NHL Entry Draft: General view of team executives on the arena floor in the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft at BB&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
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8 years later, we finally get to see where these NHLers from all 7 rounds of the 2008 NHL entry draft should be reselected.
The 2008 NHL entry draft brought the game some amazing top tier talent. While the 2003 NHL entry draft is still the best there’s ever been, 2008 still provided franchise players as well as a lot of other guys who would play 400+ games.
The majority of these picks that have been moved up to the first round, were originally taken between the 2nd and 7th rounds. This is all due to games played with points accumulated.
This re-draft is going to see a lot of changes that features players that teams would have taken without a doubt. However, at the time, they seemed to like other players (most of whom didn’t even play an NHL game). The players in these top 30 spots have played a minimum of 80 games in the NHL, which just goes to show how many didn’t cut it in the NHL or even AHL.
The top 30 players from the entire 2008 NHL entry draft will be re-positioned into the top 30 picks from the first round.
Mar 31, 2016; Saint Paul, MN, USA; Ottawa Senators forward Zack Smith (15) skates with the puck in the first period against the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center. the Ottawa Senators beat the Minnesota Wild 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Originally selected 148th overall in the 5th round by the Islanders. Matt Martin moves up to the 30th overall pick. He’s currently played 453 career games scoring 89 points. If Detroit selected Matt over Tom, they would have had a solid fourth-line grinder for the last 8 years. Martin is currently playing for the Maple Leafs where in 15 games he only has 1 point. But that’s not Matt’s job to score. His job is to make hits and wear down the oppositions best players. Which he’s done very well so far during his career.
Selected in the 3rd round 69th overall Stone has become a solid defenseman for Arizona. Through 284 games, Stone has registered 90 points. Stone would have helped Atlanta’s d-core. And eventually would have played with Tobias Enstrom. Currently through 5 games this season with Arizona,Stone has scored 3 points and is -3. He’s worked his way through the depth chart. Starting in the AHL and working his way to being a top 4 defenseman. He would have been a much better choice at 29th than Daultan Leveille.
Matt Calvert was taken 127th overall in the 5th round by the Blue Jackets. Like Stone, Calvert has worked his way up the depth chart as well. He’s been spending the last few years on the third line. Calvert’s played 295 career NHL games scoring 112 points. Viktor, however, didn’t manage out to be a good selection. Currently in 13 games for Columbus, Calvert has 2 points. He’s projected to score between 25-35 points again this season. Again, a lot better than what Tikhonov has done.
While John Carlson is a solid defenseman, you’ll see later in this article why he’s moved up. Wingels was selected 177th overall in the 6th round. He makes his way up to 27th overall. In 314 career NHL games, Wingels has 118 points. And he also played a significant role in San Jose making the Stanley Cup finals for the first time in franchise history. Through 14 games so far for the Sharks, Tommy has 4 points and is only a -1. Now with John Carlson moving up in this re-draft. Wingels would have been the best selection for Washington at #27.
Selected 79th overall in the 3rd round by Ottawa. Zack has come into his own as a solid player for the Sens. Like John Carlson, you’ll see why Tyler Ennis has moved up as well. And with him moving up, Zack Smith is an amazing selection at #26. Smith has played 415 NHL games. And in those games he has 118 points. So far this season with Ottawa, Zack has 4 points in 15 games. He’s expected to increase his point total from 36 last year to the low forties.
Dec 5, 2013; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Jake Gardiner (51) shoots against the Dallas Stars at Air Canada Centre. The Maple Leafs beat the Stars 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports
Despite Jake being drafted in the 1st round, he falls from 17th to 25th overall. He’s still a solid NHL player, and defenseman. Greg on the other hand played only 15 NHL games. He’s now an assistant coach for the Oshawa Generals. So Jake would have been a much better choice. Gardiner has played 340 games so far, all with the Maple Leafs. In those 340 games, Jake has scored 127 points. This season he’s appeared in 15 games for the Leafs scoring 7 points. Jake’s an elite top 4 defenseman. And a much better player than Greg Nemisz.
Originally selected 5th overall by the Leafs. Luke has fallen in the first round. He spent only 4 seasons with Toronto before being traded to Philadelphia. He was later traded to Los Angeles from the Flyers in 2015-16. And in the 2016 offseason Luke signed with the Arizona Coyotes. Despite bouncing around the NHL, Luke has played 579 career NHL games. In those 579 career games, Schenn has scored 129 points. Tedenby on the other hand has only played 120 games scoring 30 points.
Selected 156th overall in the 6th round, Jared has become a stable defenseman for the Wild. Which makes it ironic that he ends up at number 23 for the Wild in this re-draft. Tyler Cuma on the other hand only played 1 NHL game before leaving for the EBEL. Jared’s spent most of his time going back and forth between the 1st and 2nd lines for Minnesota. And is regarded as one of their top defenseman behind Ryan Suter. Jared has played 382 NHL games scoring 134 points. So should Minnesota have taken him here instead of Tyler, Absolutely.
While Jordan Eberle is an outstanding player, he has moved up for a reason. Hamonic was originally selected 53rd overall by the Islanders in the 2nd round. And with Eberle moving up, this would have left Edmonton with a great choice at number 22. Through 407 games so far, Travis has scored 137 points. This season in 12 games he has 5 points. Hamonic would have helped Edmonton’s defensive issues. Since they have been constantly looking for solid pieces in that position. Hamonic is a top defenseman for the Islanders, imagine what he would have done for Edmonton.
D, Saginaw (OHL)
Original Pick: Anton Gustafsson. Re-Draft Pick:T.J Brodie.
T.J Brodie was selected 114th overall in the 4th round by the Calgary Flames. So far Brodie has played in 352 career games. And during those 352 games, Brodie has 148 points and is only a -1. The last two seasons Brodie has posted two 40+ point seasons. And is expected to do so again. Gustafsson however has never played an NHL game. He’s been in the Swiss Elite League since 2010-11. Washington definitely made a bad draft choice with Gustafsson while T.J was still on the board.
NHL Power Rankings: Buffalo Sabres goalie Robin Lehner (40) and defenseman Zach Bogosian (47) during the second period against Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome. Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Michael Del Zotto falls off the draft board and Jason Demers takes over. Originally selected 186th overall in the 7th round. Jason moves up to the 20th overall pick. Demers has had a solid NHL career so far. Playing in a total of 438 games scoring 150 points. He’s also a career +37. So far this season Demers has played 15 games for Florida scoring 7 points. Del Zotto on the other hand has bounced around between 3 NHL clubs since being drafted. And has only played 4 games this season. In those four games, Del Zotto has 3 points.
Like Del Zotto, Sbisa also falls off the draft board. Bogosian also falls from 3rd overall to 19th. Theirs a reason for this, the next 18 picks are more solid NHL players. Bogosian has played a career total 487 games. During those 487 games, Bogosian has 158 points and is a career -58. Unfortunately this season through 9 games, Zach hasn’t registered a single point. Sbisa on the other hand has played in 399 NHL games scoring 76 points. With how this re-draft has shaped up so far, this leaves Philly with a solid pick at number 19.
Originally selected 121st overall in the 4th round. Gustav Nyquist knocks Chet Pickard off the draft board. Pickard didn’t play one NHL game. All of his time was spent in the AHL before leaving for the Denmark and German Elite League’s in 2014-15. Nyquist on the other hand has played a total of 277 games scoring 168 points. That’s good enough for a 0.61 points-per-game average and is also a career +7. So far through 16 games this season for Detroit, Gustav has 10 points. Chet however, has a .897 save percentage for Iserlohn in Germany.
Earlier in this article you saw Gardiner fall from 17th to 25th. And since Cam Atkinson was taken 157th overall in the 6th round. That makes him a great selection for Anaheim at this position in the re-draft. Cam has played a career 313 games scoring 177 points. His highest output was last seasons 53 points, which he’s likely to pass this season. Cause so far through 13 games, Atkinson has 12 points. So if he keep’s up this point production, he could end up in the 60+ point mark for the first time in his career.
Joe Colborne is another player who falls off the board. He’s yet to find his footing in the NHL. And so far only has 110 points in 247 games. Myers falls from 12th to 16th. Imagine what Boston’s blueline would look like with Myers and Chara on the first pairing? That’s a scary combination. Tyler has also played 473 career games scoring 198 points. And with Winnipeg this season, he’s tallied up 5 points in 11 games while being a +5. This year Joe’s played 14 games for Colorado notching 4 points as well as being a -5. It’s obvious who the better choice for the Bruins would have been.
Mar 9, 2016; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Nashville Predators defenseman Roman Josi (59) skates against the Calgary Flames during the first period at Scotiabank Saddledome. Calgary Flames won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Erik Karlsson is a franchise defenseman, which is why he’s moved up in the re-draft. Jake Allen is also a franchise starting goaltender. So how he managed to slip to the second round, no one knows. Selected 34th overall, Allen has finally come into his own as a starter for St. Louis. Which isn’t all that surprising given his career numbers. In 99 games played, Allen has 57 wins to go with a career 2.34 goals-against-average and a .915 save percentage. Ottawa has always needed goaltending before they picked up Anderson. So with Allen in the organization, all their problems would have been solved in a couple of years after the draft.
Zach Boychuk is yet another player who has fallen off the list. While Colin Wilson was selected 7th overall he’s now being selected 7 spots later. Boychuk only played 127 NHL games. The majority of his North American time would be spent in the AHL. Before finally leaving for the KHL this season. Wilson on the other hand has played 446 career games scoring 207 points. He’s also a career +27. And through 14 games with Nashville this season, Wilson has 5 points and is only a -1. When you see who took over his #7 spot, you’ll understand why this was his next best spot.
After playing only 24 career NHL games, Colten said goodbye to the NHL. He’s been playing with Iserlohn in the German Elite League since 2013-14. Mikkel Boedker has been a solid scorer during his career. And a durable player, playing 478 games. During those games, Mikkel has scored 227 points. Unfortunately Mikkel hasn’t found his touch in San Jose so far, only registering 2 points in 15 games. He’s likely to pick it back up though and get close to his career high 51 points. Which was achieved in 2013-14 with Phoenix.
While Tyler is a solid defenseman as stated earlier in the article. Josh Bailey has also been a very reliable player. Appearing in 573 games, all with the Islanders. Josh Bailey has scored 258 points. His highest output of 41 came during the 2014-15 season. And so far through 16 games, he has 8 points. He’s expected to reach that mark again and possibly surpass it. Since this is a re-draft, Bailey isn’t being taken 9th overall by Long Island. Which would make him the perfect pick to help Buffalo’s winger depth at number 12.
D, SC Bern (NLA)
Original Pick: Kyle Beach. Re-Draft Pick:Roman Josi.
Kyle Beach is another player who falls completely off the draft board. After not playing a single NHL game. And eventually leaving the AHL for the EBEL in 2014-15. Beach never matched his 11th overall draft ranking. Roman Josi though, is one of Nashville’s top defenseman. Drafted 38th overall in the second round. He is easily in the top 10 in the entire NHL for defensemen. Josi has managed to play 348 games so far in the NHL scoring 198 points. With Nashville this season he has 8 points in 14 games. He also played for Team Europe in this year’s World Cup of Hockey.
May 17, 2016; St. Louis, MO, USA; St. Louis Blues defenseman Alex Pietrangelo (27) against the San Jose Sharks in game two of the Western Conference Final of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoff at Scottrade Center. The Sharks won 4-0. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports
When Vancouver drafted Hodgson 10th overall they thought they got themselves a future number 1 centre. However thing’s didn’t work out that way for the Canucks. As Cody would eventually bounce around between Nashville and Buffalo before retiring. They should have taken this centre with their 10th pick since he was drafted 82nd overall in the 3rd round. Henrique has been a solid player for the Devils his entire career. Playing a total of 363 games scoring 209 points. He also has a career +19 rating. This season Henrique has played 14 games for the Devils scoring 6 points as well as being a +6.
After Bailey falls three spots, and Ennis climbs 17 in the re-draft. He would have been the best choice at wing for the Islanders. In 380 career NHL games, Ennis has 93 goals and 132 assists for 225 points. He’s also been playing on the top two lines for Buffalo since being drafted. Making the Islanders wish they could receive a mulligan on this pick. Because out of the two, Ennis is definitely the better player. So far this season Ennis has appeared in 12 games, only scoring 2 points however. But expect him to return to form soon.
John Carlson? Or Mikkel Boedker? The answer is John Carlson. Initially selected 27th overall, that meant Carlson was available at number 8. Which should have been the selection made by Phoenix. With Carlson in the system with the youth movement well underway. He and Ekman-Larsson would have been a fantastic duo. Through 468 games so far Carlson has 234 points and is also a career +55. While Mikkel is a solid player as well, he’s not quite on the level of Carlson, who has become Washington’s number 1 defenseman the last couple of years.
Despite falling three spots, theirs always a reason why players are where they are in the re-draft. Alex Pietrangelo is becoming an All-Star defenseman for St. Louis. But there’s someone even better who took his #4 spot. Now what if he played with Josi, Weber (now in Montreal), Ekholm, Ellis and Subban? Nashville would have the best d-core in the history of the NHL. Pietrangelo has played 475 games so far for St. Louis scoring 262 points. This season he’s put up 7 points in 16 games. Colin Wilson is also becoming a stud for Nashville as mentioned above. But if given the chance Pietrangelo would have been the best pick for them.
Everyone knows how well Filatov managed in the NHL. Four seasons and only 53 games played. In 2012-13 Filatov would leave the NHL for good, and has been playing in the KHL since. Derek Stepan however was selected 51st overall in the 2nd round. Which would have left him wide open for Columbus. And he’s been a number one centre for the Rangers since. Something Columbus could have used badly. In 450 career games so far, Stepan has 316 points. He also possesses an amazing career plus/minus stat of +94. Through 16 games for the Rangers this season, Stepan has 11 points.
Mar 31, 2016; Saint Paul, MN, USA; Ottawa Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson (65) in the first period against the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center. the Ottawa Senators beat the Minnesota Wild 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Eberle is why Schenn landed at #24 in the re-draft. This is who Toronto should have chosen at 5th overall since he was originally selected 22nd. Eberle has been one of Edmonton’s best players since being drafted. And is arguably in the top 5 for best Team Canada International players of all-time. In 441 career NHL games, Eberle has 343 points. Schenn on the other hand didn’t fair out so well in Toronto. As mentioned previously. This season through 16 games with Edmonton, Eberle has 12 points.
How Braden Holtby managed to slip so far, still boggles some people’s minds to this day. Selected 93rd overall in the 4th round. Holtby should have gone in this round, at this position. That’s why he’s here in the re-draft. He’s currently the top goalie in the NHL. And has spent his entire career with Washington. In 244 games, Holtby has an amazing 149 wins with only 60 losses. He also has 23 career shutouts to go with a 2.37 goals-against-average and a .921 save percentage. So far this year, Holtby has played in 11 games. He’s got a .922 save percentage and a 2.16 goals-against-average. He shouldn’t have fallen so late in the draft.
The 2nd of four franchise players taken in this draft. Erik Karlsson should have been taken here by Atlanta. With how dynamic he is as well as fun to watch. With him and #29 pick Michael Stone. Atlanta would probably still be in the NHL today. However, things didn’t work that way since Atlanta thought Bogosian was the next best d-man behind Doughty. Karlsson has played 494 career games totaling 397 points. He also has two 70+ point seasons under his belt along with one 80+ point season. Ottawa got more than a steal when the selected Erik 15th overall, they got a franchise cornerstone.
Originally selected 1st overall, Stamkos falls to number 2. And you’ll see why here in these next two entries. Stamkos is a franchise player, theirs no doubt about that. He’s just not the leader that currently sits at number 1 is. If you want a 50-goal scorer, select Stamkos. If you want a leader, take the player at number 1. Through 585 career games so far for Tampa Bay, Stamkos has 581 points. Nearly a point-per-game player. He also has a career plus/minus of +6. So far this season he’s currently on fire as well with 19 points in 16 games.
Jumping from #2 to #1, Drew Doughty is the best player in this re-draft. A two-time Stanley Cup winner with Los Angeles. And a two-time Olympic Gold Medal winner for Team Canada. Doughty is a natural born leader. And unquestionably in the top 3 for defensemen in the NHL. While Doughty’s numbers are not Stamkos numbers. He’s the better overall leader. He plays in every role imaginable in hockey. And does so perfectly. Doughty has played 622 games in the NHL. And in those 622 games, Drew has 324 points. He is also a career +65. Doughty is already an All-Star, and when he retires, he will be a Hall-of-Famer.