Each player has ratings for the following scouting services: NHL’s Central Scouting (CS), The Hockey News (THN), McKeen’s (McK), International Scouting Service (ISS), Red Line Report (RLR), and Bob McKenzie of TSN.ca (TSN). CS breaks down their ratings by North American skaters, European skaters, North American goaltenders and European goaltenders. ISS, RLR, and TSN all list a prospects’ comparable NHL player. The draft positions used are as of June 23, 2009.
31. New York Islanders – Toni Rajala – LW
CS: #:11E —– THN: # 49 —– McK: 45
ISS: # 31 (Martin St. Louis) —– RLR: # 34(Martin Straka)
TSN: # 56 (Sami Kapanen)
Rajala’s goal scoring exploits do not come from a Bobby Hull-like shot. Rather, he it comes from his excellent puck skills, hockey sense and shooting accuracy. He broke Alexander Ovechkin’s scoring record with 19 points in the U-18 tournament.
32. Tampa Bay Lightning – Kyle Palmieri – C
CS: # 20NA —– THN: # 26 —– McK: 42
ISS: # 23 (Brian Gionta) —– RLR: # 26 (Tuomo Ruutu)
TSN: # 25 (Chris Drury)
Palmieri is a team player who plays much bigger than his size (5-10/191). He plays a gritty style of hockey and is not afraid to play in traffic and is a strong two-way center.
33. Colorado Avalanche – Calvin de Haan – D
CS: # 25NA —– THN: # 22 —– McK: 28
ISS: # 36 (Brian Campbell) —– RLR: # 20 (Tomas Kaberle)
TSN: # 23 (Tomas Kaberle)
Calvin is a solid puck-moving defenseman who plays an intelligent game and showed this season that he can thrive when given extra ice time. Once he adds some muscle to his wiry frame (6-0/170), de Haan has the chance to become a solid all-around d-man.
34. Atlanta Thrashers – Chris Brown – LW
CS: # 30NA —– THN: # 61 —– McK: # 40
ISS: # 34 (Taylor Pyatt) —– RLR: # 101 (Anthony Stewart)
TSN: # 39 (Jamie Langenbrunner)
Brown’s combination of size (6-2/191) and very good skating ability sets him up to be a power forward in the NHL – which will be an excellent addition to Ilya Kovalchuk and Evander Kane. Brown is also very responsible in his own as well, doing the little things to help defend.
35. Los Angeles Kings – Zach Budish – RW/C
CS: # 22NA —– THN: # 44 —– McK: 50
ISS: # 51 (Keith Tkachuk) —– RLR: # 29(Ryan Getzlaf)
TSN: # 42 (David Backes)
The Kings could look to add to their defense corps, but it is worth their while to reach a bit on Budish. He is former first round projection who suffered an ACL injury while playing football in high school. The injury hurt his draft position, but he is expected to be ready to play at the University of Minnesota. His size (6-4/230), heavy shot and all-around game could make Budish one of the steals of the draft – if he lasts into the second round.
36. Phoenix Coyotes – Tim Erixon – D
CS: # 5E —– THN: # 32 —– McK: 30
ISS: # 55 (Kenny Jonsson) —– RLR: # 23 (Ron Hainsey)
TSN: # 28 (Mattias Ohlund)
The solid two-way defenseman is the son of former Ranger Jan Erixon. While there isn’t any one part of his game that stands out, he is solid in all aspects of the game – as seen by his playing in the Swedish Elite League at the age of 18.
37. New York Islanders – Robin Lehner – G
CS: # 1E Goalie—– THN: # 52 —– McK: 57
ISS: # 6 Goalie (Not Available) —– RLR: # 69 (Mathieu Garon)
TSN: 47 (Henrik Lundqvist)
With Rick DiPietro a perennial injury waiting to happen, GM Garth Snow needs to address his goaltending situation. Lehner draws comparisons to fellow Swedish netminder Henrik Lundqvist. However at 6-3/220, Lehner is bigger than The King and is more willing to cut down the angles and challenges shooters with his butterfly style.
38. Dallas Stars – Dmitry Orlov – D
CS: # 9E —– THN: # 55 —– McK: 33
ISS: # 29 (Dan Hamhuis) —– RLR: # 61 (Patrice Brisebois)
TSN: # 44 (Trevor Daley)
With Sergei Zubov nearing the end of his career, the Stars look to fellow Russian Orlov as a replacement. Dmitry is an offensive d-man who likes to rush the puck as well as join the rush late. While he still needs to polish up his game in the defensive end, Orlov will contribute immediately on the PP because of his shot and hockey sense.
39. Ottawa Senators – Richard Panik – RW
CS: # 13E —– THN: # 31 —– McK: 54
ISS: # 35 (Marian Hossa or P. Stefan) —– RLR: # 60 (M. Hossa or L. Kasper)
TSN: # 38 (Marian Hossa)
As you can see, both ISS and RLR believe Panik can be a boom or bust type player. While his play is inconsistent, he does have the offensive package (scoring touch, puck handling and speed) and size (6-2/202) to be an impact player. He has all the tools, now he needs to find a box to put them in.
40. Edmonton Oilers – Charles-Oliver Roussel – D
CS: # 36NA —– THN: # 35 —– McK: 53
ISS: # 42 (Wade Redden) —– RLR: # 14 (Brad Stuart)
TSN: # 37 (Kris Letang)
Roussel is a solid two-way blueliner who kicked his game up a notch during the post-season. He plays a well-rounded game, and while he doesn’t have one calling card aspect to his game, he does not have any major weaknesses either.
41. Nashville Predators – Ethan Werek – C
CS: # 32NA —– THN: # 34 —– McK: 38
ISS: # 26 (Gary Roberts) —– RLR: # 46 (Nik Antropov)
TSN: # 41 (Alexi Ponikarovsky)
Werek originally wanted to go the NCAA route, but decided to play in the OHL with Kingston. He is the hard-nosed type of player every team wants. He will do the dirty work needed in front of the net to score. Werek made Canada’s 2008 World Junior A Challenge team and their 2009 U-18 team.
42. Nashville Predators – Stefan Elliott – D
CS: # 17NA —– THN: # 27 —– McK: 39
ISS: # 38 (Sergei Gonchar) —– RLR: # 41 (Paul Martin)
TSN: # 35 (Tom Gilbert)
With the back end of their back-to-back picks, Nashville drafts Elliott with an eye towards his offensive contributions. His puck-handling and passing skills make him a valuable weapon on the PP. Elliott likes to join the rush and will work deep in the offensive zone. He is still a work in progress in the defensive zone and he needs to be more physical.
43. San Jose Sharks – Ryan O’Reilly – C
CS: # 39NA —– THN: # 39 —– McK: 26
ISS: # 50 (Shawn Horcoff) —– RLR: # 39 (Sammy Pahlsson)
TSN: # 27 (Maxime Talbot)
The Sharks continue to misfire in the playoffs as the team is just missing that something extra. This is where O’Reilly can fit in. He has excellent hockey sense and is a team leader who very well may be a captain in the NHL. He is solid in his own end, and is one of the best penalty killers and faceoff men in the OHL. His offensive game in the NHL will be more as a playmaker than goal scorer.
44. Florida Panthers – Josh Birkholz – RW/C
CS: # 43NA —– THN: # 57 —– McK: 67
ISS: # 37 (Matt Cullen) —– RLR: # 97 (Torrey Mitchell)
TSN: # 52 (Dan Hinote)
The soon-to-be University of Minnesota freshman is a strong two-way forward who has good quickness and speed. Josh will use his speed to beat defenders wide as he cuts to the net. Birkholz has good size (6-1/182), but he needs to use it more as part of an overall need to be consistently more consistent.
45. Atlanta Thrashers – Brayden McNabb – D
CS: # 51 NA —– THN: # 54 —– McK: 60
ISS: # 43 (Hal Gill) —– RLR: # 66 (Matt Walker)
TSN: # 54 (Sean O’Donnell)
GM Donnie Waddell has the chance to make up for his mistake for trading Brayden Coburn for Alexei Zhitnik. The 6-4/200 McNab is a stay-at-home defenseman who does have the ability to move the puck and see the ice. McNabb plays a physical game, but doesn’t run around to throw hits. He does need to work on defensive positioning because speedy forwards can beat him wide.
46. Ottawa Senators – Edward Pasquale – G
CS: # 3NA Goalie —– THN: # 40 —– McK: 80
ISS: # 1 Goalie (Not Available) —– RLR: # 98 (Dany Sabourin)
TSN: Honorable Mention (Not Available)
Despite the acquisition of Pascal Leclaire and the development Brian Elliott, the Sens still need to address the position. Pasquale has good size (6-3/218) and athletic ability. When he is on his game, he will let the puck come to him rather than trying fight off shots. He is still needs to work on his consistency and stickhandling.
47. New York Rangers – Alex Chiasson – RW
CS: # 34NA —– THN: # 76 —– McK: 47
ISS: # 85 (Not Available) —– RLR: # 67 (Jochen Hecht)
TSN: 46 (Colby Armstrong)
At 6-3/187, Chiasson has the size to be your prototypical power forward. While he needs to work on his skating, Chiasson is a hard worker who goes to the net and does all of the little things you want from a physical forward – including being a strong forechecker. Chiasson will jump from the USHL to Boston University. McK scout Kevin Wey said he has “the most upside of any USHL prospect in the 2009 Draft.”
48. St. Louis Blues – Tomas Vincour – RW
CS: # 42NA —– THN: # 63 —– McK: 98
ISS: # 49 (Nik Antropov) —– RLR: # 83 (Tomas Kopecky)
TSN: # Not Rated (Not Available)
Vincour is still a work in progress, but he is a strong mix of skill and size (6-2/203) and is a hard worker. The Czech native has spent the last two seasons playing in the WHL and is ahead of most European born players when it comes to adapting to North American hockey. He is at his best on offense when he uses his hands and his hockey sense below the faceoff dots.
49. Colorado Avalanche – Olivier Roy – G
CS: # 2NA Goalie —– THN: # 38 —– McK: 68
ISS: # 2 Goalie (Not Available) —– RLR: # 56 (Manny Legace)
TSN: # Honorable mention (Marc-Andre Fleury)
New GM Greg Sherman will look to another Roy (no relation to former Colorado goalie Patrick Roy) to solidify their goaltending position. Roy is looking to follow fellow Cape Breton netminders Marc-Andre Fleury and Ondrej Pavelec. Roy is a butterfly goalie who plays up at the top of the crease.
50. Toronto Maple Leafs – Cody Eakin – C
CS: # 29NA —– THN: # 64 —– McK: 46
ISS: # 46 (Darcy Tucker) —– RLR: # 49 (Mike Comrie)
TSN: # 53 (Darren Helm)
Eakin’s history of injuries probably cost him a shot at the first round (including two concussions). With that said, he is big-time goal scorer whose offense is fed by his speed, quickness and good hockey sense. At 5-11/176, he can’t afford to be overly physical, but he is aggressive and is an effective forechecker.
51. Carolina Hurricanes – Mac Bennett – D
CS: # 40NA —– THN: # N/R in Top 100 —– McK: 52
ISS: # 64 (Not Available) —– RLR: # 73 (Tobias Enstrom)
TSN: # 56 (petr Svoboda)
Bennett is a bit of project because he made a verbal commitment to the University of Michigan for 2010-11. An injury cost him some time this season (as well as scouting exposure), but he is a solid two-way d-man who is a tremendous skater – so much so that ISS says it is reminds them of Paul Coffey.
52. Tampa Bay Lightning – Matthew Hackett – G
CS: # 1NA Goalie —– THN: # Not Rated in Top 100 —– McK: 55
ISS: # 3 Goalie (Not Available) —– RLR: # 174 (Not Available)
TSN: # 43 (Mike Smith)
The Lightning’s goaltending situation is still up in the air so it would be worth it for Brian Lawton to draft the nephew of former NHLer Jeff Hackett. There a lot of GMs who regret passing on the 6-2/170 goalie in last year’s Draft. Hackett’s play during the season forced Plymouth (OHL) to trade Jeremy Smith – a former second round draft pick of the Nashville Predators. Hackett plays his angles well, which allows him to use his size to his advantage.
53. Vancouver Canucks – Tomas Tatar – C
CS: # 14E —– THN: # 51 —– McK: 35
ISS: # 41 (Ales Hemsky) —– RLR: # 35 (Jiri Hudler)
TSN: # 49 (Sergei Samsonov)
Replacing the Sedins continues in to the second round as Vancouver drafts Tatar. The 5-11/176 center is a potential top six forward based on scoring ability, skating and strong puck-handling skills. Tatar saved his best for big games as his 7 goals helped led Slovakia to the semi-finals in the World Juniors and he scored 5 goals in 13 games in Slovak Extraleague play.
54. New Jersey Devils – Jean-Francois Berube – G
CS: # 10NA Goalie —– THN: # 43 —– McK: 109
ISS: # 11 Goalie (Not Available) —– RLR: # 45 (Martin Biron)
TSN: # Honorable Mention (Not Available)
Martin Brodeur’s injury showed that the Devils need to start thinking about life after Brodeur. New Jersey has not had much luck in drafting a successor (see Ari Ahonen). Berube is a bit of a wildcard because he has been stuck behind Jake Allen in Montreal (QMJHL). Berube will be the main benefactor of Steve Mason’s super rookie season because Mason only played 6 games in his draft year. When he is on his game, Berube’s positioning is solid and het lets the puck come to him rather than fighting the puck.
55. Washington Capitals – Eric Gelinas – D
CS: # 38 NA —– THN: # 46 —– McK: 36
ISS: # 82 (Not Available) —– RLR: # 25 (Cam Barker)
TSN: # Honorable mention (Not Available)
Gelinas is an attractive prospect because of his size (6-3/185) and strong skating skills. He is more of an offensive defenseman at this point in his career and is valuable player on the PP. He is still a work in progress in his own end, but he does use his long reach well. One concern is that he only had 2 goals and 4 assists in his final 23 games last season.
56. New York Islanders – Kenny Ryan – RW
CS: # 56NA —– THN: # 66 —– McK: 29
ISS: # 59 (Brooks Laich) —– RLR: # 47 (Andrew Ladd)
TSN: # Honorable Mention (Not Available)
The Isles continue stocking up their organization with the selection of the solid two-way RW. Ryan, who will be attending Boston College, is a very good skater who has speed to beat defenders wide. He uses those assets to be a solid forechecker who has the ability to get back and help out in the defensive zone.
57. San Jose Sharks – Anton Lander – LW
CS: # 19E —– THN: # 50 —– McK: 75
ISS: # 47 (Mikko Koivu) —– RLR: # 64 (Niklas Sundstrom)
TSN: # Honorable Mention (Not Available)
Muck like Ryan O’Reilly, Anton Lander is a hard worker who features very good leadership abilities who plays hard until the final whistle. He has some scoring ability, but he is more of a passer than scorer. His skating and hockey sense make him an effective forechecker and solid contributor on defense.
58. Toronto Maple Leafs – Scott Stajcer – G
CS: # 5NA Goalie —– THN: # N/R in Top 100 —– McK: 34
ISS: # 4 Goalie (Not Available) —– RLR: # 115 (Not Available)
TSN: # Scott Stajcer (Not Available)
While Swedish free agent goalie Jonas Gustavsson is on the Leafs radar, Brian Burke should look to give new goalie coach Francois Allaire another toy to play with. Stajcer has good size (6-2/180) and switches between a stand-up and butterfly style of play. He is a solid athlete who has to pay attention to letting the puck come to him rather than doing too much to fight off the puck.
59. Chicago Blackhawks – Alex Hutchings – RW
CS: # 44NA —– THN: # 48 —– McK: 74
ISS: # 61 (Not Available) —– RLR: # 43 (Chris Kunitz)
TSN: # 58 (Chuck Kobasew)
His speed, skill and hockey sense make up for his lack of size (5-10/173). Despite his slight stature, Hutchings will go into the corners and play in traffic thanks to his skating skills. He has the ability to play in all situations, including both special teams.
60. Detroit Red Wings – Philippe Paradis – LW/C
CS: # 26NA —– THN: # 60 —– McK: 48
ISS: # 88 (Not Available) —– RLR: # 40 (Matt Stajan)
TSN: # 40 (Max Pacioretty)
Paradis uses his size (6-1/196) to be a grinding player who is developing a solid all-around game – after starting in Shawinigan as an offensive player. Paradis has developed into a forward who plays in all situations – including PP and PK. RLR says he is “capable of being a ‘Gordie Howe hat trick’ guy”.
61. Pittsburgh Penguins – Taylor Beck – LW
CS: # 67NA —– THN: # 48 —– McK: 66
ISS: # 53 (Scott Hartnell) —– RLR: # 130 (Not Available)
TSN: # Honorable Mention (Not Available)
Beck is a perfect complimentary player for a team that has the offensive talent the Penguins have. The 6-1/205 Beck isn’t fleet of foot, but he makes up for it with very good puck-handling ability. A McK scout compares Beck’s style to that of Milan Lucic and they believe he will be a better NHL player than junior player.