Wednesday, June 20, 2007

2007 NHL Mock Draft

Here is my Mock Draft for the first round of this year's NHL Draft.

1. Chicago Blackhawks: Pat Kane, Forward, London Knights(OHL)

Kyle Turris is also a possibility. When I first saw Kane play two years ago, my first thought was that he reminded me of Brendan Morrison. If he lives up to the hype, he could be even better.

2. Philadelphia: James van Riemsdyk, Forward, US NTDP

JVR is big, talented, and a fairly local kid since he hails from New Jersey.

3. Phoenix: Kyle Turris, Forward, Burnaby Express(BCHL)

Phoenix will probably run to the podium to select whichever one of the top three fall to them, unless the guy they really want is already drafted, in which case, another team with a lot of picks will try to trade up.

4. Los Angeles: Karl Alzner, Defenseman, Calgary Hitmen(WHL)

People have mentioned the possibility of LA trading down, but is anyone really going to be clamoring to get this pick? The Kings would like another defenseman and they’ll take the best available.

5. Washington: Alexei Cherepanov, Forward Omsk(Russia)

This is where things get crazy. If the Caps select anyone short of me, I won’t be surprised. I went with Cherepanov since I think he might have the most upside

6. Edmonton: Jakub Voracek, Forward Halifax Mooseheads(QMJHL)

Almost everyone seems to have Voracek here, so I’ll be a sheep. The Oilers could try to move up since they’ve got a couple first round picks to work with.

7. Columbus: Keaton Ellerby, Defenseman Kamloops Blazers(WHL)

Conventional wisdom seems to have Columbus taking a defenseman. I think Ellerby will be the second one to go.

8. Boston: Sam Gagner, Forward, London Knights(OHL)

I think this would be a nice steal for the Bruins. Gagner is probably more talented than he’s been credited for.

9. St. Louis: Ryan McDonagh, Defenseman Cretin-Derham Hall(USHSW)

Instead of waiting until their later first round picks to get a defenseman, St. Louis grabs an extremely talented player early on, and then will gamble on forwards later on.

10. Florida: Kevin Shattenkirk, Defenseman, US NTDP

I don’t really like anybody in this spot. There’s a lot of talented players, but none that seem to fit Florida’s needs. Florida desperately needs a goalie, but there’s none to be had this early, so they may try to trade down with somebody who really wants one of the good centers available.

11. Carolina: Brandon Sutter, Forward, Red Deer Rebels(WHL)

Carolina mortgaged their future for their Stanley Cup run two years ago, so they need lots of help to refill their prospect pool. They’ll take the best player available.

12. Montreal: Angelo Esposito, Forward, Quebec Remparts(QMJHL)

This seems like kind of a no-brainer if Esposito does indeed last this long.

13. Toronto: Logan Couture, Forward, Ottawa 67’s(OHL)

Another fairly local player that has dropped a little bit.

14. Colorado: Lars Eller, Forward, Frolunda(Sweden)

Eller is Danish. I find that funnier than I probably should.

15. Edmonton: Max Pacioretty, Sioux City Musketeers(USHL)

The third piece of the Ryan Smyth trade is a prototypical power forward to replace Smyth.

16. Anaheim: Jonathon Blum, Defenseman, Vancouver Giants(WHL)

Maybe a bit of a reach, but the Ducks need some new blood on defense, and Blum is a Southern California kid.

17. New York Rangers: Mikael Backlund, Forward, Vasteras(Sweden)

He’s another kid that has dropped a lot over the past couple of months. This is probably low enough that the Rangers will be willing to gamble.

18. Calgary: Colton Gillies, Forward, Saskatoon Blades(WHL)

I would not be shocked to see Calgary take any WHL player here.

19. Minnesota: David Perron, Forward, Lewiston Maineiacs(QMJHL)

The Wild will try to add a little skill and flash to go with their legions of grinders. Plus, he plays in the Q, which automatically bumps him up a couple spots on the Wild’s board.

20. Pittsburgh: Maxim Mayorov, Forward, Leninogorsk(Russia)

The Penguins already have some excellent young talent. They’ll take the gamble on being able to sign Mayorov for the potential to have the most exciting forward corps in the NHL.

21. Phoenix: Tommy Cross, Defenseman, Westminster Prep(USHSE)

A lot of good defensive prospects here, but I think Phoenix will go with Cross.

22. Montreal: Nick Petrecki, Defenseman, Omaha Lancers(USHL)

Montreal likes American prospects, and should be pleased that either Petrecki or Cross will be available here.

23. Nashville: Thomas Hickey, Defenseman, Seattle Thunderbirds(WHL)

A bit of a drop for Hickey. He could easily swap positions with Kevin Shattenkirk

24. St. Louis: Zach Hamill, Forward, Everett Silvertips(WHL)

The Blues took a bit of a gamble taking a defenseman with their first pick, but it pays off with a talented offensive player still available at 24.

25. Vancouver: Brett MacLean, Forward, Oshawa Generals(OHL)

MacLean is probably the best player available at this point

26. St. Louis: Oscar Moller, Forward, Chilliwack Chiefs(WHL)

I’d be kind of surprised if St. Louis kept all three first round picks, but if they do, I think they’d try for another forward that can score.

27. Detroit: Billy Sweat, Forward, Colorado College(WCHA)

In honor of the Blog That Yost Built, I wanted to say Detroit would select “the best available Jiri or Tomas” I don’t think they should pass on Sweatt though, who looks like he’ll be able to contribute at the NHL level some day, and who I think has more offensive ability than he is credited for.

28. Washington: Logan MacMillan, Forward, Halifax Mooseheads(QMJHL)

MacMillan is a safer choice after the Caps gambled on Cherepanov.

29. Ottawa: Riley Nash, Forward, Salmon Arm Silverbacks(BCHL)

*shrug* I’ll take a shot at a wildcard in the draft.

30. Edmonton: Tyson Sexsmith, Goalie, Vancouver Giants(WHL)

We can’t go the entire first round without a goalie. If Edmonton keeps all of their picks, I think they’ll take the first goalie of the draft.