With the 2022 NHL draft fast approaching, Last Word’s Kyle Pereira brought together a group for a 2022 NHL mock draft. Part of that group included another LWOS writer, Ben Kerr. Let’s get into the picks!
Last Word’s 2022 NHL Mock Draft
2022 NHL Mock Draft: First Overall: Montreal Canadiens Select Shane Wright, Center, Kingston Frontenacs
Controlled by Ben Kerr, LWOS
Wright is the consensus selection at first for Montreal. Wright is an NHL-ready forward who can play all situations. Strong defence, strong transitional player, and outstanding dual-threat offensive abilities.
Pros: Strong, well-balanced, all-situations player that is NHL-ready.
Cons: Worries about point production in draft year.
— theScore (@theScore) June 20, 2022
Second Overall: New Jersey Devils Select Simon Nemec, Right Defence, HK Nitra
Controlled by Gordon Munro, Dobber Prospects/Editor in Leaf
Nemec is a bit off the board in the sense that he is not the consensus. However, Monro had the future in mind. With the young forwards New Jersey already has, he felt focusing on defence was important. He expects Nemec to push a few players out and eventually replace Dougie Hamilton on the back end.
Pros: Elite upside, great skater and offensive vision with the puck. Excellent puck-mover.
Cons: Could refine his defensive game a bit more to translate to the NHL.
Third Overall: Arizona Coyotes Select Logan Cooley, Center, USNTDP
Group Discussion (Kyle Pereira, Ben Kerr, Sam Tirpak, Frederik Frandsen, Charlie (@BoqyTime))
This is a dream scenario. Odds that Cooley falls are there as well. With Dylan Guenther, Matias Maccelli, and Clayton Keller on the wings, Cooley not only fits a need but is the best player available. Dream fit.
Pros: Elite skater. Dynamic offensive player who can be a shooter or a playmaker. Great transitional player. Solid defensive zone play.
Cons: USDP level was too easy at times, and consistency with effort level was there. Won’t get away with his style of skating circles and out-skilling competition at a higher level.
Fourth Overall: Seattle Kraken select Juraj Slafkovsky, Left Wing, TPS
Controlled by Jack Smith, HW Radio Co-Host
Slafkovsky is very unlikely to be available at this spot, as odds are he gets selected at second overall if New Jersey does not trade their pick. But if the draft plays out this way, they should jump at the option. Him paired with Matty Beniers and Yanni Gourde sounds enticing.
Pros: NHL-ready size, pro experience in Liiga. Lots of offensive skill, especially his shot. Decent defensive play. Outstanding understanding of his size and how to use it effectively, especially on the forecheck.
Cons: Consistent production. Defensive consistency. Off-puck movement to get open in the offensive zone needs work. His skating and edges need general work, which NHL coaching can help.
Fifth Overall: Philadelphia Flyers Select David Jiricek, Right Defence, HC Plzen
Controlled by James Iacovone, Host of HW radio
Jiricek is arguably the top defender in the class. He is the second off the board here. The group was torn on Jiricek, as Pereira had him lower than most. The discussion between Frandsen and Pereira was fun to listen to, and when Tirpak joined later on, it became much funnier.
Pros: Well-balanced game. Has moments of flashiness offensively, but generally makes smart plays with the puck. Powerful skater. Good size. Strong defensive tools. Outstanding point shot.
Cons: Offensive involvement/playmaking. Defensive consistency and better use of his size and tools. Become less aggressive against the rush.
Sixth Overall: Columbus Blue Jackets (Via Chicago Blackhawks) Select Matthew Savoie, Center, Winnipeg Ice
Controlled by Sam Tirpak, Sportnet.sme.sk scout/writer.
Savoie is a guy who could fall in this draft thanks to his smaller frame. However, and this was said on the stream, Columbus does not care what the consensus thinks. They are not afraid to take the guys they like (see: Johnson, Kent and Chinakov, Yegor). This is a Blue Jackets-esque selection.
Pros: Great skater. Outstanding playmaking abilities and vision with the puck. One of the best transitional players in the class.
Cons: Defence needs a big improvement. Needs to show more effort on the forecheck and backcheck, as well as bulking up more.
Seventh Overall: Ottawa Senators Select Frank Nazar, Center/Right Wing, USNTDP
Controlled by Munro
Nazar is one of the favourite prospects in this class amongst many scouts. He fits the bill for the Senators as well, with Brady Tkachuk and Colin White both flexible between center and wing. Add in Tim Stutzle and Drake Batherson who also play wings, along with Mathieu Joseph, Josh Norris, Roby Jarventie and a few other prospects, and the Senators have quietly built a strong foundation of youngsters.
Pros: Elite skater. Fantastic playmaker with great vision, passing skills and stickhandling skills. Strong in transition. Strong two-way game.
Cons: Similar to Cooley, consistency in effort level can be an issue at times. Needs to bulk up and be more physical on the forecheck and backcheck.
Eighth Overall: Detroit Red Wings Select Jonathan Lekkerimaki, Center/Right Wing, Djurgardens IF
Controlled by Kyle Pereira, Last Word on Sports
With the eighth pick, this writer controlled Detroit. With that, he selected a very Red Wings-esque choice in Lekkerimaki. When asked about the position he plays (center and wing) and whether Lekkerimaki, if Pereira was the coach, would remain in the middle or on the outside, he responded confidently. Essentially, he would stay in the middle in Pereira’s eyes, at least to start. With wingers like Tyler Bertuzzi, Jakub Vrana, Lucas Raymond, Filip Zadina, and Cross Hanas in the system, it would make sense.
Pros: Excellent skater. Excellent transitional play. Excellent offensive instincts with and without the puck. Balanced scoring touch as a playmaker or shooter. Solid defence
Cons: Not the most physical player. Does not retrieve dump-ins, and usually relies on linemates, like an Ondrej Palat, to do the dirty work for him.
Ninth Overall: Buffalo Sabres Select Cutter Gauthier, Center/Left Wing, USNTDP
Controlled by Tirpak
Gauthier is a very complete package in all three zones. He also offers positional versatility and fits what the Sabres are building towards with the acquisition of Alex Tuch. Playing against him and Tuch, if that ever turns out to happen, would be a nightmare for the opposition.
Pros: Strong skater, though not perfect. Creative, dual-threat offensive presence. Excellent motor and puck retrieval abilities. Never shies away from the dirty areas.
Cons: He’s at best average in the USNTDP in his transitional abilities. Defence is decent, but positioning needs some work.
Tenth Overall: Anaheim Ducks Select Joakim Kemell, Right Wing, JYP
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Kemell has arguably the best shot and finishing ability in the entire class. If given the chance, if he ever gets paired with creative genius Trevor Zegras, they could be absolutely lethal. It’s a great match, and a good get at 10th.
Pros: Lethal shooting ability. Good passer, though that’s not his game. Effective defensively, though he won’t be a massive presence there.
Cons: Not the most creative with the puck offensively. Transitional game needs work as well, as he relies on linemates in that area. Similar to Lekkerimaki, he does not retrieve pucks often, relying on linemates there too. Skating needs work, specifically his stride mechanics.
11th Overall: San Jose Sharks Select Denton Mateychuk, Left Defence, Moose Jaw Warriors
Pros: Strong skater, and an especially explosive first few steps. Has a knack for stepping up into offensive plays and finding open space. Excellent vision with the puck on his stick, giving him powerplay quarterback upside. Strong transitional abilities. Decent, but not outstanding, defensive abilities.
Cons: Needs work on his shot. Fine-tuning his defensive game isn’t necessary, but it would help him get closer to NHL readiness. Can get pushed around in net-front battles and board battles, so he needs to bulk up. Lacks physicality.
12th Overall: Blue Jackets Select Danila Yurov, Right Wing, Metallurg Magnitogorsk
Pros: Decent skater, and with NHL coaching, could be really good. Outstanding playmaking abilities with his vision and IQ. Finds open space in high-danger areas often without the puck.
Cons: Needs some work on his shot. Defensive game is inconsistent, which is expected with Russian players. Does not backcheck effectively, and he doesn’t get involved physically. Transitional game is decent but needs some more work.
13th Overall: New York Islanders Select Marco Kasper, Center, Rogle BK
Controlled by Charlie, known as @BoqyTime on Twitter, Writer and Co-Owner of TheScoringTouch
Pros: Strong skater who can become elite with NHL coaching. Creative, dual-threat offensive presence who has a knack for finding soft spots in coverage. Really strong defensive zone presence. High-end motor, retrieves pucks and plays physically.
Cons: Transitional game needs a lot of work. He may be a passenger in that area at the next level. Doesn’t really stand out one way or another with his shooting or passing.
14th Overall: Winnipeg Jets Select Pavel Mintyukov, Left Defence, Saginaw Spirit
Controlled by Spence (@Kadri4Kerfoot on twitter), Writer for Overtime Heroics
Pros: Excellent skater, with superb edges, making him extremely shifty and slippery. Excellent vision and creativity, paired with a heavy shot, make him a dangerous offensive zone presence. Plays at a very, very fast pace.
Cons: Defensive game needs a lot of work. Transitionally, despite his aggressiveness with the puck, is just average. Gets pushed around easily, and doesn’t get involved often in puck battles along the boards. Shot selection needs some work, as he looks off passes to attempt a shot at times, and it can lead to turnovers.
15th Overall: Vancouver Canucks Select Noah Ostlund, Center, Djurgardens IF
Controlled by Frederik Frandsen, Writer for Overtime Heroics
Pros: Elite skater, with fantastic acceleration and short-area bursts. Outstanding playmaker with high-end awareness and offensive IQ. Effective transitional player thanks to skating and stickhandling. Strong defensive zone presence.
Cons: Does not play a physical game. Stays away from board battles, for the most part. Needs to take more shots, to open up his playmaking game even more.
2022 NHL Mock Draft: Rest Of The First-Round
16th Overall: Sabres Select Ryan Chesley, Right Defence, USNTDP
17th Overall: Nashville Predators Select Liam Ohgren, Left Wing, Djurgardens IF (run by Frandsen)
18th Overall: Dallas Stars Select Isaac Howard, Left Wing, USNTDP (run by Charlie)
19th Overall: Los Angeles Kings Select Jagger Firkus, Center/Winger, Moose Jaw Warriors (run by Pereira)
20th Overall: Washington Capitals Select Gleb Trikozov, Center/Winger, Omskie Yastreby (run by Frandsen)
21st Overall: Pittsburgh Penguins Select Conor Geekie, Center, Winnipeg Ice (run by Charlie)
22nd Overall: Ducks Select Kevin Korchinski, Left Defence, Seattle Thunderbirds
23rd Overall: St. Louis Blues Select Owen Beck, Center, Mississauga Steelheads (Group Discussion)
24th Overall: Minnesota Wild Select Rutger McGroarty, Center/Winger, USNTDP (run by Frandsen)
25th Overall: Toronto Maple Leafs Select Tristan Luneau, Right Defence, Gatineau Olympiques (run by Tirpak)
26th Overall: Canadiens Select Ivan Miroshnichenko, Left Wing, Omskie Krylia
27th Overall: Coyotes Select Jimmy Snuggerud, Center/Winger, USNTDP
28th Overall: Sabres Select Calle Odelius, Left Defence, Djurgardens IF
29th Overall: Edmonton Oilers Select Filip Mesar, Winger/Center, HK Propad (run by Munro)
30th Overall: Jets Select Brad Lambert, Center/Right Wing, Pelicans
31st Overall: Tampa Bay Lightning Select Jiri Kulich, Center, HC Energie Karlovy Vary (run by Pereira)
32nd Overall: Coyotes Select Lian Bichsel, Left Defence, Leksands IF
2022 NHL Mock Draft: Round Two Results
33rd Overall: Canadiens Select Seamus Casey
34th Overall: Coyotes Select David Goyette
35th Overall: Kraken Select Mats Lindgren
36th Overall: Coyotes Select Elias Salomonsson
37th Overall: Devils Select Julian Lutz
38th Overall: Blackhawks Select Jack D. Hughes
39th Overall: Senators Select Lane Hutson
40th Overall: Red Wings Select Nathan Gaucher
41st Overall: Sabres Select Luca Del Bel Belluz
42nd Overall: Ducks Select Jordan Dumais
43rd Overall: Coyotes Select Adam Sykora
44th Overall: Blue Jackets Select Simon Forsmark
45th Overall: Coyotes Select Filip Bystedt
46th Overall: Capitals Select Owen Pickering
47th Overall: Wild Select Devin Kaplan
48th Overall: Vegas Golden Knights Select Sam Rinzel (Group Discussion)
49th Overall: Kraken Select Maveric Lamoureux
50th Overall: Stars Select Ty Nelson
51st Overall: Kings Select Danny Zhilkin
52nd Overall: Red Wings Select Cruz Lucius
53rd Overall: Ducks Select Mattias Havelid
54th Overall: Boston Bruins Select Adam Ingram (Controlled by Pereira)
55th Overall: Jets Select Vladimir Grudinin
56th Overall: Wild Select Otto Salin
57th Overall: Blackhawks Select Justin Cote
58th Overall: Kraken Select Noah Warren
59th Overall: Calgary Flames Select Bryce McConnell-Barker (Group Discussion)
60th Overall: Carolina Hurricanes Select Antonin Verreault (run by Pereira)
61st Overall: Kraken Select Topias Leinonen
62nd Overall: Canadiens Select Reid Schafer
63rd Overall: Senators Select Jack Devine
64th Overall: New York Rangers Select Matyas Sapovaliv (Group Discussion)
65th Overall: New York Islanders Select Tomas Hamara (Group Discussion)
2022 NHL Mock Draft: Things To Note
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It’s important to remember that this is a MOCK draft. While the participants are excellent scouts in their own right, this is still a fun activity to do every year, and we don’t aim to be the most accurate with each and every pick. That said, a few things to note: No trades were made, Lambert’s long fall, Casey and Goyette in round two.
For the trades; trades were allowed, but none were made. It could have been due to the fact that only draft picks could be used in trades as opposed to players, which was not allowed. That said, the second overall pick is very much in play, which very well could change the entire outcome. Lambert also is unlikely to fall as far as he did in this mock, despite the many times Tirpak noted his dislike of the player. Finally, Casey is one of the higher-rated prospects in the class and is more likely going to be a mid-to-late first as opposed to a second-round guy. Meanwhile, Goyette is trending up as of late, and very well could become a top-20 selection.