Welcome to the Thursday prospect ramblings where I will continue my project for the next couple of ramblings. If you forget I am taking a look at the past NHL drafts (since 2014) and self-analyzing if the players were: drafted too high, developed improperly or injury-related.
I started with 2014 (see it here: https://dobberprospects.com/prospect-ramblings-drafted-too-high-developed-improperly-or-injury-related-2014/) and then realized that 2015 is also an adventure that will take some writing and combining it with 2016 would make this far too large. Today is just a look at 2015, next week will be 2016, and I will wrap up with 2017-2019. For the record I have no insider knowledge here, only what I have read/heard and my personal assumption when it comes to some aspects of this analysis.
But first, here is my #GoodTweet of the week:
Also here is a predicition tweet:
I want to add that the NHLs proposed early June draft is a really bad idea and I thoroughly dislike it
Let me begin:
Dylan Strome – 3rd overall by Arizona Coyotes
- Simply put: Drafted too high
- A lot of people still think he can turn out in to a solid 60+ point producer but at what time does that dream die?
- I will give him this though, his skating has improved a lot. He will probably hang out in the 42-53-point range for his career (unless stapled to Patrick Kane)
- Considering who all went after this pick was much too high
Pavel Zacha – 6th overall by New Jersey Devils
- I will get this out of the way (again), I am a huge Devils homer and do not think Zacha has been that bad. Would the Devils have been better off taking Provorov, Werenski, Meier or Rantanen, of course
- With that all said I believe this is more in the drafted improperly side of things, with a touch of drafted too high. It would be a combination of: no skilled line mates, scrutiny when other players received none for similar mistakes, healthy scratches, and being sent to the AHL, all courtesy of coach Hynes.
- He showed more life this season, and when he gets skilled line mates he looks great (hello Gusev and Bratt)
- He will not live up to being picked fifth overall but he can be a great shut-down centre with skill to post 45+ points
Lawson Crouse – 11th overall by Florida Panthers
- Verdict here: Drafted too high, but at least it was not first, second or third overall too high
- He would have made a solid late first / early second round pick though
Jakub Zboril – 13th overall by Boston Bruins
- I still think there is an NHL player here, the problem recently for him is that Boston is deep and a lot of other defensive prospects are passing him more and more
- The verdict here is: Drafted too high
Zach Senyshyn – 15th overall by Boston Bruins
- At least Boston got one good top six player out of this first round draft
- Back in 2014 I thought Senyshyn would have been a solid late second round pick but apparently Boston thought he was a solid first round option. Perhaps they felt so solidly on the first two selections that they felt they could take the risk? I do not know
- The Bruins also got Brandon Carlo, Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson, and Jeremy Lauzon in round two so I mean, Zboril and Senyshen being busts does not hurt one bit
- Obviously the answer here is: Drafted too high
Evgeni Svechnikov – 19th overall by Detroit Red Wings
- I was (and still am) a big Svechnikov fan. He obviously is not as good as his brother here but there is a solid top six winger here if he can get a shot and stop getting hurt
- The problem is that with the injuries other prospects may have come on to par with him, limiting his chance to show in the NHL. Not to mention when he plays in the NHL there is no one to play with when the big BLM line is together
- His 2017-2018 season still confused me, but the Wings were not great and just something did not click on the Griffins until late in the season. Then the knee injury hit. Hopefully he can get a chance on the roster before he is buried by other young talent
- His issue is definitely: Injury related
Noah Juulsen – 26th overall by Montreal Canadiens
- This one stinks to write because of how good Juulsen looked in 2018-2019 coming back from his injury filled previous year, only to have his career put in jeopardy because of a freak incident and subsequent headaches/obvious concussion
- He was thankfully able to start playing again on March 12, 2020 in the AHL before the season was cancelled. Let us all hope in 2020-2021 he can make the NHL squad (as they need help on defense)
- Verdict of: Injury related
Jacob Larsson – 27th overall by Anaheim Ducks
- Larsson is tough to evaluate here. On one hand he is a late pick that has become a fixture on the roster. On the other hand, there were better players picked later. His CF%, and overall ice impact (unless I misread a list), also dropped from 2018-2019 to 2019-2020 but is that player or team related, as he still is quite young and still learning the toughest position to learn
- I would put him on the cusp of being: Drafted too high
Gabriel Carlsson – 29th overall by Columbus Blue Jackets
- Carlsson is inching along for Columbus, but they have an overloaded blue line that will be extremely difficult for him to make the NHL for the Blue Jackets. Thankfully 40% of CBJ players tend to get hurt at this same time so he will still have a shot to make it
- He is drafted too high as I really though CBJ would have been better selecting a forward here
Nick Merkley – 30th overall by Arizona Coyotes
- Merkley really slid down the 2014 draft, a lot like Joe Veleno in 2018
- He was always a solid and skilled forward. I was a big fan and thought he should have been a top-20 pick and he looked well on his way to being a great pick for Arizona. Unfortunately, he had a second knee-injury late in the 2017-2018 season, his second as he had an ACL problem ending his 2015-2016 season
- He produces great AHL numbers for a player missing so much development time and hopefully it does not hurt his transition in to the NHL
- If not for the routine nature of him being hurt I believe he would still be on Arizona as a middle-six winger
- Injury related issues suit his development
Additionally, in regards to last week Kirill Kaprizov has not signed yet, have you attempted to pry him from an antsy gm yet? My keeper leagues are on pause and we are restricting anything related to transactions.
This leads me to some questions for other fantasy players, please tweet at me or comment for me on:
- How your keeper league has set up this paused period, is anyone doing anything?
- If the season is ended what is your payout system?
- Thoughts on a June 5th draft
Thanks for reading, follow my twitter: @FHPQuinn