Now that the 2011 NHL Draft is over, the 2012 NHL Draft can officially begin. Frankly, 2012 should be a much more fun year to cover than this past year for American/NCAA fans.
I decided to take a rough crack at a list of players that could be in consideration for being drafted next year. Of course, if this past draft has taught us anything, it's that lists this early shouldn't be taken too seriously, since what a player does in his draft year is extremely, extremely important, but it's still fun to try and take a look ahead.
I don't exactly have the budget to make a complete comprehensive list of players from around the world, so I just stuck with players that I've seen, with a couple high-end guys thrown in that I've heard are pretty likely to be top round picks. I split things up like the NHL Central Scouting early watch lists with 'A' 'B' and 'C' prospects. 'A' would be a top three round prospect. 'B' is pretty likely to be drafted somewhere, and 'C' is maybe a late round pick.
Jordan Schmaltz-Sioux City(USHL)
Cliff Watson-Team Wisconsin/Appleton United
Justin Selman-Sioux Falls(USHL)
AJ Michaelson-Apple Valley(MN HS)
Lou Nanne-Edina (MN HS)
Dylan Steman-Maple Grove (MN HS)
Will Merchant-Eagan (MN HS)
Adam Johnson-Hibbing (MN HS)
Jake Randolph-Duluth East (MN HS)
Justin Kloos-Lakeville South(MN HS)
Sam Piazza-Chicago Mission
Robbie Gawron-Chicago Fury
TJ Roo-Totino Grace
Ian Brady-Cedar Rapids
Ian Janco-Bloomington Jefferson