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SBN Mock NHL Draft Day 4: one trade, one Finn, one Swede and Nick Suzuki

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One team trades their pick, and Detroit and Florida choose their future.

Owen Sound Attack v Windsor Spitfires Photo by Dennis Pajot/Getty Images

Now that we’re into the middle third of the draft in this SBN Mock Draft, the picking gets tougher. Other teams have already taken your guy, or you have trouble choosing since there is no clear pecking order. Some teams pick for need, some don’t. One team chose to trade down to get two picks later in the draft.

Here are the picks so far:

  1. New Jersey Devils, via All About The Jersey, select centre Nico Hischier.
  2. Philadelphia Flyers, via Broad Street Hockey, select centre Nolan Patrick.
  3. Dallas Stars, via Defending Big D, select centre Casey Mittelstadt.
  4. Colorado Avalanche, via Mile High Hockey, select defender Miro Heiskanen.
  5. Vancouver Canucks, via Nucks Misconduct, select centre Gabe Vilardi.
  6. Vegas Golden Knights, via Knights on ice, select winger Owen Tippett
  7. Arizona Coyotes, via Five for Howling, select defender Timothy Liljegren.
  8. Buffalo Sabres, via Die by the Blade, select defender Cale Makar.

And now yesterday’s selections:

9. Detroit Red Wings, via Winging it in Motown, select centre Cody Glass.

Glass enjoyed an impressive sophomore year with the Portland Winterhawks, putting up 94 points (34 goals, 62 assists) in 69 games, and nine points (four goals, five assists) in 11 WHL playoff games. Glass was named a First-Team All-Star for Team West in April.

Glass’ right-handed shot gives him the ability to be utilized on the wing as well — Portland did this in certain situations to optimize his shooting and passing ability on the man advantage. His true, raw two-way talent puts him as one of the five-best centers in this Draft class.

10. Florida Panthers, via Litter Box Cats, select winger Kristian Vesalainen.

NHL Central Scouting rates Vesalainen at 7th for international skaters, and for his age group, the big Finn led all players at the 2017 IIHF Under-18 World Junior Championships, with 13 points, in 7-games (6 goals, 7 assists). He was named the best forward at that tournament, and he was the tournament’s MVP. Some scouting services claim he is underrated. We in Panthers territory know that our team management likes big, underrated Finns, and it appears Dale Tallon is back at the reigns this year. We know that Tallon likes size in the first round to go along with skill.

Vesalainen’s size and type of play look to be what the Panthers need, and have too little of in a farm system drained of power forwards with scoring touch.

11. Los Angeles Kings, via Jewels From the Crown, select centre Nick Suzuki.

Let’s emphasize what a great season Suzuki had last year for the Attack. After a 38-point season in 2015-16, Suzuki exploded for 45 goals and 51 assists in 65 games this season, adding another 23 points in the postseason. He increased his output as the year wore on, putting up 55 of his 96 points in the second half of the season. He ranked fourth in the OHL in goals, fifth in power play goals, and second in shorthanded goals. He was named Owen Sound’s playoff MVPand won their Fan Club and Scholastic awards as well. He cracked the OHL’s Second All-Star Team. He even won the OHL equivalent of the Lady Byng after a season with only ten penalty minutes. And yet, and in a draft which is chock-full of talented centers, there’s a decent chance he might not go in the top ten. Suzuki rose from 16th to 10th among North American skaters in the NHL Central Scouting rankings, but there are still bigger names ahead of him. Literally and figuratively; Suzuki measures 5’11” and 183 pounds.

We have a trade! Carolina traded down, so the St. Louis Blues are picking in the number 12 spot. The Blues sent their first pick in the draft at 20th overall, and their second-round selection in the 2017 draft, to the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for Carolina’s pick at 12th overall.

12. St. Louis Blues, via St. Louis Gametime, select winger Lias Andersson.

Respected independent scouting service ISS, who had Andersson going to the Blues with their pick at 20th overall in their own Mock Draft, lists Blues’ forward Alex Steen as the NHL player to whom Andersson best compares, and rated him as “Very Good” in the areas of Skating, Puck Skills, Shot, Defensive Play, Physical Play, and Competitiveness, and “Excellent” in terms of Hockey Sense.

We are getting closer to Toronto’s pick, but we aren’t there yet.

Here’s the schedule for today:

10 AM: Winnipeg

1 PM: Tampa Bay

3 PM: New York Islanders

So, how do you feel this draft is going so far? Are the teams picking well, or is your favourite falling and giving you hope that PPP will take him?

Poll

Which of these four players had you hoped would fall?

This poll is closed

  • 18%
    Cody Glass
    (56 votes)
  • 20%
    Kristian Vesalainen
    (62 votes)
  • 47%
    Nick Suzuki
    (145 votes)
  • 14%
    Lias Andersson
    (45 votes)
308 votes total Vote Now