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Bob Stauffer's 2016 Mock Draft

by Bob Stauffer / Edmonton Oilers



mock drafts: Bob Stauffer | Jack Michaels | Tom Gazzola | Chris Wescott | Meg Tilley
1 TOR Auston Matthews, C, Zurich (SUI) The Maple Leafs hit the home run, winning the lottery and getting one of four first-line centers over a three-year period to come into the NHL (2015: Connor McDavid & Jack Eichel, 2017: Nolan Patrick). Matthews can shoot the puck a ton and has the maturation to handle the passionate Toronto market.
2 WPG Patrik Laine, LW, Tappara (FIN) Impossible to ignore what Laine accomplished this season; winning the WJC, MVP of the SM Liga Playoffs and MVP of the World Championships. Has an Ovechkin-like rocket and has some attitude both on and off the ice. Jets get a sniper, who could be better positioned out of the gate to succeed than Matthews.
3 CBJ Jesse Puljujarvi, RW, Karpat (FIN)
As originally reported by NHL Hockey on Rogers' Elliotte Friedman the Blue Jackets could move this pick and potentially trade down (Calgary has the assets, including three second-round picks, to trade up and could use a big right winger) to target a centre (Logan Brown)… but at the end of the day I see Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen drafting his countryman.
4 EDM Matthew Tkachuk, LW, London (OHL) When the Oilers originally lost the lottery and dropped to #4 on April 30 this is a pick that appeared to be definitely in play; potentially in a trade down. However, Tkachuk's performance in the OHL Playoffs and Memorial Cup has changed that.
Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli has mentioned before that he covets players with hockey sense and compete. Tkachuk is considered by some to be the smartest player in the draft and he willed himself through the final two rounds of the OHL Playoffs and the Memorial Cup, overcoming an ankle injury to be a driver for London. His teammates considered him to be a "glue" guy as well. Tkachuk is the exact type of player the Oilers need to add to their organization.
5 VAN Logan Brown, C, Windsor (OHL) Though Edmonton-born Vancouver GM Jim Benning was spotted bird-dogging Pierre-Luc Dubois it is my belief the Canucks take Brown, realizing they ultimately have to replace Henrik Sedin. Brown had a strong second half playing for former Oilers Assistant Rocky Thompson in Windsor and is 6'6" and will play for the Memorial Cup when the Spitfires host next May.
6 CGY Pierre-Luc Dubois, F, Cape Breton (QMJHL)
This is a player that TSN Draft Analyst Craig Button has ranked ahead of Tkachuk in large part because of skating. Dubois crushed it at the NHL scouting combine in front of Flames GM Brad Treliving and Head Scout Tod Button (Craig's brother). Until this season, Dubois played almost exclusively on the wing and the Flames definitely could use a bigger, talented winger
7 PHX Olli Juolevi, D, London (OHL) If the Coyotes wanted to they would have the assets to trade up and take a shot at a Tkachuk at four, as Arizona has the 20th overall pick as well. But I got the distinct impression talking with some of their people in Buffalo at the combine that they were quite comfortable at seven. After a recent run of taking forwards in the last few years in the first round: Dylan Strome and Nick Merkley (2015), Brendan Perlini (2014), Max Domi (2013), Henrik Samuelsson (2012); I see Arizona drafting a "D". Juolevi plays an intelligent, steady game that is right up the alley of Coyotes Head Coach Dave Tippet who has a lot of power within that organization.
8 BUF Mikhail Sergachev, D, Windsor (OHL) There are a lot of teams that like this big Russian defenceman who plays for Thompson in Windsor and several organizations see him as the "D" with the biggest upside in his game. I am firmly of the belief that Sabres GM Tim Murray would love to make a splash at the draft and move up and land the third or fourth-overall pick. I also believe that Murray would pay the price with picks and prospects/roster players to do so in an effort to land a Puljujarvi or Tkachuk. If the Sabres stay at eight, they take a swing on Sergachev and could hit a home run on a guy who patterns his game after Drew Doughty.
9 MTL Tyson Jost, RW, Penticton (BCHL) I am told from those who cover the Canadiens that GM Marc Bergevin would like to trade up for Pierre-Luc Dubois, but they are not sold that he will pay the price. With Sergachev gone here I think the Habs will find it hard to pass on Jost who can help address their need for a centre in years to come. The local product overcame any questions about piling up numbers in the BCHL with a stellar performance for Canada at the U-18 (6-9-15 in 7 GP). Some have compared Jost to Jonathan Toews, as Jost is headed to Toews alma mater (reigning NCAA Champ North Dakota). I think that is a reach, but I do think Jost can become a strong two-way centre.
10  Jakob Chychrun, D, Sarnia (OHL) If this year's crop of players were drafted a year ago as 17 year-olds I believe Chycrun would have gone number two behind Matthews. No question he has the physical tools, as he is big, can really skate and shoot as well. The Avs are looking to get bigger on the back-end and might get a steal here.
11 NJD Alexander Nylander, RW, Mississauga (OHL) Part of a highly talented group of players in Mississauga, Nylander goes to a Devils organization in dire need of upgrading their forward depth. Combined with the Pavel Zacha pick last year they are off to good start.
12 Jake Bean, D, Calgary (WHL) Pierre Dorion is the new GM of the Senators and I am going to be very interested to see what Ottawa does here. The Sens could certainly add a top flight NHL forward and they are in a win-now mode with Erik Karlsson and Dion Phaneuf slotted in on D and Craig Anderson in between the pipes. After trading Robin Lehner for an additional number one last year it would not be out of the realm of possibility that this pick gets traded. Ottawa also has a history of making later picks count: Mark Stone, Mike Hoffman and Jean-Gabriel Pageau, so they have depth in their organization. If they keep the pick I see them taking a swing on the offensively-gifted Bean.
13 CAR Clayton Keller, C, USA U18 (USHL) The Hurricanes got a huge break when Noah Hanifin dropped onto their laps at five. I am sure they would love to get Jost, but I think he goes in the top 10. Carolina needs to upgrade their forward depth and Keller can really snipe and would be a good fit. Headed to Boston University.
14 Charles McAvoy, D, Boston University (NCAA) Last summer Rookie GM Don Sweeney got heavily criticized in his market for the return on the Dougie Hamilton trade and then not being able to trade up to land Hanifin. I see the Bruins starting to rebuild their D by grabbing the BU product.
15 Kieffer Bellows USA U18 (USHL) Doesn't it make sense for a team from Minnesota to draft another Bellows? Another draft-eligible headed to BU.
16 DET Michael McLeod, C, Mississauga (OHL) Detroit has some intriguing prospects, especially on the wing. McLeod has the tools to have gone higher. He can flat out fly, and is skilled but also has been inconsistent. The Red Wings know how to grow them and this is a good spot for the Mississauga centre.
17 Dante Fabbro, D, Penticton (BCHL) The Predators are in a win-now mode and can see them possibly moving this pick and a roster player for a top-six forward, and also being in on Eric Staal if he goes to free agency. If they hold the pick, Fabbro makes sense for an organization that has repeatedly shown the ability to develop defence.
18 PHI Max Jones, LW, London (OHL) Big, fast, aggressive forward that will light it up in London next year with Mitch Marner and Christian Dvorak graduated. Born to be a Flyer, right?
19 Julien Gauthier, RW, Val-d'Or (QMJHL) Huge power-forward who sniped 41 goals for Val D'or and adds to the Islanders stable of forward prospects
20 PHX
(From NYR)
Brett Howden, C, Moose Jaw (WHL) A 6-foot-2 centre who had a solid year in Moose Jaw and performed well for Canada at the U-18's, a responsible player who Dave Tippett will like.
21 CAR
(From LA)
Luke Kunin, C, Wisconsin (NCAA) Smart, skilled under-sized but competitive forward who succeeded in difficult situation in Wisconsin this past season
22 WPG
(From CHI)
Logan Stanley, D, Windsor (OHL) Big "D" at 6-foot-6. His skating has come along and will play for Memorial Cup next year in Windsor. So Jets add 6-foot-4 stud Laine and Stanley in same draft. Not bad.
23 FLA Alex DeBrincat, RW, Erie (OHL) Pure goal-scorer lit it up playing for Kris Knoblauch in Erie with back-to-back 50 goal seasons. Small but competitive and the Panthers analytics guys will love him.
24 ANA Riley Tufte, LW, Fargo (USHL) One of the best drafting organizations in the NHL has the ability to hit a home run here with 6-foot-5 winger who blossomed last season.
25 DAL Carter Hart, G, Everett (WHL) Sherwood Park goaltending prospect has really developed over the last two seasons in Everett. Stars need to improve their long-term goaltending depth.
26 WSH German Rubtsov, C, Russia (MHL) The Capitals have been very successful drafting Russian players. Rubstov can really skate and apparently is a strong two-way forward.
27 Markus Niemelainen, D, Saginaw (OHL) Hulking Finnish defender performed well in Saginaw.
28 Pascal Laberge, C, Victoriaville (QMJHL) Put on quite a show at the top prospects game and plays a bit like Alex Burrows.
(From SJ)
Nathan Bastian, Mississauga (OHL) Boston adds some much needed size up front with a big, albeit complimentary winger
30 TOR
(From PIT)
Kale Clague, D, Brandon (WHL) Clague really came on in the second half of the season in Brandon and had a decent showing for the Wheat Kings at the Memorial Cup. He can certainly transition the puck and will blossom for the Wheaties with the graduation of Ivan Provorov.
31 TOR Cliff Pu, RW, London (OHL) This guy, like his linemate Max Jones, can flat out fly. Saw very little power-play time in London and is poised to have a huge offensive campaign next season.
32 EDM Tyler Benson, LW, Vancouver (WHL) South Side Athletic Club product had difficult injury-plagued season that knocked him out of the top 20. But he is smart, physical and skilled. Plays a bit like the 2012 version of Dustin Brown.


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