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Saturday, June 4, 2011

NHL Combine video: Connor Murphy has upside and polish

One of the more intriguing draft day players to watch is American defenseman Connor Murphy of the U.S. NTDP.

The skilled two-way blue liner is a Miami University Redhawks recruit (along with fellow Ohio native and combine attendee Sean Kuraly) and came up huge for Team USA with a stalwart two-way performance at the Under-18 tourney capped by the sudden death goal that clinched the gold medal for an unprecedented third straight year (for USA Hockey).

Murphy is instantly likeable and extremely articulate. An easy-going, kid-next-door personality that masks a fierce competitor on the ice. He's not a banger, but he sure can play smart positional defensive hockey.

With his size, talent level and potential to be a legitimate two-way presence in the NHL one day, we have to believe he helped himself this week at the combine.

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