Flash back to the spring of 1997.
As NHL draft talk perked up, Joe Thornton's name was bandied about almost as much as Eric Lindros' in his draft year. Thornton was the unequivocal top pick.
Three-plus seasons later, it's clear Boston made a good choice. Although Thornton isn't exactly on a Hall of Fame career path at least not yet he's improved each season and looks poised to break out any year.
But the most interesting post-draft analysis ...
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