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MOCK DRAFT TRACKER

by Staff Writer / Buffalo Sabres
 Jakob Chychrun                        Pierre-Luc Dubois                            Olli Juolevi                               Alexander Nylander       

Here's who the experts think the Sabres might take eighth overall:

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com
May 1: Alexander Nylander - RW, Mississauga (OHL)
Nylander (6-foot, 180) had four goals and nine points for Sweden at the WJC, picking up the offensive slack when his brother William Nylander of the Toronto Maple Leafs sustained an injury. He has good separation speed, and led Mississauga with 28 goals, nine power-play goals and 75 points in 57 games as a rookie.

May 28: Tyson Jost - C, Penticton (BCHL)
Jost (5-11, 191) is committed to the University of North Dakota in 2016-17. He had 42 goals, 104 points, 14 power-play goals and seven game-winning goals in 48 games.

June 6: Jakob Chychrun - D, Sarnia (OHL)
Chychrun (6-2, 199) is a good skater with offensive instincts and defensive awareness. He enjoys playing physical, and had 11 goals, 49 points and a plus-23 rating in 62 games. He was second in the long jump at 118.5 inches; sixth in the vertical jump at 25.24 inches; and had the eighth-best peak power output on the Wingate test at 18.0 watts per kilogram at the combine.

June 20: Jakob Chychrun, D, Sarnia (OHL)


Adam Kimelman - NHL.com
May 1: Pierre-Luc Dubois - LW, Cape Breton (QMJHL)
Smart and versatile enough to play all three forward spots. Dubois (6-2, 201) was in the top-six in the QMJHL in goals and points, showing he can set up plays and finish them. The Sabres have solid depth through the middle and Dubois adds another threat from the wing.

May 28: Alexander Nylander - RW, Mississauga (OHL)
The Sabres are solid through the middle of the ice with Ryan O'Reilly and Jack Eichel. Now it's time to find them some scoring options on the wing, and that could start with Nylander (6-0, 180), a dynamic skater who excelled in his first OHL season.

June 6: Olli Juolevi - D, London (OHL)
Juolevi said he was best the defenseman in the draft during the NHL Scouting Combine and a number of scouts agreed with him. His skating and offensive ability are top-notch, as is his hockey IQ. He showed little problem adjusting to the smaller North American rinks and has room to add strength to his 6-2, 182-pound frame.

June 20: Mikhail Sergachev - D, Windsor (OHL)
The Russian-born left-shot defender showed skill and snarl in his first North American season. He's got NHL-ready size (6-2, 221) and was named the best defenseman in the Ontario Hockey League after he had 17 goals in 67 games. He could push for an NHL roster spot next season.


Damien Cox - Sportsnet
April 30: Jakob Chychrun - D, Sarnia (OHL)
To many scouts, but not all, Chychrun is the No. 2 defenceman available in the draft. The Sabres might feel differently, but going for blue-line help makes the most sense for GM Tim Murray.

June 16: Mikhail Sergachev - D, Windsor (OHL)
Many GMs see the young Russian as the best defenceman in the draft. Could easily be gone by the time Tim Murray picks.


Craig Button - TSN
April 30: Olli Juolevi - D, London (OHL)

May 13: Jakob Chychrun - D, Sarnia (OHL)

June 9 - Final Ranking: #8. Mikhail Sergachev - D, Windsor (OHL)
Mikhail Sergachev not only made a smooth transition to the OHL with the Spitfires, he was voted the best defenceman in the entire league. He excels in every single area of the game. He can skate, pass, shoot, has a physical element and very well may be the most complete blueliner available in the draft.


Corey Pronman - ESPN.com
May 5: Olli Juolevi - D, London (OHL)
Buffalo has been the hardest team for me to get a read on in the top 10. Juolevi is a real guess for me, but the rationale is based on scouts I've talked to who say he seems to be the best player available here by a hair, and the Sabres could use another top defense talent in the pipeline.

June 23: Olli Juolevi
The rumor the past few weeks has been Juolevi to the Sabres, but it has been hard to pin down. GM Tim Murray doesn't project his first-round picks all too well, but historically, he doesn't go too far off the beaten path, so Juolevi and Nylander (if Arizona selects Juolevi) are the two likeliest scenarios here. Juolevi would join Finnish countryman Rasmus Ristolainen, 21, as the core of a solid young defensive group for many years to come.


Kyle Woodlief - Special for USA TODAY Sports
June 7: Alexander Nylander - RW, Mississauga (OHL)
Buffalo gets a skilled offensive complement to Jack Eichel and an interesting sibling rivalry in the Atlantic Division is born.


Jeff Marek - Sportsnet
June 17: Alexander Nylander - LW, Mississauga Steelheads (OHL)
While it’s believed the Sabres are looking for a defenceman, the pair they covet probably won’t be there when they select. Expect them to go for the slick, goal scoring, second generation Swede.


Sam Costentino - Sportsnet
June 20: Olli Juolevi - D, London (OHL)
What you see is what you get and there’s a lot to like in this highly efficient, smooth-skating defenceman.


Chris Peters - CBS Sports
June 20: Olli Juolevi - D, London (OHL)
A tremendously gifted puck-mover, Juolevi is the kind of defenseman that helps teams win in the NHL today. He skates extremely well and has some incredible instincts and had 42 points in 57 games with London during the regular season. He also had seven assists over four games of their Memorial Cup run. On top of that, he helped propel Finland to gold at the World Juniors. He's been a real winner in his young career.


Allan Muir - Sports Illustrated
June 23: Olli Juolevi - D, London (OHL)
The draft hosts are looking to add immediate help, which means this pick is definitely in play. If they hold it, Juolevi is the safest pick. He's a smooth skating defender who is efficient both with and without the puck. He has elite hockey sense and can create offense in transition. Great situational awareness makes him highly effective in his own end.  
 
• SCOUT SAYS: “He has that ability to move the puck up the ice that every team is looking for. Poised under pressure...creative with the puck...has the tools to be an outstanding power play QB.”
 
• COMPARABLE NHL PLAYER: Roman Josi


Ryan Lambert - Yahoo! Sports' Puck Daddy
June 23: Olli Juolevi - D, London (OHL)
Since they acquired Jimmy Vesey earlier this week, the needs the Sabres might still have up front start to go away. This addresses some of the problems the team still has with its blue line, as Juolevi is considered a quality puck-mover because he, too, is a great skater. Extremely high IQ, big body, all that kind of stuff. The overall Buffalo offense for 2018-19 gets a whole lot scarier.

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