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2015 NHL Draft: Winner, losers, and in between from this weekend’s draft

by David Hahn
on
2015 NHL Draft: Winner, losers, and in between from this weekend’s draft

Photo: Seattle Thunderbirds forward Mathew Barzal was ranked as a top-10 talent, but fell to the New York Islanders at 16th overall in the 2015 NHL Draft (courtesy of Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)

With the 2015 NHL Draft in the rear-view mirror, hope and optimism abounds among NHL organizations and their fans. It’s truly a great time of year, and with 211 picks in the books, this draft should be remembered for years to come. Read more »

2015 NHL Draft: Notes and Numbers from Sunrise

by Ken McKenna
on
2015 NHL Draft: Notes and Numbers from Sunrise

Photo: The Arizona Coyotes’ Dylan Strome (L), Edmonton Oilers’ Connor McDavid (C), and Buffalo Sabres’ Jack Eichel were the top three picks of the 2015 NHL Draft (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Perhaps the most anticipated NHL Draft in the past decade is now in the books. The 2015 draft class of 211 players, led by top talents Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel, have found new homes in the NHL and will begin their journey to a pro career beginning with the coming summer development camps put on by the 30 NHL clubs. Read more »

[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Tenth Overall: Colorado Avalanche add a top offensive prospect in Mikko Rantanen

by Ken McKenna
on
[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Tenth Overall: Colorado Avalanche add a top offensive prospect in Mikko Rantanen

Photo: In addition to adding some talented youth with the trade of Ryan O’Reilly, the Colorado Avalanche also added Finnish forward Mikko Rantanen on Day 1 of the 2015 NHL Draft (courtesy of Ken McKenna/HF)

The Colorado Avalanche already have some skilled, younger players in hand in the form of Matt Duchene, Nathan MacKinnon, and Gabriel Landeskog, but they couldn’t pass up the opportunity to add a potential power forward at the 2015 NHL Draft with their selection of Finland’s Mikko Rantanen. Read more »

[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Ninth Overall: San Jose Sharks add more Swiss to the mix with Timo Meier

by Peter Prohaska
on
[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Ninth Overall: San Jose Sharks add more Swiss to the mix with Timo Meier

Photo: The San Jose Sharks looked to bolster their forward ranks with the selection of right winger Timo Meier from the Halifax Mooseheads at the 2015 NHL Draft (courtesy of Ken McKenna/Hf)

The Sharks used their first round pick in 2013 on Swiss defender Mirco Mueller, and a second round pick (53rd overall) in 2014 on Swiss forward Noah Rod so perhaps it should have come as less of a surprise that the Sharks ended up with Timo Meier, of the Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL). Meier put up 90 points this season as part of a line with Nikolaj Ehlers (WPG), but the Sharks are betting that the production is good evidence of his skill level and his versatility.

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[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Eighth Overall: Blue Jackets bolster defense by taking Zack Werenski

by Kristopher Bras
on
[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Eighth Overall: Blue Jackets bolster defense by taking Zack Werenski

Photo: The Columbus Blue Jackets added to their defensive depth with the selection of University of Michigan defender Zach Werenski at the 2015 NHL Draft (courtesy of Ken McKenna/HF)

Zach Werenski was not the highest rated defenseman in the draft, but judging from the smile on his face when the Columbus Blue Jackets selected him 8th overall in the first round, that did not matter much. The acquisition addressed the organization’s need for a quality defenseman. Read more »

[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Seventh Overall: Philadelphia Flyers add another top defensive prospect with the selection of Provorov

by Peter Prohaska
on
[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Seventh Overall: Philadelphia Flyers add another top defensive prospect with the selection of Provorov

Photo: Although already stocked with talented, young defensemen, the Philadelphia Flyers couldn’t pass up the chance to add talented Brandon Wheat Kings defender Ivan Provorov at the 2015 NHL Draft (courtesy of Ken McKenna/HF)

Although possessing several excellent defensive prospects, the Philadelphia Flyers were undoubtedly overjoyed to select Ivan Provorov with the seventh overall pick. It did not necessary represent a position of need for the Flyers, with Travis Sanheim, Shayne Gostisbehere and Samuel Morin already in the fold. Still, Ivan Provorov rose all season in the draft ranking until he was discussed as a potential third overall. It would have been a great surprise to see the young Russian slip out of the top ten, and he represents a value pick at this slot.

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[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Sixth Overall: New Jersey Devils add center depth with selection of Pavel Zacha

by Peter Prohaska
on
[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Sixth Overall: New Jersey Devils add center depth with selection of Pavel Zacha

Photo: The New Jersey Devils addressed a need up the middle with the selection of Pavel Zacha in the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft (Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)

With the sixth overall pick at the 2015 NHL Draft, the New Jersey Devils selected center Pavel Zacha from the OHL’s Sarnia Sting. Zacha is a powerful, aggressive and skilled center who might remind observers more of Bobby Holik than of Patrik Elias. That said, the standout for the Sarnia Sting offers incredible upside.

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2015 NHL Draft: Oilers shore up blueline with Reinhart acquisition

by Kristopher Bras
on
2015 NHL Draft: Oilers shore up blueline with Reinhart acquisition

Photo: 21-year-old defenseman Griffin Reinhart will offer immediate help to the Oiler blueline. (Image courtesy of Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)

The Edmonton Oilers acquired Griffin Reinhart from the New York Islanders during the 2015 NHL Draft in exchange for the 16th and 33rd overall picks. The move gives Edmonton a defenseman who is three years further along in his development than if they had used the 16th pick to acquire one. 

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[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Fifth Overall: Carolina Hurricanes help an area of need by drafting Noah Hanifin

by Ken McKenna
on
[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Fifth Overall: Carolina Hurricanes help an area of need by drafting Noah Hanifin

Photo: Boston College defenseman Noah Hanifin was the first selection for the Carolina Hurricanes at the 2015 NHL Draft (courtesy of Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Image)

One of the smoothest skaters and headiest players in the 2015 NHL Draft is Boston College defenseman Noah Hanifin. The Carolina Hurricanes obviously took a liking to the player thought by many to be the best defenseman in this draft, making Hanifin the fifth overall selection of the draft. Read more »

[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Fourth Overall: Toronto Maple Leafs add more skill with Mitch Marner

by Ken McKenna
on
[2015 NHL Draft] First Round, Fourth Overall: Toronto Maple Leafs add more skill with Mitch Marner

Photo: Mitch Marner is the newest Toronto Maple Leafs prospect, selected fourth overall at the 2015 NHL Draft (courtesy of Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)

One of the more pure offensive talents in the 2015 NHL Draft is London Knights forward Mitch Marner. The slightly-built winger was a scoring dynamo for the Knights in 2014-15, but ultimately lost out on the OHL scoring title on the last day of the season after Dylan Strome‘s offensive outburst in his season finale. With a fluid game based in part on creative distribution of the puck, Marner is one of the most offensively gifted players in the draft class and a solid pick at this spot.

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