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Invalid claims are draft picks which are deemed invalid by the National Hockey League or any other league's authority, for a reason or another. Invalid claims are not a common occurence, as it ends up penalizing the team making such a claim, who ends up with one less player selected; invalid claims therefore end up being accidents, with teams accidentally picking a player that was already picked by another previously, for instance. It has however happened that a draft pick is voluntarily wasted by a team in order to make an invalid claim.
Invalid claims in the National Hockey League Entry DraftsEdit
The most famous invalid claim in the NHL history is that of Taro Tsujimoto by the Buffalo Sabres in the 1974 NHL Amateur Draft. Sabres' GM Punch Imlach was fed up with the drafting process, that was done over the telephone and was a painfully slow process. In order to alleviate some of the pain of the process, he decided to pull a prank by drafting Taro Tsujimoto, a fake player whom he invented by picking a random common Japanese name in a Buffalo-area phone book, 183rd overall. He assured Tsujimoto was a star center for his Japan Ice Hockey League, the Tokyo Katanas. Nobody had ever heard of this player, nor of his team, but since the league knew no better, they accepted the pick as valid and made it official. It took several weeks before the league discovered of the prank.
List of NHL Entry Draft invalid claimsEdit
- 1974 NHL Amateur Draft: Buffalo Sabres pick Taro Tsujimoto in the 11th round (183rd overall). Tsujimoto does not exist.
- 1984 NHL Entry Draft: Buffalo Sabres pick Eric Weinrich in the 9th round (186th overall). Weinrich was born after the cutoff date of September 15th and was not draft-eligible.
- 1984 NHL Entry Draft: Philadelphia Flyers pick Petr Rucka in the 11th round, (225th overall). Rucka had been picked 25 picks before by the Calgary Flames.