Gillis was apparently impressed with beach during their interviews and liked his game. He just felt Cody was the better pick of the two. If Cody wasn't available at the 10 spot, there's a very good chance gillis would have taken beach. I think wetcoaster has the details on this one
Scouting staff wanted Beach, Gillis overruled them and put his stamp on the team by taking the guy he wanted.
I recall some Province Article I believe saying something along those lines. That the head scouts were pushing for Beach, but MG wanted Hodgson.
This is probably the one you're thinking of. It wasn't confirmed:
One is that nearly every member of the Canucks' hockey department wanted to draft intimidating power forward Kyle Beach in the first round a year ago in Ottawa, but Gillis, at the urging of new and trusted player development guru Dave Gagner, exercised his executive veto and instead chose Hodgson 10th overall because he believed the skilled Ontario centre trumped the Kelowna winger on leadership and integrity.
The other version has the Canucks, in the days leading up to the draft, reaching consensus that Hodgson's reliability, position and character made him a better, safer choice and put him ahead of Beach.
"I think we all got to that conclusion similarly," Gillis said.
There seems to be a stigma associated with signing/drafting overagers which means there are bargains to be had - Radko Gudas was I think the earliest overager to be drafted in the 2010 draft (3rd round) - now leads the AHL in plus/minus. Jason Demers is another example. I think Tanev is another such signing, no?
Overall I like the idea very much however for the strategy to work, you have to sign many of them and you have to fail fast when it doesn't work out - I don't think the Canucks have figured out the 2nd part of the equation just yet by the looks of it.
Seems like a quality signing of a guy who has some projectable skills and is dominating in the OHL right now. Especially given that we need some skill forwards in the system.
Gillis needs to unload a few bad prospect contracts, though - having guys like Tochkin, Schneider, Ellington under contract will limit our ability to make signings like this.
By my count this makes 52 contracts, with Andersson and Tochkin being slide contracts, so we're at the limit. Tochkin certainly looks like a bad signing at this point.
Next year those 2 contracts will count and we should sign Anthony and Friesen, meaning we need to clear 4 spots just for those guys before we can even consider UFA's. Fortunately we have a bunch of expirings that will be easy decisions. Peters, Paetch, Schaefer, Baumgartner, Weiman, that's before even the tough decisions.
Some of these will go, some will stay (Andersson, Rypien, Perrault, Shirokov, etc). We should be in good shape with the contract max by the time those decisions are made.
Being a small forward with aspirations of turning pro, you'd think he'd have to put up at least more than a point-per-game in junior in order for him to be a scorer at the next level. Add to the fact that he's (supposedly) not a great skater and that hurts his chances even more.