MOCK!

Lowetide
June 24 2013 01:20PM

I don't do mock drafts, but with this year's edition of the draft full of more plot twists than a Whodunit, I thought it might be fun. Hope you enjoy it!

TOP 5

  • Colorado at #1: L Jonathan Drouin. Drouin's outstanding season is too difficult to ignore. Does more than anyone else to contribute to goals, the most difficult thing to do in the game. I think he is a special offensive player.
  • Florida at #2: C Nathan MacKinnon. Absolutely a plug and play, he should step in immediately and should be an early Calder favorite.Could certainly go number one overall. 
  • Tampa Bay at #3: D Seth Jones. Incredible that he could fall this far, and the Lightning would have to consider themselves extremely fortunate to land a franchise defenseman at this number. If the two Q players do go off the board as I've described, suspect the Lightning will receive a lot of offers for this selection.
  • Nashville at #4: C Sasha Barkov: This is the selection I'm most comfortable with in the top 5. Nashville needs a franchise C and Barkov is a plug and play.
  • Carolina at #5: L Valeri Nichushkin. The big Russian had an enormous impact on the draft at this year's NHL combine. I think he has a huge impact on the Oilers selection at #7.

FIVE THROUGH TEN

  • Calgary at #6: C Elias Lindholm. Lindholm has an impressive resume and could come to the NHL next season. Among the best offensive players available in this year's draft.
  • Edmonton at #7: C Sean Monahan. Outstanding 2-way center with enough offense to be considered a strong 2line C candidate when he arrives in the NHL. This is a 'perfect fit' for Edmonton.
  • Buffalo at #8: D Darnell Nurse: If Monahan isn't there, I expect the Oilers to take Nurse or deal down. Buffalo takes Nurse and he could come quickly to the NHL.
  • New Jersey at #9 D Rasmus Ristolainen:  A nice range of skills, could play sooner than later. NJD will like the fact that he has played in a league against men and flourished. 
  • Dallas at #10: C Curtis Lazar: Another perfect match for team and player. Lazar impresses with spirited play and attention to defensive detail, and is tough to play against. The offense helps too.

ELEVEN THROUGH TWENTY

  • Philadelphia at #11: C Fred Gauthier. Perfect Flyer selection. Don't worry, Oilers will have their chance to get him when Holmgren decides to trade good players again.
  • Phoenix at #12: C Hunter Shinkaruk: Phoenix takes the best pure offensive player remaining in the draft. They'll have to wait a couple of years (probably) but he should impact the offense on arrival.
  • Winnipeg at #13: C Bo Horvat. Winnipeg stays where they are and get an outstanding center who probably has enough offense to play on the second line when he arrives as an NHL player. Great value.
  • Columbus at #14: C Max Domi. Solid offense and a determined player, I do think his draft number suffered a little because of his Memorial Cup performance.
  • New York Islanders at #15: L Anthony Mantha. Scored 50 goals in the QMJHL this past season, and there is some talk he is NHL ready. The Islanders have to like the combination.
  • Buffalo at #16: C Alex Wennberg. Taking a defenseman in the top 10 allows the Sabres to reach a little for this lanky Swede who has a nice range of skills.
  • Ottawa at #17: L Kerby Rychel. A trending prospect, skilled and with a mean streak. Ottawa passes on some nice defensive options to take him, reaching a little.
  • Detroit at #18: D Ryan Pulock. A nice selection at this number, Pulock can do it all and has a plus shot. Best of all, the Red Wings will be very patient with him.
  • Columbus at #19: D Josh Morrissey. Fast, skilled and a player who impressed everyone with his season.
  • San Jose at #20: C Nicolas Petan. Small but very skilled. His offensive potential gets him here.

TWENTY-ONE THROUGH THIRTY

  • Toronto at #21: D Nikita Zadorov. Big Russian defender falls with the other blue in this draft, but represents solid value for the Leafs at this number.
  • Calgary Flames at #22: G Zachary Fucale. The Flames start the march of masked men in this draft by taking the highest ranked G on Craig Button's board.
  • Washington Capitals at #23: L Adam Erne. Skill winger has some toughness, should cover this bet.
  • Vancouver Canucks at #24: C JT Compher. Skill C is also an agitator.
  • Montreal at #25: C Laurent Daupin. Impressive skill, maybe a slight reach.
  • Anaheim at #26: L Artturi Lehkonen. Undersized skill winger with terrific potential.
  • Columbus at #27: D Mirco Mueller. Smart defender with plenty of skill.
  • Calgary at #28: D Madison Bowey. Terrific skater, good value at this number.
  • Dallas at #29: R Valentin Zykov. Physical skill player, he's the return for Jaromir Jagr. Quality NHL prosect.
  • Chicago at #30: C Ryan Hartman: Physical player, tough to play against.

As for the Oilers, I think they could pick 4th, 7th, 10th, 13th or trade out of the first round altogether. Completely unpredictable. What a week!

C2a6955161684b5e3189319acfa5ebe4
Lowetide has been one of the Oilogosphere's shining lights for over a century. You can check him out here at OilersNation and at lowetide.ca. He is also the host of Lowdown with Lowetide weekday mornings 10-noon on Team 1260.
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#151 k
June 25 2013, 10:46AM
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Citizen David wrote:

The difference is I think Barkov is a good player. The fact that he's on the Finish Olympic team doesn't mean Gagner sucks. You know who Gagner has to compete with? Crosby, Stamkos, Tavares, Duchene, Thorton, Getzlaf, Spezza, Toews, Bergeron, Richards, the Staals, and the list goes on.

That's the problem citizen dave, Gags isn't good enough to compete against any of those centres you've mentioned.

And your defense of him is - since the Oilers haven't played in the playoffs we don't know how great he'll do - dang he could become a beast!

Dave get off the computor, grab a coffee and some fresh air and clear that head.

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#152 EHH Team
June 25 2013, 10:47AM
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wiseguy wrote:

I wonder if Seth Jones will play for the Canadian team? Team Finland does not equal Team Canada.

He'd have to change his birth Certificate.

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#153 Citizen David
June 25 2013, 10:49AM
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k wrote:

That's the problem citizen dave, Gags isn't good enough to compete against any of those centres you've mentioned.

And your defense of him is - since the Oilers haven't played in the playoffs we don't know how great he'll do - dang he could become a beast!

Dave get off the computor, grab a coffee and some fresh air and clear that head.

Have you watched Gagner in the playoffs?

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#154 keilan
June 25 2013, 10:52AM
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Citizen David wrote:

Have you watched Gagner in the playoffs?

Dave, step away from the keyboard.

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#155 Spydyr
June 25 2013, 10:52AM
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Citizen David wrote:

Have you watched Gagner in the playoffs?

I have not drank battery acid but I'm pretty sure that would suck.

Sometimes you don't have to see things to know the outcome.

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#156 Citizen David
June 25 2013, 10:54AM
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DSF wrote:

So, in other words, Gagner is far, far from being among the best at his position.

While I agree it is easier to earn a spot on the Finnish team, you have to realize that Barkov is only 18.

He is the youngest player ever to score in the SM Liga and that includes some pretty good players.

Here's another scouting report for your enjoyment:

Barkov is one of the greatest NHL Entry Draft prospects to ever come out of Finland.

He is a tremendously advanced player, with elite hockey sense. He regularly logged 20 minutes this season, which is rare for a September-born 17-year-old in Finland's top league.

He has an incredible amount of patience, vision, and awareness. He can slow the game down and dictate the tempo, as well as be the focal point on the power play.

He also has a high level of defensive skill, showing ability at a very young age to be a quality defensive center. He has good technique on faceoffs, as he keeps his hands low, pulling pucks back quickly.

Despite having good puck skills, he is not a player who will consistently try to stickhandle around players. He is selective, but he has the talent to create offense out of nothing.

Barkov is a big, strong player. He will not crash and bang, but he protects the puck well. His skating is a tick below average. It is possible he could improve to an average skater, but his game will not be predicated on blazing past defenders. When bringing the puck out of his zone, he tends to prefer making a good pass rather than rushing the puck up.

Submitted by: Corey Pronman of Hockey Prospectus.

Sounds like he is the real deal.

He does sound like the real deal. Below average skating is a massive caution sign. The AHL and Europe are filled with players that can put the puck in the net and make a play, but can't keep pace with the NHL.

If I had to bet I would suggest Barkov becomes a good second line center. He'll have to really work on that skating though.

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#157 k
June 25 2013, 10:57AM
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Citizen David wrote:

He does sound like the real deal. Below average skating is a massive caution sign. The AHL and Europe are filled with players that can put the puck in the net and make a play, but can't keep pace with the NHL.

If I had to bet I would suggest Barkov becomes a good second line center. He'll have to really work on that skating though.

And people call DSF a troll

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#158 DSF
June 25 2013, 10:58AM
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Citizen David wrote:

He does sound like the real deal. Below average skating is a massive caution sign. The AHL and Europe are filled with players that can put the puck in the net and make a play, but can't keep pace with the NHL.

If I had to bet I would suggest Barkov becomes a good second line center. He'll have to really work on that skating though.

Read carefully.

Pronman said a "tick" below average and could improve to average.

Hardly a "massive caution sign".

Henrik Sedin's skating is also a "tick" below average.

He's done okay.

Barkov will be Nashville's #1C and I expect that will happen in October.

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#159 Citizen David
June 25 2013, 11:04AM
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DSF wrote:

Read carefully.

Pronman said a "tick" below average and could improve to average.

Hardly a "massive caution sign".

Henrik Sedin's skating is also a "tick" below average.

He's done okay.

Barkov will be Nashville's #1C and I expect that will happen in October.

I'm not against Barkov. I'm able to like players I'm cautious about or don't think are the whole package.

Barkov is interesting. Wouldn't be surprised if he becomes a number one center, wounded be surprised if he becomes just a number three.

I've never watched Barkov play in the NHL so I can't form an opinion on his skating. Skating has been a knock against Gagner but he keeps up. He's improved it to average so it can be done.

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#160 Citizen David
June 25 2013, 11:05AM
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DSF wrote:

Read carefully.

Pronman said a "tick" below average and could improve to average.

Hardly a "massive caution sign".

Henrik Sedin's skating is also a "tick" below average.

He's done okay.

Barkov will be Nashville's #1C and I expect that will happen in October.

I don't think Barkov is in Mackinnon's league though.

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#161 DSF
June 25 2013, 11:34AM
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Citizen David wrote:

I don't think Barkov is in Mackinnon's league though.

He's close...but McKinnon will likely produce more offense.

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#162 madjam
June 25 2013, 05:57PM
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Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty) wrote:

Is it Sunday yet?

Prelude to Sunday . MacKenzie now ranks Ristolainen 7th behind Monohan . MacKenzie has this to say about Risto - he might have the best shot of all the draftees . Better than Pulock @101MPH ? Now that would be something if his shot is in that range or better than Pulock's . To think we are thinking of Nurse at 7th who has a below average shot turns my stomach . Quick call the Doctor , no more slow-mo shooters.

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#163 madjam
June 25 2013, 05:58PM
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Sorry , make that Risto at 8th and Nurse @9th I believe .

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#164 DSF
June 25 2013, 08:03PM
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G Money wrote:

My laughter has gone from an outright belly laugh to the nervous chuckle that happens when someone says something really dumb.

"Barkov will be ...". "Barkov is ..." "Barkov is better than ..."

Please. Barkov hasn't proven sh*t. He hasn't played a game in the NHL.

Players with more glowing scouting reports than his have turned into duds when they hit the NHL.

Players with better stats on a better team in a better league (Cervenka anyone?) have turned into duds when they hit the NHL. Two-way players especially have a tough time adapting, because the style of play, player speed, and the coverage angles are completely different than the Euro leagues.

Barkov may indeed turn into an elite 1st line C. He may also turn into no better than a capable 2C or 3C. Or his game may simply not translate and he'll be a flash in the pan and a trivia question a few years from now.

Young Sammy, on the other hand, flaws and all, managed to put up an ACTUAL .79 ppg in the ACTUAL NHL.

That puts him into legitimately borderline elite territory - he's 55th in scoring in a league that ices 90 first line players. (For the record, just a few of the more notable players he finished ahead of: Hossa, Eberle, Couture, J. Carter, P. Bergeron, Krejci, P. Marleau).

As we all know, Sammy does have some serious flaws to his game. That's what makes him a solid 2C as opposed to a legit 1C.

Will Barkov be better than him someday? Maybe. Way too many question marks around any prospect to say for sure.

Will Barkov be better than Sammy in Year 1? Not a f*cking chance in hell.

Bet?

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#165 Ca$h-Money!
June 26 2013, 06:13AM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

Lindholm wouldn't be a bad choice, that's not my point.

Lindholm won't be here until next season, as he has contract obligations with the SEL.

Barkov also is projected to be a two way forward, however, Jari Kurri has watched this kid for years, who also is GM for team Finland.

My money is on Barkov.

That's fine. If I had to guess I would pick Barkov too, but that's all it would be. Their NHLe values are identical, but Lindholms come in fewer minutes/game in a league with better predictive value, so we've got to say that it's pretty close. To then through in our best defensive defenseman, whose on a relatively cheap contract just entering his prime, is simply too much to make the move.

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#166 The Soup Fascist
June 26 2013, 10:05AM
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DSF wrote:

Bet?

I am totally basing this on highlights and clips as I am not a big follower of the professional leagues in Finland. However Barkov does appear to be a very awkward skater.

I know it is only important that he gets there, not how he gets there, and big guys can look awkward sometimes (see Henrik Samuelsson) but the NHL is a different league than Barkov recently played in.

"Better" is a subjective word, but I would be shocked if Barkov put up more points than Gagner. The kid is still 17 years old and will be when rookie camp opens.

Certainly the kid is a man-child and a great piece of clay to work with, but to expect a 17 year old to light it up in a new league, in a new country, on smaller ice is a touch presumptuous. No?

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