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Florida Panthers select forward Cole Schwindt 81st overall

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Cats trade up to grab Mississauga Steelhead

Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds v Mississauga Steelheads Photo by Graig Abel/Getty Images

The Florida Panthers made a draft floor trade with the Columbus Blue Jackets, exchanging the 104th and 114th overall picks for the 81st pick, which they used to select forward Cole Schwindt.

Schwindt scored 19 goals and added 30 assists in 68 regular season games with the OHL’s Mississauga Steelheads. He also tallied one goal during the postseason as Mississauga was swept in the first round by Sudbury.

In his first OHL season, he totaled 4 goals and 10 assists, so his offensive numbers took a step forward this year.

At a lanky 6’2”, Schwindt is often described as a consistent, jack-of-all-trades two-way forward who is able to physically dominate his opposition in his defensive zone with good stick work.

Like the selection of John Ludvig earlier in the third round, Schwindt seems to another reach by Dale Tallon & Co as he was slated to go lower in the draft. Expect him to take the long road to the NHL with more time in the OHL and American League after that.