That`s John Tavares in the Knights uniform and Taylor Hall just over a year ago (OHL Skills competition). This photo shows us just how much size and strength can change a player in one calendar year.
Since we are focused heavily on the draft this year, I thought it might be a good idea to do a top 30 earlier. My final list will still appear draft week, but this is one fan’s look (with a big hello from our friend math) at the top 30 players for the 2010 entry draft.
I also think it is a good idea because Redline is nearing their final stages which really helps get a feel for each draft. The latest installment is here. Woolief’s item on Granlund moved him up on my list (from 5 to 4).
A couple of final notes: this is a fan blog, I haven’t seen many of these kids and have zero idea what a scout looks for in terms of projection. I have a good knowledge of draft history and do know that performance at age 17 is an monumental “tell” for these kids. Desjardins NHLE has a major impact on my list and there are bias problems (the Finns get a free ride and I do favor the Canadian junior leagues) but hopefully it’ll be fun. Please add your comments, that’s what makes the blog go.
- L Taylor Hall: Franchise player. The next Stamkos?
- C Tyler Seguin: Franchise player. The next Toews?
- D Brandon Gormley: The most complete D in the draft.
- C Mikael Granlund: The next Saku Koivu. Smart player.
- D Cam Fowler: Exceptional puck mover.
- C Ryan Johansen: Enormous damage at even-strength.
- C Austin Watson: 2-way player underrated.
- R Vladimir Tarasenko: Terrific offensive talent.
- R Jeff Skinner: Talented scorer.
- R Nino Niederreiter: Best PF in this year’s draft.
- D Erik Gudbranson: Big, tough D plays a smart game.
- C Quinton Howden: Big C with a wide range of skills.
- R Emerson Etem: A good skater with size and skill.
- R Brett Connolly: Outstanding skills, hip a big concern.
- D Dylan McIlrath: Big, tough, physical. Shutdown D.
- C Tyler Tiffoli: Skill player posted good numbers.
- C Charlie Coyle: Size/speed/skill.
- D Derek Forbort: Scouts confirm a complete skill set.
- L Brad Ross: Big strong grinder with some skill.
- L Nick Bjugstad: Big PF, more an Eastern conference F.
- C Alex Burmistrov: Skilled Russian, brilliant with the puck.
- G Jack Campbell: He’ll go higher than this.
- C Jaden Schwartz: A wide range of skills.
- L John McFarland: Skill winger with excellent speed.
- C Tyler Pitlick: Already developing as a 2-way C.
- C Brock Nelson: Minnesota high school power-forward.
- C Evgeny Kuznetsov: Playmaking Russian.
- G Calvin Pickard: Big improvement year over year.
- L Kirill Kabanov: Lanky scorer, off-ice issues.
- C Ryan Spooner: Might be higher if he remained healthy.