SPORTS

Montreal drafts centre Vejdemo in 3rd round, adds hometown defenceman Bourque

06/27/2015 05:16 EDT | Updated 06/27/2016 05:59 EDT
SUNRISE, Fla. - Three of the four players that the Canadiens selected on Saturday at the NHL draft were absent. But all four of Simon Bourque's family members made plenty of noise when Montreal selected him in the sixth round.

Bourque, a defenceman for the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League's Rimouski Oceanic, and his family jumped up from their seats when the Habs picked him 177th overall.

"It's a dream come true," said Bourque, a native of Greenfield Park, Que. "I've said that I wasn't thinking about the Canadiens, but deep down I was. To hear my name, it was really magical."

Montreal was charmed in an interview by Bourque's personality but also impressed with his progression throughout the season. His name wasn't on the NHL's central scouting bureau initial list, but on the final rankings Bourque ranked 76th amongst North American skaters.

"I was disappointed at the start of the season, but I used it as a source for extra motivation," said Bourque. "I never asked myself what I could do more, but what I could do better."

Bourque, at six-feet and 185 pounds, had 38 points in 68 games this season for the Oceanic. He added a plus-27 rating for Rimouski, which won the QMJHL championship. In 17 post-season games, Bourque had five points before taking part in the Memorial Cup.

He says that he models his game off of Alec Martinez from the Los Angeles Kings.

Earlier in the day, the Canadiens drafted Swedish centre Lukas Vejdemo in the third round.

The six-foot-two, 19-year-old forward is under contract for two more years with Swedish team Djurgarden, where he will play next season.

He played for Djurgarden's junior team this season, amassing 48 points in 34 games in addition to being chosen MVP of Sweden's junior league.

"He's a player that's a strong skater, strong two-way player but he can create offence," said Canadiens vice-president of player personnel Trevor Timmins. "He's got good vision and he's a good puck disperser."

The Canadiens selected centre Matthew Bradley of the Western Hockey League's Medicine Hat Tigers in the fifth round, 131st overall.

The five-foot-11, 187-pound forward had 40 points in 71 games in his rookie WHL season.

Montreal added left-winger Jeremiah Addison of the Ontario Hockey League's Ottawa 67's with its final pick, 207th overall in the seventh round.

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With files from La Presse Canadienne's Robert Laflamme

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