I have the Montreal Canadiens taking forward Mikhail Grigorenko with the third overall selection. (Photo by Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images)
This is the second of three mock drafts I'll be doing here at The Cannon. As is always the case, the order is based off of current standings, and will change between now and draft day in June. This draft assumes a few things- that there are no trades made, and that the Jackets elect to keep the Kings' first round pick. The pick is conditional, with the Jackets having the option to take the Kings' first rounder this year or next.
The overall group of players remains similar to Mock Draft 1.0, with only three players from last time not in the draft, and consequently three new additions. There has been some shuffling since the first draft I did in January, but my methodology remains the same- I based the picks on recent draft trends, team needs, and player ranking.
1) OILERS: RW Nail Yakupov, Sarnia Sting (OHL)
By virtue of winning the NHL Draft Lottery, the Oilers will have the first overall pick for the third year in a row. It's likely that the Oilers will look to move down to grab a defenseman, but in the meantime the best player available in this draft is Yakupov.
2) BLUE JACKETS: D Ryan Murray, Everett Silvertips (WHL)
It certainly stung the Jackets to lose out on the first overall pick, but they may trade up to first overall, or the Oilers could surprise and take a defenseman with the first pick if they can't work a deal out. If Yakupov goes first, and the Jackets draft at second overall, Ryan Murray is the player to grab. He's NHL-ready according to reports, and he is known for steady play and leadership abilities.
3) CANADIENS: RW Mikhail Grigorenko, Quebec Remparts (QMJHL)
It remains to be seen if Grigorenko's current coach and GM Patrick Roy makes the jump to the Habs as well, but Grigorenko is a good fit for Montreal. He's the second-rated forward by NHL Scouting, and his offensive ability is sorely needed.
4) ISLANDERS: D Morgan Rielly, Moose Jaw Warriors (WHL)
The Islanders have been stocking up on forwards with their recent high draft picks, it's time for them to start improving the skill level on their back end. Rielly is arguably the top offensive defenseman in the draft and will be a fixture on the future Long Island blueline.
5) MAPLE LEAFS: LW Filip Forsberg, Leksand (Sweden)
6) DUCKS: D Matt Dumba, Red Deer Rebels (WHL)
The Ducks have great weapons up front, but are a bit thin on defense. Dumba is a hard-hitting blueliner with offensive ability who would be a solid compliment to Cam Fowler in Anaheim.
7) WILD: C Alex Galchenyuk, Sarnia Sting (OHL)
This pick could turn out to be a steal. Galchenyuk missed almost the entire season due to injury, but prior to the season he was touted as the top forward available who wasn't named Yakupov. The Wild could use his offensive ability and he would be a great addition to a group that features Mikko Koivu, Dany Heatley and Mikael Granlund.
8 ) HURRICANES: D Cody Ceci, Ottawa 67's (OHL)
The Hurricanes are in an interesting position. They could use some help up front, but a future powerplay quarterback and defense stalwart like Ceci is too hard to pass up.
9) JETS: D Jacob Trouba, USNTDP
The Jets feature some great young blueliners in Zach Bogosian and Tobias Enstrom, and Trouba makes that group even better. He's reliable, and would be a great partner for an offensive guy like Enstrom.
10) LIGHTNING: C Radek Faksa, Kitchener Rangers (OHL)
The Lightning forwards aren't getting any younger outside of Steven Stamkos, and Faksa would give Stammer a high-scoring linemate in the future.
11) CAPITALS (AVALANCHE): D Griffin Reinhart, Edmonton Oil Kings (WHL)
With the pick acquired from the Avalanche in the Semyon Varlamov deal, the Caps take an all-around blueliner with an NHL pedigree.
12) SABRES: D Olli Maatta, London Knights (OHL)
The Sabres have some great young forwards, but could use a dose of skill on the blueline. Maatta would look great paired with Tyler Myers.
13) STARS: D Derrick Pouliot, Portland Winterhawks (WHL)
The Stars, like many teams this year, could use a boost to the organization's blueline. Pouliot is a solid puck mover, and could help out on the powerplay.
14) FLAMES: LW Teuvo Teravainen, Jokerit (Finland)
The Flames need scoring, and Tervainen provides just that. He has rocketed up the draft charts and if Olli Jokinen remains with the Flames he could act as a mentor to his fellow countryman, not to mention linemate in the top six.
15) SENATORS: C Stefan Matteau, USNTDP
With Daniel Alfredsson nearing the end of his career, the Sens could use another high-end forward down the line. Matteau has an NHL pedigree and his power forward style would compliment the slick young forward the Sens currently possess.
16) CAPITALS: C Brendan Gaunce, Belleville Bulls (OHL)
The Caps have the high-end skill, what would help them in the near future is a defensive responsible pivot with offensive ability like Gaunce. He would be an ideal checking line center behind Backstrom and Johansson in Washington.
17) PANTHERS: D Brady Skjei, USNTDP
It's a banner draft for the USNTDP and the Panthers get a solid, two-way blueliner who they can allow to develop slowly in college. He'll add to an improving group of young defensemen in the future.
18) BLUE JACKETS (KINGS): RW Martin Frk, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)
If the Jackets end up with Ryan Murray with the second overall pick, Frk is a fantastic choice with their second first round pick. Frk is a physical winger who oozes offense. His wrist shot alone is NHL caliber. Playing on a line with Ryan Johansen the duo could do serious damage.
19) SHARKS: D Mat Finn, Guelph Storm (OHL)
Finn models his game after Drew Doughty, and has the build and playing style to match the Kings blueline anchor. The Sharks could use his offensive ability from the back end.
20) COYOTES: RW Colton Sissons, Kelowna Rockets (WHL)
The Coyotes will need scorers to replace Shane Doan and Ray Whitney in the near future, and Sissons can provide lots of goal scoring for the 'Yotes.
21) BLACKHAWKS: G Malcolm Subban, Belleville Bulls (OHL)
The Blackhawks seemingly have everything in their organization except a franchise goaltender. Subban fills that role.
22) DEVILS: D Slater Koekkoek, Peterborough Petes (OHL)
Koekkoek was well on his way to a breakout season before suffering a season-ending injury, but Koekkoek is a two-way blueliner who would compliment Adam Larsson very well in the Swamp.
23) LIGHTNING (RED WINGS): D Dalton Thrower, Saskatoon Blades (WHL)
Thrower has steadily risen up the draft charts, and would give the Lightning a physical blueliner to add to their stable.
24) BRUINS: RW Thomas Wilson, Plymouth Whalers (OHL)
I can't think of a better player for the Bruins to draft with their first rounder than Wilson. He's a gritty forward with offense that would be right at home with the Big Bad Bruins.
25) FLYERS: C Mike Winther, Prince Albert Raiders (WHL)
Winther is a high-scoring forward who just seems to fit the Flyer mold. Traditionally, the WHL isn't a league that produces a ton of offense players, but Winther goes against that grain.
26) SABRES (PREDATORS): C Tomas Hertl, Slavia (Czech Republic)
The slick Czech centerman would be a great offensive piece to compliment Cody Hodgson in Buffalo.
27) PENGUINS: C Zemgus Girgensons, Dubuque (USHL)
The Penguins don't have many holes, so they can take a chance on the Latvian stud. He could prove to be a long-term running mate for Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin.
28) BLUES: LW Tanner Pearson, Barrie Colts (OHL)
Pearson is known for one thing-offense. The Blues aren't flush with snipers but Pearson would give them a very good one to play with a guy like T.J. Oshie.
29) RANGERS: RW Sebastien Collberg, Frolunda (SEL)
Collberg would make a great secondary scorer for the Rangers, a team that likes to spread the offensive wealth around.
30) CANUCKS: LW Danil Zharkov, Belleville Bulls (OHL)
Zharkov is known as a defensively responsible pivot who can dangle in a phone booth, who reminds many of a Pavel Datsyuk-lite. The Canucks have many great offensive players but Zharkov would add that third line element while also contributing to the offense.
Players from The Cannon Mock Draft 1.0, not on Mock Draft 2.0:
Pontus Aberg, Phillip DiGuiseppe, Andreas Athanasiou
Players New to Mock Draft 2.0:
Teuvo Teravainen, Dalton Thrower, Thomas Wilson