Stargazing: 2009 NHL Draft mock extravaganza

With the 2009 NHL Entry Draft drawing closer, the mock drafts are starting to roll in. In today's edition of Stargazing, we'll take a look at all of the mock drafts currently released and see how that compares to how we feel the Stars might go.

The SB Nation NHL Mock Draft is already well underway, with the New York Islanders, Tampa Bay and Colorado already making their picks. Draft central for the SBN Mock Draft will be at Mirtle's From The Rink, with each team giving their specific analysis of their pick on their own website.

1. New York Islanders (Lighthouse Hockey) - John Tavares, London (OHL)

2. Tampa Bay Lightning (Raw Charge) - Victor Hedman, Modo (Swe)

3. Colorado Avalanche (Mile High Hockey) - Matt Duchene, Brampton (OHL)

The schedule for the rest of the draft is as follows:

June 17: Thrashers, Kings, Coyotes
June 18: Leafs, Stars, Senators
June 19: Oilers, Predators, Wild
June 20: Sabres, Panthers, Ducks
June 21: Blue Jackets, Blues, Canadiens
June 22: Rangers, Flames, Flyers
June 23: Canucks, Devils, Capitals
June 24: Bruins, Islanders, Hurricanes
June 25: Blackhawks, Red Wings, Penguins
June 26: NHL draft begins in Montreal

Tomorrow night, as soon as picks 4-6 are in, I'll put up a post for a poll on Defending Big D so that you guys can vote on who you believe the Stars should pick in the eighth spot.

Follow the jump for more mock draft insanity.

Hockey's Future has posted their draft preview for the Dallas Stars, and it's got some great analysis of where the Stars are prospect-wise leading up to the draft. There's not many surprises in their breakdown of the Stars' system, stating that the team's strengths are in it's depth at forward, specifically on the left side. They also aren't very impressed with our prospects at goaltender, saying that Richard Bachman's and Tyler Beskorowany's disappointing 2008-09 seasons have the left the Stars in a difficult situation in goal.

What I found most interesting was their statement that the Stars lack "blue-chip" prospects.

The Stars lack bluechip forwards; despite Benn’s recent WHL success, it’s unclear whether his scoring touch will fully translate to the next level.  Dallas has a distinct deficiency on organizational defense. [Ivan] Vishnevskiy, [Phillip] Larsen and to a lesser extent Guillaume Monast are in the top 20, but after that there are only two other blueliners in the system. 

HF has the Stars drafting Dmitry Kulikov in the #8 spot in their mock draft.

Hockey's Future is a great source for news and profiles on every NHL prospect, so if you are looking for some in-depth breakdowns of who the Stars might be drafting next weekend,

be sure to check them out.

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Here's a rundown of most of the mock drafts available on the web (My thoughts at the end):

MyNHLDraft.com:

#8
Oliver EkmanLarsson
Ht/Wt:6.00.5/165 lbs
Position:LD
Drafted From:Leksand (Swe. II)

NHLDraftSite.com:

8 Stars Dallas Jordan Schroeder RW 5'10" 175 9/29/90 University of Minnesota USA

 

Adam Kimelman (NHL.com)

8 Dmitry Kulikov, D, Drummondville (QMJHL)
SKINNY: Scouts believe he can play in the NHL right now

 

Brad Holland (NHL.com)

8 Ryan Ellis, D, Windsor (OHL)
SKINNY: Ellis brings a much-needed offensive flair to the Stars' back end.

 

Shawn P. Rourke (NHL.com):

8 Jordan Schroeder, C, Minnesota (WCHA)
SKINNY: GM Joe Nieuwendyk's first pick is a player in the Mike Modano mode

 

Shane Malloy (TSN.ca)

8. Dallas Stars - Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson - 6-1/201 - (Left Wing) - (Timra/SWE)

A natural athlete that has an impressive power to speed to ratio that makes people stand up and take notice. When Paajarvi-Svensson is coming down the wing with the puck at full speed he will cause Defenceman absolute fits trying to contain him. What you like about him more than his obvious skills set is his fearlessness and determination when driving to the net. It is that competitive drive and desire to score goals while paying price that make him successful. He has the high-end hockey sense to find the open space and go where the puck will be that makes him a dangerous goal scorer. He stickhandles very well and uses his body to protect the puck offensive zone like it is the most important thing on earth. His soft hands accuracy allow him to fit the puck into the smallest of places. When he shoots it is lightning quick off his and with a tremendous amount of power.

To make things harder on defenders, he skates exceptionally well and can pull away from you if you do not take the right angle. It would not hurt for him to mix it up physically and be a  little more assertive, but it is not like he shy's away from the rough stuff. To his credit, he works hard without the puck and you can see him hustle hard on the back check and battle for loose pucks. He will have to make some adjustments to the smaller ice surface defensively, but he seems to have the smarts and work ethic to make that happen. It is hard to find faults in his game     

Logo_dallas_stars_medium

My thoughts: I would be insanely happy with any of those picks, if the Stars made them. That's the beauty of this year's draft. The top 3-4 picks in this draft are pretty much set, with Tavares, Hedman and Duchene take the top spots. After that it's anybody's game and the talent level from the 4th to 15th spot is pretty much even. At that point it all comes down to just who the Stars have rated highest out of who is left on the board. It's not about need in the top ten, it's about talent.

That last one by Shane Malloy is interesting. Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson (from here on out, he's Magnus) is a phenomenal left wing. Phenomenal, but the Stars already have a good number of left-handed left-wingers. Despite that fact, if Magnus fell to the Stars in the #8 spot, they would be fools to pass him up. That's why when you are drafting in the top 10-15, you have to take what comes to you and worry about need in the later rounds.

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