2013 NHL Entry Draft: Mock Draft One

With the NHL Draft lottery completed, Jared Abbott and I wanted to put out our first mock drafts of the first round . Here is his mock.

Leading up to the draft we’ll be putting out several iterations of a first round mock. As the draft order becomes finalized and teams’ rosters begin to take shape it will surely effect the projected picks. Of course, there is always the possibility of trades as well, which could dramatically alter the mock.

 

1. Colorado- Seth Jones (D) Portland Winterhawks (WHL)

What else is there to say? Jones is the best overall prospect in the draft. He’s a franchise altering defenseman who grew up in the Denver suburbs. Av’s legend Joe Sakic introduced him to the game of hockey. It’s a match made in heaven for Jones and the Avalanche. He will step in right away and produce.  Between Jones, Duncan Siemens, Stefan Elliot, and Tyson Barrie on the back end and Gabriel Landeskog, Matt Duchene, and Ryan O’Reilly up front the Av’s have the pieces in place for years to come. Only question marks are in goal and who is going to behind the bench. George Gwozdecky anyone?

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

None they better take Jones or they’re morons.

2. Florida- Jonathan Drouin (LW) Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)

He needs to get stronger but the most offensively gifted player in the draft, in my opinion, will boost an already loaded Florida Panther’s prospect pool that includes the likes of Nick Bgjustad, Quinton Howden, Kyle Rau, Drew Shore, Vincent Trochek, Rocco Grimaldi, Corban Knight, Francis Beauvillier. Florida is lacking depth on the wing and Drouin will provide the scoring touch the Panther’s need  along with 2011 number three overall pick Jonathan Huberdeau.

 Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Nathan MacKinnon (C)

2. Aleksander Barkov (C)

3. Valeri Nichushkin (RW)

 3. Tampa- Nathan MacKinnon (C) Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)

MacKinnon is potential franchise player in the eyes of some people. I don’t see it but he’ll fit in nicely in Tampa with Steven Stamkos, Marty St. Louis, and Vinnie Lecavalier. Tampa has a solid young core of prospects.

 Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Jonathan Drouin (C)

2. Aleksander Barkov (C)

3. Valeri Nichushkin (RW)

 4. Nashville- Aleksander Barkov (C) Tappara (Finnish Elite League)

He won’t turn 18 until September and is already dominating against men in the Finnish Elite League. Barkov’s big frame creates havoc and gives defenseman fits. He would like great centering super prospect Filip Forsberg who the Predators acquired at the trade deadline from the Capitals in exchange for Martin Erat.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Jonathan Drouin (C)

2. Valeri Nichushkin (RW)

3. Elias Lindholm (C)

 5. Carolina- Valeri Nichushkin (RW) Chelyabinsk 2 (Russia Jr.)

Big talented, power forward who was a key member of Russia’s WJC squad that earned bronze. Nichushkin was dominant at times. His recent two year deal with Dynamo of the KHL may scare some NHL teams. He could follow the Vladimir Tarasenko route and spend two years in the KHL then come over the NHL.  How he does with Dynamo will be key.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Darnell Nurse (D)

2. Elias Lindholm (C)

3. Sean Monahan (C)

6. Calgary- Sean Monahan (C) Ottawa 67’s (OHL)

Monahan has one of the smartest hockey IQ’s in the draft. He excels at every facet of the game. Calgary has no first line talent in their farm system and Monahan would certainly fill that void.  He could be the cornerstone of the Flames rebuilding phase.

 Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Hunter Shinkaruk (C/LW)

2. Darnell Nurse (D)

3. Valeri Nichushkin (RW)

 7. Edmonton- Darnell Nurse (D) Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds (OHL)

Nephew of former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb, Nurse has seen a tremendous rise over the last two months or so. If anyone can be the next Chris Pronger, Nurse has the attributes to do it. Edmonton needs a big body forward as well so they could go that route, but the Oilers need to build the defense around Justin Schultz.

 Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Valeri Nicushkin (RW)

2. Rasmus Ristolainen (D)

3. Sean Monahan (C)

8. Buffalo- Hunter Shinkaruk (LW/C) Medicine Hat Tigers (WHL)

He went from a sure top five draft pick just last year to possibly falling out of the top 10. Shinkaruk is a versatile forward that has shown flashes of brilliance with the Tigers. Besides Marcus Foligno, who is already on the squad, Buffalo is thin at LW. I believe Shinkaruk would need another year of juniors though.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Zach Fucale (G)

2. Frederick Gauthier (C)

3. Rasmus Ristolainen (D)       

9. New Jersey- Elias Lindholm (C) Brynas  (SEL)

He’s the top Swedish player in the draft and possesses an amazing skill set that has dazzled scouts thus far. Lindholm has excelled in the Swedish Elite League and is a good two-way forward. He won silver for Sweden at the 2013 WJC. No way New Jersey let’s Lindholm slip by.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Sean Monahan (C)

2. Zach Fucale (G)

3. Anthony Mantha (RW)

10.  Dallas-  Frederick Gauthier (C) Rimouski Oceanic (QMJHL)

Gauthier is a big center who has tremendous skating and defensive ability. He’s racked up points in Rimouski this season and would be welcome addition to the Stars’ prospect pool. Dallas’ first year GM Jim Nill is regarded throughout the league as a draft wizard as he orchestrated and ran the Red Wings’ draft for years. No doubt that whoever the Stars pick will be a player.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Hunter Shinkaruk (LW/C)

2. Ryan Pulock (D)

3. Rasmus Ristolainen (D)

11. Philadelphia- Rasmus Ristolainen (D) TPS (Finland)

The Flyers need a guy who can fill the void Chris Pronger left. Ristolainen is a big, nasty, steady defenseman. He’s a solid skater and plays well at both ends of the ice. I don’t think he would come over right away and play which may scare off the Philadelphia brass that desperately needs someone to step in and play immediately. The worry is whether he will be there when the Flyers pick. I also would not be shocked if the Flyers take a forward here.

 Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Ryan Pulock (D)

2. Nikita Zadarov (D)

3. Hunter Shinkaruk (LW/C)

12. Phoenix- Anthony Mantha (RW) Val d’Or Foreurs (QMJHL)

Mantha was the lone 50 goal scoring in the QMJHL this past season. He’s a tall, lanky kid that has room to grow. He’s an offensive playmaker for the Foreurs.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Valetin Zykov (LW)

2. Hunter Shinkaruk (LW/C)

3. Bo Horvat (C)

13. Winnipeg- Valentin Zykov (LW) Baie-Comeau Drakkar (QMJHL)

The skilled winger has played well for the Drakkar this season and has proven to be excellent with the puck. Zykov’s 40 goals, 75 points in 67 games was tops among first year QMJHL players. His addition would help an already strong Jets prospect system.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Alex Wennberg (C)

2. Anthony Mantha (RW)

3. Ryan Hartman (RW)

14. Columbus- Ryan Pulock (D) Brandon Wheat Kings (WHL)

The big question with Pulock is will he be there when the Jackets pick? If so, Pulock is a steal. He has the best shot in the draft by far, comparable to Dion Phaneuf’s. He plays with a chip on his shoulder. He can fight and is a deadly open ice hitter. Columbus has three first round picks in this draft and it will be interesting to see where new GM Jarmo Kekalainen goes with this first pick.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Ryan Hartman (RW)

2. Mirco Mueller (D)

3. Alex Wennberg (C)

15. New York Islanders- Ryan Hartman (RW)- Plymouth Whalers (OHL)

Hartman was the heart and soul of the Plymouth Whalers this past season, as well as a key member for Team USA’s win at the WJC. He’s a physical, hard hitting forward that can skate.  Ryan Callahan has been terrorizing the Islanders for years now. Well, the Isles can get their own Ryan Callahan with the selection of Hartman.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Zach Fucale (G)

2. Nikita Zadarov

3. Kerby Rychel (LW)

16. Buffalo (from MIN)-) Mirco Mueller (D) Everett Silvertips (WHL)

He’s a Swiss-born, smooth skating defenseman that could help Buffalo not only defensively, but on the offensive side as well. I’ve seen Mueller going anywhere from 11-25 so there is a good chance he may be there when the Sabres pick again. However, is this where the Sabres snag Mooseheads goalie Zach Fucale?

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Zach Fucale (G)

2. Curtis Lazar (C)

3. Max Domi (C)

17. Ottawa- Max Domi (C/LW) London Knights (OHL)

The son of Tie is nothing like what his father was. Domi has tremendous upside but there is a risk due to his small stature. How many times have we heard that before? He would fit in nicely with an already strong prospect pool that includes Mika Zibanejad, Jakob Silverberg, Matt Puempel, Stefan Noesen, and Mark Stone.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Alex Wennberg (C)

2. Kerby Rychel (LW)

3. Curtis Lazar (C)

18. Detroit- Alex Wennberg (C) Djurgarden Jr. (Sweden Jr.)

He has Detroit Red Wing written all over him. Wennberg is a smart pick that offers the Wings a reliable player who is capable of making plays anywhere on the ice. He has flashed tons of talent, but needs seasoning to make an impact. Look for the Wings to keep him over in Sweden for two years and then bring him over to play with Grand Rapids.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Kerby Rychel (LW)

2. Max Domi (C)

3. Ryan Hartman (RW)

19. Columbus (from NYR)-) Kerby Rychel- (LW) Windsor Spitfires (OHL)

With taking a defenseman with their first pick, I expect the Jackets to look at the offensive side with their second. Kerby Rychel was extremely productive last season in the OHL and possesses tremendous playmaking ability. They may opt for the European route.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Andre Burakovsky (LW)

2. Artturi Lehkonen (LW)

3. Bo Horvat (C)

20. San Jose- Bo Horvat (C) London Knights (OHL)

Horvat is a strong reliable center who has flourished this season with the London Knights. I’m not sold on him being a top 10 pick like I have seen in some mocks, but I think Horvat would give San Jose another offensive playmaker in their system, which lacks depth.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Max Domi (C)

2. Adam Erne (LW)

3. Curtis Lazar (C)

21. Washington- Nikita Zadorov (D) London Knights (OHL)

The 6’5″, 230-pound defender is a punishing hitter that could potentially stabilize the Washington back end. I’ve seen him anywhere from 9-29 in some mock drafts. That tells me scouts are inconsistent with him and that raises a red flag for me. Washington loves drafting Russians too. Zadorov could be paired with fellow Russian Dimtri Orlov.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Robert Haag (D)

2. Andre Burakovsky

3. Jacob de la Rose (C)

22. Toronto- Zach Nastasiuk- (RW) Owen Sound Attack (OHL)

Nastasiuk is a defensive-minded forward who would add grit and penalty-killing prowess to the Leafs. He has good speed and can score shorthanded.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Bo Horvat (C)

2. Curtis Lazar (C)

3. Max Domi (C)

23. Vancouver- Curtis Lazar (C) Edmonton Oil Kings (WHL)

Lazar is a talented center that plays with passion and character. He’s a member of the powerhouse Edmonton Oil Kings squad that is facing off against Seth Jones and the Portland Winterhawks for the WHL crown. He may go earlier but if he’s around he’s worth a look if I’m Vancouver.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Andre Burakovsky (LW)

2. Adam Erne (LW)

3. Zach Fucale (G)

24. Columbus (from LA)- Jacob de la Rose (C) Leksand Jr. (Sweden)

Having taken a defenseman and winger with their first two picks look for Columbus to explore and possibly take an off the board pick. De la Rose is a strong skater with speed and balance. He can play in all situations and he has excellent vision with the puck.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Andre Burakovsky (LW)

2. Adam Erne (LW)

3. Arturri Lehkonen (LW)

25. Calgary- Zach Fucale (G) Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)

The Flames could take a  goalie after they finished second in most goals allowed with 160.  Fucale is the best in the class and should definitely come off the board first. Will he be there though? If they draft Fucale what kind of message does that send to Jon Gillies and Laurent Brossoit?

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Eric Comrie (G)

2. Jimmy Lodge (C)

3. Arturri Lehkonen (LW)

26. Boston- William Carrier (LW) Cape Breton Screaming Eagles (QMJHL)

Carrier is the perfect Bruin. He checks, plays hard, kills penalties, and can score. Similar to Anthony Camara of the Barrie Colts,  who is already in the B’s system.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Jason Dickinson (C)

2. Ian McCoshen (D)

3. Jordan Subban (D)

27. Montreal- Adam Erne (LW) Quebec Remparts (QMJHL)

Erne is not a flashy player, but he does the little things necessary to win. He has grit, size, and scoring touch. The Habs will stay in the province of Quebec and draft this Rempart. Montreal also loves drafting American kids. (Galchenyuk, Tinordi, Kristo, Pacioretty, McDonagh, and Fischer)

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. William Carrier (LW)

2. John Hayden (C)

3. Jordan Subban (D)

28. Anaheim- Josh Morrissey (D) Prince Albert Raiders (WHL)

Morrissey has a lot of offensive upside but he needs to work on his defensive game. He gives Bruce Boudreau a player similar to that of Mike Green, who he coached in Washington.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Nic Petan (C)

2. J.T. Compher (C)

3. Shea Theodre (D)

29. Calgary from (Pit)-  Robert Haag (D) Modo Jr. (Sweden Jr.)

Some say his physical game compares to that of Niklas Kronwall. I’ve seen him anywhere from 7th overall to dropping out of the first round. Haag could be the dark horse of the draft.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. Chris Bigras (D)

2. J.T. Compher (C)

3. Madison Bowery (D)

30. Chicago- Nic Petan (C) Portland Winterhawks (WHL)

Petan goes from the Winterhawks to the Blackhawks. Chicago can take a chance on the smallish Petan. He scored 120 points, in 70 games this season. He needs to get stronger but has elite offensive ability.

Other 2013 NHL Draft Possibilities

1. J.T. Compher (C)

2. Steve Santini (D)

3. Connor Hurley (C)