July 31-in-31: Nashville Predators






Welcome to our annual 31-in-31 Summer Series here at DobberProspects! Every day in July we will be bringing you a complete breakdown of a team’s draft, notes from their development camp, and insights into their off-season moves so far. Following this up, the August 31-in-31 Series will dive into every team’s prospect depth charts with fantasy insights and implications for the upcoming seasons. Check in often, because we plan on filling your hockey withdrawal needs all summer long!



After an early playoff exit in Round 1, there was a feeling that change was coming in the Music City.  It is often said that the Entry Draft and the Trade Deadline are the most pivotal points in the year to reface your team and GM David Poile did just that.  The PK Subban trade rumours finally ended on Day 2 of the draft with the all-star defender moving on to New Jersey for two 2nd round picks and prospects Jeremy Davies and Steven Santini.  The trade cleared much needed cap space for the highly anticipated UFA signing of Matt Duchene. While big move were made to the main roster, the Predators had a full slate of picks to make and made good on restocking organizational depth.



Round 1, 24th overall: Philip Tomasino, C

In a 1st Round that was unpredictable at best that saw the value of defenceman rise up the ranks, the Predators pounced on centreman Philip Tomasino with the 24th overall selection.  With many mock drafts slotting Tomasino in the teens, Nashville scored great value on a young centreman only just scratching his offensive potential.  


Tomasino is known as one of the fastest and most improved players in the OHL this season.  He has a great first step and excellent acceleration. He is also described as an absolute workhorse with a non-stop motor and he addresses a need down the middle in the Preds system.  He displays fantastic speed while carrying the puck, which creates great shooting angles for him and helps him draw in defenders opening up passing lanes to teammates. While he may not be an elite scorer, Tomasino has already established himself as a responsible and hard-nosed pivot at a young age.  His style of play matches a fast paced and aggressive Smashville group and is sure to eventually transition well to the next level. On many a night, Tomasino’s tenacity and relentless work ethic cannot be overlooked.


He’s a fearless puck-carrier, willing to pay the price to take the puck to the high-danger parts of the offensive zone. His hands are elite.” (EPrinkside.com)


Tomasino is a swiss-army knife forward whose versatility made him effective.” (Hockeyprospect.com, 2019)


Tomasino played behind a roster of OHL headliners in Niagara this past season and still posted a significant increase in his offensive production from 24 points in 2017-18 to 72 points in 2018-19.  Seeing as many of the Niagara over-agers will be moving on, Tomasino is poised to earn more ice-time and more favorable offensive nuggets and should continue to improve his scoring output.  


Round 2, 45th overall: Egor Afanasyev, LW

After many wingers got passed-over in Round 1, Day 2 at the draft was loaded with scoring options on the wing.  In the middle of Round 2, the Preds couldn’t pass up the raw size and skill of Egor Afanaseyev and selected him 45th-overall.  The Russian factor was an issue once upon a time, but seeing as Afanaseyev is already playing in North America with Muskegon (USHL), there was no hesitation on the part of the Preds.


The hulking left winger adds skill and size to the Predators depth on the wing as Afanesyev presents great potential