2015 NHL Draft: Defending Big D Mock Draft, Take 2
Today Huw Wales at Defending Big D tries his hand at predicting how the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft will unfold.
Mock drafts are all abound with less than a week to go until the first name is called at the 2015 NHL Draft. Here at Defending Big D we've decided to give you two mock drafts to have a look at.
On Tuesday Derek Neumeier published his mock draft as to how the first round will unfold on Friday in Florida. Today's its my turn to look into my crystal ball and predict how I think the first round will unfold.
I did not look at Derek's mock draft before writing this one so it will be an interesting comparison to see how we differ. When it comes to the later picks in the first round it is likely to become very different; I have a suspicion that our first few picks will be identical.
1) Edmonton Oilers - Connor McDavid C
McDavid is the best player in the draft and is the easy pick for the Edmonton Oilers.
2) Buffalo Sabres - Jack Eichel C
Despite missing on McDavid the Sabres are going to get another incredibly good player in Jack Eichel.
3) Arizona Coyotes - Mitch Marner C
Marner is an incredibly talented offensive forward who will join a group of young dangerous forwards the Coyotes have been collecting over the past year.
4) Toronto Maple Leafs - Dylan Strome C
Strome is a big two way forward. The idea of a 1-2 centre punch made up of him and William Nylander is a scary prospect for those who aren't Leafs fans.
5) Carolina Hurricanes - Noah Hanifin D
Hanifin is the most all around defenseman in the draft and the best player still available. He helps bolster the Canes blueline for the future.
6) New Jersey Devils - Mikko Rantanen C/RW
The Devils are a little thin when it comes to forward prospects, especially on the wing. They need some size too and make the first surprise pick by taking Rantanen this early.
7) Philadelphia Flyers - Mathew Barzal C
Barzal is an extremely talented forward and the Flyers can safely pencil him into their top six in a few years time.
8) Columbus Blue Jackets - Ivan Provorov D
The Blue Jackets have some good forwards breaking into the NHL but they can do with some more help on the blueline. Provorov is arguably the most offensively talented defenseman in the draft.
9) San Jose Sharks - Zach Werenski D
The Sharks need some help everywhere but they think Werenski could help anchor their blue line in the future.
10) Colorado Avalanche - Pavel Zacha C/LW
Zacha might not have impressive numbers but alongside some of the Avalanches talented forwards he could create a fearsome top six in the future.
11) Florida Panthers - Lawson Crouse LW
Like Zacha, Crouse's numbers aren't overwhelming but put him alongside someone like Nick Bjudstad then that forward unit gets a lot more intimidating.
12) Dallas Stars - Kyle Connor C
The Stars are pretty happy with this standout from the USHL. Connor is a good all around forward who has a lot of potential. At this point he's probably the most talented player on the board and with Jim Nill going for best player available they take Kyle Connor.
13) LA Kings - Travis Konecny C/RW
Konecny is very talented offensively though his defense might need some work. The Kings can take a bit of a risk and hope for a big reward.
14) Boston Bruins - Timo Meier RW
Timo Meier strikes me as a very Bruins type of player. Physically dominant but he's also pretty good at scoring, something the Bruins are going to need in the future.
15) Calgary Flames - Jakub Zboril D
The Flames need some help on the blue line and Zboril has shown he has some impressive offensive skills. If they can smooth off the rough edges they could have a very good player here.
16) Edmonton Oilers (From Pittsburgh Penguins) - Nick Merkley C/RW
The second Oilers pick will go towards drafting a high scoring forward from the WHL. Merkley scored a lot of goals with the Kelowna Rockets and the Oilers like their offensive prospects.
17) Winnipeg Jets - Colin White C/RW
The Jets go for the all around forward from the USHL. Colin White does everything very well and the Jets make the safer pick at 17.
18) Ottawa Senators - Jeremy Roy D
The Senators could use another talented defenseman in their prospect pool. Roy has a lot of offensive talent and he's also pretty good in his own zone. With enough time he could be a very well rounded defenseman.
19) Detroit Red Wings - Joel Eriksson Ek C
This big Swede helps bolster the Red Wings forward prospect pool with a big, physical two way forward from Sweden.
20) Minnesota Wild - Thomas Chabot D
The Wild want some help on the blueline and Chabot can help do that. He is a two way defenseman with a lot of talent and potential.
21) Buffalo Sabres (From New York Islanders) - Evengi Svechnikov LW
The Sabres decide to grab another offensively gifted forward in Svechnikov. If he works out they could have a formidableforward group to go along with an impressive young defensive core.
22) Washington Capitals - Jeremy Bracco RW
Bracco is small but put up some very impressive numbers in the USHL. He has the potential to turn into a top six NHL forward. The Caps want to bolster their forward prospects and they feel Bracco is the one to do that.
23) Vancouver Canucks - Noah Juulsen D
The Canucks need some help everywhere but decide to take a flyer on a solid defenseman from the WHL. Juulsen's stock has been rising all year and he could be a good NHL defenseman in the future.
24) Toronto Maple Leafs (From Nashville Predators) - Denis Guryanov RW
The Maple Leafs take a bit of a risk but could get a huge reward from Denis Guryanov. Alongside Dylan Strome and William Nylander the Leafs' prospect pool gets a lot better.
25) Winnipeg Jets (From St Louis Blues) - Paul Bittner LW
The Jets use their second pick to grab this forward who is huge and has the potential to be a power forward. If he works out it could be a very good move by the Jets.
26) Montreal Canadiens - Daniel Sprong RW
The Canadiens could use some more forward help in their prospect pool and Daniel Sprong will definitely do that. There are some warts in his game but there is a ton of potential too.
27) Anaheim Ducks - Jake Debrusk LW
Debrusk is a good two-way forward and will join a host of good young forwards in Anaheim. He's a very balanced forward and I can see him suiting the Ducks pretty well
28) Tampa Bay Lightning (From New York Rangers) Brandon Carlo D
The Lightning have one of the best prospect pools in the league and they decide to add size on the blueline with Brandon Carlo. He's big at 6'5" and is a good shutdown defenseman. He won't put up many points but he wouldn't have to with this Tampa team.
29) Philadelphia Flyers (From Tampa Bay Lightning) Jack Roslovic C
The Flyers add another super skilled forward in Jack Roslovic. He's a great play maker and could be a good set up man for the Flyers in the future.
30) Arizona Coyotes (From Chicago Blackhawks) Anthony Beauvillier LW
After grabbing Mitch Marner third overall they add another big point getting Beauvillier. A skilled play making who put up nearly 100 points last season in the Q.