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Blues 2012 amateur draft -- Jordan Schmaltz 1st Round Pick

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06-04-2012, 06:13 PM
  #176
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Also, the prospects board is doing a team mock draft where eventually we'll get our turn to "draft" one player after 24 have been selected by HF fans of other teams. Still a little ways away as they're on Ottawa at 15 at the moment.

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06-04-2012, 10:27 PM
  #177
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Originally Posted by PocketNines View Post
Brock, who is an OHL prospect aficionado, posted his top 50 (+HMs) from the OHL. Here's the top 10, with Laughton in at 9. Plenty of other good writeups so give him a click.



I think the reason he's sticking in my mind is how prototypical a Hitchcock player he sounds like. The debate is whether you're going to get a good #2C or a great #3C. Yeah, it's nice to hit homeruns, and yeah, he's 2-4 years away from an NHL spot, but it sounds like the downside is still a hell of a useful player and the kind winning teams have. Kind of seems like a Marchand sandpaper player. He'd eventually reach a roster loaded with talent like Schwartz, Perron, Rattie, Tarasenko, and if his forechecking can feed these guys the puck, it feels like the Blues would be a hell of a fit for this kid. He should be in the Blues' range unless someone especially covets him.
Thanks for the info. I agree with you. He sounds like a player even if things turn out less than ideal. At this point I'm more interested in making sure our pipeline keeps turning out NHL players than hitting the 'homerun' late in the first. Guys that can contribute a solid game while on their ELCs and second contracts are going to be vital to the Blues continued success with our internal budget.

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06-04-2012, 10:28 PM
  #178
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PocketNines View Post
Brock, who is an OHL prospect aficionado, posted his top 50 (+HMs) from the OHL. Here's the top 10, with Laughton in at 9. Plenty of other good writeups so give him a click.



I think the reason he's sticking in my mind is how prototypical a Hitchcock player he sounds like. The debate is whether you're going to get a good #2C or a great #3C. Yeah, it's nice to hit homeruns, and yeah, he's 2-4 years away from an NHL spot, but it sounds like the downside is still a hell of a useful player and the kind winning teams have. Kind of seems like a Marchand sandpaper player. He'd eventually reach a roster loaded with talent like Schwartz, Perron, Rattie, Tarasenko, and if his forechecking can feed these guys the puck, it feels like the Blues would be a hell of a fit for this kid. He should be in the Blues' range unless someone especially covets him.
The writeup is excellent -- and Brock is well-known around the HF Boards as a guy who does his homework on OHL players. Plus, your reasons for selecting Laughton make a lot of sense as well.

The question in my mind is this: is the #9 prospect in the OHL worth the 25th overall pick in this draft? Just figuring he's on a par with the #9 prospects from the 'Dub and the Q, that makes him at best the 25th-best prospect out there, and that's only if he's better than both the #9 guy from the 'Dub and the #9 guy from the Q.

Then there are at least five Euros who will be certainly drafted ahead of him, maybe a goalie or two out of Vasilevski, Dansk and Subban, and there is always at least one guy who comes out of nowhere to be a top 20 pick.

Based on that, Laughton sounds more to me like a 35th pick rather than a 25th pick. And yes, there's a difference, as I'm sure you are aware... not just in the quality of the prospect himself, but in the expectations for him and in terms of the salary he'll be looking for when it comes time to sign that ELC.

Laughton is, essentially, a "safe" pick, and the Blues have a bunch of those already. Since there is young quality depth in the organization as of now, why not swing for the fences with this first-rounder, rather than make a "safe" pick?

If the question was, should the Blues try to acquire an additional high second-round pick (31-37 range) and use that for Laughton, my answer would be an emphatic "yes," provided that they did not pay too high a price for the extra pick.

Just my opinion, of course, and I completely understand where you're coming from with yours, Nines. Chalk it up to a difference in drafting philosophies, I guess... at least for this year. If the circumstances in the organization were different, I'd be right there with you pulling for the "safe" pick this year, too. But this seems to me like a good time for the Blues to take a stab at someone who could possibly be a real difference-maker.

The trade for the pick used to draft Tarasenko was an example of that way of thinking, and in my mind, the window is still open for the Armstrongs to try to hit another home run with this pick, even if we won't know it's a home run until 2-3 years down the road.

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06-04-2012, 10:30 PM
  #179
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Originally Posted by bluemandan View Post
Guys that can contribute a solid game while on their ELCs and second contracts are going to be vital to the Blues continued success with our internal budget.
Very good point as well, Dan.

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06-04-2012, 10:46 PM
  #180
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On the Mock Drafts board, the Canadiens' global moderator has posted the annual "Habs Fans Mock Draft," in which 30 Habs' posters each take and NHL club and mock draft for them.

The Habs' fans did a half-decent job of picking for the Blues in this mock. HERE is the link to my post in that thread commenting on the selections they made, and didn't make.

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06-04-2012, 10:48 PM
  #181
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Originally Posted by Prussian_Blue View Post
The writeup is excellent -- and Brock is well-known around the HF Boards as a guy who does his homework on OHL players. Plus, your reasons for selecting Laughton make a lot of sense as well.

The question in my mind is this: is the #9 prospect in the OHL worth the 25th overall pick in this draft? Just figuring he's on a par with the #9 prospects from the 'Dub and the Q, that makes him at best the 25th-best prospect out there, and that's only if he's better than both the #9 guy from the 'Dub and the #9 guy from the Q.

Then there are at least five Euros who will be certainly drafted ahead of him, maybe a goalie or two out of Vasilevski, Dansk and Subban, and there is always at least one guy who comes out of nowhere to be a top 20 pick.

Based on that, Laughton sounds more to me like a 35th pick rather than a 25th pick. And yes, there's a difference, as I'm sure you are aware... not just in the quality of the prospect himself, but in the expectations for him and in terms of the salary he'll be looking for when it comes time to sign that ELC.

Laughton is, essentially, a "safe" pick, and the Blues have a bunch of those already. Since there is young quality depth in the organization as of now, why not swing for the fences with this first-rounder, rather than make a "safe" pick?

If the question was, should the Blues try to acquire an additional high second-round pick (31-37 range) and use that for Laughton, my answer would be an emphatic "yes," provided that they did not pay too high a price for the extra pick.

Just my opinion, of course, and I completely understand where you're coming from with yours, Nines. Chalk it up to a difference in drafting philosophies, I guess... at least for this year. If the circumstances in the organization were different, I'd be right there with you pulling for the "safe" pick this year, too. But this seems to me like a good time for the Blues to take a stab at someone who could possibly be a real difference-maker.

The trade for the pick used to draft Tarasenko was an example of that way of thinking, and in my mind, the window is still open for the Armstrongs to try to hit another home run with this pick, even if we won't know it's a home run until 2-3 years down the road.
Seems like a lot of guys from the OHL ahead but here they are: Yakupov, Galchenyuk, Maatta, Ceci, Faksa, Gaunce, Finn and Subban. The first seven are all highly ranked and few think any will be on the board at 25. Goalies (Subban) are pure fool's gold. I HATE drafting a goalie with a first round pick; it's for suckers. Thus, saying they shouldn't take him at 25 for the mathematical-influenced objection you raise isn't fair.

I don't think of this as a safe vs. not-safe pick. I think of this guy as a particularly strong fit with the system the Blues have and are likely to have for the foreseeable future. With the Kings' success, even if the Blues changed coaches, the aggressive two-way style Laughton plays will be seen league-wide as the key to winning. Let's say you sign Chris Kelly for 3 years, after that Laughton steps in. Berglund either becomes a real top-two center or gets packaged for an upgraded center.

I'm also not saying he's my definitive choice yet. Still need more time to play with the ideas. But if they take him you have a perfect fit for the Blues at #3C and he very possibly has more Mike Richards upside which could be a huge payoff.

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06-06-2012, 12:59 AM
  #182
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In the moderator's mock the Blues have selected:
25: Hampus Lindholm
55: Gemel Smith

The top centers were all off the board at 25, and I believe that Lindholm was too good to pass up relative to the other options. It was down to Smith and Vail for me at 55, and I like them both. I went with Smith as I feel that his speed can add a dangerous (and needed) dimension to the Blues mix at forward down the road, and the rest of his game fits right in with what the Blues are trying to do. I was also feeling a tad reckless at the time I made the choice, given the Blues penchant for drafting larger players, but I honestly think Smith has a very good chance of being the better player when it's all said and done. In a more conservative moment, I would have gone with Vail (who ended up being taken with the next pick).

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06-06-2012, 10:14 AM
  #183
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Hertl was gone? I really love his work ethic in the corners. He has some pretty good stick skills as well.

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06-06-2012, 03:39 PM
  #184
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RLR's top 10 forwards in the draft (#7-9 in order):

Quote:
Radek Faksa should be a natural fit as a second-line center at the NHL level. He has excellent size/strength, good puck-handling skills, a laser shot, and is easily the best of the top forwards at playing away from the puck and in his own defensive end. His hockey sense is outstanding in all three zones, and he's a strong competitor who hates to lose. Only his lack of first-step acceleration prevents him from being a top 10 overall selection.

Gritty all-around center Scott Laughton is a real Red Line favorite who doesn't get the love he deserves. He can do a bit of everything. He scores clutch goals, is a tremendous penalty killer and despite only average size, delivers huge open-ice hits and stands up for teammates physically.

Zemgus Girgensons is a rugged two-way center with size and natural aggression. He attacks the net with power and dominates below the circles at the offensive end. He's a big-time hitter and does all the little things well that win games but often go unnoticed. He's also a high quality, character kid.

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06-06-2012, 04:23 PM
  #185
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Hertl was gone? I really love his work ethic in the corners. He has some pretty good stick skills as well.
Galchenyuk went at #2, Grigorenko at #5, Faksa at #11, Girgensons at #12, Gaunce at #17, Jankowski at #21, and Hertl at #23.

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06-07-2012, 10:34 AM
  #186
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Hertl was gone? I really love his work ethic in the corners. He has some pretty good stick skills as well.
Yes, pretty much every player that's been discussed here as potential picks for the Blues at 25 were already gone by the time it was our pick so that's why I went with Lindholm. He's a pretty big boy who has a good two-way game for a d-man. His reports reminded me quite a bit if Tim Erixon. In the real draft, I suspect he's gone by 25th though as he's been rocketing up the rankings lately. Oh and yes, he's a lefty although I'll note that the Blues current need had nothing to do with the pick. He was simply the BPA at that point IMO. A lot of the mods were shocked he was still available at 25th.

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06-07-2012, 11:11 AM
  #187
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I've seen this draft knocked for not having as much elite talent at the top. But that's not a bad thing for a team drafting later in the first round. It only sucks when you're toward the back of the top ten picks. In the first round you're still getting a top-four defenseman or top-six caliber forward. Those are still high quality players, and the Blues have been on a strong run in recent years with hitting on their first rounders, all of whom look like solid NHL contributors. They took Oshie, Berglund and Perron at the 24-26 spots from 2005-2007 and a couple of those were considered weaker drafts (the latter two).

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06-07-2012, 11:18 AM
  #188
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PocketNines View Post
I've seen this draft knocked for not having as much elite talent at the top. But that's not a bad thing for a team drafting later in the first round. It only sucks when you're toward the back of the top ten picks. In the first round you're still getting a top-four defenseman or top-six caliber forward. Those are still high quality players, and the Blues have been on a strong run in recent years with hitting on their first rounders, all of whom look like solid NHL contributors. They took Oshie, Berglund and Perron at the 24-26 spots from 2005-2007 and a couple of those were considered weaker drafts (the latter two).
Agreed. I have the utmost confidence in the Blues staff to find a solid player. I believe it later came out that the Blues had Schwartz ranked as 8th on their board in 2010 when most "experts" had him in the late 20s, and he has continued to improve and has become one of the top prospects of that draft. The Blues scouting has been incredible in recent years and I hope they find another diamond in the rough. I also hope that Ottawa tanks next year so we get a high second rounder

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06-07-2012, 11:20 AM
  #189
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Agreed. I have the utmost confidence in the Blues staff to find a solid player. I believe it later came out that the Blues had Schwartz ranked as 8th on their board in 2010 when most "experts" had him in the late 20s, and he has continued to improve and has become one of the top prospects of that draft. The Blues scouting has been incredible in recent years and I hope they find another diamond in the rough. I also hope that Ottawa tanks next year so we get a high second rounder
I think it was Schwartz 7th and Tarasenko 8th. Undoubtedly if Tarasenko had been non-Russian he'd have been higher, considering Jarmo's comments, bumping Schwartz back to 8th. Definitely looking forward to rooting against Ottawa.

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06-07-2012, 07:34 PM
  #190
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Originally Posted by PocketNines View Post
I've seen this draft knocked for not having as much elite talent at the top. But that's not a bad thing for a team drafting later in the first round. It only sucks when you're toward the back of the top ten picks. In the first round you're still getting a top-four defenseman or top-six caliber forward. Those are still high quality players, and the Blues have been on a strong run in recent years with hitting on their first rounders, all of whom look like solid NHL contributors. They took Oshie, Berglund and Perron at the 24-26 spots from 2005-2007 and a couple of those were considered weaker drafts (the latter two).
I haven't followed the draft close enough to say anything about the skill level, but I strongly agree with the premise that the Blues can still come away with a good and useful player even in a "weak" draft. Hopefully we can continue to restock the cupboard with shrewd drafting.

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06-07-2012, 07:52 PM
  #191
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I haven't followed the draft close enough to say anything about the skill level, but I strongly agree with the premise that the Blues can still come away with a good and useful player even in a "weak" draft. Hopefully we can continue to restock the cupboard with shrewd drafting.
It's also not considered to be a weak defense draft. If anything this draft is loaded with D. Part of what happened is a bunch of the draft class had injury years this year and that makes scouts unsure of their value. So there's significant potential for someone to drop who would otherwise have been taken higher. Slater Koekkoek, for example.

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06-08-2012, 10:13 AM
  #192
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Sorry if this has been discussed already but I dont feel like digging through the thread. Obviously you want to take the BPA but just wondering what your guys thoughts are on what position you are hoping we take at 25?

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06-08-2012, 11:08 AM
  #193
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Personally, I really hope the BPA at the time is a Center. It's a weakness at the NHL level, and there isn't really any help on the horizon. I still have faith that McRae will turn into a solid NHLer eventually, but the organization as a whole is short at center. According to HF, our best center prospect after Schwartz(doesn't actually play center) and McRae is Brett Sonne. I think it's more important to continuously cycle good players into the system no matter the position, but preferably I hope we get a solid center with some upside.

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06-08-2012, 12:02 PM
  #194
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Sorry if this has been discussed already but I dont feel like digging through the thread. Obviously you want to take the BPA but just wondering what your guys thoughts are on what position you are hoping we take at 25?
You always go BPA with the early picks but if there's a tie among players, I'd prioritize them in the order of center, LD, RD, LW, RW, goalie.

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06-08-2012, 12:27 PM
  #195
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Also, I don't really see this as a weak draft. I didn't follow this draft class nearly as closely as the classes of thelore joys 5 or so years but from what I've seen myself, read from people I respect and from talking to a couple friends who are scouts, it sounds like a slightly above average draft class to me.

I am seeing a bit of a drop off around 20th overall though. I could see pretty much everybody that seems to have been talked about in this thread as an option for the Blues at 25 already being gone by then. Still, at least one is likely to slip through though. It should be an interesting draft.

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06-08-2012, 12:48 PM
  #196
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You always go BPA with the early picks but if there's a tie among players, I'd prioritize them in the order of center, LD, RD, LW, RW, goalie.
Yeah, agree with this order. If they sign a #3C bridge like Kelly for three years and BPA is a center, your first rounder this year should be hitting the NHL lineup around that time.

Defense is interesting. Lots of high quality defenders in this draft and in 2-3 years it may well be the case that the LD is totally set by the time that prospect is ready to play. After all, the right is set for at least 4 more years (Polak under contract for four more, Shattenkirk & Pietrangelo's rights owned for five) so one or two summers of Armstrong working on it and the left could be locked up as well. I'd still take a D over a winger in the draft all BPA being equal because you can never have enough and because of the quality of this year's crop.

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06-08-2012, 12:58 PM
  #197
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I'd still take a D over a winger in the draft all BPA being equal because you can never have enough and because of the quality of this year's crop.
Agreed, especially with the 1st rd pick. Obviously we can only predict how the draft will play out but I expect most of the top quality forwards to be gone by 25 but there should be a fairly high quality d-man or two left at 25.

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06-08-2012, 01:05 PM
  #198
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I would love if Slater Koekkoek would fall to us or even if we traded up a little to get him.

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06-08-2012, 01:12 PM
  #199
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Someone always falls that you don't expect. Always. Not because they're flawed in a way that teams have figured out, either. More because the teams have locked into another specific guy. There's always the Avs taking Joey Hishon or the Bruins taking Zach Hamill, which bumps people down. Gormley and Fowler, two quality defensemen, dropped to 12 and 13 when they were expected to be top 5.

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06-08-2012, 08:29 PM
  #200
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The more I hear about him, the more I want Hampus Lindholm.

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