BLUE BULLET’S LATEST 30

I met Brad McPherson (Blue Bullet) via hf a long time ago and have been impressed with his draft takes over the years. I posted his first 30 in mid-March and now here’s the latest. Everything from here on out that isn’t Deborah Harry is from Brad:

1(1)   YAKUPOV, NAIL   SARNIA   OHL   5’10.5″   189   LW
2(3)   DUMBA, MATHEW   RED DEER   WHL   5’11.75″   173   D
3(4)   MURRAY, RYAN   EVERETT   WHL   6’0.5″   195   D
4(2)   GRIGORENKO, MIKHAIL   QUEBEC   QMJHL   6’3″   200   C
5(6)   FORSBERG, FILIP   LEKSAND   SWEDEN-2   6’2.0″   181   LW
6(5)   RIELLY, MORGAN   MOOSE JAW   WHL   5’11.5″   190   D
7(8)   GALCHENYUK, ALEXANDER   SARNIA   OHL   6’0.5″   198   C
8(7)   TROUBA, JACOB   USA U-18   USHL   6’2.0″   193   D
9(9)   REINHART, GRIFFIN   EDMONTON   WHL   6’3.75″   197   D
10(10)   CECI, CODY   OTTAWA   OHL   6’2.5″   207   D
11(NR)   TERAVAINEN, TEUVO   JOKERIT   FINLAND   5’11.0″   165   RW
12(11)   COLLBERG, SEBASTIAN   FROLUNDA   SWE   5’11.0″   176   RW
13(13)   FAKSA, RADEK   KITCHENER   OHL   6’2.5″   203   C
14(14)  VASILEVSKI, ANDREI   UFA 2   RUSSIA-JR.   6’3.25″   204    G
15(20)  ABERG, PONTUS   DJURGARDEN   SWEDEN   5’11.0″   194   LW
16(17)  MAATTA, OLLI   LONDON   OHL   6’1.5″   202   D
17(15)  KOEKKOEK, SLATER   PETERBOROUGH   OHL   6’2.0″   184   D
18(NR)  SUBBAN, MALCOLM   BELLEVILLE   OHL   6’1.0″   188   G
19(12)  FINN, MATTHEW   GUELPH   OHL   6’0.25″   192   D
20(16)  POULIOT, DERRICK   PORTLAND   WHL   5’11.25″   190   D
21(19)   GIRGENSONS, ZEMGUS   DUBUQUE   USHL   6’1.5″   198   C
22(18)   GAUNCE, BRENDAN   BELLEVILLE   OHL   6’2.0″   215   C
23(NR)   LINDHOLM, HAMPUS   ROGLE JR.   SWE-JR.   6’2.5″   196   D
24(NR)   BYSTROM, LUDWIG   MODO JR.   SWE-JR.   6’0.75″   208   D
25(NR)   SKJEI, BRADY   USA U-18   USHL   6’2.75″   200   D
26(NR)   HERTL, TOMAS   SLAVIA   CZREP   6’2.0″   198   C
27(NR)   THROWER, DALTON   SASKATOON   WHL   5’11.5″   189   D
28(NR)   WILSON, THOMAS   PLYMOUTH   OHL   6’3.5″   203   RW
29(NR)   MATTEAU, STEFAN   USA U-18   USHL   6’1.5″   210   C
30(NR)   SLEPYSHEV, ANTON   NOVOKUZNETSK   RUSSIA   6’2.0″   187

BB: So there were no new players in my top ten but there was some movement. Grigorenko dropped down 2 spots. He’s talented but his consistency issues are a concern. I still prefer Dumba over Murray. I just think he has bigger upside. Will be interesting to see how his stock goes after the impressive U-18. Galchenyuk made it back to play a few games but I wish Sarnia would have made it past the first round so he could have got going. Too much talent to pass up still.

Teravainen is my biggest riser just like every other ranking. Not the biggest player but very skilled. He demonstrates how important the international tournaments late in the year are in the rankings for the European players. It’s definitely when most movement happens.

My top 30 consists of 14 d-men and 14 forwards and 2 goalies. Half of my players are European born which is higher than a normal year. It is a stronger year for European players. If the North American forward class wasn’t so poor this would be a pretty good draft year. It is one of the weakest crops I can remember with Gaunce, Wilson and Matteau being the top of it and all 3 of them are most likely to be role players at the NHL level with an outside chance of top 6.

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37 Responses to "BLUE BULLET’S LATEST 30"

  1. BlacqueJacque says:

    I can’t see why he’d like Dumba over Murray. Under-18s are one thing, but a defenceman the size of an especially large chihuahua, no matter how aggressive, is going to get kicked around like a hackeysack.

    I know Dumba is more skilled, more dynamic, and delivers big hits… but he delivers them on 18 year old boys. Dustin Penner in a bad mood would get in front of the net, tip the puck and when it hit Dumba, he’d knock Dumba and the puck into the net with a stray elbow. Now imagine what a really mean, big forward would do.

  2. dawgtoy says:

    I agree, Murray appears to be the safer, more NHL ready player. Dumba = Risk, and I doubt he’s anywhere near the height he’s listed as in this article. I’d say Reinhart goes sooner then 9 as well. Thats my 2 cents worth anyhow.

  3. Lowetide says:

    I’ll bet $$$ Edmonton takes Ryan Murray or Griffin Reinhart. Not a lot of money, but something tells me a trade down is on the way.

  4. sliderule says:

    It appears the Oil are going to try to trade down or select Murray.

    Stauffer today was comparing Murray to Suter.As he had just finished interviewing Tambo he might be reflecting Oiler thinking.

    I think they will regret passing on a elite prospect like Yak to take D .

    If we do take a D we would be better to gamble on Dumba as he has the ability to be a offensive dynamo.You don’t have to worry about his size as he has grit.

    Murray looks like he will be a good player but he hasn’t shown the offensive upside.

    In Klefbom we already have a player similar to Murray

  5. DSF says:

    Lowetide:
    I’ll bet $$$ Edmonton takes Ryan Murray or Griffin Reinhart. Not a lot of money, but something tells me a trade down is on the way.

    Don’t think Tambellini has the cajones to do that.

    Who do you see as being desperate to draft Yakupov?

  6. Blue Bullet says:

    I don’t have a problem with Dumba’s size at all. You just have to take one look at the next Norris trophy winner to see what a skilled undersized d-man is capable of doing. One thing I have learned by looking back at my past draft rankings is that safe and steady doesn’t always win the race. It takes a lot of doubles to trump one grand slam.

    I don’t know if the Oilers will trade down but there is a better chance of it than any previous year. It should make for a fun draft again.

  7. Lowetide says:

    DSF: Don’t think Tambellini has the cajones to do that.

    Who do you see as being desperate to draft Yakupov?

    I think someone will take a lash at it, and don’t think the Oilers will ask the moon. Kind of 2002 all over again.

  8. Dave Casselman says:

    Lowetide,

    Not to appear more ignorant than usual, what happened in 02?

  9. sliderule says:

    LT
    You must mean 2003?

  10. justDOit says:

    When I see Dumba, I think of MA Bergeron unable to stop Ladd and driving him on top of Rollie. I loved MAB, and was amazed early in his career when he stood up Bertuzzi just inside the blue line. Bergeron almost bent backwards with the impact, but he didn’t break.

  11. danny says:

    If we look back at last years draft, Stu was less than enamoured over Larsson. Projected him as a possible top pairing with average offense. I’d suspect that they are similar prospects in his eyes, and given his BPA tendencies, I find it hard to believe he would be on board with trading down, unless it’s for a significant roster player and a mid first pick. I can’t see it happening. Subban and the 3rd might be interesting, not sure what else EDM would need to add, but it probably wouldn’t be much.

  12. Lowetide says:

    I was thinking about the 2002 deal that saw Philly get #4 and Pitkanen for very little. That’s the kind of deal that might happen although EDM would obviously get more for #1 overall.

  13. DSF says:

    Well, you have to think it would have to be someone in the top 5 otherwise the guy the Oilers target will likely be gone.

    I doubt Columbus will make a trade for a Russian.

    That leaves Toronto. They need a centre.

    The Islanders. They need defense.

    Montreal. Maybe.

    Anaheim, Minnesota, Carolina, Winnipeg and Tampa Bay all need defensemen.

    I would think Montreal is likely the only reasonable target.

  14. Lowetide says:

    seems reasonable. So the Oilers choices are:

    1. Trade down to 3 or 5 and risk losing Murray.
    2. Draft Murray #1 overall and add your 4th piece of the future to go with Hall, Eberle and the Nuge.

    Would Reinhart last until 7?

  15. regwald says:

    If the Oil Kings continue to win, I can’t see Reinhart’s value not continuing to rise with a Memorial Cup tourney to increase his level of exposure.

    In fact, I no offense to blue bullet, I think he’s going higher than #9. I also believe Dumba is going to fall further than Fowler or Courturier did. Too small. Plays too physical for his size. He will have a short career in the NHL.

    People said that about Brule and the edge he played with in junior. He’s not physically capable of playing that level day in day out in the NHL, that is one of the reasons Brule has become a fringe player. The mental health issues, may be more crippling than we know, but his physical size is a big limitation.

  16. gd says:

    Reilly has sure impressed me in the Oil King series. I wonder if he becomes the safety valve for the Oil, if they did trade down and hope to get Murray. My impression of Reinhart is he is too much of a project to take in the top 5.

    The only assets I see on the teams in the top 5 worth trading down for are Johansson, Subban, Pacioretty, Eller and maybe Okposo.

  17. Blue Bullet says:

    Brule’s problem is less with his size and more between his ears. I guess we will wait and see on Dumba. And I do not think he is going #2 but it’s where I would take him. He will probably be in the 5-8 area.

    As for Reinhart I just don’t see the high upside. His upside is a 30 point #2 d-man and more likely a #3-4. If I was slotting him into my rankings last year he would have been around 14 with Klefbom.

  18. Blue Bullet says:

    Just to compare this year to last year’s rankings I don’t know if Yakupov would make my top 5 in 2011. Dumba, Murray and Grigorenko would slot in at the 7 spot after Hamilton.

  19. spoiler says:

    The difficulty with comparing Dumba and Murray, from our vantage which lacks a scouting department’s multiple viewings, is accounting for team effects and usage by the coach. We can guess a bit at team effect, but it’s still tough when evaluating a Dman for offense. And sadly, we don’t have TOI or it’s splits, to judge usage.

    I suspect that MagStu is discerning enough to know who’s the man and that the WHC consideration is a huge tell.

    I think Dumba will slide a bit, like Fowler, and might be a real prize later in the top 10, especially for a team with the depth to shelter him. The Edmonton Oilers are not that team, but we’re still gonna be lacking for offense from the prospect blueliners, if they don’t take Dumba.

    I think they take Yakupov because he’s the only high level talent on the list.

    But it is a real tragedy that out of three #1 top-rated prospects, two have been wingers. We wouldn’t be waffling on The Yak if the Oil had taken Seguin over Hall two years ago. Hindsight.

  20. Deeg says:

    Interesting… so, Blue Bullet – would you take Yakupov or would you trade the pick?

    And who should the Oilers look at with the 2nd round pick? I’ve heard Henrik Samuelsson’s name thrown out there. Who would be the best case scenarios to fall into the second round?

  21. spoiler says:

    spoiler:
    I think Dumba will slide a bit, like Fowler, and might be a real prize later in the top 10, especially for a team with the depth to shelter him. The Edmonton Oilers are not that team, but we’re still gonna be lacking for offense from the prospect blueliners, if they don’t take Dumba.

    I see this has already been covered, lol.

    Also… Thanks for the List, BB!!

  22. gd says:

    I have watched the last few Oi Kings games and I have really liked Samuelsson. I love seeing him out of the top 30 as I’ve got to assume Stu will have more info on a player on a team owned by his team, meaning if they don’t pick him in the second rd it’s probably the right move.

  23. gogliano says:

    Blue Bullet:
    Just to compare this year to last year’s rankings I don’t know if Yakupov would make my top 5 in 2011. Dumba, Murray and Grigorenko would slot in at the 7 spot after Hamilton.

    That seems like a huge shift in quality between drafts, particularly since #1 this year seems to have such a unanimous lead on the rest of the pack (though it sounds like you don’t think the gap is as big). Anything that stands out as to why you think he would drop that low in 2011?

  24. FPB94 says:

    Absolutely love Blue Bullet’s things. Much more than any fired scouts.

    On a sidenote: MTL is high on Grigorenko. If he falls there he’l be scooped up.

    IMO dropping down and losing Murray isn’t that much of a deal. Defensemen are really hard to evualate, and a guy like Trouba could end up a better deal.

  25. spoiler says:

    I would be very tempted to trade this year’s first to CBJ for next year’s first. Doubt they would do it, but I’d still phone up Howson and have a conversation.

    If MacKinnon is as good as they say.

  26. eidy says:

    If you have your heart set on a specific D ie Murray, take Yakupov 1st and then if your guy is there later, consider trading yakupov for Murray + another piece. Trading down and hoping your guy is there later is a terrible plan.

    Personally, I would like to see them take Yakupov and look to add through trade. I would think that buffalo might be looking to add some offense and unload a somewht expensive defense. I would like Sekera. I also wouldnsee what Nashville is tHinking on Blum, he seems to have fallen out of favor there. Ideally you could pry one of OEL, Rundblad out of phx as they have a strong pipeline. OEL would be great and I would try to work something out around the first, gagner,and a prospect for OEL and Hanzel, but that seems like a pipe dream.

    Seems like Omark,gagner, and draft picks a in play. The only way I see Linus sticking around is if the plan is to bring up Todd Nelson from OKC. That was my first thout when i heard that renney was going to get a little time to “reenergize” , was really just buying more time for OKC finish their year He would have seen Omark play and also seems to be the only one that can play MPS and omark in situations where they thrive. 91 seems much better on the right wing as he is able to use his free hand to get around D.

  27. BlacqueJacque says:

    Blue Bullet:
    I don’t have a problem with Dumba’s size at all. You just have to take one look at the next Norris trophy winner to see what a skilled undersized d-man is capable of doing. One thing I have learned by looking back at my past draft rankings is that safe and steady doesn’t always win the race. It takes a lot of doubles to trump one grand slam.

    I don’t know if the Oilers will trade down but there is a better chance of it than any previous year. It should make for a fun draft again.

    If you’re referring to Karlsson, I doubt he’s going to win the Norris. His competition for the trophy are 6’9 Zdeno Chara (who intimidates even enforcers) and 6’4 Shea Weber. Both dominate ES and the PP, and are very effective on the PK.

    Considering that my old fat ass (with a hefty dose of old man strength I guess) could knock Dumba around in front of the net like a rag doll, I’m doubtful he could handle a man in front. And he’d be seeing a lot of that in the NHL. Coaches would exploit him mercilessly and teams would throw bodies at him, especially in the playoffs. The kid isn’t just only average height for an NHLer, he’s got a very slim frame. Speedy open ice hits are one thing, but when Bertuzzi, Penner, Brown, Holmstrom, or Benn are simply planted in front of the net, Dumba is going to be exposed.

    We’ll see if he’s grown any at the combine, but while he’s got heart and brains and skill, his physique doesn’t match his style and will not translate to the NHL unless his body suddenly decides to grow the shoulders out further than a 16 year old girl.

    We need a complete defenceman, not a specialist.

  28. stevezie says:

    I really hate the idea of the Oil convincing themselves they need to find their defenceman at this year’s draft. Even if you get the right guy, there’s a good chance he doesn’t turn into who he will be until the window on the forwards closes. I’d rather trade the pick outright than take Murray, unless we get one helluva trade down.

    eidy:
    the first, gagner,and a prospect for OEL and Hanzel, but that seems like a pipe dream.

    Yes it does, but that is my ideal “fix almost everything” trade this summer. Hopefully PHX gets smoked in round two and Hanzel’s injury problems contribute to this, but then he miraculously recovers for us.

  29. Maverick says:

    It is becoming increasing difficult to not shake my head at the Oilers management every time I hear about plans at this year’s draft. We all know the team needs defense but are the top 3 defenseman going to turn into Drew Doughty or Chris Pronger? The answer is no.

    So giving up on a solid 40 goal potential dynamic scorer for a poor man’s Suter or a poor man’s Weber? Sorry I am not sold on that at all. Taylor Hall is dynamic, Eberle has a high hockey IQ and the Nugent is a pure playmaker, but after that there is scoring depth problems at forward. Smyth – too old, Hemsky – no longer a star, Jones – LOL, Gagner – lots of try but no show.

    A strong run organization would look at the whole roster and see deficiencies throughout the lineup and have a long term vision of how the line up will take shape 2-3 years from now. The team today is too small up front, lots of the same sort of players on the NHL roster (ie Gagner, Hemsky, Omark) weak on scoring forwards after the “wunderkids”, weak scoring on the farm team and drafted players (exception Rieder may become Omark or better upside). Defense on NHL roster is weak, but strong depth of drafted and AHL defenseman possible top 3-4-5-6 defenseman.

    Vision: 2-3 years out, scoring an issue, no scoring depth, lots of defenseman in the system.

    Yep if I was Mr.Dithers running the show I would be by-passing Yakupov for a top 3 defenseman. “shaking head” YIKES!!!!

  30. sliderule says:

    Lots of things for oilers to ponder over in this draft.

    Murray if he was two weeks older would have been in last years draft.Injured for a good part of this year and on the positive side played for a fairly weak team and held his own.Is he a Suter or Chorney

    Reinhart played for a powerhouse team and got to show his best.Good size but lack of foot speed really showed at WJC tryouts.Is he Weber or Plante

    Dumba,aggressive offensive defenceman who put up excellent numbers while playing on a very weak team.plays very physical in comparison to Murray who is more positional in his defense.Question is because he is currently under 180 lbs will the physical part transfer to NHL .Lots of room to grow tho as he is on of the youngest in draft.

    Yakopov, like Murray one of the older draftees.In the previous season at 17 he put up over a 100pts and if he had been eligible for the draft would have been in top five or maybe higher.He then followed that up with a solid season slowed by an injury suffered at WJC .At the WJC he was one of the top forwards in whole tournament.Not that tall but very thick .Does the Russian factor figure in?

  31. cc says:

    As per HockeyDB:
    Ryan Murray – Size 6′ 185 Birth Date: 9/27/93 – Stats: 46-9-22-31
    Matt Dumba – Size 6′ 166 Birth Date: 7/25/94 – Stats: 69-20-37-57

    Why are we so concerned with Dumba’s size but not Murray’s? When the 17 year old kid fills out he will likely play at around 200 lbs.

    I just look at the two players and think the main reason people are leaning towards Murray is he might play next year, which in my opinion would be a mistake, whereas Dumba would likely need another two years of development, BUT his upside is alot higher.

  32. SoxandOil says:

    What would it take or what are the chances that Edmonton could trade into the 6 to 8 range?

    They could select Yak and add either a great D or C in that range…

    Would Reider + 2 2nd’s (2012 and 2013) be enough? Or would they also need to add a current roster player – like Eager or Jones?

  33. FastOil says:

    spoiler:
    I would be very tempted to trade this year’s first to CBJ for next year’s first. Doubt they would do it,but I’d still phone up Howson and have a conversation.

    If MacKinnon is as good as they say.

    I would definetely make that call. CBJ are going to need an elite RW soon. Toss in Omark and Jones to sweeten the pot. And ask for Johansen.

  34. cabbiesmacker says:

    spoiler:
    I would be very tempted to trade this year’s first to CBJ for next year’s first. Doubt they would do it,but I’d still phone up Howson and have a conversation.
    If MacKinnon is as good as they say.

    If that were to happen it would be big time entertainment to see the BJ’s then take Murray with the first OV.

  35. cabbiesmacker says:

    FPB94:

    On a sidenote: MTL is high on Grigorenko. If he falls there he’l be scooped up.

    Falls? Or moves up that far you mean?

  36. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Lowetide,

    Lowetide:
    I was thinking about the 2002 deal that saw Philly get #4 and Pitkanen for very little. That’s the kind of deal that might happen although EDM would obviously get more for #1 overall.

    “Very little” = Ruslan Fedotenko, the guy who scored 6 goals against the (ahem) Flyers in the 2004 Conference Finals. Whereas Joni Pitkanen’s next playoff goal will be his first. Just sayin’.

    The two second-rounders TB also got in the deal were wasted, but Fedotenko has been a useful player. Both Fedotenko and Pitkanen have played ~12,000 regular-season minutes in their careers, with Fedotenko having far more extensive playoff experience including playing a key role on two Stanley Cup champions.

    Pitkanen is an OK player who should have (way) more left at this point — he’s still just 28 — but his capacity as a workhorse has been diminished by his inability to stay healthy. He has missed 10+ games every season but one.

    For the record, I too thought the deal was a steal for Philly at the time, but the end result is not so cut and dried.

  37. Truth says:

    What happened to not taking defencemen early in the draft? You’re saying the Oilers are going to trade away or pass up on the rights to taking a player that is head and shoulders above every other player in the draft only to draft for position? The Cam Barker experiment should be enough food for thought for Oiler fans.

    Taken from http://www.hockeysfuture.com/articles/7064/blackhawks2004_draft_review/

    “Cam Barker D, first round #3 overall
    6’3” 214, Medicine Hat (WHL)

    With their first pick Chicago selected Cam Barker, the rugged defenseman from Medicine Hat who was widely considered to be the best defenseman available in the 2004 draft.

    Barker is a big powerful blueliner who is a deceptively strong skater, at times he looks like he is gliding when in fact his stride just looks that effortless. Physical and alert in his own end, he is even better offensively. He quarterbacked the power play and has terrific passing abilities.

    When asked about coming to Chicago during a rebuilding phase, he said on Saturday, “Chicago is definitely rebuilding. So picking a defenseman, you know they have a lot of talented guys in that group. So I am really looking forward to trying to make that team and it’s a great future for them.”

    During the 2003-2004 campaign, Barker tallied 79 points making him the highest scored defenseman on the team. He played for team Cherry at the 2004 Top Prospects Game.”

    Now if the Oilers could only trade their 1st overall this year for that guy!

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