At draft time most peoples attentions is focused on the first round and who their teams might be picking. Though the first round is very important its also important to look beyond it to find players that may have dropped or could develop into solid or top players, the diamonds in the rough. For Dallas Stars fans we have benefited from several late round picks that have turned into genius moves, the most obvious example being Jamie Benn.
I have spent some time going through several different sources to try and pick out players in the later rounds that may be on the Stars radar. I have made a list of 38 players who could be interesting for the Stars to pick beyond the first round and I will present a small bio on each player. Information about some of these players is very hard to find and I therefore have to acknowledge that I gained a lot of my insight through looking at the excellent draft guides produced by Future Considerations and Hockey Prospect independent scouting agencies.
These are only my predictions of where these players might be drafted, some could fall a round or two and others might nip into the later stages of the previous rounds. I am certain that I will be wrong in where some of these players will be drafted. This is merely to serve as a rough guide to where they could be picked rather than a set in stone prediction of which round they will be selected.
These are the first 18 players, those that I think will be drafted within the second and third rounds. The Stars have three picks in those two rounds: 43, 61, 74. The players listed below are in alphabetical order by surname.
Note: There should be several Swedish prospects in these posts, however I will be writing a separate article looking at Swedish prospects that the Dallas Stars might be interested in.
Josh Anderson RW 6"1 183 OHL London Knights
Playing as a rookie on the fourth line Anderson got 22 points. He plays a full two way game and could reach the NHL as a top 6 power forward. He helped the Knights a lot in their playoff run to the OHL championship and their journey to the Memorial Cup Final. He will be a bit of a project having only played one season in the OHL but he shows the signs of having high level potential.
Coda Gordon LW 6"1 179 WHL Swift Current Broncos
Coda Gordon needs to work on his skating style significantly but he has excellent offensive instincts. He tends to wait for a pass rather than being the play maker himself. He is essentially a pure goal scorer. He tends not to use his size to his advantage and is often caught standing still in his own zone.
Brian Hart RW 6"2 215 USHS Phillips Exeter
Hart is a big powerful winger with just above average skating, good vision and a hard wrist shot. He has good leadership skills and a high hockey IQ. He is committed to Harvard which some say might hinder his development. He has the potential to be a top six forward but could become a gritty third liner.
Mark Jankowski LC 6"2 170 CAHS Stanstead College
Mark Jankowski is a smooth skating center who can read the ice well and is confident. He has the talent to be a top prospect who will be selected in the second round because of the fact he was facing much weaker opposition. He will be playing in the NCAA for Providence College.
Joonas Korpisalo G 6"2 186 Jr A Sm-Liiga Jokerit U20
Joonas Korpisalo plays with a good butterfly and excellent mobility and athelticism. His main strength over the past season was his consistent high level play, something that eludes many young goaltenders. He lacks the confidence and perhaps the ability to play the puck behind the net. In time he could be a NHL starting goaltender.
Jarrod Maidens C/LW 6"1 185 OHL Owen Sound Attack
Jarrod Maidens is a scoring power forward who has had a shortened season due to injury. Uses his size to protect the puck and has an excellent pro caliber shot. Considered a first round talent he might fall to the late second round or early third because of concerns over his injuries. He has the potential to become a top six forward.
Michael Matheson LD 6"1 178 USHL Dubuque Fighting Saints
Matheson is a bit of a project and will have to refine his three zone game by focusing more on the defensive side of things rather than continuously trying to make the offensive play. He has excellent skating and plays with a physical edge. He is committed to Boston College.
Tanner Pearson LW 6"0 190 OHL Barrie Colts
Tanner Pearson has been passed over two times already in the draft but has opened eyes this season. He is good in both ends of the ice and has excellent vision. He has above average skating and some scouts wonder whether he is an NHL ready prospect. Pearson is able to join the pros next season because of his age.
Ville Pokka RD 6"0 196 SM Liiga Karpat
Ville Pokka works hard in his own defensive zone and is efficient at moving and rushing the puck. He isn't the best skater but he is a rounded player with a complete two way game. His below average skating and his tendency to suffer brain freezes when under pressure drops him out of the first round.
Jordan Schmaltz RD 6"2 185 USHL Green Bay Gamblers
Jordan Schmaltz is a big smooth skating offensive defenseman. He is excellent quarterbacking the powerplay but doesn't use his big size to physically dominate the game. He is going to South Dakota to play for the Fighting Sioux next season.
Antony Stolarz G 6"5 200 NAHL Corpus Christi
Antony Stolarz has the size and raw potential to become a good NHL goaltender. He is extraordinarily mobile and athletic for his 6"5 frame. His skills need to be refined and it would take a long time but could pay huge dividends for whichever team took a flyer on him. He is committed to Nebraska-Omaha.
Mikko Vainenon LD 6"2 205 Jr A. SM-Liiga HIFK
Mikko Vainenon is a mean defender who is effective at frustrating opponents. He has decent skating skills but isn't going to be the most mobile of defenseman. He can play both ends of the ice well and was good enough to earn a call up to the SM-Liiga this season.
Danill Zharkov LW 6"3 197 OHL Belleville Bulls
Zharkov has excellent skating ability and offensive talent. However despite being able to be physical he is inconsistent in doing so, he is also a shoot first player and not a play maker. He might be defensively weak but he has excellent mobility and fluidity for his size.
Gianluca Curcuruto LD 6"0 195 OHL S.S. Marie Greyhounds
Curcuruto is a good skating two way defenseman. He is effective at the defensive side of the game and has some good offensive potential. He has suffered from a lack of confidence this season due to a couple of bad plays which has caused him offensive production to decline as he became more tentative. With more confidence he could be an effective two way defenseman.
Nick Ebert RD 6"0 205 OHL Windsor Spitfires
Nick Ebert is a predominately offensive defenseman who is inconsistent in his own end. He has good skating and good hockey vision. He can put up the points on the powerplay and even strength. However he hasn't lived up to the high potential many scouts felt he possesses.
Esa Lindell LD 6"2 190 Jr. A SM-Liiga Jokerit U20
At the beginning of the season it was felt that Lindell's skating would hold him back, however he has worked on his skating and become a far more mobile defender for his size. He is effective offensively and clearly has high end offensive talent, his defensive skills however are not high end. He is very raw but could become a good middle pairing defenseman at the NHL level if refined.
Matia Marcantuoni LC 5"11 194 OHL Kitchener Rangers
Marcantuoni is a talented forward with good offensive skills and excellent skating ability. He is injury prone though having played only 66 games out of 136 in the last two seasons. If he stopped getting injured and consistently played he could become a top six forward at the NHL level.
Devin Shore C 6"0 184 OJHL Whitby Fury
Devin Shore has some good offensive vision in the opposition zone and is an effective playmaker when there. His main weakness is that his defensive game is not very strong. His skills on the rush make up for this but it will need to be improved upon to get him to his potential of a top six player. He is committed to the University of Maine.