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PWHL draft comes to St. Paul with new (and old) names to watch

The PWHL draft will be held Monday evening at Roy Wilkins Auditorium, and there will be intrigue surrounding the local team that just won the league's inaugural championship.

PWHL Minnesota, the league's Walter Cup champion, parted ways with General Manager Natalie Darwitz on Friday. Coach Ken Klee, a longtime NHL player and former U.S. women's national team coach, will run the team's draft.

Minnesota will pick third among the league's six teams in each of the draft's seven rounds, based on its regular-season finish. The Cup-winning team that Darwitz built and Klee coached is deep and talented but will try to shore up its scoring that ranked fourth in the league.

PWHL draft at a glance

When, where: 6 p.m. Monday, Roy Wilkins Auditorium

How to watch: PWHL's YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/@thepwhlofficial)

Tickets: Available free of charge at: www.thepwhl.com/en/2024-pwhl-draft

Awards ceremony: 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, Great River Ballroom, Intercontinental St. Paul Riverfront Hotel

Draft order (repeats for all seven rounds): 1. New York, 2. Ottawa, 3. Minnesota, 4. Boston, 5. Montreal, 6. Toronto.

Players to watch

Sarah Fillier, C, Princeton: Helped Canada win Olympic gold in 2022, scoring eight goals in the tournament. Had 30 goals and 13 assists in 29 games for Princeton last season. Regarded as the likely top overall pick.

Danielle Serdachny, C, Colgate: Amassed 25 goals and 45 assists in 39 games as a college senior. Scored the winning goal in overtime to beat the United States and win gold at the 2024 World Championship.

Amanda Kessel, RW, Team USA: The former Gophers star is back on the ice after taking last season off to work in the Pittsburgh Penguins front office. The 32-year-old has an Olympic gold medal, plus two silvers to her credit. The 2013 Patty Kazmaier Award winner led Minnesota to three NCAA championships.

Hannah Bilka, LW, Ohio State: Had 22 goals and 26 assists in 39 games in helping the Buckeyes win the 2024 NCAA championship. The Boston College transfer played two seasons at Shattuck-St. Mary's, amassing 75 goals and 69 assists.

Britta Curl, C, Wisconsin: Bismarck, N.D., native helped the Badgers win the 2023 NCAA championship and finish runner-up this year. She had 41 goals and 63 assists over the past two seasons while playing a strong two-way game.

Three Minnesotans to watch

Abby Boreen, RW: Boreen played 14 games for PWHL Minnesota this season, limited as a reserve player as she attended pharmacy school. She had to enter the draft to be a full-time player and said she's open to playing for whichever team selects her.

Madeline Wethington, D, Gophers: A consistent blue-liner over the past five seasons for the Gophers, Wethington also won Under 18 World Championship gold three times.

Izzy Daniel, F, Cornell: Minneapolis native won the 2024 Patty Kazmaier Award after collecting 21 goals and 38 assists in 34 games for the Big Red.