Although Gretz and Howe have been drafted first overall before, Orr usually goes first in the All-Time Drafts because of the value he brings to the position of defense in building a great team. There simply aren't a lot of premier defensemen and the gap between 1st overall and the team's next pick in the second round is so great in terms of blueline quality dropoff that taking a non-defenseman in the first round pretty much forces one to get one in round two or else pick up a duo in the following few rounds.
Look at the ATD chamionship squads, seven of the last nine winners have drafted an elite defenseman or goalie early: King Clancy, Terry Sawchuk, Niklas Lidstrom, Pierre Pilote, Dennis Potvin, Glenn Hall, Brad Park.
The two exceptions were in ATD2010, when Howe was indeed chosen, along with linemates Abel and Jackson, with Salming on defense and Gardiner in net. And in ATD2012 Gretzky won with Brian Leetch and Moose Johnson duo early.
Here is a good explanation from a previous ATD champion GM:
Originally Posted by sturminator
Place in the draft order of the past ATD champions:
A somewhat interesting pattern which perhaps sheds a bit of light on where the best values are in the first round.
- two teams have won by taking elite goalies very late.
- two teams have won by taking Gordie Howe in the top-4.
- two teams have won by drafting elite defensemen in the middle of the round.
- two teams have won by drafting strong two-way forwards in the latter half of the round, but not at the end.
- one team won by taking Doug Harvey 5th.
Not a single one of the winners has drafted a one-way offensive player (like Gretzky, Lemieux, Hull, Richard, Coffey, Taylor, Esposito, Jagr, etc.) in the first round. Hmmmm...yes, we are a conservative bunch.
All that said, has Orr ever won the ATD?
Last edited by VanIslander: 09-02-2012 at 08:31 PM.