Archive for June, 2009


My First Official Mock Draft/Rankings

As I was watching Pierre Maguire and Craig Button on TSN, and ultimately have thought long and hard about the first round of every draft….well, since I can remember. In my blog I have looked at previous drafts, who I like and who I don’t like, who I would shy away from. In this draft, from an Oiler perspective, trading up would be nice, but ultimately cost prohibitive.

Drafting at 10 is a really nice spot, because you can look at your draft board, see three or four guys you really like and trade down 3 and get a great asset.

So over the course of a few lunch hours….here is what I see in 2009.

My Rankings:

1. Victor Hedman
2. John Tavares
3. Matt Duchene
4. Evander Kane
5. Brayden Schenn
6. Magnus Pajarvi Svensson
7. Jared Cowan
8. Dmitri Kulikov
9. Nazim Kadri
10. Scott Glennie
11. John Moore
12. Oliver Ekman Larsson
13. Jordan Schroeder
14. Ryan Ellis
15. David Rundblad
16. Tim Erixon
17. Nick Leddy
18. Carter Ashton
19. Chris Krieder
20. Louis Leblanc
21. Zack Kassian
22. Calvin De Haan
23. Jacob Josefsson
24. Jordan Caron
25. Peter Holland
26. Kyle Palmieri
27. Landon Ferraro
28. Drew Shore
29. Dylan Olsen
30. Jeremy Morin

Personal favourites not in my top 30….Jerry D’Amigo, Ben Hankowski, Anton Lander, Alexander Avtsyn

1. New York Islanders: John Tavares, C, London (OHL)

It is the best kept secret in hockey, but not to anyone with some common sense. On the NHL XM channel, they suggested that Tavares could me an added 2000 season tickets to the Islanders, while Hedman would be a push. All things considered equal with the two players, all other factors point to taking the forward.

2. Tampa Bay Lightning: Victor Hedman, D, Modo (SEL)

If Bob Barker had consolation prizes this good, he wouldn’t have needed Beautys. This is as slam dunk as it gets. When you watch Hedman, he has the same skating and body structure as Pronger, and oddly enough, mea culpa Mr. Cherry, Hedman also has a bit of sandpaper to his game. We may even see him in the NHL this fall.

3. Colorado Avalanche: Matt Duchene, C, Brampton (OHL)

No one expected it to be a three horse race. When late in the year, Matt Duchene started being mentioned with the top two, it was a surprise….and Colorado won’t be surprised when they pick this solid player.

4. Atlanta Thrashers: Evander Kane, C, Vancouver (WHL)

A great all around player, he has skills, grit, and hockey IQ.

5. Los Angeles Kings: Brayden Schenn, C, Brandon (WHL)

Sorry Burkie, you can’t always get what you want. I don’t think he drops to 7. If Burke will spend the assets, he might get the brothers in tandem, but if not, Schenn plies his trade in Hollywood.

6. Phoenix Coyotes: Jared Cowen, D, Spokane (WHL)

The Yotes have Turris, Mueller, Tikhonov, Boedekker on offense, and although Cowen might have some competition for BPA right here, the Phoenix/Hamilton/Winnipeg franchise needs an anchor on the back end, and this guy fits the bill.

7. Toronto Maple Leafs: Oliver Ekman-Larsson, D, Leksand (Allsvenskan)

Unless you can wrap your mind around Burkie trading down, or going a little off the board and taking Kassian, you have to figure he is going to take a blueliner here. Burkie wants either Cowen or Schenn, and as Oiler fans it would be nice to see our beloved blowhard stiffed. Too bad he still ends up with a great player.

8. Dallas Stars: Dmitry Kulikov, D, Drummondville (QMJHL)

I can’t see Kulikov continuing to slide. In my mind he is as good a two way blueliner as you will find in the draft. This reminds me of when it was Phaneuf, Coburn, Suter. This time it is Cowen, Larsson, Kulikov. It just depends on what a team feels is their BPA.

9. Ottawa Senators: Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson, LW, Timra (SEL)

Craig Button said he reminded him of John Tonelli. Pierre Maguire said he was like Jere Lehtinen. Some compare him to Forsberg and Sundin, others to Markus Naslund. I now am left to think….what type of player is MPS? I would suggest that Naslund is a pretty fair comparison….Maguire is nuts….the knock on MPS was always his defensive play. It is better than it was a couple years ago, but I wouldn’t go all Selke on him.

10. Edmonton Oilers: Scott Glennie C Brandon (WHL)

If I am the GM of the Oilers, which I am not, I have three players that I think I have a shot at with this pick. Dmitri Kulikov, Scott Glennie, and John Moore are the three players I want considered. It is very possible that someone likes Kadri, Ellis, Josefsson before 10. I believe the Oilers are well stocked with defensive depth, and their forward scoring has and continues to be a problem.

11. Nashville Predators: Nazem Kadri, C, London (OHL)

Offensive skill, slick moves, speed. Preds are happy with Kadri at this spot.

12. Minnesota Wild Zack Kassian RW Peterborough (OHL)

Best fighter in the draft. Toughest guy. Top rated power forward type. A good fit with the Wild.

13. Buffalo Sabres John Moore, D, Chicago (USHL)

To me, this guy could be the steal of the draft. Who could possibly be disappointed with a guy that skates like the wind, great shot, hockey sense, good defensively.

14. Florida Panthers: Jordan Schroeder RW USA U-18

Offensively dynamic, playing against stiff competition in NCAA and putting up impressive numbers. About the same size as Patrick Kane, needs to add some bulk, but the skill set, skating and hockey sense all project to be a good NHLer.

15. Anaheim Ducks: Ryan Ellis, D, Windsor (OHL)

The Ducks will over the next few seasons be looking to address voids left by Chris Pronger and Scott Niedermayer. With two more inches and 25 pounds, Ellis is an all star in the NHL. He has offensive tools ad nauseum, shot, smarts, and is a good leader. It must be a good draft if every player taken looks like a steal.

16. Columbus Blue Jackets: David Rundblad, D, Skelleftea (SEL)

Rundblad is a solid two way defender with good size. Good skater, and has the ever elusive right shot. He likes to rush and move the puck quickly. Will look good on the Jackets back end.

17. St. Louis Blues: Tim Erixon, D Skelleftea AIK (SEL)

Blues will be excited to see Erixon fall to 17th. Losing out to his buddy Rundblad as to who was going to be taken first, he is projected to be a little less offensive than Rundblad but more physical and better defensively.

18. Montreal Canadiens: Chris Krieder C Andover (MA – HS)

Great wheels in a power forward body. Someone to compliment their smallish skilled forwards. After a couple years in Boston College, Krieder will head to the Bleu Blanc et Rouge

19. New York Rangers Jacob Josefson, C, Djurgarden (SEL)

A little smaller than some of the other forwards available, he has some good wheels, and great hockey sense.

20. Calgary Flames: Nick Leddy, D, Eden Prairie (USHS)

Smart, smart player with tons of skill, but playing in a lower level. Scouting report looks eerily similar to John Moore (Skill, skating ability, good hockey sense), but Leddy also needs to bulk up.

21. Philadelphia Flyers: Carter Ashton LW Wethbridge (WHL)

A pick based on projection. Good skill in a power forward’s body. Just what Philly likes.

22. Vancouver Canucks: Stefan Elliott, D, Saskatoon (WHL)

Has been compared to Brent Seabrook. If you can pick him up at 22nd overall, then he is going to pay some dividends.

23. New Jersey Devils: Kyle Palmieri, RW, USNTDP

Character, grit, good skill, in the mould of a Chris Drury. Lou likes guys that are committed to winning. Also has good vision and a great shot.

24. Washington Capitals: Jeremy Morin, LW, USNTDP

An all around forward with good hands.

25. Boston Bruins: Anton Lander D Tirma (SEL)

Being loaded up front, the Bruins choose to put some stock back in the blueline with Lander.

26. New York Islanders (via San Jose): Calvin de Haan, D, Oshawa

After taking Tavares with their first pick, the Isles grab de Haan to bolster the back end.

27. Carolina Hurricanes: Louis Leblanc, C, (USHL)

Leblanc has very good hands, and along with good hockey sense, he is a tireless worker.

28. Chicago Blackhawks: Peter Holland, C, Guelph (OHL)

Holland to me was at one point a top 15 pick, but seems to lack some motivation. Maybe the Hawks can kick him into gear.

29. Detroit Red Wings: Markus Johansson, C, Farjestad (SEL)

If my projections are close, then the Wings will be disappointed that a blueliner to their liking doesn’t fall. I am sure they would have been happy to see Erixon, Rundblad, Elliot or any of the ilk fall to them at 29. I wouldn’t be surprised if they like someone enough to move up. If not, a solid two way centre like Johansson is just what the doctor ordered.

30. Pittsburgh Penguins: Ryan Button D, Prince Albert (WHL)

Button is a solid two way defender that uses his smarts to keep him ahead of the competition. Pens take the BPA at this point.

And there you have it…cheers.