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NHL Mock Draft – The Final List

Eric Thompson

by Eric Thompson in News

Updated Jan 17, 2018 · 9:39 AM PST

The NHL Draft: it’s officially less than a month away! This year’s crop of prospects is loaded with game-changing talent will start on June 26. The first-overall pick will be one of the least suspenseful in NHL history as the Edmonton Oilers have the honor of taking top prospect Connor McDavid. Knowing who will be the top pick is nothing new. But this draft is somewhat unique in that we also know who’s going to go second to the Buffalo Sabres: Boston University’s Jack Eichel.

After that, the order gets slightly unpredictable. And naturally, when things are unpredictable, we go ahead and predict them anyways! So here is our fool-proof list of whose names will be called by which teams come draft day.

No. 1 – Edmonton Oilers: Connor McDavid, C; Erie Otters (OHL)


No. 2 – Buffalo Sabres: Jack Eichel, C; Boston University Terriers (Hockey East)

Also Duh.

No. 3 – Arizona Coyotes: Dylan Strome, C; Erie Otters (OHL)

The Yotes have a decent pipeline of forwards already – highlighted by Max Domi – but offense has been scarce in the desert and Erie’s other superstar center should be a staple for years to come. At 6’3″, 193 lbs, this teen has NHL size and pro-ready hockey sense. (For what it’s worth, NHL success clearly runs in the Strome genes with big brother Ryan lighting it up for the Islanders this year.) If Arizona chooses to keep Dylan in the minors for another year, he’ll have more time as the number-one option with McDavid leaving Erie.

No. 4 – Toronto Maple Leafs: Noah Hanifin, D; Boston College Eagles (Hockey East)

What do you get the team that needs everything? If hometown Strome’s name is called first, the Leafs will grab the top defenseman in the draft. Hanifin has all the offensive skill that had the Leafs enamored with Morgan Rielly and Jake Gardiner, but scouts say his transition game is truly special. A true two-way D is just what this rebuilding team needs, especially after the likely jettison of Dion Phaneuf this offseason.

No. 5 – Carolina Hurricanes: Mitch Marner, C; London Knights (OHL)

The latest talk out of the Canes camp is they are looking to trade down in a very deep draft. If a move can’t get done, the Canes’ desperately need a forward prospect (apparently just being a Staal brother hasn’t made Jared an all-star yet). Marner is undersized, but the way the NHL is transitioning, that shouldn’t be a problem for this electrifying playmaker. He’ll likely take a few years to fully develop, but that will fit right into the Canes’ rebuild plans.

No. 6 – New Jersey Devils: Mikko Rantanen, RW; TPS (Finland)

After getting penalized for the Kovalchuk contract last draft, the Devils need to hit this pick out of the park. Rantanen has great puck skills and, while he doesn’t throw around his big frame much, he’s a tough guy to move in the corners and around the net.

No. 7 – Philadelphia Flyers: Ivan Provorov, D; Brandon Wheat Kings (WHL)

A lot of scouts believe Provorov to be the most NHL-ready defenseman in the draft, which is great news for Philly. The Russian is a complete player and averaged a point per game for the Wheat Kings this year. It will be great for the Flyers to finally have their own defensive prospect so they can stop preying on other teams’ rejected ones.

No. 8 – Columbus Blue Jackets: Lawson Crouse, LW; Kingston Frontenacs (OHL)

Crouse and the pesky Blue Jackets seem like a match made in heaven. His strength on the forecheck will make him a welcome addition to the hardworking group that includes Brandon Dubinsky, Scott Hartnell, Boone Jenner, and more.

No. 9 – San Jose Sharks: Mathew Barzal, C; Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL)

Barzal is a two-way forward who gets in the shooting lanes and can distribute the puck well. San Jose could certainly use some more prospects up front and the kid from Vancouver has a bright future after putting up 57 points in just 44 games this season.

No. 10 – Colorado Avalanche: Zachary Werenski, D; Michigan Wolverines (Big Ten)

Only 17-years-old, this freshman tore up the Big Ten this year and should only improve with another couple seasons under legendary Michigan coach Red Berenson. He has NHL size (6’2, 206 pounds) and a lot of upside. He should be a big contributor in a few years when this young Avs core is in its prime.

(Photo Credit: Eric Thompson)

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