Thread: Draft By Need ?
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06-13-2011, 09:08 AM
  #77
Ohashi_Jouzu
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Neo, for all the typing you just did, you really didn't add much, and did very little to address what was in the posts you quoted. Instead of replying to them individually, here's a "Cole's Notes" on what lacks in your rebuttal(s):

You say that "despite" prelim. rankings "90% of the hockey world" thought it was a **** pick, but who exactly are you taking on authority here, and who made up the bulk of the 90%? Were they criticizing the pick because they thought there was a better fit for the Habs, or a better future NHLer? Without submitting support such as quotes, or whatever, I submit that you don't know for sure. Were those vocal critics simply partial and biased to other particular players, maybe a favourite from their own league (or area), or did they all really have the Habs' best interests in mind when criticizing the pick? If your impression is based on what you read/heard in the Montreal media, I can make my own guesses on that one.

Next, you can't be high risk AND high reward without talent, so to claim that Fischer was only taken because he was a big defenseman who fit a need is completely contradictory to direct quotes from Timmins himself who said his "upside" (explain to me how you can have "upside" without talent) made the pick a no brainer. Yes, high risk. Yes, possible high reward. No, not taken purely based on need. And no, this example doesn't discredit the importance of factoring need into every pick. And for what it's worth, I seem to remember plenty of people, even if it was a minority and not a majority, acknowledging the merit of taking the risk on Fischer at the time, and it was based on everything including his skill set. Maybe it was actually hockey sense that no one got the proper read on.

Also, on the flip side of the coin, you can't be blinded by skill, because everyone has seen guys with boatloads of talent (Locke) struggle to crack the NHL. If you draft based on skill without factoring the physical realities of the NHL in at all, you're taking a way bigger risk than you would by being overly focused on "need". A guy who fits a need will have an easier time at least getting a chance to prove himself than a guy who starts off behind multiple players in the minor league depth chart and might not actually be physically equipped for the NHL, no matter how talented. GMs/scouts can't worry about that too much, but they can't be completely ignorant of it either.

Moving on, no one is suggesting Giroux was ranked 50 spots lower because he was smaller than most ranked higher, but it WAS a factor. Looking back, who wouldn't take him well above his #22 draft spot? Point is, given Philly's make-up at forward, and their prospects in the system at the time, adding a smaller guy with lots of skill wasn't as much of a risk as it might have been for the team at #21. Or #20. Or #19. Or #18. Or maybe even #23, 24, or 25. And so on. If Philly didn't pick him, who knows if he might have dropped all the way to #30? Without knowing the drafting strategy of all the teams, and the players they were targetting, you can't say for sure, and I'm certainly not pretending to try, either.

And finally, Berglund's slight slip in the rankings has already been discussed earlier in the thread, and I think the consensus is that his loyalty to his team resulting in reluctance to move immediately into a "better" league closer to the parent club may have factored in there a bit; obviously not enough to drop him out of the 1st round or anything. Similar things happen with 18 year old Russians who have a contract over there, and teams have to gauge whether or not they'll be able to get that player over to North America, how soon, and how much is it worth picking that guy instead of someone ranked right beside him and available immediately for grooming in the system.

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