Reviewing the results of a prospect draft run by prospect specialists in the Sunday Ramblings…
The DobberProspects Fantasy Hockey League (DPFHL) started earlier this summer with a roster player draft. Only players with 41 games or more of NHL experience were eligible, as well as goalies with more than 21 games. Now its time for Part II: the prospect draft for our farm teams – aka our scouting team's bread and butter. Only players with less than 41 games NHL experience are eligible (and goalies with les than 21 NHL games). Every team is run my the site scout responsible for that team (for example, the Colorado Avalanche team in the DPFHL is operated by myself, as I am responsible for the Avs page here on DobberProspects). So, lets take a look at how the first few rounds have shaken out, in the name of both transparaency as your fantasy hockey references, and since there's no such thing as a boring draft! Before judging a writer's pick too harshly, remember that given a team's current roster, one may be aiming for help immediately or far down the road.
|1: New Jersey Devils – Auston Matthews||13: Buffalo Sabres – Matt Murray|
|2: Montreal Canadiens – Jesse Puljujarvi||14: Arizon Coyotes – Christian Dvorak|
|3: WInnipeg Jets – Patrick Laine||15: Chicago Blackhawks – Matt Barzal|
|4: LA Kings – Mitch Marner||16: Columbus Blue Jackets – Zach Werenski|
|5: Florida Panthers – William Nylander||17: Colorado Avalanche (via CGY) – Thatcher Demko|
|6: Washingston Capitals – Dylan Strome||18: Ottawa Senators – Nick Ritchie|
|7: San Jose Sharks – Matthew Tkachuk||19: Calgary Flames (via COL) – Jon Gillies|
|8: Tampa Bay – Sebatian Aho||20: Toronto Maple Leafs – Shea Theodore|
|9: Dallas Stars – Kyle Connor||21: St. Louis Blues – Stephen Johns|
|10: Pittsburgh Penguins – Mikko Rantanen||22: San Jose Shaks (via CAR) – Timo Meier|
|11: Edmonton Oilers – Pierre-Luc Dubois||23: Minnesota Wild – Pavel Zacha|
|12: Vancouver Canucks – Ivan Provorov||24: Nashville Predators – Jakub Vrana|
No bad players were taken in this round, but a few don't belong where they ended up in my opinion. Both goalies were likely taken higher than necessary (I was one of the offenders here), but given how hard quality goalies are to come by, I wanted to ensure my goaltending future was in good hands. Stephen Johns is likely the weakest prospect in the group, however he has an excellent shot at earning an NHL spot this season, as opposed to many others taken this round who will likely be a year or two. Factors like this are what make these drafts so intense, as everyone is considering different timelines for their rosters. I consider Shea Theodore the steal of Round 1.
|25: Nashiville – Brett Ritchie||37: Vancouver – Jakub Chychrun|
|26: Minnesota – Mikhail Sergachev||38: Edmonton – Jake Bean|
|27: Carolina – Clayton Keller||39: Pittsburgh – Travis Sanheim|
|28: St. Louis – Julius Honka||40: Dallas – Brandon Montour|
|29: Toronto – Lawson Crouse||41: Tampa Bay – Travis Konecny|
|30: Columbus (via COL) – Esa Lindell||42: San Jose – Tyson Jost|
|31: Ottawa – Mike Matheson||43: Washington – Ryan Pulock|
|32: Calgary – Brock Boeser||44: Florida – Logan Brown|
|33: Columbus – Alex Nylander||45: LA – Anthony DeAngelo|
|34: Chicago – Olli Juolevi||46: Winnipeg – Michael Dal Colle|
|35: Arizona – Colin White||47: Montreal – Juuse Saros|
|36: Buffalo – Oliver Bjorkstrand||48: New Jersey – Malcom Subban*|
Things stayed relatively on the tracks in Round 2. Again, no bad prospects on the list, but it started entering the territory where scouts clearly had very different valuations of players, and very different priorities concerning the immediate or far future. Many top prospects from the 2016 NHL Entry Draft were selected, who are excellent pieces but will not be contributing to their fantasy team anytime soon. This round was also very low on goaltender picks, making me think a swarm of them may be coming in the future. Ryan Pulock should not have droped to 43rd overall, shame on the scouting team for letting that absolute steal happen. Koneccny and Dal Colle will also be great value picks. The asterisk on the final NJD pick, as well as the first of the next round, indicates that the pick was actually made much later in the draft, after the team owner was replaced.
|49: New Jersey – Kerby Rychel*||61: Buffalo- Daniel Sprong|
|50: Montreal – Nick Schmaltz||62: Arizona – Danton Heinen|
|51: Colorado (via WPG) – Jimmy Vesey||63: Chicago – Joel Eriksson Ek|
|52: LA – Andreas Athanasiou||64: Colorado (via CLB) – Josh Morrissey|
|53: Florida – Thomas Chabot||65: Washingston (via CGY) – Ilya Samsonov|
|54: Calgary (via WSH) – Kevin Fiala||66: Ottawa – Anthony Mantha|
|55: San Jose – Sonny Milano||67: Winnipeg (via COL) – Madison Bowey|
|56: Tampa Bay – Brendan Guhle||68: Toronto – Adrian Kempe|
|57: Dallas – Frank Vatrano||69: St. Louis – Mike Reilly|
|58: Pittsburgh – JF Berube||70: San Jose (via CAR) – Haydn Fleury|
|59: Edmonton – Drake Caggiula||71: Minnesota – Jake DeBrusk|
|60: Vancouver – Max Jones||72: Nashville – Michael McLeod|
Unfortunately for New Jersey, fantasy hockey leagues are an unforgiving past-time. Picking your 2nd and 3rd round picks after the rest of the league has finished is not a fun thing to do, but the new owner did well to snag a goaltender and possible NHLer. Things started getting quite unpredictable in Round 3 as the darkhorses have started coming out. Betting on players like Jones, DeBrusk, and McLeod this early in the draft are risky moves, but could have big payoffs if development goes as planned. Lots of good value was had; in my opinion Vatrano, Mantha, and possibly Bowey could be real gems at their respective draft spots.
Round 4 is underway as I am writing – the Ramblers will surely be keeping you up to date throughout the next week or two as the draft unfolds. For live udates, the scouts are using the hashtags #DPFHL and #DPFHLProspectDraft on twitter to help us all follow along wherever we are. Organizing a group based all over Canada, the US, and Europe is tough task, its truly exciting to be part of such an enormous undertaking.
As always, thank you for readings and best of luck in your upcoming drafts!
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