NHL Mock Draft Part 4: Picks 49-65
Before we move on to our final part, lets quickly review the FAQs about this mock draft.
- Our draft Rankings are arrived at jointly, while the mock draft is my work alone. So if I go away from the rankings greatly that could be one reason why.
- The rankings are pure “Best Player Available”. The mock draft takes into account team style of play, the prospects already in the team’s system, and prior draft trends, this is another reason why I haven’t followed the ranks exactly.
- I am doing a mock draft with no trades (except those that have already been made).
- If you click the player’s name, you will get a link to their draft profile.
Got it? Good. Lets move on and finish Round 2 of the mock draft.
49) Detroit Red Wings - Jake McCabe
This is Detroit’s first pick of the draft as they traded their first rounder to the Lightning in the Kyle Quincey deal. The Wings have decent depth in their system at both Forward and Defence and have always drafted the best player available. This continues with the pick of Jake McCabe, a versatile 2 way defender playing NCAA hockey at the University of Wisconsin.
50) Nashville Predators (from Philadelphia via Tampa Bay) – Lukas Sutter
Previous Pick: Jordan Schmaltz
With the second pick acquired in the Anders Lindback deal the Nashville Predators take Lukas Sutter. Size, intelligence, grit and two way play have always been important components of the Nashville model, and Rich Sutter’s son has these attributes in spades. The Predators hope that the latest member of hockey’s greatest family continues to develop his offence and becomes a top 6er. However even if he can’t, he’ll still be a good third line player.
51) Montreal Canadiens (from Nashville) – Scott Kosmachuk
Previous Picks: Alex Galchenyuk, Mark Jankowski
The Canadiens have added to their centre depth with their first two picks. With their third pick they take Scott Kosmachuk who despite being a Right Wing (a position where Montreal is relatively deep in prospects) is the best player available at this stage of the draft. Kosmachuk is a great skater, and an offensively talented agitator. The Canadiens hope that he will bring his ability to get under an opponents skin to the Bell Centre one day.
52) Pittsburgh Penguins – Brady Vail
Previous Pick: Pontus Aberg
The Penguins have a deep system and choose to go with the Best Player Available. As such they take Vail, a two way centre with size here. Vail really broke out with Windsor this season, and the Penguins hope they have found a gem in the Palm City Florida born player.
53) Florida Panthers* – Mike Winther
Previous Pick: Tomas Hertl
As mentioned when they picked in the first round, the Panthers have built up a nice stable of prospects at all positions. As a result they are again able to take the best player available here. The go with Winther, a versatile forward with the WHL’s Prince Albert Raiders. Winther is capable of playing both left wing and centre, and is great on both the powerplay and the penalty kill.
Note: The Florida Panthers have the option to give this pick to the Tampa Lightning, or to give the Lightning a 2013 2nd rounder as part of the Kris Versteeg deal with Philadelphia, and the subsequent Pavel Kubina Deal between Philadelphia and Tampa. NHL.com indicates that as of now the Panthers seem to be keeping the pick.
54) Washington Capitals (from Boston via Toronto via Colorado) – Matt Murray
Previous picks: Radek Faksa, Matt Finn
Another pick thats already been around the block a few times, Washington gets this pick as part of the Semyon Varlamov deal made on July 1st, 2011. The Capitals always seem to have another goalie in the pipeline, and with Brayden Holtby looking to make the big club, there is once again room to develop a prospect. The Caps tab Matt Murray to be that prospect as they load up on OHL talent this year.
55) San Jose Sharks (compensatory pick) – Brian Hart
Previous pick: Zemgus Girgensons
After adding Girgensons in the first round, the Sharks again look for a big physical forward in the second. They grab Brian Hart from Exeter Academy in New Hampshire. The Sharks havent been afraid to allow their prospects to develop in the NCAA and will watch Hart’s progress at Harvard intently.
Note: This pick was awarded because the Sharks did not sign 2007 First round Pick Patrick White. White was a Vancouver selection but his rights were traded to the Sharks in the Christian Ehrhoff deal.
56) St. Louis Blues - Anton Slepyshev
Previous Pick: Ludvig Bystrom
The Blues added the offensively talented defender Bystrom in the first round. In the second round, they look to add even more high end scoring talent up front in taking Anton Slepyshev. With Vladimir Tarasenko committing to come to North America for the 2012-13 season, the Blues are less concerned with the Russian factor than some other NHL teams might be, and look to once again steal high end talent who has slipped due to the fears of other teams.
57) Vancouver Canucks – Trevor Carrick
Previous Pick: Tom Wilson
The Canucks added the big, physical Wilson in the first round, and look to improve on defence in round two. They take Carrick, whose primary specialty is as a defensive defenceman. While not hugely physical, Carrick plays his position smartly and effectively. The Mississauga defender really came into his own this season, and showed his worth when Stuart Percy was injured.
58) Phoenix Coyotes – Kevin Roy
Previous Pick: Henrik Samuelsson
The Coyotes, searching for pure top 6 offensive talents decide to take a chance on the diminutive but skilled Kevin Roy. The former youtube sensation put up the highest scoring season in the history of the USHL (in its current form). He has all the offensive skill you would want in a hockey player, now if he can overcome questions about his size.
59) New York Rangers – Dane Fox
Previous Pick: Colton Sissons
The Rangers take Fox an agitator and two way centre who spent the season split between the London Knights and the Erie Otters. Fox really took a number of steps forward offensively this season when given increased minutes and offensive responsibility.
60) New Jersey Devils – Tomas Hyka
Previous Pick: Michael Matheson
The Devils have never been afraid to take an undersized forward with offensive talent, and grab the Czech born Hyka at the end of the second round. That Hyka is only available due to the CBA mistake of rival Flyer’s GM Paul Holmgren in 2011 makes this pick that much sweeter for Devils fans.
61) Dallas Stars (from Los Angeles via Philadelphia) – Gemel Smith
Previous Picks: Olli Maatta, Cristoval “Boo” Nieves
The Stars add the dimunitive Smith with the last pick of round two. Smith won the fastest skater competition at the CHL top prospects game, and is an extremely hard working player, so he has the skating and work ethic to overcome his size. Despite his size Smith isn’t afraid to be physically involved in the play, agitating opponents and getting under their skin.
Bonus Picks Round 3
Due to popular demand we’ve decided to add 5 picks to this draft in the third round. This is due to both the placement of the picks in this round, and the overwhelming support that this website has recieved from fans of the Edmonton Oilers, Montreal Canadiens, and New York Islanders. We’d also like to thank the Leaf fans for their support, but they no longer hold the 66th pick as it is now property of the Nashville Predators,
62) Columbus Blue Jackets – Branden Troock
Previous Picks: Ryan Murray, Stefan Matteau, Oscar Dansk
The Blue Jackets take the big, physical power forward prospect Troock of the Seattle Thunderbirds. After missing the entire 2010-11 season with concussion and neck issues, Troock returned to the Thunderbirds lineup and played every game this season. He seemed to get more comfortable, and played more effectively as the season went along. A bit of a project due to the missed development time, the Jackets continue to build a big and physical forward group with this pick.
63) Edmonton Oilers – Nick Ebert
Previous Picks: Nail Yakupov, Dalton Thrower
The Oilers take a true boom or bust Defenceman in the third round. Ebert was touted as a sure fire top 5 pick just one year ago. After an underwhelming season in Windsor, Ebert has fallen far on draft boards. Based on his 2010-11 season though, Ebert possesses the skills necessary to be a top defenceman. The Oilers take him hoping that they can help get his game back on track. If they can, they will get a true draft day steal.
64) Montreal Canadiens – Charles Hudon
Previous Picks: Alex Galchenyuk, Mark Jankowski, Scott Kosmachuk,
The Canadiens go 4 for 4 in taking forwards in this draft. Having already addressed needs at the Centre position, and the need to add some size, the Canadiens address their need for a talented LWer in grabbing Hudon. The best forward on the board at this point in the draft, that he’s a native of La Belle Province, is just a bonus for the Habs.
65) New York Islanders – Brandon Whitney
Previous Picks: Matt Dumba, Martin Frk
With the great number of high picks they have amassed in recent years, the Islanders have really built the depth of their system. However they do lack a young goaltending prospect and address that in the third round, grabbing Brandon Whitney, a huge goaltending prospect from the QMJHL’s Victoriaville Tigres.
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