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When the Colorado Avalanche won the Stanley Cup last thirty day period, their 2017 No. 4 decide on Cale Makar took home the Conn Smythe Trophy, 2011 No. 2 choose Gabriel Landeskog served as captain and 2013 top rated decide Nathan MacKinnon led the team in playoff ambitions.
That trio, aided by some shrewd trade additions, form as very good an argument as any for the value of the NHL draft.
As these, they also present hope for the league’s 31 other teams as the 2022 draft commences on Thursday with Spherical 1. Rounds two by 7 choose put on Friday. Here is everything you have to have to know:
The draft is in Montreal, and the Habs are finding very first. Just 1 yr immediately after reaching the Stanley Cup ultimate, the Canadiens slumped to the worst history in the league en route to earning the initially overall pick for the sixth time in franchise heritage — a lot more than any other club. Their success in that slot are a combined bag: 1971 yielded the late, great Man Lafleur, but the Habs also whiffed on Doug Wickenheiser in 1980, passing on fellow defencemen Larry Murphy and Paul Coffey as effectively as Quebec native Denis Savard in the method. Réjean Houle, the best decide on in 1969, won 5 titles in Montreal throughout a respectable 11-year actively playing occupation, but he could be most effective identified currently as the typical supervisor who traded Patrick Roy in 1995.
The No. 1 choose, barring surprise, is down to Shane Wright vs. Juraj Slafkovsky. Wright, of Burlington, Ont., stood as the consensus major decide until eventually the Olympics, when Slafkovsky stormed onto the scene with seven aims in seven online games to make event MVP and help Slovakia acquire bronze for its 1st-ever Olympic hockey medal. The six-foot-four winger, who has due to the fact turned 18, only obtained momentum from there to power the Canadiens into a tough choice. Wright, for his component, has ongoing to complete well — just possibly not quite to the benchmarks set when he was granted OHL outstanding status at 15, joining the find likes of Connor McDavid and John Tavares. Wright finished eighth in league scoring previous year (94 details in 63 video games) with the Kingston Frontenacs, but neither he nor Slafkovsky is regarded a generational prospect in the mould of McDavid or Auston Matthews. In the end, it may possibly occur down to positional desire: would Montreal rather the big scoring winger in Slafkovsky, or the smaller sized playmaking centre in Wright? Read much more about Wright’s prolonged street to the draft listed here.
Never ever a superior notion to give Juraj Slafkovský an open up search 👀
The 17-calendar year-old has been ON Fireplace at #Beijing2022 🔥🔥🔥
Look at on the CBC Sports app or @cbcgem pic.twitter.com/f7BW0r2yH4
The war in Ukraine could have an affect on Russian prospective customers. Teams are weighing the possibility of picking out Russian gamers when journey to and from their residence region stays intricate at greatest. Previous 7 days, Flyers prospect Ivan Fedotov, who was established to soar to North The united states next season following completing his KHL contract, was suddenly delivered to a remote military services article in northern Russia. The overarching uncertainty could mean Russians are shut out of the 1st round for the to start with time given that 2005. Though one top Russian in the draft, defenceman Pavel Mintyukov, might be considered a safer selection owning performed in the OHL, two other people in wingers Danila Yurov and Ivan Miroshnichenko could drop into the later rounds immediately after spending their draft yr at dwelling. Read more about the Russian conundrum below.
Absolutely free agency is not significantly absent. The draft generally creates an intriguing trade or two, but the off-time should really warmth up when totally free agency begins future Wednesday. A lot of residence names are set to strike the current market, and the Flames are significantly susceptible as 100-level scorers Johnny Gaudreau (unrestricted) and Matthew Tkachuk (limited) the two need new contracts. Other top players who could be out there contain Predators centre Filip Forsberg, Colorado’s Nazem Kadri, longtime Flyer (turned Panther at the trade deadline) Claude Giroux and Penguins stalwarts Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang.