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    Ducks sign 1st-round picks Beckett Sennecke and Stian Solberg
    • July 6, 2024

    The Ducks signed both of their 2024 first-round picks, Beckett Sennecke and Stian Solberg, to entry-level contracts, the team announced in a news release Friday.

    Sennecke, 18, was selected third overall, with his rapid ascent up the prospect board throwing the draft order into flux. Solberg, 18, was acquired with pick No. 23, which the Ducks traded up to obtain.

    At development camp, Sennecke demonstrated flashes of the elite skill that the Ducks found so alluring.

    “That’s one of the elements of my game. I think I’m a very versatile player, and I have all these different kinds of elements. I think that’s one of the reasons why the Ducks liked me so much,” Sennecke said.

    Sennecke said his experience at development camp this past week exposed him to the defensive rigors required to excel in the pro game that may have only received lip service at the junior level.

    “The next stepping stone for me is learning how to play that side of the puck as well, and that’s the case with a lot of highly skilled players,” Sennecke said.

    Matt McIlvane, the Ducks’ AHL coach who was on the ice this week, said Bennecke’s strengths and weaknesses were fairly transparent at this initial stage of his pro career.

    “He’s a big, long guy. From there, you can see the skill: his skating skills, his puck skills, his vision. He was able to show that off a bit this week,” McIlvane said. “With most young prospects, the focus is on (physique). That would certainly be priority No. 1 for Becks, and he’s already excited about taking the next steps.”

    Solberg, a more physically mature prospect with a rugged and fairly well-defined game, said his forthcoming challenge would be moving from his native Norway to play in a more competitive league.

    “When you’re going to handle a new level, you have to work on everything,” Solberg said. “I’m going to play in Sweden next year, and that’s a new level from the Norwegian league, so I’m going to keep training and focusing on everything.”

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    The young rearguard already got a taste of the big time when he competed on the senior level at the men’s world championships last year.

    “I played with (Mats) Zuccarello, Patrick Thoresen, Andreas Martinsen, all guys who have played in the NHL,” Solberg said. “So it was a lot of fun, and I learned a lot.”

    ​ Orange County Register 

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