Follow Us on Twitter

Sens Underground


We're all volunteers paying out of our pocket. We operate on a loss.  If you'd like to help, it will be put to use running the podcast and we'll give you huge kudos on the show!


Underground Hosts







Quick Search

Sens Underground Forums > The one with the draft, prospects and future considerations.

I still think I would be a lousy scout. Especially if the future of the franchise and many million $'s depended on it. I do have my preferences, but so has everyone.

I was very excited to witness the development of Erik Karlsson from somebody no one had heard of to the superstar he is now. I remember the first season (the one were he was sent back to Bingo), thinking: holy crap that guy is good. The skating and the offense first mentality had my psyched! I'd rather have a 2009 season again than watching boring Rangers hockey all season long (and still no Cup at that).

Back to the draft: I really want our new pick to play like that. All out, with enthusiasm, smooth skating, being burnt every once in a while on a promising pinch (but saved by the other D), clever passing. That's what makes my watch hockey, that's what I wanna see more. We all more or less know what our rookies can do. But the upcoming draft will provide us with new, unknown, promising stuff. It's this excitement that I want to share with you all. After seven years (podcast) or a bit shorter (forums) I know how this community thinks about their Sens and guess they share my feelings. Have I told you already the draft is the last thing I'm looking forward to this summer (apart from maybe Alfie saying somewhere in august he doesn't retire)? After that I shut off the hockey part of my brain until October!

June 4, 2012 at 8:45 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

don't forget free agency day, july 1st.

June 4, 2012 at 9:19 AM | Registered CommenterResigned Russell

Free agency day is overrated. Ok, something might happen for the Sens and therefore I will shut of my hockeybrain a few days later :) By then we should also know the cap hit for EK for the next 10 yrs (hope not).

June 5, 2012 at 2:50 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Olli Maatta

Height: 6'2" Weight: 202lbs
Born: August 22nd, 1994
Birthplace: Jyväskylä, FIN
London Knights (OHL): 69GP 5G 27A 32P, +25, 25PIM
NHL Comparable: Nicklas Lidstrom / Toni Lydman
Projection: Top Four Defenceman

This is also a guy that's being linked to Ottawa in mockdrafts and projections by analysts and scouts (and writers and bloggers). Here's a look from SilverSevenSens. This Scandinavian born! defenseman won the OHL cup with the London Knights this year. In the rankings he's all over the place but that's because some scouts only look at the offensive side of things. The highest ranking I've seen is 12th. The highest rankings come from scouts/bureaus who preach defense first. Which is a thing we need on our blueline (not defense first, but someone who can shut it down). Still I don't think we should trade up to get him. Although I like for the Sens to pick the type of player he is or seems to be.

The quotes:

"a good shutdown defender with the ability to move the puck well at the professional level", "this is the kind of defenseman the Sens are likely in the market for: strong away from the puck, but competent on it as well"

"Olli Maatta has been an absolute rock on the backend for the London Knights. He has arguably been the Knights best defenceman despite being the youngest guy on the backend. That says a lot considering he is playing with former first rounder Jarred Tinordi and team canada standout Scott Harrington", "As for Maatta's style of game...coaches appreciate (it)", "He has a great deal of patience, looks calm on the ice, makes the smart play and looks comfortable doing so", "unbelieveably professional and mature for his age", "has excellent vision on the ice and will only continue to get better"

"Maatta is an extremely advanced defenseman who thinks the game at a very high level", "regularly logged 25 minutes...sometimes touching 30 minutes", "such a mistake-free shutdown defenseman who makes a very good first pass", "a good mix of instinctual reads, good stick work, and strong physical play", "calm under pressure with accurate outlets", "On occasion, he will show a flash of something more offensively in terms of his vision" (he could learn from the best!).

Some problems:

"a concussion early in the event (the World Juniors)", "puck handling is a little rigid", "has an awkward stride in terms of his forward hunch and the way he extends through. He has improved in that area, however".

Have a look for yourselves, at this site has collected some YouTube-clips. As you can see, he can drop the mitts too! Don't be surprised if the Sens take this fellow. He might even support the Bingo cast next year, you have to be 18 right? They say he's defense first, but also considered a puck mover. He scored more than a point per game during the OHL play offs (stepped it up from half a point during regular, although you could argue he only just got used to the smaller ice) and he led his team +25 (regular season).

June 5, 2012 at 3:40 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

During 'research' I bumped on this site, a Jackets blog affiliated with SBNation (as is SilverSevenSens). Just a quick observation: if their scouts & GM pick as 'bad' as their fans, that would explain a lot about that organisation!

Ok, I know that after the Top5 it's a crapshoot. But after their top10 I see names all 'experts' pick in the second round or later. Ahhh... what the heck, the Jackets pick in the top 5 every year anyways.

They have a few commenters that seem to know what they're talking about though, I'm just not liking their picks. And it's funnier to paint fans of other teams, let me see how to phrase... not so smart :)

June 5, 2012 at 4:06 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Slater Koekoek

Height: 6'2" Weight: 186lbs
Born: February 18th, 1994
Birthplace: Mountain, ON
Peterborough Petes (OHL): 26GP 5G 13A 18P, -7, 17PIM
NHL Comparable: Erik Johnson / Nicklas Lidstrom
Projection: Top Pairing Defenceman

Another local boy. He had an injury, which cut his season short and made him drop in the rankings. As I recollect BM has had some success with drafting injured defensemen (Cowen?). This is one of those risks, injury history vs. high reward. The injury could come back and haunt you, on the other hand: at 15th we may have a top10 or even top5 player on your hand. It's a shoulder injury, no fracture though, but a torn labrum. For those who want to read more: click. I don't and won't (at least for now).


"a tough as nails defenceman that oozes leadership and battles for loose pucks", "potential is through the roof", Coach: "He's a wild mustang. You just let him go and he will show why he is and wants to be the best in hockey" (seems the Paulrus knows how to handle those guys), "a unique blend of size, skill and character", "He can take care of his own zone first and can also jump into the rush. He is incredibly versatile with high offensive potential and great defensive posture", "Anyone who passes on Koekkoek will be shaking their head next year wondering why we passed over him"

"a pretty good skater with a good first step, smooth four-way movements, a technically sound stride, and quick, powerful feet", "not that flashy...very smart though, showing good awareness on the power play when it comes to his decisions, he makes good defensive reads, and plays a pretty mistake-free game"


"inconsistent, doesn't show every night" (this is however denied by other scouts who say the opposite), "needs to work on his consistency", "extremely raw", "tries to do too much" (but) "for his team", "a safe, low-upside player", "he will dominate one night, and have several brain cramps per shift the next".

He could even fall to the second round. Therefore, I don't know if Ottawa would want to take him 15th, but BM has shown they're quite determined about their 1st rounders and are willing to trade up if necessary. I wouldn't be surprised they take a player they really want higher than he's projected. What I read about his character, makes me think he would be a great fit in the young group. "Very coachable" means to me that even a bad coach can get him to play the system, imagine what a great coach can do. I wouldn't mind him being taken at 15. And if he's taken over some other prospects mentioned here... well BM and his team clearly know things I don't.

He talked to 26 teams, so there's quite the chance Ottawa was one of them.

June 5, 2012 at 6:54 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

A Codi Ceci quote:

“I am a huge Ottawa Senators fan, and an even bigger Daniel Alfredsson fan,” said Ceci. “Alfie is quiet, but he’s effective.”

More where that came from (also on and from the other prospects) here (NYI colored)

June 5, 2012 at 7:16 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Nice work Labru -- I'd love to see another 67 in a Sens uniform on draft day this year, but I don't think Ceci will be around when Murray steps up to the podium. Your gathered analysis is excellent though; please keep it up!

TW: As a non-native speaker, is it defence or defense? I've seen both been used.

'Defence' is the British/Canadian spelling; 'defense' is the US spelling. The line between the two has been blurred over the past 20 years due to Microsoft Word's dictionary being set to US English and many Canadians adopting the wrong spelling for many words because they don't know how to or care to change the dictionary to the right one. Many websites suffer from the same spellcheck problem. It's the same problem with centre/center, colour/color, etc. Centre is correct, and it's also bilingual. ;)

June 5, 2012 at 1:19 PM | Registered CommenterKardinal

Spellcheck seems to think sometimes both are correct that makes it a bit harder, not that I depend heavily on that. I'm educated to follow British spelling. But due to overwhelming American media consumption in the Netherlands the last few decades, both ways are deemed correct nowadays if used consistently. I don't know if many people on the internet don't know any better or just don't care, but even native speakers are many times not correct, or consistent for that matter. Learning by reading...? Might only work with books. The internet...? Not so much.

June 7, 2012 at 3:57 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

There are a few potential first round D-men I didn't mention yet, so here they are:

Morgan Rielly, Griffin Reinhart (Hockey Prospectus has them both going higher than 15th), Matt Finn (whom I discarded based on his ill advised taste in disappointing hockey franchises), Ludvig Bystrom, Derrick Pouliot, Dalton Thrower and Brady Skjei.

I'll be a bit shorter with these. Afterward I might add a few forwards that could go around 15. I can certainly see Ottawa picking a forward, although their need seems to be in D. If the guys they really like are gone, that means that some pretty high end forwards will still be on the table. If they feel they can address their defensive needs in the 2nd or later...

June 8, 2012 at 3:23 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Morgan Rielly

Height: 6'0" Weight: 197lbs
Born: March 9th, 1994
Birthplace: Vancouver, BC
Moose Jaw Warriors (WHL): 18GP 3G 15A 18P, +6, 2PIM

He's projected to go as high as even 5th, but other scouts have him fall outside the top 10. That's because he suffered an injury (torn ACL), which can of course be quite serious. At first I had a bad feeling about him, therefore I didn't include him in my initial list. But I flopped and do now think that Murray should take him, if available at 15. I wouldn't trade up though, because of the risk involved and the other defencemen available. He's not overly physical, but might have the best hockey sense from all the D-man in this draft.

Some quotes:

"just oozes potential and might have the best vision from any defenceman in the draft", "shows a lot of poise with the puck and has exceptional wheels", "a "chess player" that knows how the play is going to break down before he even makes the pass", "isn't going to knock guys over but he can usually outsmart them",

"can be especially impressive from a standstill with his acceleration, four-way mobility, and his elusive quickness", "a very skilled offensive player with plus puck skills and passing ability who can dangle an opponent out of his skates or thread a bullet pass through a tight lane",


"his torn ACL could really hinder his mobility", "still needs to work on his physical play and handling larger bodies in front the net", as with all knee injuries that is an aspect of his game to monitor going into next season to see if any effectiveness is lost", "will take a few years before being ready to make the jump"

Reading this it's hard not to get excited. Especially since he didn't seem to have suffered too much mobility upon return. Based on this many reports have him in the top 10 and it seems there will be a few teams above 15 willing to take a chance... So don't count on him being available.

June 8, 2012 at 3:45 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Griffin Reinhart
Height: 6'4" Weight: 202lbs
Born: January 24th, 1994
Birthplace: Vancouver, BC
Edmonton Oil Kings (WHL): 58GP 12G 24A 36P, +23, 38PIM

This is a kid that usually is projected in the top 10, but could definately fall to 15th. Why didn't I include him? Don't know really. He's a defensive D-man, which we certainly could use. Reading the quotes again I really don't know why I didn't.

Here they are:

"has that unique package of size, skill, grit and leadership", "the guy that is out there to protect a one goal lead with a minute left in the game", "can lay out the big hit or push over forwards if need be but isn't going to cost his team because of it", "might be the most physically mature defenceman in the draft and could even jump into the NHL as early as next year" (I say, don't rush. But I would most certainly be nice!), "I remember scouts saying that Tyler Myers was the same way at the WHL level and could see Reinhart adapating his game to be more aggressive at the NHL level" (some people would like BM to trade for Myers, so here you go), "offensive game still needs some work but he does a lot of things you normally don't see in your typical defensive defenceman".

"looks like a legit offensive defenseman who is well above average skill-wise considering his 6'4" frame" (which seems to be contradicting the other report), "I don't have any reservations from projection a high-end physical game from him at the highest level", "he has the puck skills to make people miss, execute all the little plays in tight quarters, and to deliver crisp, accurate passes consistently"

Haven't read too much negative about him, which might mean he doesn't have a very high ceiling. But his steady and recent improvements offer promise. Wouldn't mind the Sens take him, but no trading up please. I do have some preferences over him, but if those are not available, he could certainly be a nice addition to the blueline (maybe even in the NHL later this year).

June 8, 2012 at 4:02 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Matt Finn
Height: 6'0" Weight: 195lbs
Born: February 24th, 1994
Birthplace: Toronto, ON
Guelph Storm (OHL): 61GP 10G 38A 48P, -13, 58PIM

Who is this kid, that should know better than to cheer for you know who? Actually since he's from Toronto, he might just more be a fan with his heart than with his head. What does he bring to the table? Projected to go somewhere between 26 and 13, but most reports have him on 18. Therefore I think we could do better, but management might really like him. He's a two-way puck mover, which is a need.

Some quotes:

"elite level hockey sense and intelligence", "is better known for his defensive game. Yet, ... his totals were good enough for 6th in scoring by a defenceman in the OHL", "A team will likely draft him in the middle of the first round and be happy with their selection. He skates the puck out of his zone very well, can run a powerplay and shoots the puck well from the point", "the way he can elevate his game will make up for any size issues he may have".

"was looked at last year as a fine defensive defenseman, but now has the looks of a great two-way player", "doesn't lose a step late in the game even after logging big minutes", "displays high-end hockey sense, making very quick decisions while his reads remain correct and creative and he always seems to be making things happen with the puck", "Defensively, he shows good awareness, is a fine stick-checker, and uses his mobility well to close gaps".

The knocks:

"Finn isn't that threatening physically, as he's slightly short for a defenseman and has a frame that needs a ton of filling out, but he does work hard and shows the grit needed for a 6'0" defenseman", "scouts may be weary of taking a player of his size so early in the draft"

Being compared to a Drew Doughty who also played for Guelph, is a big compliment. And we could certainly take him. It's early enough to protect him from the actual sucking. And it's always nice to have a TO boy excelling in Ottawa and really liking it here. Last year, his size was even more of a concern, but he has shown to really work on that. I say, take if Maatta and above aren't available anymore.

June 8, 2012 at 4:20 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Ludvig Bystrom
Height: 6'1" Weight: 208lbs
Born: July 20th, 1994
Birthplace: Örnsköldsvik, SWE
Modo (SEL): 20GP 0G 1A 1P, +2, 8PIM

Hey, we like them Swedish players, don't we? How 'bout this kid? Rated from somewhere outside the first round to as high as 19th it might be a bit of a stretch. But our Swedish connections tend to be quite good, so why not take a player a bit higher than he's rated by commercial reports. Even the later rounds have showed to spew out some elite Swedish talent. I didn't include him because no report had him in our range, but as stated: I wouldn't be surprised... One report has him rated higher than Maatta.

What do they say about him?

"Bystrom is a pretty advanced puck-moving defenseman who earned very limited minutes in the SEL this year but really showed his potential to log significant two-way time during international events", "His hockey sense is pretty high-end and is evident when you watch him play as he makes so many simple, smart plays consistently all over the ice while displaying a flashy element to his game as well. Bystrom is an effective defender who uses his stick well, is always in the right position, and works hard in the physical element of the game", "very low panic threshold and really knows how to evade checkers, find his outlets through tight steams, and if he has a short window to make a play, he normally is able to execute".

"great hockey sense, plays a very well rounded defensive game and reads the game very well", "Opponents have to keep their heads up whenever Bystrom is on the ice"

He's not that big and one could say that we should watch out that our defence doesn't get to smallish. On the other hand I'd rather rate players on their play than size.

June 8, 2012 at 4:35 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Derrick Pouliot
Height: 6'0" Weight: 192lbs
Born: January 16th, 1994
Birthplace: Weyburn, SASK
Portland Winterhawks (WHL): 72GP 10G 46A 56P, +15, 79PIM

The early reports I read, had him 20+ so I didn't include him at first. Then I came across reports that had him as high as even 10th. So definately a defender who should be on Ottawa's radar. And on ours for that matter. He's not too big for a D, but excells in vision, with some calling it maybe the best from a D in this draft.

Da quotes:

"capable of rushing the puck up the ice and can move the puck extremely well. He can quarterback a powerplay, provide leadership and makes a tremendous first pass", "his offensive instincts are too good to pass on", "I wouldn't be surprised if a team likes him enough to select him within the top 10 but right now he is a safe pick between 10-15"

"an above-average puck-handler who looks smooth and coordinated when he's controlling the puck and is able to make opponents miss", "an accurate passer who can make a great outlet, has confidence and poise under pressure and when distributing into tight lanes and also doesn't hesitate from attempting the difficult feeds and has the ability to be effective doing so", "he can be decent physically, although his size/strength still make it a weakness".

There are very mixed reports on this guy, which explains the bandwidth of his rankings.

"tends to be a bit too cute and beat players one-on-one rather than making the smart and safe play", "can play a bit to casual at times and needs to work on decision making", "needs to bulk up so he can battle trough checks and handle big powerful forwards down low", "He isn't a beast defensively" (which is not what you expect from this kind of player, so I don't see that as a very valid criticism), "others say he's very soft and is so bad defensively he should be converted to forward", "he hurts himself with getting too cute in his own end or having a brain cramp as opposed to not having a feel for the position"

Definately an offensive d-man. Which is fine, we had one of those pan out quite well recently. But it remains a gamble and can result in frustration for the coaching staff, but also for us as fans. If management is confident his decision making and defensive play will improve; I'd have no problem with him. They might have a vision for the second line and pair him with a responsible D. I think there are some better two-way D-men out there and most likely available at 15. Offense from the back end is a nice plus, and I really like to watch it. But if you let your goalie hang out to dry too much, it'll lose you games; which will make you miss the play offs; which is not what you want.

June 8, 2012 at 5:00 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Dalton Thrower
Height: 6'0" Weight: 189lbs
Born: December 20th, 1993
Birthplace: North Vancouver, BC
Saskatoon Blades (WHL): 66GP 18G 36A 54P, -4, 103PIM

Rated from somewhere in the second round to as high as 20th, he's projected to be out of the range. Like with all lower rated prospects: if management likes him, OK; they'll have very good reasons to pass over higher rated prospects. Otherwise I'll let the comments speak:

"as tough as nails and a great character guy to have patrolling the backend", "also an offensive catalyst from the backend. By comparison, Thrower scored only two goals and three points less than Dumba", "If Thrower was a couple inches taller, he would be a lock as a top 15 pick in this years NHL entry draft. Still, teams are always scared of taking small defencemen. Ironically, he actually prides himself on his defensive side of the game first and does a good job handling bigger forwards along the boards and in the corners", "logged 30+ minutes on any given night with the blades", "doesn't have a whole lot of weaknesses in his game".

"despite a 5'11" frame, I think Thrower should be able to be at least average in the physical game for a defenseman even at the highest level", "He's not a wow prospect in any regard, but he does a lot of solid things"

Last quotes came from a report that has him almost fall to the 3rd. I try to focus on the actual things that are said about a player, since the rankings after 15th are very much coloured by the preferences of the scouts or agencies.

June 8, 2012 at 5:17 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Brady Skjei How the heck to pronounce that? Well at least he has vowels (Frk doesn't).
Height: 6'3" Weight: 203lbs
Born: March 26th, 1994
Birthplace: Lakeville, MN
USNTDP (USHL): 22GP 2G 9A 11P, +3, 12PIM

Fit somewhere between 22nd and the second round. Just some quotes:

"think he is a huge project at this point. He has exceptional wheels and the size that scouts are looking for but has a tendency to make poor defensive decisions", "lack of physical play and doesn't use his frame to his advantage", "tremendous character", "always a risk taking a guy who has his defensive problems in the first round, but could be a steal years down the road", "I could see a team taking him inside the top 20 being disappointed"

"Skjei is a well above-average to elite skater who moves as well as you'll find in a 6'3" player", "first step is pretty explosive and makes him very dangerous on the rush as he regularly will take the puck out of his own end and bring it up through the opponent's blue line with ease", "I don't think he has a significant offensive ceiling", "whoever drafts him will be betting on the tremendous physical tools and hoping something else in his game takes a jump forward along the way to really propel his value"

These quotes actually show better why not to take him. If he's available in the 3rd... well that won't happen.

June 8, 2012 at 5:28 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Those were the D-men projected to go in the first. I already said there might be some forwards worth taking a look at as well. Forwards projected to go top5 won't be there. But a top10 might be there if many D's are taken high. So no: Grigorenko, Forsberg, Galchenyuk or Yakupov. But there are: Teuvo Terevainen (Pierre is gonna love that name!), Pontus Aberg, Radek Faksa, Sebastian Collberg or Zemgus Girgensons I'll just let the quotes speak, since I think we should really pick a D-man in the first.

On the other hand Tim Murray said there's quite the quantity of forwards in the organisation, which might be used for a trade. If they trade away a few forward prospects for one or two solid D players, the needs of the organisation look quite different. But still for depth (also in Bingo) we need D.

June 8, 2012 at 5:41 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Teuvo Terevainen
Height: 5'11" Weight: 185lbs
Born: September 11th, 1994
Birthplace: Helsinki, FIN
Jokerit (SM-liiga): 40GP 11G 7A 18P, -5, 6PIM

Projected to go as high as 5th, this would definitively be worth the gamble for me if he's available. If the price is right, maybe trade up a few spots.

"Excellent Vision, unbelievably creative and unpredictable with the puck", "hard for defenders to contain and can beat opposing teams in a number of different ways", "a playmaker with good hands and and underrated shot", "style of game is pro friendly, as he doesn't rely on beating defenders wide", "sees the ice extremely well and always knows where to go on the ice. He is very elusive, makes his teammates better and makes good decisions with the puck", "he can also play center (but is being used as a winger) gives him some versatility", "a special player that could be taken much higher if a team is looking to add that skilled playmaking winger".

"an impressive skater with a great first few steps who can get to a dangerous top speed that puts defenders on their heels, while also showing the ability to change gears quickly, and is very elusive from a standstill", "his possession skills are even better and really drive top-end value", "a smart, creative player who knows how to miss checks and open up lanes", "He's small guy and that's his main issue"

There are some clips available on YouTube like this one

June 8, 2012 at 5:53 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Pontus Aberg
Height: 5'11" Weight: 194lbs
Born: September 23rd, 1993
Birthplace: Stockholm, SWE
Djurgardens (SEL): 47GP 8G 7A 15P, -3, 6PIM

He's being compared to Z-bad, which is our highest rated prospect. So that's not a bad thing. He's rated from 28th to 9th, but mostly higher than 15th, so my first reaction is pass... But it's most likely due to injuries so there's the risk vs. reward story.

"ran into his fair share of injuries this season", "really quite a shame since he took the SEL on fire early in the season", "isn't the biggest guy but he conditions himself well and make the most out of his frame", "plays a gritty game and isn't afraid to go into the corners and battle for the puck. He possesses the best wheels of any Swedish prospect since Paajarvi and an amazing slap shot that just simply beats goaltenders clean", "a very hard working player with exceptional vision", "Offensively he is very skilled sniper", "very good two-way forward. He uses his tremendous speed to catch up to opposing forwards and backchecks very hard", "should have a game that translates very well to the NHL level", "arguably the best pure goal scorer in the draft behind Yakupov", "will always be that shoot first type of player" (there's definitely a need for that on our team).

"very good acceleration off his first few steps and a pretty dangerous top speed", "a plus shot which will drive a decent portion of his offensive value and allow him to maintain an above league average shooting percentage over his career", "His shot is pretty accurate with good technique on his release, his one-timers fly off his stick with remarkable speed, and Aberg has the makings of a dangerous power play triggerman", "Aberg has great hands and can show some flash in that area in terms of being able to make great individual plays in creating space for himself", "needs to work on his defense, although with his on-ice work ethic, there is reason to believe the finer points of his defensive game will come along"

June 8, 2012 at 6:20 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Radek Faksa
Height: 6'3" Weight: 202lbs
Born: January 9th, 1994
Birthplace: Opava, CZE
Kitchener Rangers (OHL): 62GP 29G 38A 67P, +19, 47PIM

Another centre, so not sure there. Rated from 16th to 10th, so in our range and would not be considered a steal per se.

"excells at playing a good two-way game", "arguably the 4th or 5th best forwards in this years draft", "has the frame that NHL scouts do favor", "definitely pays attention to detail and could be a more effective second line center", "can dish out and take big hits, battle along the boards, and plays with a bit of an edge", "needs to bulk up in order to fill out his massive frame but could be a beast when he does", "uses his size better for defensive situations and is hard to match up against".

"a pretty well-rounded player who doesn't have a clear weakness but is notably strong at all areas of the game", "shows very good dependability in the defensive end and scouts I've talked to rave about his defensive game which is high-end potentially and creates a lot of value when combined with his skill set", "has no fear of getting involved with the physical game as he will battle hard in the corners, take his checks with the body, and drive the net with regularity"

Could prove to be a slightly better Foligno. Is that what you want from this years 1st rounder?

June 8, 2012 at 6:31 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Sebastian Collberg
Height: 5'11" Weight: 176lbs
Born: February 23rd, 1994
Birthplace: Mariestad, SWE
Frölunda (SEL): 41GP 0G 0A 0P, -8, 2PIM

I've seen several mockdrafts where he's projected to be picked by Ottawa at 15th. To me that just discredits that mockdraft, because it shows no insight in the organisational needs. He's projected at 22nd to 12th. I'd again say pass...

"Collberg isn't as fast or gritty as his fellow swedish teammate Pontus Aberg, but he is definitely the better playmaker of the two and already has an NHL wrist shot in his arsenal", "very elusive for a smaller winger and oodles of creativity in his back pocket. I wouldn't say he has a better offensive skillset than Aberg, its just different. He probably has better hands than Aberg and tends to use his teammates better in the offensive zone", "isn't as good as Aberg is defensively", "has a very high hockey sense and tends to make the most of his opportunities. He is patient with the puck can lead to defenders standing still and watching the puck only to see it being pulled through their feet and in the back of the net before they even realize it. Collberg has a lot of flair in his game but has to prove that he can consistently produce offensively", "a risk/reward prospect that could end up being on a teams first line or being stuck in the minors like Gilbert Brule...he doesn't have the same issues that Brule has and he has his heads in the shoulders"

"In international events, he was much better and produced a lot", "When he gets going, his top speed is quite dangerous and he can really put defensemen on their heels. Collberg has very quick feet that allow his first few steps to take advantage of his acceleration and speed more than the average quick player", "overall is hard to strip the puck from", "a plus shooter with a great wrist shot that is deadly accurate and he regularly shows the ability to score from a distance", "will also go to the high percentage areas to score goals and doesn't mind getting involved with the physical stuff. He is quite small though and needs a boatload of strength to be effective doing that at the pro level"

...but if he's taken, I'll still be excited and will root for him.

June 8, 2012 at 6:43 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

Zemgus Girgenson
Height: 6'2" Weight: 198lbs
Born: January 5th, 1994
Birthplace: Riga, LAT
Dubuque Fighting Saints (USHL): 45GP 20G 27A 47P, +15, 63PIM

Another Latvian. I like what Daugavins brings to the table and as far as nationality says something about that... well it doesn't say much more than that it's no Russian. He's compared to Ryan Kessler and Toews, but what I've read sounds more like Mike Fisher to me. Which isn't a bad thing.
Projected from 24th to 1 report putting him on 5th which is too high in my opinion. Most have him somewhere between 12th and 18th which is exactly Ottawa's range. First impression, lot to like but... pass. Didn't I tell you we need D?

"big, physical, and gritty hard-working forward that will do anything to help his team win", "great vision, a quick shot, is very hard to knock off the puck and good mobility for a guy of his size", "has very good hockey sense, has tremendous strength and does all the little things that help teams win hockey games", "This year he is putting up the same numbers while getting better defensively and being the go to guy", "already one of the most complete players in the draft and has unbelieveable upside", "hard not to like his potential and is still a relatively safe pick. I don't think he has the offensive potential to be a number one center but is definitely a number 2/3 center that teams win championships win with" .

"a great do-it-all player who can create offense from his natural skill and still be a fan favorite because of his intangibles", "a dangerous puck handler who I'd say is above-average to plus in that area as he can certainly make players miss and at times he can be a pretty flashy player", "other times, though, Girgensons can be a straight-ahead gritty type of power forward who drives the net, gets in people's faces after the whistle, and will lay out big hit after big hit. He also shows a diligent work ethic at both ends, and is very responsible and smart defensively for his age, which has garnered trust from his coach to play him in a lot of tough defensive minutes".

June 8, 2012 at 6:57 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

I just read this crazy story.

What I didn't understand was: the Laffs possibly trade their pick (5th overall) to get both (Yakupov and Grigorenko). How the f# is that possible. If you want Yakupov, you have to give something to Edmonton (not including your 5th pick, otherwise you can't have Grigorenko). What could Edmonton possibly want from Toronto? Gardiner? That would be something, I guess Tambellini would want a bit more. On the other hand Burke would be crazy if he pays more for an unproven pick. Stay tuned, if this is real, I can't wait to see what stupid deal mr. Burke comes up with this time (to drive the franchise even further into the ground!). The speculation in this article is probably bogus, but one can dream...

June 8, 2012 at 7:39 AM | Registered Commenterdisappointed labru

what's so strange about this? don't you know EVERY good player is dying to throw his career away and play for the laffs? that's why ever free agent wants to sign in the BIG STINK too.

now, if only Burke had all those first rounders he turned down at the trade deadline.

June 8, 2012 at 11:32 AM | Registered CommenterResigned Russell