MLHS 2013 Mock Draft – Part 1

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Don’t take this as our etched in stone mock draft projection, think of it more as a fun exercise for the sake of learning a little bit about the top prospects set to join NHL teams this Sunday.

1st: Colorado Avalanche – ALEX TRAN – NATHAN MACKINNON

With the 1st pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, the Colorado Avalanche are pleased to select forward Nathan Mackinnon from the Halifax Mooseheads of the QMJHL.

We believe Nate is the best player available in a very strong draft class. He is a brilliant offensive player with the kind of skillset that will have our fans on the edge of their seats. Nate will fit right in with a young, exciting roster and we are thrilled to welcome him to the organization.

2nd: Florida Panthers – MISLAV JANTOLJAK – SETH JONES

With the 2nd pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, the Florida Panthers are delighted to select defenseman Seth Jones from the Portland Winterhawks of the Western Hockey League.

We believe that Seth Jones possess all the characteristics that will make him a franchise defenseman in the future. A skater with great lateral mobility along with a big frame, Seth is already showing hockey IQ beyond his years. Him and Erik Gudbranson make our defensive core a major franchise strength for years to come. We’re very excited to be adding this young man to the fold.

3rd: Tampa Bay Lightning – MICHAEL STEPHENS – JONATHAN DROUIN

With the third pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, the Tampa Bay Lightning are proud to select left winger Jonathan Drouin from the Halifax Mooseheads of the QMJHL.

We feel that with Jon’s selection, the Lightning have acquired the player with the best on-ice vision in the entire draft class. His vision pairs nicely with his terrific passing skills and simply sublime puck-handling ability. We feel that he is NHL-ready, and should get a long look in the preseason with Steven Stamkos and Martin St-Louis.

We feel that he will be a top flight winger within the next few seasons; an electric offensive contributor who should combine with Stamkos to give the Lightning perhaps the most intimidating offensive tandem in the league.

4th: Nashville Predators – BRIAN HUDDLE – ALEXANDER BARKOV

With the 4th selection in the 2013 NHL Draft, Nashville is proud to welcome Alexander Barkov to the organization.

We feel Barkov is an NHL-ready center with top line upside, and an ability to impact all zones of the ice — the Nashville way. We believe his combination of size, skill and two-way play make for a long term franchise option to build around, and we think we could see him in the lineup as soon as September.

5th: Carolina Hurricanes- JON STEITZER – VALERI NICHUSHKIN

The Carolina Hurricanes would like to thank our hosts, the New Jersey Devils for putting on this fantastic event here in beautiful Newark. The Hurricanes would also like to say hello to our draft party back home in Raleigh. We would also like to congratulate the Chicago Blackhawks for their tremendous Stanley Cup run this spring and offer our support to all the great hockey fans in Calgary.

Since the New York Rangers refused to trade us Marc Staal for this pick, the Carolina Hurricanes are pleased to select, from Traktor Chelyabinsk of the Kontinental Hockey League, Valeri Nichushkin

This was a relatively easy decision as Nichushkin is the last of the top-five talent left on the board. I had him ranked fifth, and picking fifth I got him. It really was a toss up on whether or not I would put him ahead of Drouin, who I have ranked fourth since Valeri has size, experience playing against grown men, and a style of play better suited to the NHL than Drouin.

Nichushkin is all speed and isn’t afraid to go to the net. It seems that the two things that prevented him from being ranked higher are the fact that he’s a winger, and the fact that he has committed to spending the next season in the KHL if he can’t crack an NHL roster.

6th: Calgary Flames – BLUE CHIP PROSPECTS – SEAN MONAHAN

For years and years, Leafs fans lamented the team’s inability to find a top-end winger for Mats Sundin to skate with and for just as long Flames fans felt the same frustration with the centre position on Jarome Iginla’s line.

In Sean Monahan, the Flames have found themselves an all-situations centre who doesn’t really have any apparent weaknesses in his game. He’s a great playmaker who skates reasonably well and has strong puck skills. Everything Monahan did in the OHL this year he did alone as Ottawa really didn’t provide him with much in the way of help. In my viewings, Monahan was exceptional and actually reminds me a fair bit of Anze Kopitar. If he keeps growing, as most draft eligible players tend to, then he’ll be a real force all over the ice.

7th: Edmonton Oilers – MATT MISTLE – MAX DOMI

The Edmonton Oilers would like to thank the New Jersey Devils for hosting, the Toronto Maple Leafs for allowing us to outright steal a promising young coach, and the Chicago Blackhawks for delivering the swift swing of an ironic, karmic blade to the exposed necks of the Boston Bruins.

We furiously tried to trade this pick to Toronto for Dion Phaneuf. They kept asking for Ryan Nugent-Hopkins back. I’m not sure which one of us is more insane.

With the 7th overall pick in the 2013 Entry Draft, Edmonton is thrilled to troll every blogger in this mock draft by reaching ever so slightly to select Max Domi. For reasons of nostalgia, hope, and awesomeness that probably do not need to be elaborated on further.

8th: Buffalo Sabres – ANTHONY PETRIELLI – ELIAS LINDHOLM

With the 8th pick in the draft, the Buffalo Sabres are extremely happy to select Elias Lindholm

Despite drafting two centers last year in the first round and having Hodgson and Ennis on the NHL roster, Lindholm is too tantalizing of a talent to pass up with the eighth overall pick. The value is simply phenomenal. He’s a playmaking center who has already shown he can produce against men in the top Swedish league and he’s almost 200 pounds standing 6’, which is the sweet spot for centers.

9th: New Jersey Devils – MISLAV – CURTIS LAZAR

With the 9th pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, the New Jersey Devils are proud to select center Curtis Lazar from the Edmonton Oil Kings of the Western Hockey League.

Curtis is a strong kid who possesses a good shot and has enough offensive ability to be a factor in the NHL. Above all, we really like his character and feel he could be a leader of this team in the future. We view Lazar as one of the can’t-miss prospects in this year’s draft and are happy to welcome him to the Devils organization.

10th: Dallas Stars – ALEX – DARNELL NURSE

With the 10th selection, the Dallas Stars are pleased to select defenseman Darnell Nurse from the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds of the Ontario Hockey League.

Darnell has taken great strides in his development this past season, to the point where we were worried he played himself out of our range with this selection. He plays with tremendous poise and vision from the blueline and his combination of size, skating and reach are second to none in this class.

11th: Philadelphia Flyers – MICHAEL – Rasmus Ristolainen

The Philadelphia Flyers, with the 11th pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, are proud to select from TPS Turku of the SM Liiga… uhh — wait, I forget – Rasmus Ristolainen!

Ristolainen stands at 6’3” 207 pounds, and at the tender age of 18 is already a 93-game veteran of Finland’s top league. A late ‘94 birthday, the defenseman is among the more mature and experienced draft eligibles in the 2013 class and has a well-rounded game. He’s also a two-year veteran of Finland’s World Junior team, where he’s displayed both talent and leadership characteristics. There’s a fair chance he’ll captain the country’s 2014 team.

Offensively, he’s capable of carrying the puck out of the zone as well as firing off crisp, effective break out passes. He also posseses one of the hardest slap shots in his draft class. While hardly earth shattering, he led Turku in points by a defenseman, with 3 goals and 12 assists in 55 games.

Fairly mobile given his size, he still needs to improve his defensive game by using his imposing frame to check with aplomb. Given the dearth of defensive talent on the Flyers roster, Ristolainen could get a chance in the NHL as early as next season.

12th: Phoenix Coyotes – BRIAN – BO HORVAT

With the 12th pick in the 2013 NHL Draft, Phoenix is proud to select forward, Bo Horvat, from the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League.

Bo is a terrific two-way player in the mold of what we’re building in Phoenix, but brings tremendous IQ and skill along with an advanced two-way game. In the mold of a Mike Richards/Ryan Kesler/Ryan O’Rielly/Patrice Bergeron, we feel that Bo will be among the best two-way forwards for many years to come.

13th: Winnipeg Jets – BCP – NIKITA ZADOROV

With the 13th selection, the Winnipeg Jets are pleased to select from the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League, Nikita Zadorov.

This is the spot in the draft where I really tend to favour swinging for the fences and that’s exactly what I’ve done with this selection. At 6’5” and between 220 and 230 lbs, Zadorov is a monster. Add strong skating and good mobility to the package and you’ve got a defenseman with one of the highest ceilings of any player in the draft. He needs to work on his shot and his puck movement leaves a fair bit to be desired, but if you’re looking for a potential major trophy winner in the middle of the first round then you should look long and hard at Zadorov.

14th: Columbus Blue Jackets – JON – HUNTER SHINKARUK

With the 14th pick in the first round, the Columbus Blue Jackets are proud to select from the Medicine Hat Tigers of the Western Hockey League, Hunter Shinkaruk.

To be honest I’m absolutely shocked that Shinkaruk has fallen this far. He’s been in the top ten on most draft lists, he’s a solid scorer who can play center, but is likely destined for the wing at the pro level. He has an outside shot at being ready to play this season, but his size might hold him back. For the Blue Jackets, who have two more picks in the first round to address more specific needs, having someone with this amount of upside available here is a huge win.

15th: New York Islanders – MISLAV – ZACHARY FUCALE

With the 15th pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, the New York Islanders are proud to select goaltender Zachary Fucale from the Halifax Mooseheads of the QMJHL.

Positionally sound and very mature for his age, we feel that Zachary is by far the best goaltending prospect available in this year’s NHL entry draft. He proved he can be a goalie who can single handedly carry a team and one who can make good, timely saves for a powerhouse squad. This cool and collected young man will be a most welcome addition to the aging Islanders’ crease as the organization hopes to have found its future No.1 goaltender.

  • wiski

    TheCanucksnaphook your fast 😉

  • Anthony Petrielli

    TheCanucksnaphook Blame Mislav

  • Black_Hawk

    TheCanucksnaphook yeah i doubt they do too but it makes sense sort of

  • Black_Hawk

    why is the site different?

    • newkb

      Black_Hawk Because we have knowledgeable posters?

      • Black_Hawk

        newkb Black_Hawk no i mean the format lol

        • newkb

          Black_Hawk newkb Aha….not sure, seems the same to me on Chrome.

        • Black_Hawk

          newkb Black_Hawk i can still post so thats fine i guess

  • Pent_House

    Domi @ 7? Lazar at 9? lmao

    • Black_Hawk

      Pent_House i would love to get him at 21

    • wiski

      Pent_House Bit high for Domi eh?

      • Alec Brownscombe

        wiski Pent_House Haha relax boys.
        Not to spoil part 2, but Matt Mistele takes Jordan Subban in the teens. Let’s just say this mock draft is not meant to be bet on.

        • YakovMironov

          Alec Brownscombe wiski Pent_House Matt played the role of Jay Feaster for us.

        • Anthony Petrielli

          YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski Pent_House See below comment I made.

        • wiski

          YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski Pent_House LOL

        • newkb

          YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski Pent_House Feast-er famine?

        • Black_Hawk

          Alec Brownscombe wiski Pent_House i would take him with our pick if he falls that far. That is a realistic pick.

        • YakovMironov

          Anthony Petrielli YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski Pent_House For the Subban pick I’m suggesting his username be changed to JFJ for a month.

        • Pent_House

          YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski Pent_House No kidding lol I was surprised with Mislav though, Lazar at 9 is ridiculously high

        • YakovMironov

          Anthony Petrielli YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski Pent_House though it did mean I could get the player I wanted by drafting after him so it wasn’t so bad.

        • Black_Hawk

          Pent_House YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski i like him too though. i can understand his rational.

        • YakovMironov

          Pent_House YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski I love Lazar and I wasn’t thinking of taking him that high. I have him 11th on my draft list, though my draft list is more geared around who I’d want on the Leafs.

        • Pent_House

          YakovMironov Pent_House Alec Brownscombe wiski The highest I’ve seen Lazar ranked is 14th, and even then, most rankings have him around 19th.  9th is just nuts, I would even say 11th is nuts.

        • YakovMironov

          Pent_House YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski Hockey News had him in the top 10, but then again, that’s the Hockey News.

        • Black_Hawk

          Pent_House YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski think he will be good though.

        • Anthony Petrielli

          Black_Hawk Pent_House YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski In fairness, NJ is forfeiting a pick soon and Lazar is safe. People thought the same thing when Scheifele was drafted as high as he was. I wouldn’t have picked Lazar there, but I don’t think it’s crazy.

        • Black_Hawk

          Anthony Petrielli Black_Hawk Pent_House YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski man I dont know what NJ was thinking not forfeiting the 29th pick last year.

        • Pent_House

          Anthony Petrielli Black_Hawk Pent_House YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski Doesn’t make sense for NJ. Lazar is a 3c, or 2RW at best. They need offensive forwards or a goalie. I’m thinking they take Shinkaruk if they want the forward, and Fucale is a no brainer for the goalie. Lazar is way off the board at that spot and doesn’t really make sense to me for the Devils.

        • Black_Hawk

          Pent_House Anthony Petrielli Black_Hawk YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski yeah i would go goalie too

        • rustynail

          Black_Hawk Anthony Petrielli Pent_House YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski they are hoping they can get Betsy to drop that penalty to avoid their bankruptcy next season

        • Black_Hawk

          rustynail Black_Hawk Anthony Petrielli Pent_House YakovMironov Alec Brownscombe wiski really?

    • Pent_House

      NJ takes Shinkaruk or Fucale at 9, no way in hell Lazar goes that high.

      • Black_Hawk

        Pent_House that might be the case

    • Anthony Petrielli

      Pent_House This exercise confirmed Matt would be the worst GM of any MLHS writer.

      • YakovMironov

        Anthony Petrielli Pent_House I’m going to give him the benefit of the doubt and assume he’d be great at signing free agents.

        • Anthony Petrielli

          YakovMironov Anthony Petrielli Pent_House “I won’t be around when these picks make the NHL anyways, so I might as well sign some guys that can help right now”-Matt.

      • BrianJHuddle

        Anthony Petrielli Pent_House Damn fanboys, I tells ya.

        • rustynail

          BrianJHuddle Anthony Petrielli Pent_House I thought you were all done with hockey :)

        • BrianJHuddle

          rustynail BrianJHuddle Anthony Petrielli Pent_House Done with being out there publically, yes. Haha. Not into the bitching and name calling that Twitter and the Hockey World has become. 😉

        • rustynail

          BrianJHuddle rustynail Anthony Petrielli Pent_House was just yankin your chain

        • BrianJHuddle

          rustynail BrianJHuddle Anthony Petrielli Pent_House SHUTUP! I KILL YOU!
          But hey :)

        • Burtonboy

          BrianJHuddle rustynail Anthony Petrielli Pent_House Your more then welcome here as far as I’m concerned

        • rustynail

          Burtonboy BrianJHuddle rustynail Anthony Petrielli Pent_House agreed always

  • Glove Dropper

    Interesting draft ranking that has a pretty clear scouting methodology and good reports on the players and their tiers, although a notable bias towards forwards.  Still an interesting read.

    http://hockeyprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=1522

  • http://i.imgur.com/MyKj5C3.gif ingy56

    https://twitter.com/sunhornbyhttps://twitter.com/sunhornby/status/349983384023478273
    Order of Sunday’s draft has Leafs currently picking 21, 51, 81, 117, 142, 172 and 202. Picks in all rounds.

    • Black_Hawk

      ingy56 nice

      • http://i.imgur.com/MyKj5C3.gif ingy56

        Black_Hawk ingy56 …as of now, here’s hoping they move up!

        • Black_Hawk

          ingy56 Black_Hawk not expecting anything but would be nice if the deal is right

        • http://i.imgur.com/MyKj5C3.gif ingy56

          Black_Hawk ingy56 I think they get the Oilers 4th next year for Brownie too.

        • Black_Hawk

          ingy56 Black_Hawk oh yeah what did we get for brown again

        • http://i.imgur.com/MyKj5C3.gif ingy56

          Black_Hawk ingy56 A 4th, but if the Oilers make the playoffs next year it’s a 3rd.  C’mon Dallas, make it so.

        • Black_Hawk

          ingy56 Black_Hawk lol i rather just have the 4th 😉

        • http://i.imgur.com/MyKj5C3.gif ingy56

          Black_Hawk ingy56 Yeah…could be worth it eh?

  • wiski

    https://twitter.com/mirtlehttps://twitter.com/mirtle/status/349984440052748288
    As part of conditions on Lupul deal, Leafs will receive Ducks fourth round pick in draft (117th). Condition made it either fourth or sixth.

    • Black_Hawk

      wiski solid, lupul deal still paying dividends for us

      • http://i.imgur.com/MyKj5C3.gif ingy56

        Black_Hawk wiski Leafs 4th went to the Preds in the Franson deal but they get a 4th from the Coyotes next years for sending them Lombardi this year.

        • Black_Hawk

          ingy56 Black_Hawk wiski solid

  • Great Dane

    Nonis need to go hard after the Lightning, Hurricanes and Oilers and try to get their first round pick. MacKinnon is not possible but Barkov should be possible to grab at 4th.

    • Black_Hawk

      Great Dane Barkov does not get to 7

      • Great Dane

        Black_Hawk Great Dane Agree – he will probably go 4th but it is possible to move up from 7th to 4th at a reasonable price.

        • Black_Hawk

          Great Dane Black_Hawk might cost too much though

        • Great Dane

          Black_Hawk several possibilities. As long as useful assets are getting back to Toronto.

        • Pent_House

          Great Dane Black_Hawk I wouldn’t take any of their roster players. I’d take picks. No thanks to Fatty(tlusty) and Faulk is nice but kinda more of the same of what we have.

        • newkb

          Great Dane Black_Hawk I just vomited on my keyboard…..wow.  Yuck.  3rd time this week, too.

        • Black_Hawk

          newkb Great Dane Black_Hawk lol

        • wendelsfist

          Great Dane Black_Hawk Are you saying a 3 way with Lecav and 3rd to leafs.  And Carle or Hedman to Canes?

        • wiski

          newkb Great Dane Black_Hawk Get yourself a tablet. 😉

        • newkb

          wiski newkb Great Dane Black_Hawk Got one.  You’d figure it would wipe clean too, but…..damn speakers.

  • Black_Hawk

    Cant believe the flyers bought out Bryzgalov. What a stupid move. He was gonna return to form this year and be a superstar im sure. ……lol

    • http://i.imgur.com/MyKj5C3.gif ingy56

      Black_Hawk They really didn’t have much choice.

      • Black_Hawk

        ingy56 Black_Hawk joke bro

        • http://i.imgur.com/MyKj5C3.gif ingy56

          Black_Hawk ingy56 He could return to form though…no joke.

        • Black_Hawk

          ingy56 Black_Hawk yeah i think he will if he goes to the right team. Like phx

        • http://i.imgur.com/MyKj5C3.gif ingy56

          Black_Hawk ingy56 Yes, if they lose Smith it could happen. Sean Burke has left though so he would have a new goalie coach.

        • Black_Hawk

          ingy56 Black_Hawk yeah he has

    • Black_Hawk

      canuckintheuk Black_Hawk that would be too funny

    • Burtonboy

      Black_Hawk
      http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2013/06/26/bryzgalov-would-consider-signing-with-edmonton-oilers-his-agent-says/http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2013/06/26/bryzgalov-would-consider-signing-with-edmonton-oilers-his-agent-says/

      • Black_Hawk

        Burtonboy Black_Hawk that would be a solid move for EDM imo

      • rustynail

        Burtonboy Black_Hawk but isn’t it tooo cold for him there? Seem, to remember him stating that while he was in Phoenix

        • Burtonboy

          rustynail Burtonboy Black_Hawk LOL Winterpeg

        • newkb

          rustynail Burtonboy Black_Hawk Don’t forget he’ll have to worry about bears there too.

        • Black_Hawk

          newkb rustynail Burtonboy Black_Hawk lol yeah “i scared of bear”

        • Burtonboy

          Black_Hawk newkb rustynail Burtonboy Can you imagine him a Dallas together .lol

      • wiski

        Burtonboy Black_Hawk Does he know it’s colder than winterpeg 😉

        • http://i.imgur.com/MyKj5C3.gif ingy56

          wiski Burtonboy Black_Hawk or Russia?