Now that the CSB has released the final rankings for the upcoming NHL Entry Draft, it is time for us to start focusing our own efforts towards how see the 2008 Entry Draft breaking down.
We think that while our fellow prospect evaluators have done a solid job breaking down the players and where they should be ranked. We decided to look at the draft based on where a prospect would actually help both himself and his drafting team.
When we look at 2008 it really is the year of the defenseman as there are so many very talented defenders out there worthy of becoming solid contributors to the NHL. What makes this crop so special is because this is also such a diverse group with each prospect offering up some very special talents.
Having said that at the same time there are also some very talented forwards out their as well but in all honesty the majority of them will all come with the same catch: “smallish in size and physique”.
And before anyone really tries to do the good old mock draft there is a potential that once again hockey politics will become a factor in whether or not players from
With the current NHL/IIHF Player Transfer Agreement now up for negotiation; there have been rumblings that the
At the very least it will offer some drama at the draft as we think there are at least 5 Europeans who deserve to be selected in the top 20. For now we will include them since we are also going to redo this mock draft at least 2-3 times given how the NHL Playoffs and Draft Combine go.
So here are OUR First 5 picks:
There needs are at every position but we think that while they can point at Vincent Lecavalier, Martin St. Louis and Dan Boyle as great starting points; at the same time those star players are going the lack of change and will want out.
Whether it is Lecavalier or
Steve Stamkos of the Sarnia Sting as the future replacement. Stamkos is an amazing offensive talent who can do it all on offense.
Stamkos is a very poise young man who one day will wear a “C” for someone, in the meantime we think he could make the jump right away to the NHL as Stamkos can pass, create and has several different shots. The one other thing Stamkos does which is expected of any star player is that he makes those he plays with that much better.
Stamkos put up a 58-47-105 season on a not so talented Sarnia Sting team while also helping Team
However we also have this gut feeling that if the Lightning ownership issue does get resolved and Feaster actually is allowed to spend some money then do not be surprised if the Lightning shift gears and address a serious hole on the blueline by selecting instead Zach Bogosian of the Peterborough Petes (more on him later).
Pietrangelo is a 6’3 200 is one of the smartest players in this current crop. This is one of the most mature 17 year olds we have seen in years, He adapts to the situations without losing a beat; whether it is a read on the power play or trying to kill a penalty, Pietrangelo rarely makes mistakes or gets caught out of position.
If Pietrangelo had a better supporting cast then more people would understand why we say he will go to the Kings with the second pick. Pietrangelo is coming off a 13-40-53 season
That said we expect to appease the Thrasher superstar that the Thrasher will select Nikita Filatov of CSKA in
We saw Filatov playing with Ranger prospects Artem Anisimov and Alexi Cherepanov and Filatov was flat out impressive, 7 games 4-5-9 as in our eyes
What would you like to choose from? His speed, his skill set or his creativity? The only concern (for the Thrashers) might be how long will it take for Filatov to fill out his body but they will still select him to add him to Angelo Esposito who they got in the Hossa trade.
Even if Kovalchuk wants out of the Thrashers then at the least they have some firepower to replace him with.
Bogosian is a 6’ 1 190 lb defender who most like better than Alex Pietrangelo as he is a very mature
Crafty player not afraid of contact to make a play, and does not get enough credit for his defensive play but what the Blues need is a prospect who is willing to work hard and sacrifice for the team. Bogosian will do exactly that.
We start with his 13-37-50 numbers, toss in being the best defenseman at the World Juniors and carrying the Guelph Storm on his back all season. Add in that despite Doughty being the smallest of the first drafted defensemen; Doughty also happens to be the best two-way defender.
We are talking just as much an offensive weapon as Bobby Sanguinetti and just a shade less a defender as Marc Staal.
Doughty though was asked to do too much by the Guelph Storm and even Team Canada (he averaged close to 30 minutes a game) so the wear and tear along with his barely 6 foot frame is why he drops to here.
The Islanders luck out here until they do their typical trading away of superior prospects.
Coming up will be picks 6-10