Good morning from Dallas. It is draft day and things are starting to heat up here in big D!
Yesterday was the media accessibility day and here are a few takeaways from some of the players I was able elbow my way into their scrum.
Filip Zadina: I really enjoyed what this kid had to say. My big take away from the whole event was how candid he was about wanting to play in Montreal. When asked where he hope to be drafted he said it didn’t really matter…
”But I would love to be the third player picked”
Another reporter asked if he has had meetings with Montreal and he has had several and ended the comment with..
“I got a pretty good feeling about Montreal”
Brady Tkachuk: Earlier I spoke to a NHL scout from the Pacific Division and we spoke about Tkachuk. He said they asked if he would like to play for their team and he said absolutely, because he would get to play his brother frequently. I asked him if he was going to drop the gloves with Matthew because we all love brother fights in the NHL. He said…
“Im not going to be looking for one, I hope we never do”
Who would win?
“I would, and he knows it. He knows not to mess with me”
Andrei Svechnikov: When asked who he would love to play with in the NHL one day, he replied with a big smile and said
Andrei Kuznetsov and Alex Ovechkin”
The Carolina Hurricanes have been pretty candid about their intention to make the pick at second overall and that it will be Svechnikov. Every time a NHL GM makes such statements they need to be taken with a grain of salt. They say things that just aren’t true often to the media in strategic manoeuvres towards a specific goal.
Yesterday my friend Russ Cohen told me he overheard Tom Dundon say to Svechnikov in the lobby of the Fairmount
“See you tomorrow”
Saying this directly to the player and not to the media really confirms for me that Svechnikov will be picked at two.
Based on what I heard yesterday the top of the draft will go like this
- Rasmus Dahlin to Buffalo
- Andrei Svechnikov to Carolina
- Filip Zadina to Montreal
I think Montreal is still a wild card here. They are leaking a lot of we need a center and we want Jesperi Kotkaniemi talk. This may be a good example of the strategic misdirection I mentioned above. You just don’t pass over the best player available to pick an organizational need with the third overall pick.
Just to further muddy the water on this pick, I spoke to Aynsley Scott and we had a good debate about if Brady Tkachuk could play in the middle. Tkachuk was asked that yesterday and said he played center growing up, and he did play a little in the middle with USA at the World Junior.
If Montreal really wants a center at the third pick could they be looking at Tkachuk? Picking Tkachuk at th