By Multiple DraftPro Contributors.

The team at DraftPro was able to get together last week and make some best guesses at what NHL teams will do come tomorrow and Friday. It is a fun little exercise as we pull out our crystal balls and makes three rounds worth of selections for the NHL teams we represented. Some picks will be surprising, some boring as you have already seen in other mocks, while other picks will be controversial just like there will be at the NHL Draft.

Picking for this mock are the below twelve DraftPro contributors:

Dan Stewart – Director of Scouting
Jared Brown – Head Scout
Kai Farenholtz – NA Regional Scout
Matt Hnatiuk – NA Regional Scout
Murray Caldwell – NA Regional Scout
Christian B-Cote – NA Regional Scout
Andrew LeBlanc – NA Regional Scout
Alex Taxman – NA Regional Scout
Joseph Peters – NA Regional Scout
Niclas Karlsson – EU Regional Scout
Charlie Thelin – EU Regional Scout
Mikko Saarela – EU Regional Scout

The Draft host Montreal Canadiens have the first pick.


“With the 1st overall pick Montreal Canadiens are proud to select, from Kingston Frontenacs of the Ontario Hockey League, Shane Wright. Shane is somebody who can help the team right away. He might not be the player with the highest potential upside but he’s the only one who is ready to contribute right away in the NHL. He will be an NHL player, there’s no doubt about it, basically with anyone else you can’t be sure. Even though Wright isn’t the most skillful with the puck in this draft, he’s a player who you rarely find. He can keep up with the most skilled players in the top line while also being a balancing force in the line making it less vulnerable defensively which is a powerful combination as we’ve all seen with Patrice Bergeron and the team that I can’t mention by name as a Montreal Canadiens’ GM.” – Mikko Saarela

“With pick #2 New Jersey Devils select winger Juraj Slafkovsky. Slafkovsky will add some significant talent to a developing devils core. A player that will fit well alongside Jack Hughes and be a steady point producer for many years to come. Has proven himself being capable of dominating games versus men several times which has made his draft-stock continuously rise throughout the year. His big size really stands out and he possesses great attributes and a nose for the net which makes him a potential future star.” – Niclas Karlsson

“Arizona is happy to select Logan Cooley at #3 overall. A left shot center with brilliant passing skills who creates mid ice separation with explosive speed when breaking down the middle or to the outside leaving Dmen flat footed. Has an elite shot that is near NHL ready. This man plays a 200 foot game with high end vision & creates turnovers any where on the ice. Excellent with and without the puck. Logan brings that much needed speed down the middle to help with the rebuild, taking place in Arizona. It is all about his speed, the Coyotes feel Logan is the fastest skater in this years draft. Size and speed will be crucial in the rebuild.” – Murray Caldwell

“The Kraken select from HC Plzen defender David Jiricek, a physical, commanding, mobile, scoring, two-way defenseman with good IQ. Seattle needs everything after a confusing expansion draft process along with a poor first season. They have some upcoming young players upfront with Beniers and Winterton. Slightly more mature defenseman incoming, could he be NHL-ready? The Kraken think so.” – Christian B-Cote

“With the #5 pick overall Philadelphia Flyers selects RD Simon Nemec. His puck moving skills, skating, and offensive toolkit will juice up the Flyers group on the blue line on the right side. His two-way potential as a top four right shot defenseman is desired by all 32 organizations. When he is ready to step onto NHL ice, this draft pick will provide the Philadelphia Flyers organization with some exciting transitional play up and down the ice, a good amount speed through puck movement, deception, creativity, and a player with a defensive game that can be coached and groomed into something greater and more impactful.” – Joseph Peters

“With the #6 pick Columbus Blue Jackets select Matthew Savoie. Reports about me being furious about the top two defenders not being available for us at six aren’t true… We went with the best player available and Matthew will add to some already exciting forward-prospects in our organization. He’s a player that really excels in the offensive zone and will definitely add some scoring to this franchise. He will be crucial for us on the power play as we consider him being one of, if not the best player in the draft on the PP.” – Niclas Karlsson

“Ottawa selects the big power center and goal scorer Cutter Gauthier from USDP at #7 overall. A center with versatility to play on the wing. Plays with speed and physicality in his 200-foot game. The Senators will look to bolster their 3rd line with a player that knows how to score. He can drive straight through the neutral zone or to the outside with explosive acceleration. Gifted hands for stick handling passing or shooting! Not afraid to shoot from any angle. Scores a lot of goals due the quick release. A very good puck distributor. Uses his big frame to lay out some thunderous body checks to create puck turnovers and separation. A big plus is his skating, it looks to be close to NHL ready.” – Murray Caldwell

“Detroit is proud to select from HC Karlovy Vary in Czechia, center Jiri Kulich. Detroit has some organizational needs to address like adding prospects down the middle and goaltending depth, but with their top pick it is about finding the best player available who can contribute to the rebuild that is running into year four under GM Steve Yzerman and Co. The Wings value work ethic and smarts not just on-ice skills. Not afraid to go off the board and make who they see as the best pick they do it again in Montreal with this selection. Kulich has the drive, leadership and skills to be a difference maker at the NHL level and while he might still be a year or two away from meaningful NHL minutes they love how he led the Czech team at the recent U18’s.” – Dan Stewart

“With the #9 selection Buffalo Sabres selects winger Joakim Kemell. The sniper from Finland fell into the Sabres lap. A no brainer. His electric potential of becoming a prolific goal scoring winger with agility, deception, and top notch puck skills, will bolster the right wing for years to come. While he is not NHL ready as of this moment, there is no problem with letting him develop and polish up his overall game. Kemell has the potential of being a reliable 30 goal scorer, and with his shooting abilities, he can break the 40-goal ceiling. He is a piece to the puzzle, perfectly fitting in with the young and upcoming talented forwards in the Buffalo organization.” – Joseph Peters

“Anaheim has solid depth at each position all the way through their charts. Where the lack a little is in scoring depth. Drafting a scoring forward will add to an already very promising group of developing prospects. With the 10th pick, the Anaheim Ducks select, from the USNTDP, C, Frank Nazar. Frank is a player who can be creative with the puck and has proven he can score. He has excellent skating ability and puck control through the neutral zone and into the offensive zone. We look forward to seeing him develop his game further as a member of this organization.” – Matt Hnatiuk

“San Jose is proud to select Jagger Firkus of the Moose Jaw Warriors with the 11th pick. First off, I look at this now as a poor pick on my behalf… I was pressed during Grad and couldn’t make a real qualified selection, but I still think this pick holds some value. So I apologize for that. San Jose hasn’t entered complete rebuild mode just as of yet, but there’s no time to start like the present. Peering through San Jose’s prospect pool, you’re welcomed with a plethora of strong, speedy, and versatile skaters that stem from Brandon Coe, William Eklund, Tristan Robins, and even guys on the backend like Ryan Merkley. Another player that can easily mold into this style of play is Moose Jaw Warrior’s highlight-reel machine, Jagger Firkus. Hands down one of the draft’s best shooters right behind Kemell and Slafkovsky… and arguably even more flashy. The Sharks have always been an exciting fast-paced team to tune into and Jagger seems like a guy that fits that image immensely. It’ll be a few years down the line before a guy like Jagger slides into an NHL lineup, but he’s bound to grow not only in terms of maturity, but physicality as well. In my eyes, a situation where you draft the best player available. Jagger’s ceiling is that of a palace. Give him the proper environment and development path and he’s bound for stardom at the next level.” – Kai Farenholtz

“With pick #12 Columbus Blue Jackets pick Jonathan Lekkerimaki. All though we would like to make an improvement to our defensive prospect pool, Jonathan being available for us here at 12 made us go a different direction with this pick. It’s a pure goal scorer with a lethal shot, that will be yet another exciting forward prospect that will be a crucial piece in our future success. His fluent skating and willingness to shoot and score from anywhere really makes him special and he really caught our attention at the U18 world championship – where he had the most points (15) out of all players participating and won gold with Team Sweden.” – Niclas Karlsson

“With the #13 selection the New York Islanders select center Marco Kasper. From the players we had available, we felt Marco Kasper was the most probable future NHLer. He’s going to fit in our system like a glove and we have great confidence in him becoming our middle 6 forward. Kasper plays a tough, mature and direct game, he isn’t afraid to go in front of the net. Anders Lee will be a great mentor for Kasper even though he’s in a different position, at least for now. Kasper has the potential to be a great winger as well.” – Mikko Saarela

“At #14 The Winnipeg Jets are proud to select from the USNTDP, Rutger McGroarty. With many decisions within our core forward group moving forward, we felt continuing to strengthen our prospect pool up front is best for us and we are thrilled to have a player like Rutger who can play either C or on the wing. His excellent character and leadership qualities stood out to us most. He can play a hard-nosed game which will fit into the way we like our forwards to play. Fans will love the way he battles, competes, and the energy he brings on a nightly basis. Considering the terrific physical maturity this young man has already, we expect him to challenge for a spot on our roster within 1-2 years.” – Jared Brown

“The Vancouver Canucks are proud to select at #15 from Metallurg Magnitogorsk, Danila Yurov. We are looking for a bounce-back season after a stormy 2021-2022. We are confident to take the best player available in Yurov. A highly skilled, smart, dynamic two-way winger that can come into our organization when he’s ready without any stress. We like how he plays with a good motor, can score goals and set up beautiful plays with his quick soft hands. A future top six player in our organization.” – Charlie Thelin

“At pick #16 Buffalo Sabres  select C Conor Geekie. The big center out of the WHL will provide some size to the eventual lineup, as well as down the middle of the ice for the Sabres organization. While the Sabres depth charts show promise and a hopeful future, Geekie fills the void where they lack size through physical stature and play amongst the mix of forwards. Even though there are some question marks when it comes to his skating, his smarts and attitude/character for a team effort outweigh the worry. As we have seen before, even the not so great skaters in the league figure it out and have success in their career.” – Joseph Peters

“With the #17 selection Nashville Predators are proud to select skilled US NTDP winger Isaac Howard. He is a player that we really wanted and we are thrilled to have him in our organization. There’s a lot of things to like about this young man and we do believe that once he adds some strength making it harder to push him off the puck, he will be a bona fide top 6 forward in the NHL. Of course we had in mind that he certainly fits well next to Tomasino. That is an exciting young duo that hopefully turns out as good as we expect it to do. He also adds some depth for us as there is still some uncertainty about pending UFA, LW Filip Forsberg.” – Niclas Karlsson

“With the 18th selection, the Dallas Stars select, from the Moose Jaw Warriors, Defenseman, Denton Mateychuk. Denton is a confident, puck carrying defender who shows excellent skating ability. He is strong in the transition game and has shown he has excellent play reading ability. Denton will grow to fill a gap on the back end as he has the ability to play on his off side (the right side) and can do so confidently and consistently.” – Matt Hnatiuk

“Minnesota uses the pick they just acquired to select center Brad Lambert 19th overall. With Lambert, there is a slight gamble. The highly touted Fin has been atop of everyone’s list for the last three years with his dynamic skating and overall quick style of play. But after a lack of overall production and some concern about being able to compete at the next level, he’s fallen across numerous boards… although he isn’t as much of a sure thing as he was a few years ago, the frame for a top-6/top-9 forward is still there.” – Kai Farenholtz

“With the 20th selection the Washington Capitals are proud to select, from Djurgarden, Liam Ohgren. Ohgren can be seen in a Capitals jersey sooner than later, a player that will fit perfectly into the organization. He possesses an excellent 200-foot skill set and is a true athlete. This kid has a motor that’s off the charts, elite acceleration and skating, overall a very well-rounded player. We are very glad that a prospect with Ohgren’s caliber and upside was available for us with the 20th pick.” – Charlie Thelin

“Pittsburgh Penguins select Pavel Mintyukov. A fantastic skating defenseman with skills and instincts to produce offense from the blue line. The Penguins core of defenseman need a spark and an inevitable youth movement. Letting Mintyukov continue to develop his defensive mishaps, while improving his skating, puck skills, and offensive attack, the Pittsburgh organization could have a legit solid top four weapon on the backend. Pittsburgh may still be in a win now mode mentality, but at some point the organization must stock up on young talent, and Mintyukov is a great start, arguably right at the top of their list of youngsters.” – Joseph Peters

“With the 22nd selection, the Anaheim Ducks select from HK Poprad in Slovakia, RW, Filip Mesar. Filip is a playmaking forward who has excellent puck skill and playmaking ability. He is quick on his feet and has shown he can play against older, more experienced opponents and still succeed with his style of game. He will add another dimension to the right side that should allow his linemates to flourish.” – Matt Hnatiuk

“The St. Louis Blues are proud to select from the Seattle Thunderbirds of the WHL, Kevin Korchinski. Kevin fills multiple organizational needs as a somewhat unique defenseman. His size, skating ability, instincts with the puck, and defensive capabilities lead us to believe he can be a future top-four minute-muncher in all situations, with some untapped offensive potential.” – Alex Taxman

“With the 24th pick, Minnesota will be selecting Noah Ostlund from Djugardens of the SHL. He plays a great all around game. Competes hard every shift. He is a great skater that shows flashes of tremendous upside. For a team that needs help down the middle, Ostlund will slot in nicely next to Rossi in their prospect pool. The Wild will be hoping these two can lock down the top two center spots for the foreseeable future.” – Andrew LeBlanc

“With the 25th pick, Toronto is proud to select from USNTDP, RW Jimmy Snuggerud. We like that Snuggerud will play at the same program as one of our other prospects, Matthew Knies, at the University of Minnesota in the 2022-2023 season. We felt that Snuggerud was an underrated star in the USNTDP this past season hiding in the shadows. He’s got a pro-level release, constant heads up surveying skills to execute passes, and the hockey IQ with the puck that we actively search for. He comes with versatility in his position as he can play either C or RW. We believe he was the best player available at pick #25 with a safe floor level for the NHL as long as his skating continues to improve, which we have full trust in our development team to help train Jimmy in that department.” – Jared Brown

“With the 26th pick, we are proud to select from Lokomotiv Jaroslavl, Alexander Perevalov. We got our safe pick with 1st overall, now we are going risky. We are willing to look past Perevalov’s lack of consistency because his skill level is without a doubt one of the best in this draft class. He can really hurt the team with his unorthodox and selfish moves but we are confident that we can harness Perevalov’s potential by developing his weak points enough for them to be at a tolerable level, and by helping him with improving his strengths enough to cover the weakness. We just drafted Wright to cover for players like Perevalov so this is a perfect match.” – Mikko Saarela

“With the 27th pick Arizona selects from USNTDP Ryan Chesley RD will add defensive awareness, mobility and not afraid to rush the puck. A player that can be used in all situations bringing leadership skills. A calm decisive player that can control the play. A skilled puck rusher not afraid to jump up in the play and contribute. Plays with poise, compete, grit and determination. Should be ready to compete for a spot by next season. He will get some great experience playing with the Golden Gophers in Minnesota next year.” – Murray Caldwell

“Buffalo Sabres select W Ivan Miroshnichenko. Arguably a top five pick before the season started, he encountered unfortunate health complications, tainting his draft stock. Like the 9th pick, the Sabres snag another goal scoring winger who can score at will when he is on top of his game. His shot velocity, accuracy, and strength on the puck are freakish for his age group. He is an extremely talented player who plays heavy on the forecheck when he wants the puck. Cleaning up inconsistencies, specifically two-way efforts, are his biggest room for improvement. In a 2 year window, he should be ready to prove himself worthy of a roster spot. He has top six game breaking talent and can supply goals in various ways.” – Joseph Peters

“Edmonton Oilers are proud to select Owen Pickering out of Swift Current. Although the Edmonton blueline has seen improvements over the past few seasons, it’s no where near what it’s capable of. Adding Pickering doesn’t just add a solid top-4 capable defender to the arsenal, it adds a defenceman that’s able to recognize plays and distribute the puck to high opportune areas with his skating and passing. Possessing a defenceman with keen offensive awareness, size, and skating would gel perfectly with Edmonton’s gung-ho style offence. And with a towering frame, the potential to become an even better two-way minute munching defender is always there.” – Kai Farenholtz

“With the 30th pick, Winnipeg is proud to select from Linkoping HC, D, Mattias Havelid. We elected to wait and take a defenceman here at this selection instead of with our 14th pick. We have a lot of solid two-way defencemen in our current prospect pool at the moment but we feel we are missing a high-end offensive style defenceman, which Havelid fulfills for us. We envision Havelid potentially becoming our next PP quarterback. Offence from the backend was an area we lacked in this past season so this was a positional need type of pick for sure for us.” – Jared Brown

“Tampa Bay selects D Lian Bichsel. The Lightning use their only selection in the top three rounds of the 2022 NHL Draft to pick an Erik Cernak type prospect who skates well, plays physical, uses his long reach and size to defend well and can make consistent simple passes to move the puck. While he is still very raw in his timeline and development they feel he could end up replacing the aforementioned Cernak down the road on a team that is perpetually up against the NHL Salary Cap ceiling.” – Dan Stewart

“With the 32 pick Arizona selects from QMJHL Quebec Ramparts Center Nathan Gaucher, it’s never a bad thing to add a big strong center to your lineup to bolster the future. A lazer wrist shot that explodes of his stick. The best part of his game is his leg strength with a powerful long stride, could be one of the fastest skaters just behind Logan Cooley. His edges in tight as well as his speed allows that mobility to play the 200-foot game with ease. Has a long reach which he uses effectively to interrupt and create turnovers on the back check. A powerhouse that blows past defenders on the rush. Wins board battles and his skating and stick handling allows him to play the cycle down low. A high IQ that sees the ice very well. A big man that can play in the greasy areas with soft hands deflecting blue line shots. Should be able crack the roster early in his career and center anywhere up and down the line up.” – Murray Caldwell


“With the 33rd overall pick Montreal Canadiens are proud to select, from Ilves, Jani Nyman. Nyman is going to complete our future top line. He is a top level scoring threat who isn’t afraid to do the dirty work in the corners to either win the puck or to keep it. Nyman’s shot is top notch and he can protect the puck amazingly well. His stickhandling isn’t flashy but it’s very effective. We are looking forward to see him using his body a bit more in the future.” – Mikko Saarela

“With the 34 pick Arizona selects from the QMJHL Drummondville Voltigeurs RD Maverik Lamoureux – A bit of intimidating player due to his towering HT at 6.7 WT 200 – showing good gap management keeping pucks out of high danger zones, dishes out some huge body checks when players try to beat him to the outside or along the boards. Strong on his skates with decent balance. Using a long stick with long arms he has about a 12 foot reach easily knocking down opponents passes & taking away lanes. Has an extremely hard shot with decent accuracy. Makes good first passes. It will take him sometime to develop, he will need to work on his edge work, stops & starts. Shows excellent potential to play a key defensive roll, as well as contribute.” – Murray Caldwell

“Seattle chooses David Goyette from the Sudbury Wolves. David is a dynamic rushing center, who breaks down opposing teams with his puck handling and skating combination.” – Christian B-Cote

“Arizona selects from the OHL Ottawa 67s Austria born RW Vinzenz Rohrer We cannot wait to show the world the compete level this player brings. A gritty 2 way player who doesn’t mind grinding it out in all 3 zones, he is wide awake at all times. Always looking for opportunity to pounce on a missed play by the opponent. A threat whether he has the puck on his stick or making a no look pass to spring someone into the offensive zone. He is quick as cat when spinning away from a check. His agility makes him a threat when driving the net or slipping a check to get to a high danger shooting area. A slippery player who is hard to take the puck away from because he is able to shield the puck with his quick movements. Should be ready to compete at the NHL level in 2 years. Would be a big ingredient to our 3rd or 4th line by contributing not just in a energy line but able to rack up some points as well. He is one of the players we see as having a long and successful career in the NHL.” – Murray Caldwell

“New Jersey Devils selects, from US NTDP U18, Seamus Casey. The Michigan committed Casey is a modern defensemen with his skating as his greatest attribute. He plays with speed, he either finds a quick outlet pass to a teammate out uses his smooth skating to carry the puck up ice. He can quarterback the power play which you would want from a player like this, his skating and ability to walk the blue line combined with great hands makes it hard to prevent him creating opportunities once he’s got time and space. Defensively his decision-making is good and his skating is a huge factor in him being great at defending the rush with his gap control.” – Niclas Karlsson

“With the 38th overall pick, from Omskie Yastreby of the MHL, the Chicago Blackhawks select Gleb Trikozov. Trikozov will instantly become the Blackhawks’ best forward prospect, and while it may take him a couple of years to come to North America, the payoff will be worth it. Not many forwards in this draft can play with the speed, finesse, and power that Trikozov brings to the table, and he has all the tools to become a productive top six NHLer” – Alex Taxman

“Ottawa selects W Jack Devine at #39. Jack Devine will be a big edition for Ottawa. Playing in the NCAA against a lot of older players gave him a taste of what it takes to play pro. He is great away from the puck getting himself into position to make passes. He is equally as talented on a power play, playing off the wall or the cycle game. No question he is a great skater making quick turns, stops & starts. He is strong using his balance to carry through on the body to win puck battles & create turnovers. Will fit nicely in the our top 6 in the next few years as Jack develops with his shooting and experience.” – Murray Caldwell

“Detroit brass is ecstatic to see another top ten prospect in their rankings as an option in US NTDP U18 defender Lane Hutson who is still on the board at #40 overall. They have gone for the big bodied, two-way defenders at this point in the last few previous drafts but despite being just five-foot-eight the Wings feel he will grow still (as he has been told by an Orthopaedist he would) and be able to help boost the teams powerplay down the road. Adding a homegrown puck mover from the backend was something the Wings recognized they needed to add in this phase of the rebuild.” – Dan Stewart

“The Buffalo Sabres select Sam Rinzel. A durable and dynamic right shot defenseman with skating ability, crisp puck movement, and smarts. While the left side looks steady, Rinzel was the best option for the right side with his size and skills. He will provide a boost to the crop of right shot defenseman for the Buffalo organization. A draft pick who needs at least a couple years to round out his game and improve how to use his strength with defensive consistency. He has the potential to reach a second pairing position and would be a solid 4/5 option.” – Joseph Peters

“With the 42nd pick the Anaheim Ducks select, C, Rieger Lorenz from the Okotoks Oilers of the AJHL. Rieger is a well-rounded forward who ticks off all of the boxes for what you want in a two-way player. A combination of size and skill rolled into one, Rieger has shown through his brief Jr career that he is a force on the ice. He will add depth down the middle and can play in any situation.” – Matt Hnatiuk

“Arizona select from the WHL Kamloops Blazers LD Mats Lindgren. We are ecstatic to have brought in this player, it is a good bet he will become one of our premier Offensive Dmen adding depth to our blue line in the coming years. Stick handling & rushing the puck then pushing back defensive line is a thing of beauty. Did we mention this player can skate? Fluid in motion, stride is smooth, quiet & effortless. He can slow the game down or explode out of a pocket & drive through the neutral zone before dishing the puck to a forward. Then there are times where he sends a razor pass/shot for a deflection or tip. Highly intelligent as well as vision to execute. Did we mention he is strong & produces a heavy shot both from half slap to a wrister. Needs to work on his defensive game. His speed could easily make him one of the dynamic Dmen in the game. We feel he will be ready to fight for a roster spot 2023.” – Murray Caldwell

“At #44 Columbus Blue Jackets select Tristan Luneau. A two way defender we are certain have a great shot at being a part of our future core. We are chocked Luneau are available for us this late. He has great hockey iq and can do a lot of things with quarterbacking the power play being one of them. He has great gap control and stick work, making him a very reliable defensive player. He adds some well needed NHL-caliber depth to our defensive prospect pool.” – Niclas Karlsson

“Arizona selects from the WHL Seattle T-Birds LW Reid Schaefer: Still raw in most of his game, his hockey sense is a large part of his overall success and maybe the most noticeable in his sudden rise in the last half of the season. His team’s playoff run was mostly due to his play. He is a player that will use his big frame to create space and time for his teammates. We see great potential in him becoming a power forward and we will take our time in his development. He can score from distance and is showing some high level play making skills. A better then average skater who can stay up with the play. Once we help him find how to engage the mechanics of his body for that extra gear he is going to be unstoppable. Plays with grit, determination, physicality, focus, consistency and showed at times poise. We look forward to helping him in his development beginning in our bottom 6 and turning into a top 6 power forward.” – Murray Caldwell

“Washington Capitals are proud to select, from Djurgarden, Calle Odelius. With drafting Odelius the Capitals get a mobile two-way defenseman with a high ceiling. He is a left-handed, efficient puck moving defenseman. A great skater with impressive edgework and agility. Very versatile in his style of play, runs the point on the powerplay firing his dangerous wrist shots as well as playing a smart and alert defensive zone play. With his great attention to details and confidence we are positive that Odelius will contribute to our backend down the road.” – Charlie Thelin

“Minnesota Wild select from North Bay Battalion of the OHL, defenseman Ty Nelson. The Wild will be thrilled to add Nelson to the blue line. Although he may not be the biggest guy, he is not afraid to throw his body around. Great at winning puck battles and can transition well into offense. High energy player that will give his all every shift. He will be a welcomed addition to the Wild’s deep defense prospect pool. The Wild will hope that he can solidify a middle pair spot and thrive on special teams.” – Andrew LeBlanc

“With #48, the Vegas Golden Knights select from Northeastern of the NCAA, center Jack Hughes. Vegas needs guys to come in and play for them as quickly as possible on ELC’s. Hughes, having played a year in college already, is ahead in his development than a lot of his American counterparts. Vegas likes the two-way game and compete level that Hughes brings every night against older players. They also like his intelligence and ability to read the game. Vegas hopes that he can turn into a middle six forward for them and would like to see him get in games as soon as the 2023-24 season.” – Andrew LeBlanc

“At #49 Seattle picks Jorian Donovan from Hamilton. Son of former NHLer Shean Donovan, has a good frame at 6’2 181 but won’t produce a ton. It’s all about keeping the opponents’ scoring chances down for future Kraken squads.” – Christian B-Cote

“With the 50th selection, the Dallas Stars select, from Linkoping HC of the SHL, C, Filip Bystedt. Filip is a towering forward who is currently developing his game at the highest level in Sweden. He plays a power forward style that he compliments with excellent playmaking ability. Filip can be a physical presence that is something Dallas needs more of, and he can develop all aspects of his game playing in the SHL before making the jump to North America and having an immediate impact here.” – Matt Hnatiuk

“With the 51st pick, the Los Angeles Kings are proud to select from HK Nitra, Adam Sykora. Sykora is an adaptable two-way player with a strong base to fit in a team’s bottom-6 as a pure pest. Since LA has such an established pool in regard to top-6 & top-4 potential players… perhaps its time to add some security to the depth. Sykora fits the perfect mold on a team that is in need of defensive and two-way security. Since there’s also no rush for Sykora to be placed in the lineup as of now, it allows for some quality development within Europe or the AHL. 2-3 years down the line, Sykora could easily play a 4th line role on this franchise with PK time and possibly soar higher throughout the season, much like he did in his draft eligible season. His work ethic is bar-none the best in this draft. Having another countryman, Martin Chromiak, along his side will also fair pretty for him.” – Kai Farenholtz

“Detroit selects from Mississauga in the OHL, Center Owen Beck. Yzerman and Co. are pumped to see this first round talent still available this late in round two. They see a hard-working kid who battles, skates well, likes the puck on his stick and has some offensive ability as well when he does have it.” – Dan Stewart

“With the 53rd pick, Anaheim Ducks select, from EHC Munchen of the DEL, LW, Julian Lutz. Julian is a hard working player with excellent skating skill. He has a shot that is as near ready for the NHL as you can get and he loves to use it. He is willing to grind it out, shift after shift and shows he is willing to consistently be the hardest working player on the ice. He will compliment our team nicely given some time to develop and add grit and scoring depth along the left wing.” – Matt Hnatiuk

“With the 54th pick, Boston selects from the Saginaw Spirit of the OHL, Matyas Sapovaliv. The Bruins will count on the big center to fill some big shoes in the middle of the ice. With Krejci leaving to play in Czechia and the future of Bergeron unknown, the center of the ice is surely the #1 priority in upcoming drafts. Sapovaliv brings great size and combine that with his intelligence, you are talking about a guy that fits into the Bruins system. Great at protecting pucks, making plays, and anticipating on both sides of the ice. Also is great in the face off circle, so he will be able to add value even if he doesn’t fully pan out. The Bruins development system will have to work with him on his skating skill and building more explosiveness in his stride, but if he can work out these kinks, he will be relied on to fill some big shoes in the middle six.” – Andrew LeBlanc

“With the 55th pick, Winnipeg select from the Mississauga Steelheads of the OHL, Luca Del Bel Belluz. We’re continuing to build the cupboard with our selection of Luca here. After selecting McGroarty in the first round, we wanted to select a forward here with a high upside and a terrific skill level. As he gets stronger and continues to spend time in the gym building muscle, his skating will follow suit which will elevate his game even more. We feel he has a really good opportunity to become our 2nd line center of the future while playing pivotal minutes on the PP. He’s got the offensive tools and a solid two-way game to play a well-rounded game which is another big reason why we selected him.” – Jared Brown

“With the 56th pick, Minnesota select from Frolunda HC J20 of J20 Nationell, Ludwig Persson. Looking at the Wild’s prospect pool, they are solid down the middle and on the blue line. They will be excited to add a versatile forward that can play either center or wing. He is an excellent skater that sees the ice well. Makes good decisions with the puck and has a good hockey IQ. His versatility will fit nicely into this prospect pool. Minnesota will hope he can bring some offensive punch into their middle six and be able to play up and down the lineup.” – Andrew LeBlanc

“With the 57th overall pick, Chicago selects Jordan Dumais of the Halifax Mooseheads. Jordan’s dynamic offensive skill will be a fresh addition to the Blackhawks’ currently bleak looking young forward crop. After dominating the QMJHL, we believe Jordan will be able to step into our middle six and contribute within 2-3 years.” – Alex Taxman

“Seattle uses pick #58 to continue to bolster its porous D in the projected future top four Elias Salomonsson. We went with an older D in the first round. Now one of the younger ones with an excellent skating base.” – Christian B-Cote

“With the 59th selection, the Calgary Flames select, from the Green Bay Gamblers, C, Ryan Greene. Ryan brings size, speed and physicality with his playmaking ability. He has quick feet and plays a Calgary brand of hockey; a lunch pail player. After he completes his time at Boston University, Ryan should be developed enough to move into the professional game, and we look forward to his continued growth.” – Matt Hnatiuk

“With the 60th selection, Carolina select, from the Soo Greyhounds of the OHL, Bryce McConnell-Barker. McConnell-Barker plays with a certain style that we like our forwards to play with in Carolina. Utilizing their speed to attack off the rush or get in on the forecheck quickly, playing with intensity, display a consistently strong work ethic, and not cheat on the defensive side of the puck. BMB does all of that. He played on an older Greyhounds team, but we expect next season for him to take a big step forward when given more offensive opportunities and be a leader for his club. We really like that there aren’t many flaws in his game.” – Jared Brown.

“Seattle selects offensive winger Alexander Suzdalev. The Kraken continue to build up their prospect pool with talent who General Manager Ron Francis, Director of Amateur Scouting Robert Kron, and the scouting staff identified as the best available. Suzdalev is one of the most elusive puck magicians in this draft class.” – Christian B-Cote

At #62 Montreal Canadiens select defender Christian Kyrou. We have the future top line so we wanted a defenseman. A goalie would have been nice as well but this year this is too early to pick one. Kyrou in my opinion was the best dman available. He’s very lucky that he’s born 16th of September and not a day earlier because of the season being cancelled last year. Kyrou had a great season and if he wasn’t only an average skater and relatively small, teams would be drooling all over him. His defensive game isn’t convincing by any means but he’s got simply enormous offensive potential.” – Mikko Saarela

“NYR walk up to the podium for the first time. It’s been a long wait. They couldn’t swing any deals to get into the first round. The one thing they could really use though is more depth down the middle. With that in mind, welcome to the Big Apple, Danny Zhilkin. He was very good in the faceoff circle this year, averaging close to 60%. He’s also someone who could provide some offense on a 3rd line if he begins to compete at a higher level.” – Christian B-Cote

“At #64 Ottawa selects from WHL Kamloops Blazers, American born RW Matthew Seminoff. Anyone with a hard work ethic like this young man brings determination. These guys work hard to get better in all aspects of their game. They make coaches look great. We decided to go with a relentless, tenacious forechecker that has elite speed straight up the middle. Matthew takes away time and space, which leads to turnovers. As a puck rushing winger this gives a team the zone entry that can be critical at 5 on 5 or on a power play. The hockey sense, vision, skating is what makes his game look easy. All these things are showing signs of brilliance when setting up a play. Due to his edges and skilled hands he is able to play in the small areas & not afraid to take the punishment in front of net. Core strength leading to balance makes him difficult to play against. Matthew just continues to improve year after year. We feel he will be that difference maker on our third line to begin with. As he hones his skills he is very likely to become that key guy to play in all situations. He has all the right strengths and tools. We know that he be a welcome addition in 2023/2024 season when he challenges for a spot in the roster.” – Murray Caldwell

“With the 65th overall pick New York Islanders select from HIFK, Otto Salin. We love this kid. Carries himself like a grown man with confidence in his abilities. A great two-way dman who can really do almost anything for you. A good skater, can carry the puck, opens the play well and possesses a heavy shot. From our organisation he’s very similar to Robin Salo, with a slightly higher potential upside. We expect him to play full time in Liiga next season because that’s where he clearly belongs. Defensively he has room to improve but we don’t see that as too big of an issue. We are confident that Salin is our future top 4 or top 6 dman.” – Mikko Saarela


“With the 66th overall pick Montreal Canadiens are proud to select from Tappara, Topi Rönni. Rönni is a great combination of high level skill and reliability. He was number one of his age group in Finland in technical skills at U15. We know he’s never going to be a rocket on skates but he’s got room to grow physically which will help for sure and his lack of speed is compensated by great  work ethic. Rönni is consistently breaking up passes and uses his body as effectively as it can be used. Rönni can make it as a bottom 6 forward but also higher in the lineup because of his soft hands and good playmaking skills.” – Mikko Saarela

“At 67th Arizona Coyotes select from Sweden of the SHL Orebro LD Simon Forsmark – Simon has chartered himself into a strong 2 way Dman, pushing the play into the OZ by using his strong skating & protecting the puck to advance. Nice crisp leading passes to forwards so they don’t get trapped with their back to a play. Proficiency when it comes to power play setting up forwards. Nice laterals when positioning himself to open up seams for passes. Uses good vision away from the puck and understanding his role when to get on his horse to defend. Great gap management, using his active stick & reach to push attackers to the outside. Good hands & forearm strength allows him the ability to create turnovers down low. We can see this young man growing into one of our top 4 over the next 3 seasons.” – Murray Caldwell

“At #68 Seattle Kraken select RW Cole Knuble of Fargo Force. They love the grit and work ethic Knuble, son of former NHLer Mike Knuble, brings to the table.”- Christian B-Cote

“At #69 Philadelphia Flyers select C Adam Ingram. Ingram is a solid addition to the Flyers pool of prospects. Smart and with power in his game, he is the level of player who fits in the middle six of the lineup, who can take charge and play up and down the lineup when called upon. His skating is the main area of improvement. Even so, he can score, pass, and defend well. He is a smart centerman who plays a well-balanced and structured game. Still a few years out from touching NHL ice, Philadelphia in time will have themselves a bigger and more developed young player at the center position.” – Joseph Peters

“At #70 the New Jersey Devils select Viktor Neuchev. He possesses one of the best shots in this draft class and has reportedly got a great confidence. That’s a combo that intrigues us. We wanted to add talent to our wings to complement our great young center men and Neuchev certainly does that.” – Niclas Karlsson

“With the 71st pick, Carolina select, from HIFK U20 in the U20 SM-Sarja league, Aleksanteri Kaskimaki. There is no hiding the fact that we trust our European scouting staff greatly to find gems out in primarily the Scandinavian countries. We see him as a very versatile forward, one who can play either down the middle or on the wing and someone who can be moved up and down the lineup while being thwarted into playing different types of roles. We expect him to earn a spot and play a full season for HIFK in Liiga this upcoming year, earning valuable reps playing against men while progressing his offensive skills at a higher level. He’s a strongly built forward with a nose for the net which we’re excited to add to our prospect pool.” – Jared Brown

“With pick #72 Ottawa Senators select from Jokerit U 20 (U20 SM-sarja) RW Miko Matikka. A scoring winger with a hard release. A bigger solid player that gives his team the best opportunities to score. Boasts a wicked release, surprising goaltenders by finding the twine. Competent passer around & inside the offensive zone. Plays with reckless abandonment and we need to slow this part of his game down to avoid needless injuries. Hates to wait on the play to come his way. Instead he tries to create a turnover to push the play forward. The Sens will work on his skating to help him become quicker so he can lead more rushes. His skill set is his shot, release, toughness, balance, passing. Hopefully after a few seasons in the NCAA it will help build more self confidence. We hope Mikko can help us become stronger down the middle to the right side.” – Murray Caldwell

“Detroit selects from Guelph of the OHL, centre Matthew Poitras. The Wings have had the past two centers fall into their laps and as an area of need adding a two-way, intelligent, hardworking pivot who still has some offensive growth to his game is a no-brainer.” – Dan Stewart

“At #74 Buffalo Sabres D Noah Warren. Size, power, strength, and top-level skating for a big defenseman. With this pick, the Buffalo organization continues to build their crop of defensemen on the right side. Warren can skate, move the puck, and play a physical shutdown role. When he is ready for NHL minutes, the Sabres will have a tall and wise defenseman on the right side of the blueline who can shut down the play and distribute the puck.” – Joseph Peters

“With the 75th pick Montreal Canadiens are proud to select from London Knights of OHL, Isaiah George. George is a versatile skater. His first strides are good, he’s very agile and the top speed is also on point. We love his defensive game, especially his gap control. He’s a confident puck carrier under pressure. We are highly confident George makes it to the NHL, and expect him to be in our future top 4.” – Mikko Saarela

“With the 76th selection the San Jose Sharks are proud to from the Prince George Cougars, Hudson Thornton. Taking defenceman from the WHL has been clicking lately with the Sharks, Gannon Laroque and Nick Cicek look to be two solid options heading down the stretch. Thornton could be another one of these guys in a few seasons. Two of your top defensive prospects are also righthanded (Laroque & Merkley), Thornton provides some offensive stability to the left side with a deceptive shot and heads-up awareness within the offensive end. Easily could be a bottom-4 defender with an offensive punch or a valuable trading asset down the line as his point production is set to soar in junior over the next few seasons with the Cougars.”- Kai Farenholtz

“With the 77th selection, Winnipeg select, from the Prince George Cougars of the WHL, Tyler Brennan. In our eyes, you can never have enough depth or options at the goaltending position and it’s been a few years since we’ve selected a goaltender in the draft. Though Tyler’s statistics may not intrigue our fans, it’s important to keep in mind that he played on the youngest WHL team this past year and Prince George had an inexperienced roster. Brennan multiple times this past year gave the Cougars excellent performances in the crease to help steal them wins including giving his team a fighting chance in the first round of the playoffs. He didn’t start game 1, but he was tasked to come in just short of nine minutes into the game and from that point on only allowed 7 goals on 153 shots in four games, putting up a terrific save percentage of .954. We feel he has the potential to challenge for a starting role down the road.” – Jared Brown

“New York Islanders select from CSKA Moscow, Vladimir Grudinin. Grudinin is small but that’s something that can be compensated with great skating and that’s what this guy has. We believe Grudinin is one of the best and most versatile skaters in this year’s draft. He’s also a great puck handler who sees the ice well and gives good opening passes. Torey Krug, Quinn Hughes and Samuel Girard are good examples of how he Grudinin might end up like. We hope that his shot will become more of a threat after he grows a bit more physically.” – Mikko Saarela

“With the 79th selection, Toronto select, from the Guelph Storm of the OHL, Michael Buchinger. We were impressed with how strong of a rookie season Buchinger had in the OHL considering the missed season of development he had last year due to Covid-19. We were also impressed with how his elevated play was able to earn him more minutes and trust from Guelph’s coaching staff. Buchinger has something we look for in every one of our draft picks, hockey IQ. He displays a high level of hockey IQ with and without the puck as well as showcasing intelligent puck management to be an accurate passer. We believe he has a high floor level due to the abundance of pro-qualities he already has in his game.” – Jared Brown

“The Canucks keep bringing in these Russians, with the 80th selection, Vancouver select from MHK Spartak Moskva, Daniil Ivanov. A very smart, physical, two-way defenseman that can skate at the same time. He is already looking for the next level of play in his career. A competitive, well-rounded blueliner that the Canucks are proud to add into their prospect pool.” – Charlie Thelin

“Chicago was eyeing Ivanov at #81, but with the Canucks taking him off the board, the Blackhawks are proud to select from Krasnaya Armiya Moskva of the MHL, Artyom Duda. Duda’s size, puck moving skills, and mobility will put him right behind Wyatt Kaiser as the Blackhawks’ #2 LD prospect.” – Alex Taxman

“At #82 Nashville Predators select Ludvig Jansson. We were in search of a puck moving defensemen and we are delighted to make this pick. Jansson has excellent skating and plays an effective game with quick outlet passes and we believe there’s some offensive upside. A right shot defenseman is something we wanted to add to our prospect pool and with Jansson we feel we got ourselves a good one.” – Niclas Karlsson

“Dallas selects from Barrie of the OHL centre Hunter Haight. Haight is seen as a very talented prospect with much higher upside than he was able to show on a 2021-22 Colts team. His offensive IQ, puck skill and athleticism could see him have a big bump in his offensive numbers next season.” – Dan Stewart

“At #84 Nashville Predators select Tomas Hamara. Cold as ice. You know what to expect from this kid. No situation is to tough as he keeps on making easy plays throughout games. Can carry the puck and make plays offensively while being reliable defensively. Could for sure grow into a top 6 defensemen and be a longtime player in this league.” – Niclas Karlsson

“With the 85th selection Washington are proud to select, from the Seattle Thunderbirds, Jordan Gustafson. Gustafson offers a hard working 200-foot game that fits perfectly into the Capitals prospect pool. He is a shifty and skilled skater, contributes at both ends with a high compete level. Playmaking upside with his high hockey IQ.  An overall reliable guy that plays in all situations.” – Charlie Thelin

“With the 86th pick, the Los Angeles Kings are proud to select from the Swift Current Broncos, Reid Dyck. Say what you want about goaltenders and the LA Kings, but Cal Peterson is not going to get the Kings far. It honestly seems like an Edmonton situation with the prospect pool they possess up front with the lack of support between the pipes. Acquiring Reid Dyck has its risks, but the upside in drafting a goalie with the frame and athleticism he possesses is sky high. Not a tendy that’ll be rushed into the organization anytime soon, it’s a long term project. But given the proper time, coaching, and development, you’re looking at a goalie that can take that starting role and really provide a team with some serious support.” – Kai Farenholtz

“At 87th From the OHL, Ottawa will select Tucker Robertson, a solid RW/C who was passed over last year due to the pandemic. We really like the idea of having a lot right-handed players going forward. With deep athletic bloodlines, Tucker had 81 points in 68 games this year, 41 goals. Strong net front presence, slick hands, excellent on face offs, winning more face offs then anyone else in the OHL this year. Plays both ends of the ice with high level of compete, a back-checking winger with creativity. Plays solid both ends of the ice. The vision when to shoot or pass was on full display. If you want hard a nosed player, this guy can absolutely do it all. His style will fit nicely into our top 6. Has the potential to play the opposite side of Tim Stutzle.” – Murray Caldwell

“The Blues select, from the Kamloops Blazers of the WHL, Fraser Minten. Minten’s goal scoring ability and edge in his game will make him a perfect fit in St. Louis’s future core. With the right skating development, he could be a real threat at the NHL level.” – Alex Taxman

With the 89th pick, the Minnesota Wild select from the Kingston Frontenacs, Paul Ludwinski. Played this season in the shadow of Shane Wright. With more opportunity, we could be talking about a guy who could’ve been ranked much higher. He reads the game well and is a quick skater. Minnesota likes the upside he brings and hopes he can carve out a roll for himself in the bottom six within the next few years.” –

“From the Hamilton Bulldogs, the Chicago Blackhawks select Logan Morrison. Morrison’s high levels of both skill and awareness in all three zones more than compensate for his lack of elite skating. He proved this season and postseason that he can play a massive role on one of the top teams in the CHL, and we expect him to continue to develop into a premier two-way forward.” – Alex Taxman

“With the 91st pick, the Boston Bruins select from the Green Bay Gamblers of the USHL, Cameron Lund. He is a guy that has good size and speed. Shown the ability to play both wing and center. Plays physically and brings great energy every game. The Bruins hope he can bring some scoring punch that they have been lacking into their bottom six, while playing a solid 200-foot game.” – Andrew LeBlanc

“With the 92nd pick Montreal Canadiens select from Niagara IceDogs of the OHL, Pano Fimis. Fimis was forced to learn some defence this season and he certainly did. His offence on the other hand wasn’t showing too much but he showed signs of good playmaking skills. IceDogs’ below-par performance also forced Fimis to make the most of the little room that he had with the puck. Our expectation is for him to be our future 3rd or 4th line center.” – Mikko Saarela

“With the 93rd overall pick, the Florida Panthers select from the Victoria Royals of the WHL, Brayden Schuurman. Brayden is a highly skilled forward who plays a quick tempo game, and possesses one of the better wrist shots in the draft class. He brings a scoring touch to any line he plays on, and can be a potential middle six contributor in the future.” – Alex Taxman

“With the 94th overall pick, the Chicago Blackhawks select Nicholas Moldenhauer. Plagued by illnesses and injuries for much of the past two seasons, Moldenhauer hasn’t had a full opportunity to show what he’s capable of as a prospect. After his return from a nearly fatal on ice injury, Moldenhauer scored at over a point per game pace in the USHL. The Blackhawks are ecstatic to pick him this late, as he could be an absolute gem.” – Alex Taxman

“With the 95th pick, Vegas selects from Linkoping HC J20, Hugo Havelid. Lehner has been inconsistent as of late and is also getting up there in age. Now is the time for Vegas to bolster their goaltending pipeline. They will do so by acquiring the number one goalie on their board in the third round. A little bit undersized but Vegas will love the compete effort from this guy and hopes he can jump to the top of their goaltending pipeline in the near future.” – Andrew LeBlanc

“Columbus selects, Elias Pettersson, from Timrå IK. A two way defensemen with a lot of intriguing attributes. Skates well, good Iq and has a good shot from the blue line. Had a great season where he got the opportunity to play in the SHL and won gold with Sweden in the U18 championship. We do believe Pettersson can evolve into a solid NHL:er with top 4 upside for the Blue Jackets.” – Niclas Karlsson

“Colorado Avalanche selects from the West Kelowna Warriors, Tyson Jugnauth. We’ve waited a good while to encounter our first pick in the 2022 NHL Draft, and we’re extremely pleased that we’re able to snag the BCHL Defenceman of the Year. Jugnauth is an observant offensive defenceman with tight skating and some great hockey IQ. The Avalanche have struck gold in their last few picks out of Jr. A organizations, and although Jugnauth is not per-se on the Newhook/Makar caliber. He still fits the mold and carries outstanding traits that you can’t teach a player. As a long term project, Jugnauth projects to be a top-4 defender with his all-around offensive toolkit. Can’t hurt to store another prospect that can either be used as a trading asset for another Stanley Cup run, or as a role player in a couple of years to keep the team thriving.” – Kai Farenholtz

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