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SBN Mock Draft day 8: The Penguins put their Foote in it

Pens trade up for the son of an NHL great

Swift Current Broncos v Kelowna Rockets Photo by Marissa Baecker/Getty Images

We’re in the final picks of the Mock Draft this week, and we’ve seen some surprises. Another team traded up yesterday to get the player they wanted.

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.
  9. Detroit Red Wings, via Winging it in Motown, select centre Cody Glass.
  10. Florida Panthers, via Litter Box Cats, select winger Kristian Vesalainen.
  11. Los Angeles Kings, via Jewels From the Crown, select centre Nick Suzuki.
  12. St. Louis Blues (from Carolina Hurricanes), via St. Louis Gametime, select winger Lias Andersson.
  13. Winnipeg Jets, via Arctic Ice Hockey, select defender Juuso Välimäki
  14. Tampa Bay Lightning, via Raw Charge, select winger Kailer Yamamoto [yesssss]
  15. New York Islanders, via Lighthouse Hockey, select Elias Pettersson
  16. Calgary Flames, via Matchsticks & Gasoline, select winger Klim Kostin.
  17. Toronto Maple Leafs, via Pension Plan Puppets, select winger Eeli Tolvanen.
  18. Boston Bruins, via Stanley Cup of Chowder, select defender Nicolas Hague.
  19. San Jose Sharks, via Fear the Fin, select centre Michael Rassmussen.
  20. Carolina Hurricanes, via Canes Country, select centre Martin Necas.
  21. New York Rangers, via Blueshirt Banter, select defender Erik Brännström.

Here are yesterday’s picks:

The Edmonton Oilers, via Copper & Blue, select center Ryan Poehling.

The Oilers wanted to build up their centre depth, with the pending trade of Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, and they went with college kid Ryan Poehling:

Poehling isn’t the flashy first round pick that Oilers fans are used to, but he’s the kind of player that this team is going to need down the road. On some teams, he might project as a second line options, for the Oilers though, he’s more likely a third line option which says more about the players in front of him than it does about him. And being a centre there is always the possibility of him playing on the wing on the second line if need be. It’s not what we’re used to. It might be safer than some fans like. But this is a pick that we’re very happy with.

The Pittsburgh Penguins, via Pensburgh, select defenseman Callan Foote.

The Penguins traded up with Arizona, sending #31 and #93 and getting #23 and #128 in return. The wanted this player, and worked to get the kid they felt they needed.

We decided to trade up since we thought Foote seems like a future top-4 defenseman, and his size + RH shot are traits that are very difficult to acquire for a team like Pittsburgh that doesn't usually have a high draft pick (or any first round pick at all, most years). He almost certainly wouldn't have been around for the Pens pick at the end of the 1st round, and may go as high as 15 in the real draft, so why not move up to grab him?

Being a hulking defenseman who's right handed, the Pens have no one like him in their system. In a few years he could just be a Dougie Hamilton/Seth Jones/Rasmus Ristolainen/ Colton Parayko type of a big, reliable RHD and give Pittsburgh a bedrock player on their defense for years to come as a guy like Letang makes the turn into his 30's. The opportunity to add a top-flight defenseman like that was too tempting for us as the Penguins choice in this mock draft.

The Columbus Blue Jackets, via Jackets Cannon, select winger Maxime Comtois.

A big right winger from the QMJHL, Comtois will be a presence on the CBJ forward corps for years to come. Not the flashiest of players, he’s seen as reliable by everyone who scouts him, which is what landed him on multiple Canadian teams, QMJHL all star teams and more.

Comtois will come to the Draft with no whispers about his work ethic or motor. He loves to play big in front of the net (evidenced by his shot totals) and possesses a strong two-way game that includes heavy responsibility as a penalty killer for Victoriaville. He has good speed and a sterling wrist shot to go with a sharp hockey mind that comes from a lifetime around the game.

So, who’s the real Comtois? The 2015 version that turned heads across Canada, or the 2016 edition that some scouts feared has plateaued (especially when his center Pascal Laberge missed time with a concussion)?

We think he’s worth any risk that comes with the No. 24 pick (which, hey, is the latest first-round pick in Blue Jackets history—and one they probably won’t even have, most reports indicate). You can’t teach size or the vision Comtois uses across all 200 feet and no one outworks him on or off the ice, a trait coveted by head coach John Tortorella. He can protect the puck and make opponents pay in the dirty areas.

The Montreal Canadiens are on the clock. I hope they screw this up, but even if they don’t, they’ll run the kid out of town in a few years.


Would you trade up to draft Cal Foote?

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