Prospect Ramblings: What Your 2020 First Round Pick Says About You

Brayden Olafson




If you’re a millennial like me, or a Gen-Z like many other readers, you’re likely familiar with TikTok and the various trends that the video-based social media platform is famous for. If not, here’s a sample – it’s been an entertaining way to pass the time during these times of social isolation to say the least. In fact, Dobber Prospect’s own Joel Henderson [@dathockeydoe] is somewhat of a TikTok celebrity… check it out.


One of the trends that have caught fire on TikTok is the “What your ______ says about you” meme. These videos feature an individual who fills in the blank with a noun, and generalizes people based on their possession of or association with that noun… I’ll let them explain:




For today’s Ramblings,’ I wanted to play off the trend with a hockey prospect spin, specifically focusing on some of the top prospects eligible for the 2020 draft. Although we more commonly evaluate a player more directly, I thought it would be fun to take a unique angle and evaluate teams’ values based on the player that they select. If this isn’t making sense yet, keep reading, it’ll all come together shortly. 


For two reasons, I think this will only be engaging if we focus on some of the players who are projected to go outside of the top-5. The first few picks will be made almost undeniably in order of “best available” as judged by the team – as such, there won’t be much to interpret about what those selections say about the team, whereas deeper into the draft, there is likely much more subjectivity when it comes to making a selection than simply being the “best available”. Secondly, the top players in the draft simply already receive an abundance of coverage here on DP. We’re looking at a deep draft and there are plenty of players who are owed their dues. 


What drafting Dawson Mercer says about you…



From the perspective of an NHL franchise, if you’re banking on picking up Dawson Mercer in the 10-20 range (approximately where he’s ranked) chances are that you’re not extremely risk-averse and err on the side of value rather than growth potential. 


That isn’t to say by any means, that Mercer has topped out. Rather, as players ranked in this range of the draft go, he seems to have the most secure growth floor. Mercer’s growth potential, however, doesn’t appear to have the project