re coming soon,” general manager Steve Tambellini said, adding: “We’re definitely going in the right direction.”

One player the Oilers couldn’t secure before leaving Minnesota is Ryan Smyth, Edmonton’s former star who could return for a second stint with the club.

The Oilers have been discussing reacquiring the left wing from Los Angeles, but Kings general manager Dean Lombardi told reporters the deal has been held up and complicated by the salary cap. Smyth has reportedly agreed to drop his no-trade clause. Tambellini declined to comment on the potential swap.

There were 33 players taken from the WHL, starting with Nugent-Hopkins, second only to the Ontario Hockey League, which produced 46 picks this year. In the native country category, Canada topped the list, of course, with 79 selections. The United States had 64, and Sweden followed with 28 over the seven-round event.

A record four Swedish players were taken in the top 10, a fitting milestone for a draft held in Minnesota, where Scandinavians are everywhere.

“It’s really cool,” said defenseman Jonas Brodin, who went to the hometown Wild with the 10th pick Friday.

The Wild kept their fans cheering Saturday by trading their third and fourth-round picks to the Vancouver Canucks and moving into the second round to take left wing Mario Lucia at No. 60. Lucia played at Wayzata High School in the Twin Cities area, and his father Don is head coach at the University of Minnesota.

Though there are different ways to count them, based on birthplaces, sites of their current teams or the states of their formative years, Minnesota essentially produced 14 draft picks, though none in the first round for the first time in 10 years.

Seth Ambroz, the 31st-ranked North American skater by the NHL’s Central Scouting Service, had to wait until the fifth round, 128th overall, to hear his name called by Columbus.

The right wing from nearby New Prague told Blue Jackets fans, “Hopefully you got a steal.”

With what’s considered a weaker-than-average free agent market this year, several trades of significant players took place during the weekend. Tallon’s Panthers acquired defenseman Brian Campbell from the Chicago Blackhawks.

“There are a lot of teams looking for the same types of players. I’d rather make sure we have some things done before we get to July 1,” Tallon said, adding: “He’s a top-four defenseman in the NHL. It was his choice to come to Florida, so that speaks volumes.”

The Calgary Flames traded veteran defenseman Robyn Regehr to the Buffalo Sabres in another headliner transaction.