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Mid-Season Draft Rankings

from Bob McKenzie of TSN,

It is still the Shane Wright Draft.

For now, anyway.

To be clear, though, the Kingston Frontenac centre’s top-prospect status is by no means a sure thing – even if nine of 10 scouts ranked the Burlington, Ont., native first on TSN’s 2022 Mid-Season NHL Draft Rankings.

“I think [Wright’s] first half-performance has left the door open for someone to unseat him,” said one of the 10 scouts surveyed by TSN to determine consensus rankings aimed at projecting where in the draft players are likely to be chosen.

“[No. 1] is absolutely still up for grabs,” said another scout.

Bear in mind that these two scouts, while voicing some concerns, still currently have Wright atop their lists. But they would like to see more from him. And from the other contenders for No. 1, for that matter.

Two forces appear to be at work here — Wright’s so-so performance thus far this season combined with the other top prospects, who could conceivably challenge him for No. 1, not fully seizing the opportunity.

Wright’s game has been, to varying degrees, viewed as underwhelming, especially when weighed against the high expectations coming into the 2021-22 season.

continued for much more and a prospect list too...

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink


Paul's avatar

from Michael Traikos at the Calgary Herald,

As of Thursday, the last-place team had the best odds of winning the No. 1 overall pick in the NHL Entry Draft. For the longest time, that meant winning the Shane Wright sweepstakes.

But while the Kingston Frontenacs centre is still regarded as the consensus top prospect, the gap between him and the next-best players is shrinking. So much so that at least one prominent scout no longer has Wright going No. 1 overall.

Another doesn’t even believe Wright should go at No. 2.

“He’s going to drop to No. 3,” said North American Scouting’s Mark Seidel. “I’ve been mulling it over for quite a while. He’s just a guy who isn’t deserving of the No. 1 spot.”

Who is?

“For me, Joakim Kemell is going to be No. 1,” Seidel said of the Finnish winger, who has drawn comparisons to David Pastrnak for the way he generates offence.

“He’s dynamic. He can create something out of nothing. He’s playing in the Finnish men’s league and showing he can do it well.”

At No. 2 — and it’s very close — Seidel likes 5-foot-9 centre Logan Cooley.


Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 01/20/22 at 03:28 PM ET

TreKronor's avatar

This sounds familiar to the Jack Hughes situation back in 2019.

Posted by TreKronor on 01/20/22 at 03:43 PM ET


I know whenever they (scouts and media commentators, etc)
talk about who is going to end up #1 they mean the number one
pick overall as a proxy for the best NHL longterm. That’s why everyone wants the number on pick to be in a position to draft that best overall future NHL player.

But even with all of the understandable caveats about how hard it is to project players in their teens, all the differences in teams’ existing strengths and weaknesses, coaching, anything that might affect how well a top pick does in a given organization and how quickly, I wonder if the semi-public and media-hyped groupthink around who is going to end up #1 is a different process than actually finding the most impactful player. How does a consensus of experts miss on not only Makar but Heiskinen?

Is getting it right successfully picking who the consensus number one will be among your scouting and media expert peers - which is usually accompanied by a similar group think among NHL executives on draft day. Or is it sticking your neck out and saying: I think Hughes (and Hischier) will be very good NHL players for a long time.
But (while a lot has to pan out) my pick at number one is _____.
Yes it’s possible when projecting is that hard for virtually all experts to make a safe but incorrect pick. But what’s interesting to me is how much most front offices seem from the outside to be partly constrained by that groupthink.
Even at #6 overall, you heard the almost gasps of shock when our GM picked someone no had ever suggested would go as high as sixth. And it was the right pick.
How often could or should GMs go outside that narrow groupthink consensus where they’re picking? Picking 1-2 overall should mean you get to pick from among everyone available. Not that you’ve won the right to inhabit a box where you have to pick 1-2 guys.

Posted by lefty.30 on 01/21/22 at 01:48 AM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

How often could or should GMs go outside that narrow groupthink consensus where they’re picking?

The easy answer to that is: Anytime Stevie Y thinks it’s the right thing to do. It’s one reason I’m not obsessing over the exact spot where the Wings will draft this year. Wherever it is, I trust that Yzerman will pick someone who has the right skills and mindset to be a contributor, regardless of where they were projected to be drafted.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 01/21/22 at 11:42 AM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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