The Flyers moved down 4 spots in the draft and still got their puck moving defenseman. By doing so they gained a 7th rounder this year and a high second round pick in 2002. With what seems like small moves in the later rounds, they gained high picks in the 2002 draft. Looking at this draft, it seems like the Flyers are planning to build their team through the draft. They took 5 defenseman in the draft and 2 goalies. It seems like they are trying to stock their system and at the same time develop players at the minor league levels.
They acquired a potential 1st or 2nd line center with size and skill in Jiri Dopita, who is considered the best player outside of the NHL by the Hockey News. If he is anywhere near that, the Flyers stole him for a second round pick . This may in the future allow the Flyers to sign Jeremy Roenick and then trade Daymond Langkow . Also, the Flyers could chose not go after Roenick and try to sign Rob Blake instead.
Now if the Flyers can just deal their 10 year old headache, Eric Lindros. There seems to be no end in site for this saga. Eric and Carl still think they are larger than the game. My thought is that the Flyers will still go after Roenick even though they acquired Dopita. This will allow the team to get the fans excited and put the Lindros dealings “on the back burner” as Clarke promised. The Flyers future is bright.
A pick-by-pick draft review follows.
1st Round (# 27)
Jeff Woywitka (D)
If the San Jose Sharks drafted as well as they hope, in a few years the San Jose Sharks could potentially have a very German flare to it.
In Saturday’s first round of the NHL Entry Draft, San Jose chose only the second player from Germany to be taken in the first round, centerman Marcel Goc; the first was Sharks left wing/center Marco Sturm. San Jose didn’t have selections in the second or third rounds due to trades with Montreal for Vincent Damphousse and Columbus for retaining Evgeni Nabokov respectively.
Goc, a 6’1” 187lbs center plays a style most comparable to Scott Gomez of the New Jersey Devils. Goc’s puck handling ability is as good as many players currently playing at a high level in the NHL. What impresses scouts the most about Goc, however, is his poise and ability to read plays.
The second youngest player selected, Goc still has time to improve his skills, as he will likely not see time with San Jose until the 2002/03 season at the earliest. Goc already possesses many skills that cannot be taught and that most players his age are still developing.
“Marcel is a very complete player with very little weaknesses,” said Tim Burke, Director of Amateur Scouting. “He has the potential to be a number one center.”
While not nearly as highly touted as names such as Kovalchuk and Spezza, Goc has found a niche’ for himself being considered one of the late-first-round gems such as Martin Havlat selected 26th in 1999 by Ottawa and Gomez, selected 27th in 1998.
Several scouts from teams including Detroit, Bu Read more»
Though the promise was to go defense today, the Hawks did quite well at forward too. And a drop down deal today brought two additional picks.
San Jose was again this year, a willing participant in taking the #106 pick for San Jose’s #119, 186 and 216 picks.
The Hawks opened the fourth round taking RH D Brent MacLellan of Halifax, Nova Scotia with pick #104.
In talking to the 6’3″ 210 pounder, I asked the Rimouski defenseman how he thought he ended up a Blackhawk and he answered, “Good interview.” He was a likable conversationalist, who didn’t dodge my question of how he was known for his hitting and clear out abilities, but that scouts thought he didn’t make improvements this season. He answered that he thought he played the last third of the season strong and aggressively, and his “problem” early on is he started thinking he was a end rusher and scorer and forgot what got him where he was. (He usually makes the smart pass out the defensive zone.) Known to protect teammates,he was the alternate captain on team Orr at the 2001 prospects game.He will be at the Hawk camp in July and he said and knows that he can build stamina.
With pick #115, Mike Smith made his second annual western Russia pick ala Radulov last draft. It was virtual unknown Vladimir Gusev, a LHD who is 6’1″ 189 lber who played at Khabarovsk in Russia.
Pick #119 was LH Forward from the Russian superleague named Aleksey Zotkin, a 6 foot 200 lber from Magnitogorsk where he had 2 goals and 5 points in 40 games along with 34 pims. Neither was at the draft.
The fifth round is where I felt th Read more»
Fate just put me there. An innocent draft watcher just waiting for my Blackhawks to change their fate. I never thought I would be smack dab in the middle of a snafu that certainly made draft history. I just happened to be sitting in section with Chiodo entourage: Andy, his parents, friends, agent,advisors,and coach Dave Cameron. There was talk about how Atlanta had made inroads and were definitely interested in taking the young goaltender. As a new franchise they were looking for help in net and Chiodo is a young man who handles adversity well. The every fact that he had to share time in net on the Toronto St. Petes with Peter Budaj probably had already weaken his hold on a draft slot. Loss of starts means lack of showcase by NHL scouts.
As the 5th round cranked into the fourth pick, the voice at the podium blared out, “Atlanta Thrashers pick, from St. Mike’s of the OHA, Andy Chiodo.”
There was the usual celebration with the draftee, alone, making his way to the floor to meet the team’s management. Usually photos and baseball cap fittings ensued.
Not this time.
We all watched as Andy Chiodo made his way back to his seat to the bewilderment of his following. Andy returned and quietly explained why he was no longer on the hallowed draft floor. I tried hard to hear as Andy quietly repeated the story to members of his enclave. Apparently Atlanta, though interested in him, also had Colorado College’ Colin Stuart on their board. When a team decides, the name goes two places. One to the central registry which is the official pick and the other to the podium. Ap Read more»
Every team has to build somehow. General Manager Brian Burke and Assistant GM David Nonis have done an excellent job in taking the Canucks from doormats to a success story in the money-driven NHL of today is remarkable. Burke and Co have been able to build through the draft, acquiring players such as Bryan Allen, Artem Chubarov, the Sedins, Brandon Reid, and now, R.J. Umberger, and that’s only in three seasons since taking over.
The Canucks have never been a model of draft excellence. Blunders such as Shawn Antoski, Alek Stojanov, Libor Polasek, and others, have been more or less forgotten since Nonis and Burke took over a couple of years back. They have instilled a mode of confidence in the players, management, and most importantly, the fans.
Even though Bryan Allen hasn’t arrived full time, (Which can be excused because of his various injuries) Burke has had a multitude of success in developing players, and drafting the best player available, rather than picking for a need, and that strategy has served him very well, as there is nothing to suggest that the good luck won’t continue.
Burke and Company strolled up on to the Draft podium and announced that their first pick in 2001 was R.J. Umberger. Umberger, who is is power-forward type of player. He slipped to the Canucks which was probably due, in small part, to the Oilers making a reach for Ales Hemsky at number thirteen.
The one problem with Umberger, however, is that he always leaves scouts wanting more. For someone with his size, he should be invo Read more»