NHL Entry Draft: With the Draft Lottery Now Over, 15 Team’s Positions Have Been Solidified in the Draft Order. So Let’s Jump Into Our Third Edition of our Second Round Mock Draft.
The NHL Entry Draft is just three months away which gives everyone a bunch of time to speculate on who their favorite team is going to select in the first round, but this time we’re doing the second round. With this year not being as deep as the years of yesterday, there are still some top notch guys available.
Jun 24, 2016; Buffalo, NY, USA; NHL commissioner Gary Bettman speaks on stage before the start of the first round of the 2016 NHL Draft at the First Niagra Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports
In this second round mock draft, I’m keeping the same order as the first round, and adjusting teams to their respective slots that they achieved through trade. There was a total of nine deals made that affected teams in the second round. Carolina is the only team with three picks in this second round with Buffalo, Toronto, and Montreal gaining an additional pick. There are also a ton more picks but they are all conditional selections that have yet to be figured out due to the playoffs.
Next is the full rundown of all the deals that happened where teams gained an additional second round selection.
Mar 31, 2016; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers forward Eric Staal (12) skates with the puck against the Carolina Hurricanes during the third period at PNC Arena. The Hurricanes won 4-3. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports
Senators get D Jryki Jokipakka and 2017 2nd Round Pick
Mar 8, 2016; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Canadiens fans Roger Button (left) and his son Ronan wait for the players to come in before the game against Dallas Stars at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports
C, Brandon (WHL)
Possessing fantastic hockey I.Q, and powerful skating. Stelio Mattheos is an excellent two-way player with power forward like instincts. He can travel the ice quite easily and can contribute in his own end and in the offensive zone.
LW, London (OHL)
Alex Formenton already has good height at 6 foot 1 but needs to add more weight since he’s only 160 pounds. He’s purely offensive minded and uses his speed to help that part of his game. The only thing he needs to do is use his body to separate himself from the opposition to get in better scoring chances, but that will come when he adds more weight.
C, Swift Current (WHL)
For a guy standing at 5 foot 9 and weighing 145 pounds, Aleksi Heponiemi makes up for it with his skill set. He has top end offensive abilities along with top end speed. Once he gets a little taller and adds more weight he’s going to be a solid top nine player in the NHL, but that’s roughly three to four years from now.
C/W, Regina (WHL)
Jake isn’t a big guy by any means but he definitely plays like one, besides that his skating and top end speed has to be his greatest attributes. He’s also a creative player that can also play wing due to his durability on the ice.
G, Prince Albert (WHL)
Ian Scott is a fantastic goalie that already has great height, he does, however, need to add more weight to his tall frame. The Blues need a lot of help in net and this is why I selected him, he can soak up rebounds, is rarely caught out position, and has great athleticism.
C/W, Rogle J20 (Superelit)
With Nashville selecting top goaltender Jake Oettinger in the first round to help for when Pekka Rinne leaves. I have them selecting Lukas Elvenes in the second round to help the center core, another thing that’s great about Elvenes is the fact he can also play wing. He’s probably three years away from NHL play but once he’s ready he already possesses all the skills to thrive.
Apr 19, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Two Toronto Maple Leafs fans in Maple Square outside of the Air Canada Centre prior to game four of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs against the Washington Capitals at Air Canada Centre. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports
D, Seattle (WHL)
Edmonton gave Boston this pick when they hired Peter Chiarelli as a general manager. Boston has a ton of young defenseman that really helped the team this year so why not add another since Zdeno Chara is nearing retirement? Jarret Tyszka is a strong two-way defenseman with strong skating with great size for his age.
D, Team USA U18 (USHL)
David Farrance is most likely a year or two away from NHL play but he’s still a solid prospect that can fill a top-six role for Anaheim. He’s an offensive defenseman that can transition play from his own end back up the ice with ease.
C/W, HC Sparta Praha (Czech Extraliga)
The Lightning acquired this pick in the deal that sent Brian Boyle to Toronto if Tampa wants another center who can step into the lineup sooner rather than later, Ostap Safin is that guy. He has great size, great skating, puck handling, and hockey sense. The only thing he needs to work on, however, is his consistency from game to game.
D, Charlottetown (QMJHL)
Another defenseman that could help the Devils big time is Pierre-Olivier Joseph, he has great skating, puck handling and agility making him more of an offensive defenseman that can jump up in the rush. He’s a couple of years away from pro hockey but once he’s ready, he’s going to be dynamite.
C, Sarnia (OHL)
A pick in which the Maple Leafs acquired in a trade with San Jose, the Leafs could use a center like Adam Ruzicka. He’s 6 foot 4 and 210 pounds meaning he could step into the lineup as early as next season that could easily fill a fourth line role. And after a first solid year in North America, Ruzicka has shown he can play on this side of the pond.
Oct 5, 2016; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Arizona Coyotes center Dylan Strome (20) controls the puck against Calgary Flames during the second period during a preseason hockey game at Scotiabank Saddledome. Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
D, Univ. of Michigan (NCAA)
Montreal is going to have to start stockpiling defenseman and the selection of Luke Martin will help that and the fact he can also step into the lineup right away due to his size. He’s more a defensive defenseman which is something the Canadiens also need on the backend. He has great skating and can make a solid first pass out of his own end which will help the rush and create more scoring chances.
C, Hamilton (OHL)
A pick that originally belonged to Minnesota that is now Buffalo’s MacKenzie Entwistle will add even more depth down the middle for the Sabres and on the wing. He’s an amazing skater with tremendous two-way abilities that loves to grind it out and play more of a defensive role. Once he’s NHL ready he could fill a fourth line role giving Eichel, Lipanov, O’Rielly, and Girgensons more space on the ice.
C/W, Sault Ste. Marie (OHL)
Morgan Frost has an extremely high hockey I.Q. and hockey sense which is great for the Blackhawks. They need to rebuild and had a ton of rookies and second-year guys on their roster in this year’s playoffs. With the addition of Morgan Frost, the Blackhawks will get a lot stronger down the middle.
LW, Moose Jaw (WHL)
An absolute steal for the Blue Jackets would be Nikita Popugayev, he’s 6 foot 6 and 205 pounds. Which is why he scored 69 points in 71 games he could very well step into the Jackets lineup next season since they want to keep getting younger.
LW, Team USA U18 (USHL)
Grant Mismash is coming off a solid season in the USHL where he put up 24 points in 26 games and at 6 feet tall and 185 pounds he already has decent size for the pro game. He’s also an excellent two-way forward that can contribute at both ends of the ice. And since this was originally a Calgary pick that now belongs to Ottawa, it sort of worked itself out as he can be a replacement for Curtis Lazar.
Jan 3, 2016; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders fans celebrate an Islanders goal against the Dallas Stars during the first period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports
RW, Kelowna (WHL)
Kole Lind had himself one heck of a season with 87 points in 70 games. At one end of the ice he’ll crash the net and score a ton of goals, and then on the other end he’ll block shots and cut off passing lanes making him an excellent two-way forward. He would fit in well with the Islanders.
C/W, Ottawa (OHL)
Chmelevski loves to show off his speed which is probably his strongest skill set next to his offensive abilities. Tampa could use a player like Chmelevski with Brian Boyle and Valtteri Filppula now gone. Another bonus about Sasha is the fact he can also play wing which is another position that Tampa needs to address, this is why he’s a perfect selection for Tampa.
C, Spokane (WHL)
Jaret Anderson-Dolan is one of those centers that loves to play both ends of the ice and does so very well. He also has tremendous offensive upside and after posting 76 points in 72 games this year in the WHL the Winnipeg Jets will yet again be adding another solid offensive piece.
D, Team USA U18 (USHL)
Carolina loves to build from the backend and Max Gildon would be a perfect selection for them in the second round. At 6 foot 3 and 190 pounds Gildon came off a season where he scored 14 points in 26 games and that’s amazing for a defensive defenseman in the USHL. Imagine what he will accomplish at the NHL level with the defensive prospects the Hurricanes already have.
C/W, Acadie-Bathurst (QMJHL)
Even though Antoine Morand is a small guy, his all-around skills make him a player everyone wants. He’s fresh off a 74 point campaign in 67 games, and besides Anze Kopitar and Jeff Carter, the Kings need more offensive centers. And after a couple more years of development Antoine Morand can come to LA and be a solid third line center who will put up some points.
Mar 15, 2017; Denver, CO, USA; Detroit Red Wings fans react to a goal by center Andreas Athanasiou (72) in the first period against the Colorado Avalanche at Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
C/W, Team USA U18 (USHL)
A lot of people overlook players from the NCAA and USHL but you need to keep in mind those organizations aren’t as stacked as other junior organizations like the CHL etc. So when a player has an outstanding season that’s most due to himself. And in 21 games Reedy posted 14 points. This would make him a perfect center prospect for Florida, another bonus is the fact he can also play wing.
LW, Brynas J20 (Superelit)
Jesper Boqvist has top notch offensive skill, the only reason why he isn’t ranked higher is due to the fact he’s an offensive minded player only. With one more year overseas and then one or two in the AHL, he’s going to come to Detroit and make a ton of noise alongside first round pick Martin Necas.
C, HK MVD (MHL)
Lipanov has great size for his age but is on the small side when it comes to weight. This isn’t all that bad for the Sabres since they are fine with the smaller sized guys. Another thing that would help the team is the fact Lipanov loves to carry the puck and create chances for his team, something the Sabres could benefit from big time if he was given a third line role behind O’Rielly and Jack Eichel.
LW, Kingston (OHL)
At 6 foot 2 and 195 pounds, Jason Robertson is a highly skilled winger that would help the Coyotes a lot on the left side of the ice. After posting an 81 point season in 68 games, Robertson still has some things to work on but the scoring is there. And with another season or two down in the OHL to strengthen his game away from the puck will benefit the Coyotes big time.
G, HPK U20 (Liiga Jr)
With the Knights selecting Casey Mittelstadt in the first round, Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen would be a great goaltending choice for the team. He’s a massive goaltender who will fill a lot of nets and has tremendous upside. The Knights are likely to get a few solid goalies in the expansion draft, this means Luukkonen will have more time to develop overseas.
Jan 14, 2017; Dallas, TX, USA; Fans line up to enter the NHL Centennial Museum truck before the game between the Dallas Stars and the Minnesota Wild at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
C, London (OHL)
Since Bo Horvat will be replacing Henrik Sedin in Vancouver, someone will need to replace his role and that center is Robert Thomas. Fresh off a season in which he scored a point per game, 66 points in 66 games, 50 of which were assists shows just how creative Thomas is and how well he can move the puck.
D, Sault Ste. Marie (OHL)
With Colorado’s second round selection, I have them selecting OHL defenseman Conor Timmins from Sault Ste. Marie. He has tremendous speed and puck moving abilities is something the Avalanche need on the backend. And since they are rebuilding he would mesh well with a team that is bound to get a lot younger.
C, Waterloo (USHL)
Shane Bowers has all the attributes needed to succeed at the NHL level, he has top end speed, creativity, puck handling, and hockey sense. With the good size to boot at 6 feet tall and 175 pounds. After putting up 51 points in 60 games in the USHL, he’s climbed up the rankings significantly.
RW, Erie (OHL)
Ivan Lodnya just came off a career year in Erie of the OHL where he scored 57 points in 66 games as well as four points in four games in the Ivan Hlinka tournament. Lodnya possesses incredible creativity and puck moving skills, and since he’s a natural right winger which is something the Flyers need, he can mesh well with first round pick Nico Hischier.
After a strong first season in the Finnish Elite League, Robin Salo is a strong two-way defenseman that can play against bigger sized guys without much issue. This would make him a solid piece for the Devils since they need more defensive pieces with Eric Gelinas and Adam Larsson gone.