Gibsonia native makes debut against Pens

| Thursday, Sept. 22, 2011

Chicago Blackhawks left winger Brandon Saad, a Gibsonia native, will play his first NHL preseason game Thursday night against the Penguins at Consol Energy Center.

"I'd be excited no matter who I was playing," Saad said Wednesday night. "But yeah, I'm excited."

Saad once was projected to be a top-five draft pick this past June but slipped to No. 43. The 18-year-old likely will return to his Ontario Hockey League team in Saginaw, Mich., this fall.

A power forward, Saad was one of four Pittsburgh-area players selected in the first 64 picks of the draft, joining J.T. Miller (East Palestine, Ohio), John Gibson (Whitehall) and Vincent Trocheck (Upper St. Clair).

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