Hockey’s Future 2009 annual Staff Mock Draft

By HF Staff

Below is Hockey’s Future’s Annual Staff Mock Draft, covering the first round of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.  We do only one mock draft a year, after the NHL combine, once all the data has been collected and the teams are actually in their decision-making modes.

The draft will be held in Montreal on June 26th-27th and will cover seven rounds.  Next to each pick below is a brief explanation as to why that selection was made. Team writers made the pick when available, and some were a consensus. No trades were allowed. 

No. Team Player Pos. Reasoning
1 New York Islanders Victor Hedman, Modo, Sweden D The highest rated defenseman in the draft, Hedman brings a blend of size and skill to an Islanders team that has lacked a No. 1 blueliner for some time. He will instantly provide a steadying presence along the blue line.
2 Tampa Bay Lightning John Tavares, London, OHL C The all-time goal-scoring leader in the OHL, Tavares is the consensus top forward in the draft. On a team with forwards such as Steve Stamkos and Vincent Lecavalier, Tavares would have the luxury of developing without as much pressure. 

3 Colorado Avalanche Matt Duchene, Brampton, OHL C The Avalanche are seeking an heir to Joe Sakic. After a season where he showed strong two-way play throughout and clutch scoring ability during the playoffs, Duchene appears to fit that need.

4 Atlanta Thrashers Evander Kane, Vancouver, WHL C Among the goal-scoring leaders in the WHL with 48 goals in just 61 games, Kane would bring a secondary scoring presence the Thrashers currently lack. His physical, two-way play at center addresses another organization need.

5 Los Angeles Kings Jared Cowen, Spokane, WHL D The Kings are expected to make some trades this off-season to address their need at forward. If they hold onto the fifth spot in the draft, then they will pursue that need through trade, likely dealing one of the defensemen already in their system. Cowen would go towards keeping the system well stocked. 

6 Phoenix Coyotes Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Leksand, Sweden D A late riser on draft boards, Ekman-Larsson is a dynamic, offensively-minded defenseman who would dramatically improve the Coyotes’ transition game and power play. Known as a mobile skater capable of crisp tape-to-tape passes, the 17-year-old also plays with maturity beyond his years. 

7 Toronto Maple Leafs Brayden Schenn, Brandon, WHL C Toronto GM Brian Burke has been open with his intentions to try and move up in the draft. If he is not able to, he could make a big splash by drafting Brayden Schenn, the younger brother of Toronto blueliner Luke Schenn. The younger Schenn is a complete player, playing with equal parts grit and skill.

8 Dallas Stars Dmitry Kulikov, Drummondville, QMJHL D The Stars have graduated the most of their defensive prospects over the past two seasons and to to restock the pipeline. They are also seeking an eventual replacement to the puck-moving Sergei Zubov. The smooth skating and offensively dynamic Kulikov should fill both of those needs. 

9 Ottawa Senators Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson, Timra, Sweden LW The Senators needed secondary scoring anyway, but with Dany Heatley’s days numbered in Ottawa, the need for a scoring forward is even greater. Paajarvi-Svensson brings good size (6’2, 198 pounds) along tremendous skating and playmaking abilities to a Senators organization needing help up front.

10 Edmonton Oilers Scott Glennie, Brandon, WHL C The Oilers are still looking for a blue-chip forward to build their offense around for the future. Glennie, an offensively gifted forward with decent skating ability, could fill that need. 

11 Nashville Predators Jacob Josefson, Djurgarden, Sweden C The Predators lack a second-line center at the NHL level and there appears to be no help in the pipeline. Josefson, a strong skating, two-way center with raw, untapped offensive ability, would go a long way to address that need.  The Predators are not shy of taking Europeans.

12 Minnesota Wild Jordan Schroeder, Minnesota, WCHA RW With Marian Gaborik’s future very much in limbo, picking an offensively minded forward is likely for the Wild.  The dimunitive forward and NCAA standout could develop with current Wild forward Pierre-Marc Bouchard into an effective one-two punch for years to come.

13 Buffalo Sabres Nazem Kadri, London, OHL C Kadri, a gritty, offensively minded forward from the OHL is someone Buffalo has seen a lot of this year. He is particularly effective on the forecheck and can play all three forward positions.

14 Florida Panthers John Moore, Chicago, USHL D Cornerstone defenseman Jay Bouwmeester seems destined to leave Florida via free-agency this summer creating an organizational need for mobile, puck-moving defensemen. The Panthers can go a long way to address that need by selecting John Moore, a fluid skating, puck-moving defenseman from Illinois.

15 Anaheim Ducks Louis Leblanc, Omaha, USHL C The Ducks depth at forward took a couple of hits this past season and the organization will look to restock the pipeline. Leblanc, a strong two-way center from the USHL, would add depth to their system and bring a much-needed secondary scoring presence behind Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry.

16 Columbus Blue Jackets Ryan Ellis, Windsor, OHL D The Blue Jackets are picking outside of the top 10 for the first time in franchise history. The organization’s primary need is for a puck-moving defenseman to quarterback the power play and Ellis, who posted 22 goals, 67 assists in 57 games fits the billing perfectly.

17 St. Louis Blues Zack Kassian, Peterborough, OHL RW The Blues are well stocked at all positions. But one glaring weakness in the system is the lack of a bona fide power forward prospect. The 6’3, 205 pound Kassian, who plays a physical, offensively minded game, is that type of player.

18 Montreal Canadiens Simon Despres. Saint John, QMJHL D Despres, the best defenseman still on the board at No. 18, brings good size and a puck-moving presence the Canadiens could use down the road.

19 New York Rangers Kyle Palmieri, U18, NTDP C A draft combine standout, Palmieri is an offensively-minded forward who combines grit, character, and work ethic with a high skill level. Although he is at least a year from going pro, his offensive game-breaking ability will be a welcomed addition to a Rangers squad who struggled to score last season.

20 Calgary Flames Landon Ferraro, Red Deer, WHL RW The Flames lack any top-six prospects at wing and Ferraro is among the top finishers remaining at this point. Playing for a Red Deer team owned by Brent Sutter, it would also make sense for Calgary GM Daryl Sutter to pick a player he has inside information on.

21 Philadelphia Flyers Chris Kreider, Andover, USHS LW At 6’2, 205 pounds, Kreider fits the profile of a big-bodied offensively minded forward that the Flyers like. With most of their current team young and under contract through 2010-11, the Flyers will have the luxury of allowing the young forward to develop at his own pace.

22 Vancouver Canucks Tim Erixon, Skelleftea, Sweden D The Canucks have drafted only three defensemen in the past three years. Consequentially the defensive pipeline has emptied, with no clear-cut, top-four defensemen in the system. Adding the steadying presence of Tim Erixon to the system will go a long way to bringing it back to respectability.

23 New Jersey Devils Calvin de Haan, Oshawa, OHL D The Devils have a handful of promising defensive prospects in their system but none have the skill level to match Oshawa standout Calvin de Haan. The prospect is a classic puck-moving defenseman with smooth skating, fantastic vision, and superior puck-distributing abilities.

24 Washington Capitals Carter Ashton, Lethbridge, WHL LW Despite having a wealth of offensive talent at the NHL level, the Capitals still lack a true power-forward type who can also act as a secondary scoring threat. Ashton, a 6’3 winger who posted 30 goals, 20 assists, and 93 penalty minutes last season, would go a long way to filling that need.

25 Boston Bruins David Rundblad, Skelleftea, Sweden D The Bruins are young and well stocked at all positions. With puck-moving defenseman Matt Lashoff traded to Tampa Bay in March, Rundblad, a smooth-skating defenseman with good vision and offensive instincts, would be an ideal fit for the organization.

26 NY Islanders (from SJ) Ethan Werek, Kingston, OHL C With their second pick in the draft, the Isles need to address their need for more scoring help. Werek, a 6’2, forward from the OHL is still considered a raw talent. The fact he posted 32 goals on a weak Kingston squad and can play all three forward positions, makes him a prospect with intriguing upside.

27 Carolina Hurricanes Peter Holland, Guelph, OHL C The Hurricanes have made their draft intentions clear that they are looking for a forward who brings a blend of size and skill to the ice. Holland, a 6’2 center who posted 28 goals, 39 assists for the Guelph Storm last season fits that profile.

28 Chicago Blackhawks Drew Shore, U18, NTDP C With strength and youth at both forward and defense, the Blackhawks will have the luxury of drafting a player who may take a little longer to develop. Shore is good on the forecheck, a strong skater, and his blend of size (6’2, 198 pounds) and skill make him an intriguing prospect.

29 Detroit Red Wings Carl Klingberg, Frolunda, Sweden LW An energetic forward who is not afraid to throw around his 6’3, 205-pound frame, Klingberg is also capable of producing offensively. A right-handed shot who plays along the left wing, his mix of grit and skill seems a smart choice for the Red Wings.

30 Pittsburgh Penguins Jeremy Morin, U18, NTDP C The Penguins need a goal-scoring forward to play with star centers Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby. Despite character issues, Morin’s pure goal-scoring ability is something that simply can not be ignored.


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