The first 31 thoughts will pertain to the team that selects at that position in the first round. The last 19 thoughts will be about anything else related to the NHL Draft.
1. The New Jersey Devils were always one of the scariest teams in the league and a perennial contender when I was a kid. It’s going to be Nolan Patrick or Nico Hischier here. I’d take Patrick, but what do I know?
2. This is easy, Philadelphia takes whoever the Devils don’t.
3. I don’t know what happened to the Dallas Stars last year, but it wasn’t pretty. They could use depth at centre, but they also need help on the blue line. At least they seem to have solved their goaltending problems by adding Ben Bishop. Yay, minor victory!
4. I used to own a Colorado Avalanche jacket when I was a kid, then I gave it to my neighbour when it no longer fit. I wish I hadn’t. I loved that jacket. The Avalanche are just that – an avalanche. Take the best player.
5. Vancouver was one win away from the Stanley Cup in 2011. All they had to do was win a home game, but they couldn’t. The city rioted. The players got older. And the prospects in the cupboard have left something to be desired. Oy.
6. Viva Las Vegas! Did I say it right? They can do no wrong with this pick. No fan base would scrutinize their team’s first ever draft pick. Methinks they go for a centre who can be the first piece of their future.
7. I don’t know what the Arizona Coyotes are doing, but their coach left them last night and isn’t coming back. Oh, and they sent their captain away a few days ago, too. Throw another forward prospect on the fire.
8. As a Leafs fan, I don’t like to see the Buffalo Sabres do well. I hope this pick is a flop. That being said, it’ll probably be a forward who averages a point-per-game against the Leafs. That’s how these things go.
9. I did some research for this one; applaud me. In the last 25 years, the Detroit Red Wings highest draft pick was 15th overall. Think about that. Someone better make sure they don’t miss their turn. They’re probably accustomed to napping through the first 20 picks or so.
10. No offence, but I’m still trying to figure out how the Florida Panthers are surviving as a franchise. This is a forward heavy first round, they’ll probably take one here.
11. I’m not a fan of the LA Kings. Their jersey and dark arena makes watching their home games quite difficult for me. It’s all about the aesthetics, kids. Anyway, they’ve gone stale and need some fresh faces.
12. I really didn’t want Carolina to win the Stanley Cup in 2006, but they did. I also still hold a grudge against Arturs Irbe for having large pads which were completely unfair. With the 12th pick, someone probably drops to them and they’ll say “We’re fortunate that ____ fell to us.”
13. Viva Las Vegas! And this has already gotten old. Get another forward, Vegas.
14. I think Tampa Bay needs help on defense. Wow, what a brilliant sentence. I’ll leave it at that.
15. Viva Las…oh shut up, Paul! Vegas will draft at least one defenseman with one of their three first round picks, so if they haven’t done it yet, here it is.
16. I could see Calgary picking a defenseman. Another brilliant sentence. I’ll add more. By the time this prospect bulks up and can make a serious impact, their blue line will be old and on the way out.
17. Next up is Toronto. Hey, I said Toronto! That’s who I cheer for! I cheer for Toronto. Oh my God. (Look up “The Rock promo in Toronto” and you’ll understand what I just did). We have forwards for days. Give me Callan Foote on defense. Make it happen, hockey Gods.
17.5 Callan Foote probably goes to Calgary because Brian Burke likes players like him. Sigh.
18. I still can’t over the fact that Boston traded away Tyler Seguin about four or five years ago. So, what do the Bruins need? I don’t even know. I’d say a forward, but they’ll probably say a defensemen. Do what you want, Boston!
19. Has the window for San Jose to win a Stanley Cup, closed? I don’t know. If they lose Thornton and Marleau, that gives them a quicker team, but it also takes away a lot of production. I think they need to draft a scorer. Man, I am killing it with the brilliant statements.
20. The St. Louis Blues, what are we going to do with you? Their lineup is full of players not born in North America, perhaps this pick is from a different continent as well.
21. If you have a hard time winning at home in the playoffs, you won’t get far. Such is the case with the New York Rangers. They don’t pick again until the 4th round, so they’ll probably trade down in this round and add a pick in the 2nd or 3rd round. Maybe they can get Dallas to do something with them.
22. All of a sudden, we live in a world where the Edmonton Oilers are going to make the playoffs for the next 15+ years. We just left a world where they hadn’t made the playoffs in 11 years. What a weird world this is. The Oilers will draft me with this pick. I can put up 65 points on a line with McDavid, no problem.
23. The Arizona Coyotes are back for another pick. They need talent, so that’s what they should get. I wouldn’t put it past them to trade up or down from this spot, either. Their GM seems like the type to do that a lot.
24. It’s almost a crime that Winnipeg is this low in the first round. With so much pressure to be (financially) successful, I think they were forced to rebuild on the fly when they moved to Winnipeg and never properly did. This is why their playoff appearance a couple of years ago was fool’s gold.
25. It feels so good to hate the Montreal Canadiens. I’m convinced their GM doesn’t have a long-term plan and is just doing things on the fly. They have the best goalie in the world, and one defenseman whom I’m comfortable with. Oh Montreal, thank you for being you.
26. The Chicago Blackhawks will replenish their cupboard and in two or three years will call them up to the NHL where they will be contributors to a Stanley Cup run. It’s what they do.
27. St. Louis again.
28. I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that the Ottawa Senators were one goal away from going to the Stanley Cup Finals. Those aren’t the Ottawa Senators I know, but hey, good for them. I can see them drafting a defenseman.
29. Dallas again.
30. So hard with my girls not around me, it’s definitely not a Nashville party, ’cause all I see are stilettos, I guess I never got the memo. Those are lyrics, by the way, which I had to look up because all I knew was “Nashville party.” Oh, this is Nashville’s pick if you haven’t figured it out yet.
30.5 I would’ve gone with a Carrie Underwood song since she’s married to the captain of the team, but taking a Louisville Slugger to both headlights isn’t exactly a hockey lyric.
31. Pittsburgh Penguins. They won the Cup two years in a row. They should donate this pick to Arizona or something.
32. My favourite part of the draft is when Gary Bettman says, “We have a trade to announce.” Sends chills through my body.
33. The draft is in Chicago. I could see the Blackhawks trying to please the fans by acquiring more picks.
34. Hockey player interviews are the worst. They say five words and then sniffle, and repeat. Watch for it.
35. When a player gets drafted, they are normally seated on the aisle. Then, they go down the row to give hugs before retreating back to the aisle. Shouldn’t they just sit in the middle of the row and hug everyone as they pass, rather than making two trips?
36. Washington, Columbus, Anaheim, and Minnesota don’t have first round picks.
37. After each pick, analysts will outline the player’s strengths and weaknesses. I could only imagine how awful that must feel to be scrutinized at age 18.
38. “He’s not strong enough.” No kidding! He’s still on Flintstone Vitamins. Let his body develop.
39. Get ready for all the cliche terms they use to describe a player. My personal favourites are “Hockey IQ” and “Good upside”. I sure hope they are smart on the ice and have potential. Geeze.
40. The Vegas Golden Knights came away from the expansion draft with a ton of assets and made the rest of the league bow down to them. Get it? I’m interested to see if that continues tonight.
41. Every team normally has a kid sitting at their table, who is responsible for giving a jersey and hat to the draft pick. I missed my calling.
42. I like how quickly the NHL processes trades when they are made. The NBA is forever in “Proposed Trade” peril for the entire night.
43. My heart rate accelerates whenever I see two General Managers having a private conversation.
44. It’s amazing how goaltenders are rarely ever high draft picks, yet they are the most important aspect of a championship team.
45. “I’d like to congratulate the Pittsburgh Penguins on their Stanley Cup, and I’d like to thank the city of Chicago for your hospitality.” – Most teams will say this before making their pick. I like the teams that don’t.
46. Every team gives their draft picks a hat, except for Brian Burke’s team – Calgary. He wants the camera to see their face. Listen Brian, I get your point, but give them a hat!
47. I’m setting the over/under at 2.5 for how many people trip up the steps while going on stage. That includes: front office staff, draft picks, anyone else.
48. Every first round pick is going to be hyped up as a guy who could do “x, y, and z” for their new team. In reality, some of them will never play a game in the NHL.
49. I have a feeling there is going to be a trade during the draft featuring a well-known/big name player. I have no guesses as to who, but my 6th sense is really going off right now.
50. Woo draft!
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