2018 Draft Talk.

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2018 Draft Talk.

Post #1 by Rogers Pancreas » Mon Mar 19, 2018 6:51 pm

As it stands, the St. Louis Blues are just outside the playoffs. They're only one point back, and have a game in hand, but they're up against Colorado, Dallas, and Los Angeles for a wildcard spot. The Blues' saving grace in all of this is that they have quite possibly the weakest schedule of the four, and I'm actually alright with that. If they make the playoffs, yes, that first round pick gets bumped down a few spots. But, we also don't need to worry about the lottery re-seeding their pick, giving the Blues the option of putting it off another year.

So, even though we're a few months away yet, it might not hurt to start throwing some names out there to get the group familiar. And I'll start by aiming high at Ty Smith of the Spokane Chiefs.

Cam Robinson - Dobber Prospects - January 9th: "The dynamic two-way defender continues to display his full arsenal of weapons with Spokane this season. Smith is an excellent skater who demonstrates poise and patience with the puck. His outlets are crisp and his head is always up. He’s a player you fall in love with because he always makes the right play."

Sam Cosentino - Sportsnet - December 6th: "If the on-ice package isn’t enough, look no further than character for this smooth-skating defenceman who projects to someday wear a letter in the show."

Steve Kournianos - The Draft Analyst - September 30th: "Instinctive two-way force from the blue line with exceptional hockey sense and a strong desire to join the attack and create chances. Smith’s mobility and vision seem to throw opponents into a state of confusion — his ability to transition quickly from defense to offense is excellent. He’s an effortless skater with strong balance and agility, and he can pivot with the best of them."


Bob McKenzie had the guy as the 10th best prospect, and from everything you read it's hard not to understand why. I think everyone would be happier if he was 6'1", but if that were the case we wouldn't even have the chance to talk about the guy. Besides, there is the possibility of a late growth spurt.

Case in point:

Trent Yawney still remembers the day he was coaching the Norfolk Admirals in the AHL when Duncan Keith first walked into his locker room six years ago.

"He was a snotty-nosed kid who really hadn't become a man yet," said Yawney, the former Blackhawks player and coach who is now a San Jose Sharks assistant. "He didn't know where to live and eat."

Nobody in the organization cared where Keith ate as long as he never pushed away his plate. He was generously listed at 5 feet 11 inches and 160 pounds when the Hawks selected him out of Penticton, Canada, in the second round of the 2002 NHL draft.

"I was always a real skinny kid, and if you saw old pictures of me, you'd probably think my parents weren't feeding me," Keith said jokingly. "If I wasn't playing, I'd probably weigh 150 pounds."

http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2009 ... ent-yawney
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #2 by jester » Tue Mar 20, 2018 11:23 am

I'll be curious if Hextall considers jumping up given the two firsts.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #3 by FlyHigh » Tue Mar 20, 2018 11:55 am

Be interesting to see what the price would be. Obviously there were differing motivations, but cost the Rangers a solid top-6 C (and maybe a borderline 1C) in his prime and a highly regarded young goalie just to pick up the 7 last year plus DeAngelo. And obviously cost the Flyers a late 2nd in 2015 just to move up 5 spots to pick Konecny.

A pity that the Blues aren't a bit worse, was kind of hoping they'd fall in that 10-15 range. Maybe they'll swoon at the end, 6 of their 10 games left are against teams in the playoff hunt and 2 of the remaining are a home and home with Chicago (rivalry hopefully).
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #4 by jester » Tue Mar 20, 2018 4:06 pm

Obviously depends on player evaluations, and the Flyers have done very well in the latter half of the first. But they have some options if there is a guy they really like.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #5 by Rogers Pancreas » Tue Mar 20, 2018 8:03 pm

Hextall's never really been shy about trading up, but I doubt he moves out of the first to do it. He collects first round picks like they're going out of style.

...

Unless you're suggesting that giving up the second-round pick becomes more tolerable when you also have two first-round picks.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #6 by jester » Tue Mar 20, 2018 11:26 pm

Rogers Pancreas wrote:Hextall's never really been shy about trading up, but I doubt he moves out of the first to do it. He collects first round picks like they're going out of style.

...

Unless you're suggesting that giving up the second-round pick becomes more tolerable when you also have two first-round picks.


It should be, but really depends on how they feel about the prospect pool depth. If you think there's an expected value drop off at position X, it behooves you to maximize picks prior to then.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #7 by Hovercraft » Wed Mar 21, 2018 7:27 am

Yeah I'm sure they will at least find out the prices for moving up. Pretty great work by Hextall to have 7 firsts over 4 years.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #8 by Rogers Pancreas » Sat Mar 31, 2018 12:06 am

Rasmus Sandin isn't getting much love, but if this draft year wasn't so rich in D I bet he'd be ranked higher.

Taken from Brock at OHL Prospects.blogspot.com:

8. Rasmus Sandin - Defense - Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds
Total Votes: 16
High/Low Ranking: 3rd (1x)/Outside of the Top 10 (2x)
Comments:
“I feel that team drafting Sandin is going to get something really special, particularly if he falls outside the top 20. I like everything about his game. He's smart, and he knows where to go to give his teammates options. He's a big threat on the power play and he has a big shot from the point and his hockey IQ is off the charts. He gained experience in the Swedish Hockey League before coming to North America, so he has that experience against men.” - Mike Morreale

"The type of player you really gain an appreciation for the more you see him. Early on, I saw a player who I thought lacked flash and upside. But the more I see him, the more I recognize how effective his relatively mistake free game is and how pro-ready he is. Honestly might have one of the best stretch/exit passes of any defender in the OHL. Just has great vision up ice. He has a great hockey IQ in both zones too. With Timmins out of the lineup at times, we've also seen him become more aggressive in leading the rush and looking to create scoring chances by jumping up into the play. With a strong playoff run, this guy could quietly slide into the top 20 IMO."

“Sandin’s is a cerebral two-way defender with excellent wheels who is starting to put up points for a team loaded with firepower. He won’t dazzle you like most of the top-rated defense prospects for the 2018 draft, but he picks his spots to go end-to-end, and his one-on-one play and puck poise are pretty close to pro level.” - Steve Kournianos

“There is a reason the Greyhounds went from good to Elite once Sandin committed to the program. Very aggressive in the defensive zone. Does not give the opposition much time or space and isn't afraid to use the body. Offensively he shows great vision and play making ability and has thrived on the Greyhounds 2nd power play unit and has helped make it as dangerous as their top unit.” - Peter Kneulman

“We knew the scouting report on Sandin prior to arriving in the OHL, and he's been exactly as touted and then some. He's one of those guys that is just good at everything he does. I know there are questions about his size and how he will handle the defensive game at the NHL level. But I see a guy who knows how to position himself, has the ability to keep people to the outside and boxes the opposition out in front of his goaltender, While he is not a physical defenceman, he doesn't shy away from that aspect. He has good upper body strength and can battle along the walls. Offensively, he's not at the level of a Bouchard or Merkley, but he continues to rack up points. He uses his high hockey IQ, knows when to jump into the play, make an excellent pinch - he rarely gets caught - and sees the ice very well and makes excellent passes. He has a wealth of international experience and known to have excellent leadership qualities. The tell tale story for me was when Conor Timmins was at the World Juniors and now out with an injury. Sandin filled in admirably and the Greyhounds didn't miss a beat.” - Dominic Tiano
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #9 by Rogers Pancreas » Sat Mar 31, 2018 12:14 am

I'll keep digging for info on Alexander Alexeyev. At a quick glance, the kid's 6'3", 180-ish lbs, and put up 37 in 48 playing for Red Deer. He's projected to go late in the first-round, but I question it. 1) He wears a letter for the Rebels already, which speaks volumes about his character I think, 2) he hurt his hand this year and lost a significant amount of time to showcase his skills and 3) his mom unexpectedly passed away this year, so if anyone can say they had an off-ice distraction it's this kid. He might be a good candidate for St. Louis' pick if they go and do something stupid like make the playoffs.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #10 by Rogers Pancreas » Sun Apr 08, 2018 3:14 pm

Jonny Tchonick, D, Penticton Vees, BCHL
Height: 6’0”
Weight: 175 lbs.
Shoots: Left
Born: March 3, 2000 – Penticton, British Columbia, Canada
NCAA Commitment: University of North Dakota (2018-19)
Jonny Tychonick is a highly skilled and reliable defenceman who finished off his first season in Penticton as a BCHL champion. A strong skating puck rusher who can send pinpoint passes through traffic and then likes to join the rush and help out below the goal line in the offensive zone. Quick feet give him the ability to skate effectively east to west and impress in neutral zone. Good puck skills and good anticipation with the puck on his stick. In his own end, he is evasive and can lose forecheckers with one slick move to keep the puck alive and transitioning to offence. Not very strong physically and can be knocked off the puck easily. Seems to back off when it comes to digging the puck loose in the corners and this could be just a confidence thing that he should outgrow as the long season goes on. Committed to North Dakota for 2018-19 while the Calgary Hitmen own his WHL rights.


Benoit-Olivier Groulx, LW, Halifax Mooseheads, QMJHL
Height: 6'1"
Weight: 192 lbs.
Shoots: Left
Born: February 6, 2000 – Gatineau, Quebec, Canada
Draft: 2016 QMJHL Draft – Round #1 (1st overall) by Halifax Mooseheads
Benoit-Olivier Groulx is real intelligent in every aspect of his game and does everything he is asked to do to help his team win. Has the skill set and the IQ to develop into a real offensive threat. Good core strength gives him the ability to dig deep in the corners and stay in hot pursuit of loose pucks. Plays an “in your face” style and creates a panic for defencemen to get rid of the puck quickly or he will take it away. He seems to own the game when the puck is on his stick and has the ability to set the game pace. Reacts quickly in all three zones and is a reliable two-way forward. His feet never stop moving and this creates the ability to draw penalties and get in fast on the forecheck. Not afraid of getting dirty in front of the net and getting in the middle of traffic. Understands the league and has been around it his entire life as he is the son of longtime QMJHL head coach Benoit Groulx.

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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #11 by chaosof99 » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:20 am

Flyers officially have the 19th overall pick now, and there is a 95% chance that they will pick 14th overall with the Blues' pick.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #12 by CantSeeColors » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:29 am

Two mid first round picks is a pretty nice setup.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #13 by Konecny HypeTrain Captain » Tue Apr 24, 2018 11:02 pm

Wonder if Hexy looks to package something to slide up a bit.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #14 by Rogers Pancreas » Sat Apr 28, 2018 10:42 pm

And the Blues land 14th, so the Flyers are definitely picking 14th and 19th this year.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #15 by chaosof99 » Sun Apr 29, 2018 12:55 am

The thing I don't like is Carolina picking 2nd overall, but then again I can believe that Carolina will screw it up somehow as they have been handled as a "playoff contender" for at least 5 years now and haven't made the playoffs once in that timespan.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #16 by Rogers Pancreas » Sun Apr 29, 2018 11:33 am

Joel Farabee
January 2018 – The captain of the U18 USNTDP, Farabee is a dangerous and prolific scorer amongst his age group. Blessed with top level skating ability and a mind for creating offense, the New York native can also be trusted in his own zone which facilitates further opportunities from the coaching staff. His level of play seems to rise when surrounded with high-level talent as indicated with the recent boon of production next to fellow draft-eligible prospect, Oliver Wahlstrom and top 2019 pick, Jack Hughes. While Farabee lacks ideal size, his ability to use his edges to slash in and out of lanes keeps opposing teams on their heels and keeps him off of the IR. Cam Robinson


Joel Farabee is an excellent skater, with the agility and edge work to get by defenders in one-on-one situations. He also has an outstanding first step and lightning quick acceleration. If he gets a step on a defenceman, he can blow past him and cut to the net. His top end speed is very good, and he is a threat to get behind the defence and get hit with a long breakaway pass. Farabee uses his ability to change speeds to fool defenders and create space. He has a low centre of gravity and good balance and power in his stride.

arabee has good hands and stick skills allowing him to control the puck while moving at top speed. Defenders must respect his speed, and so they back off him on the rush, creating shooting and passing lanes. Farabee has good vision and is an outstanding playmaker off the wing. He anticipates extremely well and seems to be a step ahead of the play. Farabee finds open ice without the puck and makes smart plays with it. He could stand to add some power to his shot though. This may come as he adds more muscle to his frame.

Farabee is a bit on the smallish side. He works hard to get in on the forecheck, and get to the front of the net but needs to add muscle to be more effective in this area of the game. If he can put more muscle on his frame, he could really improve this aspect of his game.

Farabee is committed to playing a strong game at both ends of the ice. He has been a key contributor to the US NTDP penalty killing units. He uses his smarts to read the play and get his body and stick into passing and shooting lanes. Farabee is also not afraid to put his body on the line and block shots. He provides effective back pressure and supports the defence down low. His defensive game is very advanced for his age and is something that will help him going forward towards a pro career. Farabee’s biggest strength might be his work ethic. He never quits during a shift, giving max effort in all three zones.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #17 by Rogers Pancreas » Sun Apr 29, 2018 11:36 am

Oliver Wahlstrom
Wahlstrom is a tremendous skater. He has a great first step, and his acceleration is lightning quick. Sometimes he is coasting in the offensive zone, and quickly changes speeds, catching his defender off guard and finding open ice. His agility and edgework is also very good, allowing him to elude defenders both with and without the puck. His balance and lower body strength allow him to win battles on the boards and fight through checks at the junior level, but can improve as he continues to get stronger.

One of the best stick handlers in the draft, Wahlstrom has an impressive array of moves. He isn’t afraid to use them in traffic either. While he won’t initiate contact, he does take hits to make offensive plays. He is a very good playmaker. Wahlstrom can extend plays and wait for a teammate to get open. Once they do, he can make a pass through the tightest of openings. He also has a very good wrist shot and outstanding release. However, it is the improvements in his shot that have taken Wahlstrom’s game up a notch.

While his shot was already at a high level, it seems it is even better this year, and Wahlstrom is using it more. He is a pure sniper, and with this aspect of his game improving he is a better and more dangerous player. Wahlstrom is taking a ton of shots, from high danger areas, and putting the puck in the back of the net. He has an outstanding snapshot, wrist shot and slap shot. His release is very quick and can fool goaltenders. He also scores goals in front of the net with good tip-in skills and the quickness to bang in rebounds.

Wahlstrom’s defensive game is a bit of a work in progress. He sometimes seems to puck watch, waiting for a turnover and a chance to go on the attack again. He needs to be more engaged in his own zone, especially if he wants to play in the middle again. Getting involved in more physical battles, and backchecking with more intensity are areas to work on.


Wahlstrom is a dominant power winger with elite puck skills, highlighted by a devastatingly accurate shot. He is one of the top goal scorers available for the draft, but he does far more than simply fill the back of the net. Not only is Wahlstrom Team USA’s top-line right wing, but he is also a key cog in both the power play and the penalty kill. Although it seems like he never turns down the opportunity to crank one towards the cage, he is blessed with an acute sense to quickly identify a defender’s intentions, then exploit the tiniest of windows and turn a seemingly harmless 1-on-1 into a clear dash for the cage. Wahlstrom has very good speed with an above-average first step. And although he is no straight-line road-runner, his footwork, balance and lateral skating ability are all excellent, and he uses a keen understanding of play development to get the extra step or two he needs to create plenty of space between the opponent and him.

Wahlstrom has very soft hands and is an excellent passer, capable of threading the needle with a slap or touch pass, or saucering one cross-ice during odd-man rushes. His puck poise for a neophyte is extraordinary, and there are multiple instances during a game when you get the impression he’s a man playing against boys. His physical play, defensive-zone awareness and ability to combine physicality with smart reads are ribbons and bows on what looks like the complete package.


. He has the best shot out of anyone I’ve watched and the variety of ways he can put the puck in the net tells me that facet of his game will translate very well to the next level. He’s also big enough that ability to handle physical play shouldn’t be a concern among scouts and GMs. Offensively, he doesn’t have any skills that are below average. Maybe there are some out there that still see him as a center, but I think if you keep him on the right side, Wahlstrom can be a legitimate top-line player someday. More likely though, he falls somewhere in the 6-10 range, and it is very improbable that he gets picked outside of the top 10. There’s just too much upside in his game for him to slip that far, and his floor is still that of an NHL regular.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #18 by Rogers Pancreas » Sun Jun 10, 2018 8:04 pm

I'd ask "how are we this close to the NHL draft, and not yet know the start time?" But, I already know the answer to that question...

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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #19 by jester » Sun Jun 10, 2018 8:16 pm

Rogers Pancreas wrote:I'd ask "how are we this close to the NHL draft, and not yet know the start time?" But, I already know the answer to that question...

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I mean, it's probably 7pm.
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #20 by Rogers Pancreas » Sun Jun 10, 2018 9:11 pm

I don't know, jester. Last year's had a listed start time of 6 PM. It's probably 7 PM, but if I'm planning of heading to a bar with a couple of friends, who are all Sabres fans, and we miss the first overall pick because we assumed, it's going to a bit of a disappointment. Ya know?
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Re: 2018 Draft Talk.

Post #21 by jester » Sun Jun 10, 2018 9:22 pm

Rogers Pancreas wrote:I don't know, jester. Last year's had a listed start time of 6 PM. It's probably 7 PM, but if I'm planning of heading to a bar with a couple of friends, who are all Sabres fans, and we miss the first overall pick because we assumed, it's going to a bit of a disappointment. Ya know?


I mean, I found 7pm based on looking at the schedule from last year ...

I am sure the TV networks are the ones driving the schedule, and I'm sure they will put out word.

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