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Change in Draft Philosophy for Your Team?

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07-02-2009, 08:15 AM
  #1
montreal
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Change in Draft Philosophy for Your Team?

As a big draft fan, I find it interesting to see what scouts do at the draft. As a Hab fan, I've noticed a change in direction in their drafting. Since Trevor Timmins took over as the Director of scouting for the Habs in 2003, it was clear they had confidence in picking kids from Minnestoa USHS, and American college bound kids as well. (David Fischer, Ryan McDonagh, Danny Kristo, Andrew Conboy, Scott Kishel, JT Wyman, Joe Stejskal all played in Minnesota USHS at one time)

In the last 3 years the Habs have looked to the USHL, a league that they seldom drafted out of in the clubs history. (Matt Shasby/Balej in years past) Since then they have picked 9 kids with ties to the USHL out of 22 picks overall and traded for another. (Pacioretty, Conboy, Kishel, Kristo, Quailer, Johnson, Leblanc, Bennett, Cichy and Pateryn) Five of those nine picks were selected in the top 80 of their draft class, and three of them were either picked in the 1st round or were the Habs first pick of the draft (Pacioretty, Kristo, Leblanc) although 3 of the nine were 7th round picks and for the first time in the Habs history, they had back to back picks from the USHL with their first two picks in the draft. (Kristo/Quailer)

So I'm wondering if people have noticed trends in their clubs drafting over the past few years. I know that the USHL as a league, since they gained classification as America's only Tier I junior league back in 2002 have gotten scouts attention, and in the past 5 years the USHL has had nearly 140 players with ties to the USHL drafted by NHL clubs, so it's not just the Habs who are picking players from there.

This isn't meant to pimp the USHL, I'm wondering about trends from other clubs from any league. I was working on an article for my site and started thinking about other teams and what they are doing at the draft.

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07-02-2009, 08:22 AM
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danishh
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Under john muckler, the sens were almost guaranteed to take 2-3 russians a year.

under Murray, the sens have taken 1 russian in 3 years (bashkirov), who played in the QMJHL during his draft year.

also, Murray seems content to take smaller, highly skilled guys in the later rounds (Petersson, Sandin, Wideman) and hope they eventually pan out.

Murray has also taken an inordinate amount of overagers. I guess the theory is that they will contribute faster and have less question marks.

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07-02-2009, 08:27 AM
  #3
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The Penguins like big, strong, North American kids.

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07-02-2009, 10:10 AM
  #4
montreal
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danishh View Post
Under john muckler, the sens were almost guaranteed to take 2-3 russians a year.

under Murray, the sens have taken 1 russian in 3 years (bashkirov), who played in the QMJHL during his draft year.

also, Murray seems content to take smaller, highly skilled guys in the later rounds (Petersson, Sandin, Wideman) and hope they eventually pan out.

Murray has also taken an inordinate amount of overagers. I guess the theory is that they will contribute faster and have less question marks.
A few years back when ISS was just getting off the ground, I had the chance to have several long phone conversations with their head scout and one of the things we discussed was how teams would handle picking Russians, and he pointed to the Sens as an example of a team that was rolling the dice but were picking some very skilled kids from Russia, so if it paid off, it could pay huge dividends down the road. He said that other teams felt it was better not to pick any Russians at all.

For the Habs, they had not had good luck for the most part with their Russian picks from Savard/Timmins era. Perezhogin, Korneev, Emelin, Valentenko they have little to show for it and who knows what will happen with Trunev, Avtsin from the '08 and '09 drafts. But then you look at the rangers and the two they got coming up who look to be steals, I can see why teams would gamble on Russians while others shy away. Should be interesting to see how this plays out.


Last edited by montreal: 07-02-2009 at 01:41 PM.
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Old
07-02-2009, 10:48 AM
  #5
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Brian Burke likes small, speedy skilled players from the Swedish leagues.

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Old
07-03-2009, 02:03 AM
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Burke, generally like the way he has gone. NA talent, tough guys. Schenn was a decent pick, but he didn't have to move up to get him. I hate the Kadri pick, but I love the Ryan and Hayes picks.... generally like the fact he is going NA and still trying to get some skill with size.

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07-03-2009, 02:28 AM
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I've noticed Ottawa drafting more Swedish since we hired that new European scout guy (forget his name ATM).

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07-03-2009, 02:32 AM
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Devils have been using thier 1st rounders on european picks, let those guys play one more season in Europe, bring them over, let them adjust in the AHL and then go to NHL. hell i cant say off the top of my head the last devils player who didnt have to go spend time in the AHL.

and we've been using our other picks to get bigger and tougher, esp on defence this year.

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Old
07-03-2009, 03:15 AM
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The Canucks have definitely taken a new approach towards their drafting. Firstly, we only picked one player from the CHL and he was taken with our last pick. This is the first time in 4 years we haven't picked a player form the WHL. Gillis seems to be more than content picking talented players from 'lesser' Leagues.

More importantly, it looks like Mike Gillis is placing an emphasis on drafting high risk/high reward type players. This is a breath of fresh air for Canuck fans as we always seem to draft defensemen with limited potential. Part of the reason Gillis is doing this is because he has been among the most active GM's in signing College players who have gone undrafted. Some scouts compared our Evan Oberg signing to that of a late 1st round draft pick.

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07-03-2009, 03:23 AM
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Kings tend to pick from the CHL under Lombardi, rather than the collegiate route, which seemed to be a favorite of Dave Taylor's. The results speak for themselves.

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07-03-2009, 03:34 AM
  #11
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Rangers built up a ton of depth/character prospects over the last number of years.

Over the last 2 drafts, though, they have went purely boom bust for the most part, which is what they needed to do after getting a number of safer guys earlier on.

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Old
07-03-2009, 08:26 AM
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vincent_TheGreat View Post
Burke, generally like the way he has gone. NA talent, tough guys. Schenn was a decent pick, but he didn't have to move up to get him. I hate the Kadri pick, but I love the Ryan and Hayes picks.... generally like the fact he is going NA and still trying to get some skill with size.
I think Schenn was a great pick, no matter how easy to make. Not sure about Kadri, I am interested to see how he does in the AHL. Hayes and Stefanovich were both interesting picks as well. I figured Burke would go big, makes sense as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Letang58 View Post
The Penguins like big, strong, North American kids.
The Pens seem to like picking guys from the Q it seems. I like the Despres pick, and thought the Habs might be interested in him (especially with losing Komisarek) They seem to have a good scout in the Q, what a steal Letang was.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CanadianDevil View Post
and we've been using our other picks to get bigger and tougher, esp on defence this year.
The Burlon pick could be a very good one, I like what I saw from him at Michigan in the few games I saw.

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07-03-2009, 09:11 PM
  #13
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Buffalo has had a notable "correction" by taking almost all grit players in this draft after spending many a pick on good character types but not necessarily anyone who will go out of their way to knock someone down. They've also not taken a single European-league player in the last three drafts. They have stuck with the idea of retaining player rights that they used to have with European-draftees under the previous CBA by now taking USHS and Junior B players NCAA bound (12 in the last 5 drafts) after having barely touched that resource in Regier's tenure (4 in the previous 8 drafts).

They've also started going to the Q more often - 5 players in his first 8 drafts ( and yes, I know '97 was run by the scouts, not him) vs. 11 in the last 5.

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07-03-2009, 09:25 PM
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The Rangers love CHL players, especially OHL players, and tend to shy away from NCAA bound players unless they see a lot of offensive upside (Kreider, Stephan) in the first few rounds. They usually reserve NCAA picks for the later rounds (5,6,7th). The Rangers love OHL defensemen most of all, having selected 3 in the first round in the last 5 years (Sanguinetti, Del Zotto, Staal)

Beginning in 2006 with Artem Anisimov the Rangers started looking for offensively gifted Russians that fell to them based on transfer agreement questions (the only reason they didn't this year is probably because the '09 Russian draft class is pretty weak).

Anisimov, Grachev, and Cherapanov are good examples of this trend. Note that both Anisimov and Grachev are big forwards that were projected to be first round picks. This has been paying big rewards.

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07-03-2009, 10:31 PM
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Under Jarmo, the Blues have been consistently inconsistent in its tendencies. Its almost bizarre how diverse their drafts have been. They dont seem to be afraid of drafting Russians (have drafted 6 in 7 years). We also dont seem to be afraid to draft overagers (10 in 7 years). They also seem to like defensemen with good natural strength.

In 7 years our first round picks have broken down as...
CHL- 3 (1 WHL, 1 QMJHL, and 1 OHL)
Sweden- 3 (Counting Eller)
USNDP- 2
USHS- 1
Czech Repub.- 1

All of our picks (since Jarmo took over, since 2003), breakdown as...
WHL- 10
Sweden- 9
OHL- 7
Russia- 7
USHS- 4
Czech- 4
USHL- 4
USNDP-4
QMJHL-3
NCAA- 2
Finland- 2
Belarus- 1
Swiss- 1
OPJHL- 1
NAHL- 1
MWEHL- 1

By nation...
Canada-20
US- 17
Sweden- 8
Russia- 7
Czech- 4
Finland- 2
Swiss- 1
Denmark- 1
Belarus- 1

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Old
07-03-2009, 11:10 PM
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The Canes changed a good bit of their drafting philosophy this past year. After having gone for the smaller, skilled players the past 3 drafts since the lockout they went all out for size and physicality. They also added a couple European scouts this year, that was obvious in their drafting. After not having drafted a single player of even European background in the prior 3 drafts they drafted 2 Europe based players and another Finnish defenseman who was playing in the WHL.

Since the Lockout:
By League:
2006: 2 OHL, 1 USNTDP, 1 QMJHL, 1 NCAA, 1 BCHL
2007: 3 WHL, 2 OHL
2008: 2 OHL, 1 WHL, 1 QMJHL, 1 BCHL
2009: 1 OHL, 1 WHL, 1 QMJHL, 1 EJHL, 1 Sweden Jr, 1 Finland Jr

Players 6'2/185 or over
2006: 1 (Krueger, 7th round)
2007: 1 (Bellemore, 6th round)
2008: 0
2009: 6 (all picks from the draft)
A couple players like Sutter and McBain are now bigger then that but they weren't when they were drafted.


Last edited by DaveG: 07-04-2009 at 07:38 AM.
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07-03-2009, 11:15 PM
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The Flyers have abandoned drafting from European leagues completely. Well, just about. In fact, we only have Kimmo Timonen and Andreas Nodl who are European and will actually play NHL games next year. And Nodl even went to the USHL and then St. Cloud so he barely counts.

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07-03-2009, 11:29 PM
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Leafs: Drop Euros, Draft Goons.

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07-04-2009, 12:01 AM
  #19
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Yes, I love the Flyers' new philosophy:

They don't as of 2009, 2010 and 2011.

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07-04-2009, 12:06 AM
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GKJ is right, the Flyers have pretty much abandoned Europe and stick to the CHL for the most part.

They actually did focus on Europe one year which seemed to be a reaction on which way the league was heading. The Flyers were deemed to be too big and slow for the new NHL right after the lockout after a disappointing loss to the speedier and more skilled Sabres. So that draft they seemed to focus more on skill and speed and less on size. About half of their picks were European from that draft. Then the next year the big and tough (and mostly North American) Ducks won the Cup so the Flyers went back to a mostly North America draft focusing mainly on size and toughness.

Personally I don't like the Flyers draft philosophy outside of the first and wish they would go for more boom or bust types and start focusing on Europe again.

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07-04-2009, 12:42 AM
  #21
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Canucks Drafting philosophy is players with high hockey sense, high hockey intelligence with the emphasize to skill and grit. Also character and leadership plays a role.

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07-04-2009, 08:41 AM
  #22
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The last several years the AVs have stuck to taking Americans or guys going through the NCAA program.

With the changes in management this year they seemed to go to the well with Canadian junior a bit more...something i agree with. Not that there is anything wrong with the NCAA...i just think the CHL is more proven, plus the guys are ready faster compared to going to school for 3-4 years.

They did take a couple of NCAA goalies though i believe...

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07-04-2009, 09:43 AM
  #23
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Chicago seem to favour NA players and generally don't draft Europeans (Swedes seem to be a bit of an exception with Lagerstrom, Carlsson, Kruger and Hjalmarsson being recent examples). This year the Hawks took a lot of guys from high school and non-major junior leagues but that may just be a one off for this year or could point to a change in focus.

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07-04-2009, 10:20 AM
  #24
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Gillis has a hard on for girls wearing glasses who are skilled.

And thank god because it's better than just getting the gritty lesbians.

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07-04-2009, 10:51 AM
  #25
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Gillis has a hard on for girls wearing glasses who are skilled.

And thank god because it's better than just getting the gritty lesbians.

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