We're in the final days leading up to the NHL Draft, which begins a week from Friday. So far, I've posted draft profiles on 28 different players from all over the draft boad, which as a reminder, can be found here, with more to come in the next week. A few people have asked about my full draft list. I'll be posting that next week.
In the meantime, here is some Draft content i've seen over the past week that caught my interest...
College Hockey Inc. put together a nice little piece on a strategy that I've advocated for some time about drafting players that have already shown success in the college ranks. They've got a handy chart showing that players playing in the NCAA in their Draft year or more likely to make the NHL and more likely to play more than 41 games.
This makes a lot of sense, especially as NCAA hockey trends towards older players and a more defensive style of play. If a player can succeed at the NCAA level at an age young enough to be draft eligible, odds are pretty good that he's a very talented player. You also flush out the added risk of the certain percentage of HS/junior players that won't even be able to make the transition to college hockey, let alone pro hockey.
Every once in a while, you'll hear someone go on a rant about how NHL scouts don't know what they're doing because this certain player that was a high draft pick was a bust, or that certain player that was a late round turned out really good. But ignoring the hand-picked anecdotes, the general trend shows that overall, they pretty much get it right:
Here is an attempt I took a couple years ago at valuing NHL Draft picks pic.twitter.com/fpo9Fo9t3v— DTM About Heart (@DTMAboutHeart) June 15, 2016
At least they do with skaters. Goalies are all over the map.
As for this Draft in particular, some more interesting opinions are starting to come out now that we're less than 10 days from the Draft.
Red Line Report published their list of the top 10 forwards available in this year's Draft. The most notable decision on that list is the inclusion of Riley Tufte at 10th, especially considering he gets the spot over Clayton Keller. I'm not sure about the "needs to tone down his physicality" part of it. I saw Tufte take a lot of penalties this year because a) he was a lot bigger than most other kids b)Minnesota high school is much stricter about contact than just about any other league c) he was making a concerted effort to develop a more physical side to his game, something that had been lacking. Chalk it up to how hard it is to get a good read on a player when he's playing at the high school level.
Red Line also goes one step further on the growing Wade Allison hype by theorizing the talk of him as a second round pick is just a ploy for somebody to take him late in the first round. It wouldn't shock me. As I've mentioned before, there's really no consensus on picks 20-30 in this Draft and we could see some real surprises as teams "reach" to get their guy.
Brock Otten of OHL Prospects published his annual survey on the Top 10 prospects out of the OHL.
A few things that caught my eye...
-I feel like Logan Brown at 6th is pretty conservative, though that likely depends on the three defensemen in front of him. I don't think there's a franchise D in that group, while Brown has that potential.
-These things are generally overly positive, but it's interesting to see the local guys on the Michael McLeod bandwagon. A lot of people are dismissing him based on his stats, but man, it's tough to drop him when you actually watch him play.
-The 'Top 10' voting format creates some wonkiness in the Honorable Mention category, as it benefits guys that are all over the map in terms of rankings like Cam Dineen, Will Bitten, and Adam Mascherin as opposed to somebody like Jordan Kyrou that seems to be ranked within the 31-35 range in nearly every projection.