Home > 2014 NHl Entry Draft, Mock Draft, NCAA, OHL, Prospects, QMJHL, USHL, WHL > @RossyYoungblood’s 2014 NHL Mock Draft

@RossyYoungblood’s 2014 NHL Mock Draft

 

2014 NHL Entry Draft

 

  • Not-so-Bold Predictions:
    • Florida trades the 1st overall selection swapping spots with one of the Canadian teams in Edmonton Oilers, Calgary Flames, Vancouver Canucks or Toronto Maple Leafs
    • In general, trading should be on the rise in 2014 with many teams looking to get “their” targeted player in a crop that’s fairly tightly packed together (and consequently, difficult to project who goes where). Trading up will ensure teams get their guy.

 

  • 3 Potential Draft Fallers:
    • Sam Bennett – NHL CSS’ top ranking of Bennett could be a curse. He’s certainly got the skill to go 1st overall but both Aaron Ekblad and Sam Reinhart have promising potentials as well. In addition, their playing styles are easy to project into the NHL and that might give them an edge in a group that’s tightly packed. Mix in big skilled forwards Leon Draisaitl, Michael Dal Colle and Nick Ritchie (who is considered #1 by some NHL scouts) and Bennett may slide further than people expect.
    • Brendan Perlini – A hot start to his draft season was promising but fizzling down the stretch sticks in scouts’ minds didn’t help IceDogs’ winger Brendan Perlini. He remained a Top 10 prospect throughout the season but the concerns about his competitiveness are legitimate and he could slide into double digits.
    • Tony DeAngelo – Publicly discussed and debated, Tony DeAngelo’s troubles on the ice and off the ice have been a hot topic throughout the season and that has left a sour taste in scouts’ mouths. Despite rumoured strong interviews at the NHL Draft Combine, there are just some scouts who just won’t risk a 1st round pick on a defenseman who is one dimensional and has some red flags. DeAngelo is the most interesting storyline, in my opinion, at the 2014 NHL Draft. Personally, I want to see him selected well and prove that these were all overstated “troubles”. In the end, the gifted offensive defenseman could end up being selected anywhere from 10th to 75th overall.

 

  • 3 Potential Draft Risers:
    • Dominik Masin Not an overly familiar name in North America, Czech defenseman Dominik Masin receives rave reviews from those who have followed him this season. He captained his nation to a silver medal at the Under-18 World Championships and showed that he can log huge minutes in both offensive and defensive situations. Don’t be shocked to see him scooped up inside the opening round.
    • Sonny Milano – Largely considered a mid-to-late 1st round selection, American Sonny Milano could be considered a “riser” if he creeps inside the Top 15. He is a wizard with the puck and in a draft class that’s fairly wide open after the opening 8-9 picks, Milano could get snatched up quickly by a team who values his game-breaking abilities.
    • Travis Sanheim – Calgary Hitmen defenseman Travis Sanheim elevated his game down the stretch and his performance at the Under-18 World Championships was nothing short of outstanding, lifting him into first round consideration. Sanheim could hear his name called any time after the Top 10, especially in a relatively weak defensive crop at the top of the draft

 

  • Sleepers to Watch: Jaden Lindo, Dylan Sadowy, Jake Walman, Louis Belpedio, Josh Wesley, Ryan Foss

 

  • Valuable Long-term Investments (Project Picks): Ryan MacInnis, Eric Cornel, Brett Pollock, Nicolas Aube-Kubel, Brycen Martin, Jacob Middleton

 

  • Rossy’s Favourite Draft Prospects Team: 
  • Just  some of my favourite prospects heading into the 2014 NHL Draft that I have enjoyed following or watching. Most of these players I have been high on dating back to last year (especially the forward trio)

Nick Ritchie (LW) – Robby Fabbri (C) – Nikolay Goldobin (RW)

Travis Sanheim (LD) – Julius Honka (RD)

Brandon Halverson (G)

 

  • The Coaches Choice Team:
    • Players who provide an element found on championship teams

John Quenneville (LW) – Conner Bleackley (C) – Brendan Lemieux (LW/RW)

Dominik Masin (LD) – Josh Jacobs (RD)

Alex Nedeljkovic (G)

  • Draft Eligible Wildcard Team (Boom/Bust):

                            Vladimir Tkachyov (LW) – Nikolay Goldobin (C) – Josh Ho-Sang (RW)

Joe Hicketts (LD) – Tony DeAngelo (RD)

Julio Billia (G)

Notes About the Analysis:

Alternative Option – This subsection provides one or two logical player options for the team under analysis to consider (within a reasonable projectable draft slot)

Rossy’s Ideal Target – I give the one prospect (within a reasonable projectable range) that each franchise should be targeting. Trading up or down is not an option with this scenario and occasionally, the player picked in the mock draft is the same ideal target.

 

1st Round

 

Aaron Ekblad (OHL Images)

Aaron Ekblad (OHL Images)

1st Florida Panthers – Aaron Ekblad (RD)

If the Panthers keep the 1st overall pick, the mature Aaron Ekblad would be a defenseman that would strengthen Florida’s blueline and be ready to step into the lineup immediately. Expect GM Dale Tallon to field plenty of trade offers but Ekblad is a great consolation pick if the proposals fail to impress.

Alternative Option: Trade down to land top wingers Michael Dal Colle, William Nylander or Nikolaj Ehlers.

Rossy’s Ideal Panthers’ Target: Aaron Ekblad

 

 

2nd Buffalo Sabres – Sam Reinhart (RC)

While Aaron Ekblad is the stud defenseman of the draft, Kootenay’s Sam Reinhart will be heavily targeted. Even though Sam Bennett got the nod on NHL CSS’ final ranking, it’s Reinhart that could be the target of many teams looking to trade up.

Alternative Option: If Sam Reinhart is unavailable, the rebuilding Sabres must select defenseman Aaron Ekblad. Case closed.

Rossy’s Ideal Sabres’ Target: Sam Bennett

 

3rd Edmonton Oilers – Sam Bennett (LC)

Building down the middle is the standard course of action in the NHL and Edmonton will snatch up one of Bennett, Reinhart or Draisaitl when GM Craig MacTavish takes the stage. Loaded with character, compete and two-way skill, Bennett gives the Oilers a potential number one centerman but he won’t be arriving in 2014-15, a scenario Edmonton isn’t familiar with.

Alternative Option: Leon Draisaitl is the type of pivot the Oilers could use as he offers a strong possession game and size down the middle. Also, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Oilers give Nick Ritchie some serious consideration.

Rossy’s Ideal Oilers’ Target: Sam Reinhart

 

4th Calgary Flames – Leon Draisaitl (LC)

The real wild card of the top group, Calgary opts for German playmaker Leon Draisaitl, a sizeable pivot that provides a top line skill set. Draisaitl has 1st overall potential and could end up being the forward gem of this draft.

Alternative Option: Assuming Calgary stays put at #4, Brad Treviling will snatch up one of Ekblad, Bennett or Reinhart if they fall into his lap. However, Michael Dal Colle has the frame and hockey IQ of a future NHL star and that could be tempting.

Rossy’s Ideal Flames’ Target: Leon Draisaitl

 

 

Nick Ritchie sits number one on some scouts lists so don't be surprised to see him drafted higher than expected (OHL Images)

Nick Ritchie sits number one on some scouts lists so don’t be surprised to see him drafted higher than expected (OHL Images)

5th New York Islanders – Nick Ritchie (LW)

The Islanders could go several ways with this selection but settle in on Petes’ winger Nick Ritchie, a player who adds size, grit and offers an intimidation factor. Wildly inconsistent but dominant when he’s on top of his game, look for Ritchie to be one of the best from this draft class once he lands alongside some skilled line mates.

Alternative Option: Michael Dal Colle would fall in line with what the “public” feels the Islanders should do but Garth Snow has shown to be a gambler so expect the unexpected. William Nylander or Nikolay Ehlers maybe?

Rossy’s Ideal Islanders’ Target: William Nylander

 

 

 

6th Vancouver Canucks – Michael Dal Colle (LW)

The Canucks are in desperate need of a team overhaul and bringing in Oshawa’s Michael Dal Colle would be a nice building block. Dal Colle reminds me of Brandon Saad, a player many teams would like a mulligan on. Extremely intelligent on the ice and offering impressive character, Dal Colle is the type of player who will translate well to the NHL once he learns to play bigger.

Alternative Option: Nick Ritchie would offer up much needed grit. Vancouver native Jake Virtanen may be a convenient fit as well.

Rossy’s Ideal Canucks’ Target: Michael Dal Colle

 

 

7th Carolina Hurricanes – William Nylander (LW)

Traditionally, Carolina drafts forwards in the 1st round and they seem to have good luck identifying skill so heading back to Sweden after selecting Elias Lindholm in 2013 to select highly skilled forward William Nylander makes sense.

Alternative Option: GM Ron Francis may be tempted by Halifax rookie standout Nikolaj Ehlers. The last time the ‘Canes held the 7th overall selection was in 2010 and OHL Playoff standout Jeff Skinner turned out rather good for them. Robby Fabbri enjoyed a similar rise this season. Just sayin’

Rossy’s Ideal Target: William Nylander

 

 

 

8th Toronto Maple Leafs – Nikolaj Ehlers (LW)

Come draft time, Toronto is a bit of a wild card and besides Morgan Rielly, they’re 1st round selections have been rather underwhelming. Recently, an emphasis on getting bigger seemed to cloud their judgement. The faithful Leafs fans are hoping management adds some skill making CHL Rookie of the Year, Nikolaj Ehlers, a possible candidate.

Alternative Option: Ideally, Nick Ritchie would be the typical big prospect the Leafs would target (and a worthy one) but Jake Virtanen would make be a shrewd selection also. Gut feeling thinks Haydn Fleury could be high on their list too.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Nikolay Ehlers

 

 

 

9th Winnipeg Jets – Haydn Fleury (LD)

With Dustin Byfuglien slated to move back up to forward permanently, Winnipeg fills a hole on the blue line by selecting Haydn Fleury who is widely considered the second best defenseman of the draft. Fluid in motion and solid at both ends of the rink, Fleury appears to be a top-four defender in the making.

Alternative Option: There’s a pressing need for an upgrade in net but 9th overall is too high for a goaltender in this draft. If not, Thatcher Demko would be that guy. Jake Virtanen or Brendan Perlini should get consideration.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Haydn Fleury

 

 

 

10th Anaheim Ducks (formerly OTT) – Jake Virtanen (RW)

Teemu Selanne finally hangs up his skates and the Ducks quickly find his speedy replacement in Calgary Hitmen sniper Jake Virtanen. Blessed with lightning fast feet and a dangerous shooting arsenal, Virtanen can strike several different ways.

Alternative Option: The Ducks’ scouting staff have shown to be persistent on players they like (See Hampus Lindholm) so don’t be surprised if they consider forwards Kevin Fiala, Sonny Milano or maybe even Josh Ho-Sang. They own two 1st round picks so risk taking might be right up their ally.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Robby Fabbri

 

 

 

11th Nashville Predators – Kasperi Kapanen (RW)

Nashville’s roster is crying for an offensive spark and with a focus on adding skill, Kasperi Kapanen would be welcomed on the Predators depth chart. Incredibly crafty and creative with the puck, Kapanen projects as a high-level playmaker with top-line potential.

Alternative Option: Drafting defensemen is a strong suit of Nashville’s but unless Haydn Fleury falls to them or they reach for a guy like Julius Honka, the Preds may consider forwards Kevin Fiala, Brendan Perlini or Alex Tuch.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Kasperi Kapanen

 

 

 

12th Arizona Coyotes – Dylan Larkin (LC)

Scouts seem to really value Dylan Larkin’s ability to play the game at high speed and his admirable work ethic. His strong character and intelligent approach to the game make him a safe yet impactful player in the middle of the opening round.

Alternative Option: Kevin Fiala, Brendan Perlini and Jared McCann are all players worthy of this draft slot.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Kevin Fiala

 

 

 

13th Washington Capitals – Sonny Milano (LW)

Unless the Capitals plan to reach for a defenseman to fill a team need, the Capitals’ tendency to draft from the USNTDP continues with them adding slick puck handler, Sonny Milano, to the restructured organization.

Alternative Option: Haydn Fleury would be a perfect pick if he lasts until the 13th slot. Alex Tuch or Ivan Barbashev are two forwards who would add a much needed hard-to-play-against element to Washington’s lineup.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Haydn Fleury

 

 

 

14th Dallas Stars – Kevin Fiala (LW)

Over the past few drafts, Dallas has made some excellent selections adding tremendous depth in their system. Kevin Fiala is an ultra-competitive skilled winger who showed great development throughout his draft season. He’s not big but his work ethic and intelligence gives him a good shot of becoming an impact top-six player.

Alternative Option: With a history of favoring the OHL at the draft, Brendan Perlini and Jared McCann should both be high on the Stars draft rankings.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Julius Honka

 

 

15th Detroit Red Wings – Brendan Perlini (LW)

The Red Wings sit in a favourable position – a landing spot that could see a player fall into their laps. Don’t be surprised to see the Red Wings move this pick but if not, Brendan Perlini would be a good Wings’ selection. Perlini has promising upside but time spent in the NHL’s best development system would greatly benefit his game.

Alternative Option: Robby Fabbri is a Detroit type of player as he possesses high-end intelligence and excels in possession.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Nikolay Goldobin

 

 

16th Columbus Blue Jackets – Julius Honka (LD)

After an impressive 2013 debut draft, Jackets’ GM Jarmo Kekäläinen has the Blue Jackets’ system on the right track. With a focus on the future, Jarmo selects Julius Honka from his homeland providing the team with a future stud PP QB.

Alternative Option: Alex Tuch or Jared McCann are two competitive forwards that would fit with Columbus’ rebuild, one that emphasizes two-way play and strong character players.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Jared McCann

 

 

17th Philadelphia Flyers – Alex Tuch (LW)

Making his GM debut in Philadelphia, Ron Hextall steps up and selects Alex Tuch, a potential power forward who will look great in the orange and black.

Alternative Option: If more skill is a high priority then Nikolay Goldobin, Josh Ho-Sang or David Pastrnak could be great options.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Josh Ho-Sang

 

Robby Fabbri, Guelph Storm (Terry Wilson/OHL Images)

Robby Fabbri, Guelph Storm (Terry Wilson/OHL Images)

18th Minnesota Wild -Robby Fabbri (LC)

The Minnesota Wild have shown in the past not to shy away from drafting skilled undersized forwards (See Mikael Granlund) making Robby Fabbri an easy choice. His OHL Playoff MVP performances solidified his talented skill set. If Fabbri were four inches taller, he’d be a consensus top five selection.

Alternative Option: Goaltending could be addressed with Thatcher Demko. Jakub Vrana, Josh Ho-Sang or Nikolay Goldobin would be alternative high-end skill choices.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Robby Fabbri

 

 

19th Tampa Bay Lightning – Ivan Barbashev (RW)

Barbeshev will compete with country mate Nikita Scherbak to be the top selected Russian and would anyone be surprised if the Lightning took one of them? Tampa Bay is building a Russian embassy.

Alternative Options: The dazzling skill of David Pastrnak or Nikolay Goldobin might draw Yzerman’s attention. Jared McCann could be a good long-term player to build a second line around.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Jared McCann

 

 

20th San Jose Sharks – Thatcher Demko (G)

San Jose’s crease has been neglected from a prospect standpoint over the last few years. Add Thatcher Demko and the Sharks get the drafts’ top goaltender prospect and a potential starter with big game experience.

Alternative Option: The Sharks struck gold with forward Tomas Hertl two years ago so why not head back to the well and consider fellow Czech David Pastrnak?

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Thatcher Demko

 

 

21st St. Louis Blues – Adrian Kempe (LW)

Swedes seem to find success in St. Louis and the young (late birthday) Adrian Kempe could find himself spending some of his future in Missouri. He’s a big player who balances his scoring abilities and physicality well.

Alternative Option: The Blues have plenty of options on the board and with a strong NHL roster in place, high potential players in Josh Ho-Sang or Roland McKeown might be worth the long-term investment.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Roland McKeown

 

 

Jared McCann of the Soo Greyhounds has a bright future and one team will cash in on his huge potential (Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images)

Jared McCann of the Soo Greyhounds has a bright future and one team will cash in on his huge potential (Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images)

 

22nd Pittsburgh Penguins – Jared McCann (LC)

Jim Rutherford moves in as the new Penguins GM and immediately leaves an imprint by selecting Greyhounds two-way pivot Jared McCann. Inconsistencies surface from time to time but his natural scoring abilities and his defensive awareness are real assets. He may not be around when Pittsburgh picks but their scouting team has been tracking him closely all season.

Alternative Option: McCann might not likely won’t last until Pittsburgh selects so the Penguins can consider Jakub Vrana up front or perhaps Travis Sanheim or Jack Dougherty on the back end.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Nikita Scherbak

 

 

23rd Colorado Avalanche – Nikita Scherbak (LW)

From owning the 1st overall pick in 2013 to selecting 23rd in 2014, Colorado made some astonishing improvements over a calendar year. GM Greg Sherman selects intuitive playmaker Nikita Scherbak in the next step of building a competitive NHL roster.

Alternative Option: The Avs franchise could use some depth additions and Conner Bleackley is one player who would excel in that role.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Jakub Vrana

 

 

24th Anaheim Ducks – Travis Sanheim (LD)

After adding Calgary Hitmen forward Jake Virtanen earlier in the draft, Anaheim heads back to CowTown for teammate Travis Sanheim. The big wiry defenseman used the Under-18 World Championship as a launching pad to lift his game to new heights and a legitimate first round selection.

Alternative Option: Jack Dougherty and Roland McKeown are two defensemen with bright careers. Look for high upside forwards Nick Schmaltz, Josh Ho-Sang or David Pastrnak to get consideration, especially with Anaheim holding an extra 1st rounder.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Roland McKeown

 

 

25th Boston Bruins – David Pastrnak (RW)

The Bruins remain one of the most feared teams in the NHL but adding some more skill would strike a different kind of “fear” into its opponents. David Pastrnak’s one-on-one abilities and slick puck handling skills are capable of creating that offensive fear.

Alternative Option: The Bruins’ blue line could use some added depth and GM Peter Chiarelli will address that if opportunity presents itself. Cue Travis Sanheim, Roland McKeown or possibly a shutdown defender like Josh Jacobs.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Brendan Lemieux

 

 

Barrie Colts skilled agitator Brendan Lemieux learnt his skill from NHL father Claude Lemieux (Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images)

Barrie Colts skilled agitator Brendan Lemieux learnt his skill from NHL father Claude Lemieux (Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images)

26th Montreal Canadiens – Brendan Lemieux (LW)

After a 2013 draft that presented the Canadiens with six selections in the opening three rounds, Montreal won’t have the quantity of picks this time around so making a smart pick is crucial. It was 21 years ago that Montreal used the exact 26th pick to draft super-pest Claude Lemieux, so why add his son Brendan, who plays the same pesky way?

Alternative Option: The Habs have shown a fairly strong CHL bias and Nikolay Goldobin or Josh Ho-Sang would be worthwhile gambles.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Brendan Lemieux

 

 

 

 

27th Chicago Blackhawks – Nikolay Goldobin (LC/RW)

Nikolay Goldobin produced just one less point than top draft eligible OHL scorer Michael Dal Colle and he did it playing with far less talent in Sarnia. With a history of insulating offensive and creative players (see Patrick Kane), Goldobin would flourish in the ‘Hawks system.

Alternative Option: It’s been a few years since Chicago drafted a defenseman high but rearguards like Jack Dougherty, Roland McKeown or Marcus Pettersson could spark their interest. Could Joel Quenneville’s second cousin, John Quenneville be a target?

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Nikolay Goldobin

 

 

 

28th Tampa Bay Lightning (formerly NYR) – Jack Dougherty (RD)

Underrated in draft circles, Jack Dougherty is a high potential defender with an ability to develop into a minute-munching impact player. Dougherty is calm under pressure and executes safe passes leaving little risk in his approach.

Alternative Option: Tampa Bay will likely target a defenseman with one of their two 1st round selections. Julius Honka would be a nice get at 28th but if not, McKeown or a riskier pick in DeAngelo should also be available.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Travis Sanheim

 

 

 

29th Los Angeles Kings – Conner Bleackley (RC)

The Kings delivered the Stanley Cup to Orange County for the second time in three seasons and their roster full of heart-and-soul, high-character players was a major reason. Conner Bleackley projects to be that sort of player and offers a smart two-way game with a nice balance of grit and skill.

Alternative Option: Nick Schmaltz didn’t have the best draft season as scouts identified some concerns in his game but he seems like a player that the Kings would fancy. Eric Cornel would be a sensible long-term player with intriguing upside as well.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Eric Cornel

 

 

 

30th New Jersey Devils ** – Jakub Vrana (RW)

Lou Lamoriello enters his 23rd draft as Devils GM and hopes to make good on a selection that was once taken away from him. Despite moving back 19 spots from where they originally should be selecting, New Jersey will be excited to grab a dynamic winger in Jakub Vrana.

Alternative Option: Vrana may be long gone by the time the 30th pick rolls around and the Devils will need a back-up plan. Windsor’s Josh Ho-Sang might appeal to them. New Jersey native Tony DeAngelo holds some tremendous offensive upside despite some serious red flags.

Rossy’s Ideal Target: Tony DeAngelo

**New Jersey Devils will receive the 30th overall pick regardless of their final standing as penalty for cap circumvention in signing Ilya Kovalchuk

 

 

2nd Round

Roland McKeown of the Frontenacs (Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images)

Roland McKeown of the Frontenacs (Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images)

31st Buffalo Sabres – Roland McKeown (RD)

With three 2nd round selections, Buffalo takes a homerun swing on Roland McKeown, a gifted puck moving defenseman just beginning to tap his potential.

32nd Florida Panthers – Josh Ho-Sang (C/RW)

The Panthers add a much needed winger in Josh Ho-Sang. He is an extremely dynamic forward with the potential to develop into a star.

33rd St. Louis Blues (formerly EDM) – Nick Schmaltz (RC)

Nick joins older brother and former 1st round selection, Jordan Schmaltz in St. Louis offering them some high-end offensive skills up front.

34th Calgary Flames – Eric Cornel (LW)

A move to wing mid-way through his draft year sparked Eric Cornel’s confidence and helped this high potential forward flash his true skill set.

35th New York Islanders – Dominik Masin (LD)

Dominik Masin is a steady stay-at-home defenseman that quickly established himself as one of the draft’s top defenders down the stretch.

36th Vancouver Canucks – Anton Karlsson (RW)

The Canucks have been way too easy to play against, so adding gritty winger Anton Karlsson would add some spunk to their top-nine.

37th Carolina Hurricanes – John Quenneville (LW)

Last year the ‘Canes only had four selections so 2014 is their time to improve their team depth. John Quenneville isn’t the smoothest skater but his instincts and ability to play throughout the lineup will be coveted.

38th Anaheim Ducks (formerly LAK, CBJ & TOR) – Ryan Donato (RC)

The Anaheim Ducks have a few extra picks to play with and choose to take on top high schooler Ryan Donato, the son of former Bruins’ forward Ted Donato.

Sarnia Sting's Anthony DeAngelo led all OHL defenseman in scoring in 2013-14 (Terry Wilson/OHL Images)

Sarnia Sting’s Anthony DeAngelo led all OHL defenseman in scoring in 2013-14 (Terry Wilson/OHL Images)

39th Buffalo Sabres (formerly MIN & WPG) – Anthony DeAngelo (RD)

Aggressive on draft weekend, the Sabres have the luxury of taking Tony DeAngelo, a passionate and volatile defenseman who projects as a future PP QB.

40th Ottawa Senators – Brayden Point (RC)

With just four picks in the draft, Ottawa feels the pressure to land some talent and competitive pivot Brayden Point could be an ideal target after notching 91 points for Moose Jaw, albeit as an undersized forward.

41st New Jersey Devils – Marcus Pettersson (LD)

With a focus on rebuilding, New Jersey opts for converted defenseman Marcus Pettersson in hopes of cashing in on his impressive puck moving game.

42nd Nashville Predators – Jack Glover (RD)

Carving a niche at the draft for identifying top defenders, Nashville chooses American Jack Glover for their next development project.

43rd Arizona Coyotes – Jayce Hawryluk (RC)

The Phoenix Coyotes are hard to predict at the draft but there has to be interest in sparkplug forward Jayce Hawryluk, a player who’d fit well in the desert dogs’ system.

44th Washington Capitals – Ryan MacInnis (LC)

Promoted to Capitals GM after George McPhee’s firing, Brian MacLellan will be looking to put his stamp on this team and Ryan MacInnis might be his target after his father, Al MacInnis, played with MacLellan on the Calgary Flames for three years.

45th Dallas Stars – Brett Pollock (LW)

Brett Pollock’s development was like a steady ladder climb and he topped out serving as a vital member of his WHL and Memorial Cup Championship Oil Kings team. Plays a similar game to Stars’ prospect Brett Ritchie.

46th Nashville Predators (formerly DET) – Nicolas Aube-Kubel (RW)

Despite skating in the shadow of high scoring Red Wings’ prospect Anthony Mantha, crafty winger Aubé-Kubel’s skill level still stood out making him a great candidate for Nashville and their hunt for offensive options.

47th Columbus Blue Jackets – Ondrej Kase (LW)

The stocked prospect cupboards in Columbus allow the Blue Jackets to invest in Ondrej Kase, a gifted skater and dazzling puck handler.

48th Philadelphia Flyers – Johnathan MacLeod (RD)

High character two-way defenseman Johnathan MacLeod is capable of punishing opponents with hard hits and his suffocating defensive style is exactly what the Flyers need.

49th Buffalo Sabres (formerly MIN) – Alex Nedeljkovic (G)

With no stud goaltender of the future in their pipeline, Buffalo adds American puck stopper Alex Nedeljkovic. His athleticism and compete level are capable of dominating games.

50th Tampa Bay Lightning – Vladislav Kamenev (LC)

GM Steve Yzerman plucks Vladislav Kamenev from the KHL in hopes of getting the top ranked Russian not playing in North America to come overseas.

51st San Jose Sharks – Justin Kirkland (LW)

Raw power forward, Justin Kirkland, has the upside, two-way acumen and strong possession game that the Sharks are looking for as a piece of their mini-rebuild.

52nd St. Louis Blues – Brycen Martin (LD)

Broncos defenseman Brycen Martin continues to search for his ideal playing style but flashes of promising offensive skills and a developing defensive game make him defender a coach could easily mold.

53rd San Jose Sharks (formerly PIT) – Joshua Jacobs (RD)

The Sharks traded away Douglas Murray acquiring this pick and Josh Jacobs can replace some of Murray’s physicality but also add some evolving offensive talents.

54th Calgary Flames (formerly COL) – Jake Walman (LD)

Coming out of the OJHL after a breakout season, Jake Walman is a true wildcard for the draft. This former forward turned defenseman could be a homerun pick with proper development in Calgary.

55th Anaheim Ducks – Luc Snuggerud (LD)

Named Minnesota’s top defenseman, Luc Snuggerud is a puck moving defenseman that displays strong hockey sense in all three zones. He’s flying under the radar a bit especially since his game doesn’t have many glaring weaknesses.

56th Boston Bruins – Edgars Kulda (LW/C)

With a Memorial Cup MVP and Championship in his pocket, Oil Kings’ import forward Edgars Kulda enters the draft with plenty of ammo. The Bruins select a player who can control the game with an impressive high panic threshold and confident puck skills.

57th New York Islanders (formerly MTL) – Mason McDonald (G)

GM Garth Snow attempts to end the need for overpaying and trading for expensive goaltenders by drafting Mason McDonald in hopes of eventually icing a homegrown netminder.

58th Arizona Coyotes (formerly CHI) – Alex Peters (LD)

The Coyotes add rangy defenseman Alex Peters. His poised demeanor and attention to detail would transition nicely into Tippett’s stingy defensive system.

59th New York Rangers – Dysin Mayo (RD)

Another member of the WHL and Memorial Cup Champions, Dysin Mayo worked his way into the Oil Kings’ top four displaying improved defensive commitments while excelling in his usual puck moving game.

60th Columbus Blue Jackets (formerly LAK) – Sebastian Aho (LD)

Jarmo Kekalainen selected forwards with seven of his eight picks last year. Adding its second defenseman in highly regarded Swede, Sebastian Aho, is an intelligent decision for Columbus. Undersized yet feisty, nothing about Aho’s game is “small” besides, of course, his height measurements.

Follow @RossyYoungblood on Twitter for all your #NHLDraft coverage

 

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