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NHL Draft

2005 NHL Redraft: Kopitar, Rask make big leaps

Crosby remains first pick for Penguins; Quick jumps from third round to top five

by @NHLdotcom

With the 2019-20 NHL season on pause due to the concerns surrounding the coronavirus, will reimagine one NHL Draft each week. Today, we look back at the 2005 NHL Draft, which was held at the Westin Hotel in Ottawa on July 30, 2005.

There was no doubt the Pittsburgh Penguins would select Sidney Crosby with the No. 1 pick in the 2005 NHL Draft. He was the most decorated prospect available, and with 15 years of hindsight, there's no question they would do it again.

Since making his debut in the 2005-06 season, Crosby has helped the Penguins win the Stanley Cup three times (2009, 2016, 2017). He was voted the winner of the Conn Smythe Trophy as most valuable player of the Stanley Cup Playoffs in 2016 and 2017, and the Hart Trophy as League MVP in 2007 and 2014. He won the Art Ross Trophy, awarded to the League leader in points in 2007 (120) and 2014 (104), and the Maurice Richard Trophy, which goes to the NHL's leading goal-scorer, in 2010 (51) and 2017 (44).

But how would the draft look after the top pick if it were done today? Would Anze Kopitar fall all the way to 11? Would Tuukka Rask stay on the board until the 21st pick?

Thirty staffers, using the draft order and class from 2005, and selected in random order, have answered those questions. Here are the results. For reference, here is how the original draft went.

1. Sidney Crosby, C, Pittsburgh Penguins (originally selected No. 1 by Penguins) -- There's no need to rewrite history here; everyone expected Crosby to be a generational player, and he has delivered despite some injuries along the way. Only Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid, who would be the No. 1 pick in the 2015 NHL Draft, has a better points-per-game average (1.34 in 351 games) among active NHL players than Crosby (1.28 in 984 games). After the Penguins selected fellow elite center Evgeni Malkin with the No. 2 pick in the 2004 NHL Draft, the selection of Crosby was and is a no-brainer. -- Pete Jensen, senior fantasy editor

Video: PIT@BUF: Crosby races in and backhands puck home

2. Anze Kopitar, C, Mighty Ducks of Anaheim (No. 11 by Los Angeles Kings) -- He's second to Crosby in goals (333), assists (617) and points (950) among players from the 2005 draft. Kopitar is one of the best two-way forwards in the League and has won two Stanley Cup championships with the Kings. He would have been a nice future addition for the Ducks, who selected center Ryan Getzlaf in the first round of the 2003 NHL Draft, adding a strong No. 1 and 2 at the position for years to come. It's worth noting goalie Carey Price could have been considered here, but Anaheim had goalies Jean-Sebastien Giguere and Ilya Bryzgalov on the active roster at the time. Giguere did help them win the Stanley Cup in 2007. -- Rob Reese, fantasy editor

3. Tuukka Rask, G, Carolina Hurricanes (No. 21 by Toronto Maple Leafs) -- Rask has been one of the top goalies in the NHL since leading the League with a 1.97 goals-against average and .931 save percentage in his rookie season of 2009-10. Sure, the Hurricanes had Cam Ward, who helped them win the Stanley Cup in his rookie year of 2005-06, in the system, but Rask has won more games (87) after turning 30 than anyone in his draft class and is still going strong. At age 33, he leads the NHL this season with a 2.12 GAA (minimum 30 games), is second in save percentage (.929) and is tied for second with five shutouts. -- Jon Lane, staff writer

Video: BOS@PHI: Rask earns 50th NHL shutout on 33rd birthday

4. Carey Price, G, Minnesota Wild (No. 5 by Montreal Canadiens) -- Defenseman Kris Letang was hard to pass here up here, but Price's numbers were too enticing to overlook. Consider that Price has the most wins (348) for the Canadiens, who have produced Hockey Hall of Famers Jacques Plante, Ken Dryden, Patrick Roy, Georges Vezina, Gump Worsley, George Hainsworth and Bill Durnan. In a rather ordinary draft otherwise, this one was rich in goalie prospects with Rask, Price, Jonathan Quick and Ben Bishop. Forward T.J. Oshie also was a consideration here. -- Mike Zeisberger, staff writer

5. Jonathan Quick, G, Montreal Canadiens (No. 72 by Los Angeles Kings) -- I was looking for a franchise goalie with Price off the board, and Quick was the man. A third-round pick of the Kings, he helped them win the Stanley Cup twice and has the most wins (325) among Los Angeles goalies, a group that includes Hall of Famer Rogie Vachon (171) and Kelly Hrudey (145). Hard to pass on talent like Letang and Bishop, though. -- William Douglas, staff writer

6. Paul Stastny, C, Columbus Blue Jackets (No. 44 by Colorado Avalanche) -- At the time, the Blue Jackets had yet to make the Stanley Cup Playoffs and needed scoring punch. Stastny was coming off two solid seasons at the University of Denver (98 points in 81 games) and made an immediate impact in the NHL in 2006-07 with 78 points (28 goals, 50 assists), finishing second to Malkin in voting for the Calder Trophy as the League's best rookie with Colorado. -- Frank Giase, staff writer

7. Kris Letang, D, Chicago Blackhawks (No. 62 by Pittsburgh Penguins) -- I was surprised Letang was still on the board, so I didn't hesitate with my pick. The defenseman somehow seems perpetually underrated to me, even with 537 NHL points (127 goals, 410 assists). The Blackhawks would win some serious hardware over the next few seasons and already had some talented defensemen in the pipeline (Duncan Keith, 2002 NHL Draft; Brent Seabrook and Dustin Byfuglien, 2003 draft), but I think Letang would have been an impressive addition. -- Amalie Benjamin, staff writer

8. James Neal, LW, San Jose Sharks (No. 33 by Dallas Stars) -- I was as surprised as Amalie to see Letang slide that far, but I still got a great player here. Adding a natural goal-scorer to a team that would acquire center Joe Thornton a few months later sounds like a match made in heaven. Neal is third in goals (289) and seventh in points (545) in his draft class. He scored at least 20 goals in each of his first 10 seasons in the NHL. -- Sebastien Deschambault, managing editor,

9. Marc-Edouard Vlasic, D, Ottawa Senators (No. 35 by the San Jose Sharks) -- I was tempted to go with Bishop, a three-time Vezina Trophy finalist. But he didn't hit his stride until 2013-14 with the Tampa Bay Lightning, after stints with the St. Louis Blues and, yep, the Senators. By then, Vlasic already had been averaging more than 20 minutes per game for seven NHL seasons. He hasn't put up flashy numbers, but he has been one of the best defensive defensemen in the game for much of his career. -- Nicholas J. Cotsonika, columnist

10. Niklas Hjalmarsson, D, Vancouver Canucks (No. 108 by Chicago Blackhawks) -- I thought about going with a goalie here, but instead, why not just bolster the defense? Hjalmarsson has had an outstanding career and has been tough, sustaining one major injury despite his history as a shot-blocker (1,536 in 780 NHL games). Just imagine a blue line with Hjalmarsson making his NHL debut in 2007, Alexander Edler (drafted in 2004) joining the Canucks in 2006 and Kevin Bieksa already there (2005-06 was his rookie season). That's the start of a pretty good group to put in front of your goalie. -- Tracey Myers, staff writer

11. Ben Bishop, G, Los Angeles Kings (No. 85 by St. Louis Blues) -- With Quick no longer an option, I needed another franchise goalie and turned to Bishop, who has won 222 NHL games and has been a finalist for the Vezina Trophy three times. We'll never know how Los Angeles would have fared in the 2012 and 2014 postseasons without Quick, but one has to believe Bishop still would have provided the Kings a fairly good chance to win it all. -- Brian Compton, deputy managing editor

Video: DAL@ANA: Bishop denies 27 shots for 33rd NHL shutout

12. Patric Hornqvist, F, New York Rangers (No. 230 by the Nashville Predators) -- A two-time Stanley Cup champion and eight-time 20-goal scorer in the NHL, Hornqvist would have been beloved by Rangers fans for his willingness to score dirty goals, especially on the power play. His character, gritty play and clutch gene would have made him a nice fit and possible difference-maker for coach John Tortorella's team that reached the Eastern Conference Final in 2012, and Alain Vigneault's team that played in the 2014 Stanley Cup Final. -- Jim Cerny, senior editor

13. T.J. Oshie, RW, Buffalo Sabres (No. 24 by St. Louis Blues) -- I bucked this goalie-happy crowd and selected Oshie, who would have been a great fit for any team looking for a reliable forward in this draft. His 567 NHL points (238 goals, 329 assists) in 803 games are the fourth-most among forwards in this draft class. Oshie's hockey sense, nose for the net, consistency and reliability in the clutch helped him win the Stanley Cup with the Washington Capitals in 2018. -- Tim Campbell, staff writer

14. Keith Yandle, D, Washington Capitals (No. 105 by Phoenix Coyotes) -- Oshie was by far the best forward available just before my turn, and it was quite surprising to see him fall to No. 13. With him gone, I jumped on the most productive and durable offensive defenseman in the draft. Not only do Yandle's 573 NHL points (99 goals, 474 assists) top his draft class among defensemen, his ironman streak of 866 games is the best among active players and fourth-longest in NHL history. -- Paul Strizhevsky, columnist

15. Bobby Ryan, RW, New York Islanders (No. 2 by Mighty Ducks of Anaheim) -- Ryan has been one of the most productive forwards of his draft class. He ranks sixth among his peers with 555 points (254 goals, 301 assists) in 833 games. Before he was traded to the Senators in 2013, he had four consecutive seasons of at least 30 goals. Who knows if he would have reached the 50-goal plateau if he had played alongside Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry for a couple of more years? -- Guillaume Lepage, staff writer,

Video: VAN@OTT: Ryan's fifth NHL hatty leads Sens to 5-2 win

16. Darren Helm, C, Atlanta Thrashers (No. 132 by Detroit Red Wings) -- With goalie Ondrej Pavelec up my sleeve in Round 2, I selected Helm, who was a clutch playoff performer with Detroit even before he was an NHL regular. Helm scored six goals in 41 postseason games during his first two seasons with the Red Wings and was part of their 2008 Stanley Cup-winning team before he'd scored a regular-season goal. -- Dave Stubbs, columnist

17. Matt Niskanen, D, Phoenix Coyotes (No. 28 by Dallas Stars) -- Niskanen is never going to pull anyone out of their seats, but he's an all-situation player, and winning seems to follow him around. He was a key part of the Capitals' Stanley Cup championship team in 2018 and has made the playoffs for nine straight seasons. Niskanen's 356 points (72 goals, 284 assists) and 949 regular-season games played are third among defensemen selected in 2005. More importantly, his 40 points in Stanley Cup Playoffs are second only to Letang. -- Adam Kimelman, deputy managing editor

18. Anton Stralman, D, Nashville Predators (No. 216 by Toronto Maple Leafs) -- With Kimelman stealing my thunder, and most of the offensive firepower in this draft off the board, I went with Stralman, who has outperformed his original draft position as a tremendous value pick and a steady influence on defense in a 13-year NHL career. With 261 points (52 goals, 209 assists) in 818 NHL games, Stralman likely would have complemented the offensive-minded P.K. Subban, Roman Josi and Ryan Ellis. -- Barry Rubinstein, manager, assignments

19. Marc Staal, D, Detroit Red Wings (No. 12 by New York Rangers) -- I was getting excited with two quality right-handed defensemen on the board before Kimelman and Rubinstein selected them with the previous two picks. Instead, I went with the left-handed Staal, who has had a solid NHL career, playing 892 regular-season games and 104 in the playoffs for the Rangers, and helping them reach the Stanley Cup Final in 2014. Never an offensive defenseman, Staal had an NHL career-high 29 points (seven goals, 22 assists) in 2010-11, but he's been a fixture in New York's top four for most of his tenure despite injuries, including one to his right eye in 2013. He's second on the Rangers with 1,162 blocked shots and third with 1,308 hits since entering the League in 2007-08. -- Tom Gulitti, staff writer

20. Andrew Cogliano, F, Florida Panthers (originally selected No. 25 by the Edmonton Oilers) -- I took the guy who almost never misses a game because of an injury, is faster than most players, kills penalties and plays a reliable enough game to be used on the second, third or fourth line. Cogliano played in 830 consecutive games before a two-game suspension ended his ironman streak during the 2017-18 season. He is third in games played (1,012), eighth in goals (165), 12th in assists (234) and 10th in points (399) among players selected in the 2005 draft. He's not going to blow your hair back in any one area, but he's consistent and reliable, two traits that count for a lot when you're picking 20th. -- Dan Rosen, senior writer

21. Kris Russell, D, Toronto Maple Leafs (No. 67 by the Columbus Blue Jackets) -- He's not an offensive defenseman (46 goals, 236 points in 846 NHL games), which is fine because the Maple Leafs had and would continue to have enough of those with Tomas Kaberle, Morgan Rielly and Jake Gardiner, to name a few. Since entering the NHL in 2007-08, Russell is first among active players in blocks (1,901), which includes five straight seasons of at least 200 from 2013-18. -- David Satriano, staff writer

22. Martin Hanzal, C, Boston Bruins (No. 17 by the Phoenix Coyotes) -- Big centers are always in demand. Hanzal (6-foot-6, 230 pounds) fits the bill and was a steal at this point in the draft. Here's a player who had eight seasons of at least 10 goals and seven seasons of at least 30 points. He also developed into an above-average face-off man during the second half of his NHL career, which ended in 2018-19. The Bruins have traditionally been strong down the middle, especially with Patrice Bergeron anchoring that rotation. -- Shawn P. Roarke, senior director of editorial

23. Justin Abdelkader, LW, New Jersey Devils (No. 42 by the Detroit Red Wings) -- I'm a proponent of building from the goalie on out, but at this point in the draft, and considering the needs of the Devils, I went with the best player available, and I believe that to be the rugged forward. Abdelkader, now in his 11th full NHL season, doesn't possess the flash and dash of some of the higher-end draft picks, but he plays a tough, in-your-face game. He ranks first on the Red Wings in hits (1,754), 10th in blocked shots (344) and 11th in points (252) since 2005-06. He's also 15th in goals (106) among players chosen in this draft. -- Mike G. Morreale, staff writer

24. Jack Johnson, D, St. Louis Blues (No. 3 by Carolina Hurricanes) -- The Blues started the 2005-06 season without two stalwarts, defensemen Al MacInnis (retired) and Chris Pronger (traded), so I felt adding reinforcements on the blue line was crucial. Though Johnson has had a somewhat up-and-down career, partly due to the weighty expectations put on him for being a top-three pick, he's managed to build a solid resume. He ranks among the top five in nearly every major category among defensemen drafted in 2005, including first in hits (1,607) and second in average ice time (22:19). -- John Ciolfi, senior producer,

25. Benoit Pouliot, LW, Edmonton Oilers (No. 4 by the Minnesota Wild) -- Like Morreale with the Devils pick, I was looking for value here, and Pouliot ranks 10th in goals (130) and 15th in points (263) among players in this draft class. And I loved getting the No. 4 North American skater in NHL Central Scouting's rankings entering the draft. Pouliot had some of his most productive years in Edmonton, with 41 goals and 84 points in 180 games with the Oilers, so we know there's a good fit. -- Pat Pickens, staff writer

26. Ryan Reaves, RW, Calgary Flames (No. 156 by the St. Louis Blues) -- The pickings were slim as we got near the end of the first round, and thankfully Pickens didn't take Reaves. Reaves, who didn't make his NHL debut until the 2010-11 season with Blues, has never hit double digits in goals during his 11 NHL seasons, but he's a good bottom-six forward who provides a physical presence (6-foot-2, 225 pounds). He also stays in the lineup, having played at least 79 games in four of the previous five seasons and playing in all 71 games this season for the Vegas Golden Knights. And how many guys have scored the series-winning goal in a conference final like he did for Vegas two seasons ago? -- Bill Price, Editor-in-Chief

27. Mason Raymond, LW, Washington Capitals (originally selected No. 51 by the Vancouver Canucks) -- With Strizhevsky selecting Yandle for the Capitals at No. 14, it made sense to turn my attention to offense. Choosing Raymond provides the Capitals with more depth on the wing a year after they drafted Alex Ovechkin with the No. 1 pick. Raymond scored 10-plus goals in seven of the eight seasons when he played at least 40 games, and his 0.21 goals per game are the 10th-most from this draft class. His speed and versatility (he averaged 1:50 of power-play ice time per game and 53 seconds of shorthanded ice time per game during his 10-season NHL career) make him a strong pick late in the first round. -- Matt Cubeta, Editor-in-Chief, International

28. Alex Stalock, G, Dallas Stars (No. 112 by San Jose Sharks) -- I know Ondrej Pavelec was available with this pick, but I went with Stalock, a proven backup who is still in the NHL and has shown the ability to be a capable No. 1 in his first opportunity at age 32. With Devan Dubnyk missing time for the Minnesota Wild this season attending to a medical situation regarding his wife, Stalock has stepped up, going 20-11-4 with a 2.67 goals-against average, a .910 save percentage and four shutouts in an NHL career-high 38 games (36 starts). Stalock is a solid pick this late in the first round, especially for Dallas, which entered the 2005-06 season with two aging goalies (Marty Turco, 30; Johan Hedberg, 32). -- Brett Amadon, staff writer

29. Nathan Gerbe, C, Philadelphia Flyers (originally selected No. 142 by the Buffalo Sabres) -- With Reaves, the big bruiser I was hoping for, off the board, I went the other way and picked a diminutive but energetic spark plug. Listed at 5-foot-4, 169 pounds, he is surely undersized, but definitely not underskilled. His play this season for the Blue Jackets at age 32 (10 points in 30 games as a midseason fill-in), has earned endless praise from coach John Tortorella, who isn't one to compliment just anybody. An undersized underdog who is fearless and fierce well beyond his size? Hmm, how do you think that would go over in Philadelphia? -- Dan O'Leary, staff writer

30. Devin Setoguchi, F, Tampa Bay Lightning (originally selected No. 8 by San Jose Sharks) -- The Lightning were still savoring winning the first Stanley Cup championship in their history in 2004, but captain Dave Andreychuk will be 42 on opening night, so I needed some young blood up front. Setoguchi is coming off the first of three 30-goal seasons as a junior and was good enough to be a first-line forward and score 31 goals as a 21-year-old with the Sharks in 2008-09, so it was surprising to find him available. His NHL career didn't last as long as some others (nine seasons), but he's ninth in his draft class with 131 goals. So with the final pick in the first round, I can take Setoguchi, who can be worked into a low-pressure role with Vincent Lecavalier, Brad Richards and Martin St. Louis. -- John Kreiser, managing editor

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