Tri-City Americans forward Michael Rasmussen was taken by the Detroit Red Wings with the ninth overall pick of the NHL Draft on Friday in Chicago.
The Americans have not had a first-round NHL draft pick since goalie Chet Pickard went 18th overall to Nashville in 2008.
Rasmussen, a native of Surrey, British Columbia, is the first Tri-City forward drafted since 2010, when Brooks Macek went in the sixth round (171st overall) to the Detroit Red Wings. He also is the first forward to go in the first round since Scott Gomez went 27th overall to the New Jersey Devils in 1998.
Stu Barnes is the franchise’s highest-drafted forward — and player — going fourth overall in 1989 to the Winnipeg Jets.
The 6-foot-6, 220-pound Rasmussen scored 32 goals (15 on the power play) with 23 assists in 50 games before knee and wrist injuries derailed his season in February.