Panthers Draft Review
By Panthers Editor Mark Fischel with commentary from Jes Golbez
Going into the draft, the Panthers had 4 of the top 50 picks, and it wasn’t an issue of if they were going to make a deal, but rather what kind of deal will they pull off? Needless to say, the Panthers didn’t disappoint the 8000 fans in attendance. Pulling one major deal to acquire Valeri Bure, and another in which they traded up to the first round, the Panthers ended up the draft with making 2 first-round selections and ensuring next season will be an easy one for the marketing department.
Going into this draft, areas of attention were as follows: Defense, Defense, and more Defense; Center of Attention,; Tending the Nets; and Speedy Defensive Forwards with Heart. It is a comforting that the Panthers scouting department on draft day fulfilled 75% of those needs, with some smart picks heavy on skilled players, tough players, a overage Euro-veteran, and a Elite level prospect.
Before the draft, all differing opinions had the Panthers trading up, trading down, trading the pick for defensive help, or having a fire sale of players to rid themselves of high priced players like Pavel Bure and Trevor Kidd. But the Panthers mainly stayed the course and got what they wanted. Tim Murray, the Panthers Director of Amateur Scouting, felt the day was a successful one “We actually got guys a full round later, 2 rounds later than we thought we were going to get them”
Panthers Draft Selections
1st Round, 4th overall: Stephe Read more»
Many teams were busy making moves on day one, but the Caps remained fairly complacent. They choose Nathan Paetsch with their fifty first pick overall, traded the sixty first overall pick to Tampa bay for the New York Islanders’ second pick in the 2002 draft, and picked up Owen Fussey with the ninetieth pick overall.
The trade the Caps made was a fairly minor one, basically swapping a low second pick this year for what should be a high one next year. They could pick as high as thirty-five or forty next year with the Islanders’ second rounder. The trade is a relatively minor one, and most likely does not do anything significant to help or hinder the Caps in the immediate future.
58 overall – Nathan Paetsch – D – Moose Jaw (WHL)
Size: 6’0, 195
Last Year’s Stats: 70 games, 8 goals, 54 assists, 62 points, 118 PIM
Washington’s highest draftee of 2001 was ranked fifty first overall by the Hockey News, and is a player who probably could have gone a lot earlier. He is known as an offensive defenseman whose primary asset is his outstanding passing and decision making ability. He should be a solid NHL defenseman someday, probably a 3, 4, or 5 type guy on a good team. His offensive abilities will make him a power play quarterback. Because of the Capitals’ depth at defense, Nathan will likely finish his junior career before getting a real chance to make the Caps.
90 overall – Owen Fussey – RW – Calgary (WHL) Read more»
The Los Angeles Kings were poised to add some quality players to their system last weekend, and that is exactly what they did. The Kings pulled some suprises, but left Florida with exactly what they wanted- a combination of size, speed, skill and goaltending- some that can contribute right away.
The Kings used the 18th selection on 18 year-old Swedish right winger Jens Karlsson. Karlsson had slipped down the draftboard on many teams’ lists because of a somewhat “off” season last year. Two years ago, Jens was listed among the top potential Euro’s in the 2001 draft and this potential is what lead the Kings to nab him in the first round. Many feel Karlsson has the protoypical NHL game and can give the Kings the power forward they have coveted for so long, Karlsson has a nasty streak as evidenced by his 185 penalty minutes in the Swedish Junior league last season.
The 30th selection was used to draft Ohio State freshman David Steckel. The hulking center from West Bend, Wisconsin had 35 points in 32 games for OSU in his freshman season. Steckel is a worker and a potentially powerful player. At 6-5, 200 pounds, Steckel is another piece of the puzzle that the Kings have yearned for- a big, playmaking, nasty center.
After seeing what Adam Deadmarsh’s style did for the team this season, the King’s mission seems clear. They want gritty forwards, preferably with size. If you look at the last two drafts, you could potentially see a line of 6-3 Frolov, 6-3 Karlsson and 6-5 Steckel. While you never know when these players will arrive, the potential of somet Read more»
Going into the 2001 Draft the needs were on the table plain and simple, toughness and size up front. The Rangers picked a goaltender in the by the name of Don Blackburn out of Kootenay of the WHL. Although Blackburn is and was rated as one of the top overall players in the draft the nets in NY have greater “short” term problems and than long term. With Johan Holmqvist, Jason Labarbera, Henrik Lundqvist, Johan Asplund and Vitali Yeremeyev in the pipeline one has to wonder why add another? Regardless of whether he is better than those, the Rangers needs in the nets are immediate. Mike Richter will be unavailable for sometime and Kirk McLean is not the answer. Guy Hebert has been given his walking papers so who is available in the short term?
The Rangers next pick was 6-3 200 pound defender out of St. Petersburg in the Russian Elite League. While the second round pick, he could turn out to be a nice addition to this club in 3 years or so. While the likes of Mottau & Aufiero and now a slew of free agent / traded defenders St.Croix, Kinch join up… there are question marks about what to do with the excess baggage on defense.
The Rangers did not find a “need player” until the 3rd round when they selected Garth Murray. The 6-1 205 pounder tallied 44 points on 28 goals in 2000-01 and amassed 183 penalty minutes for his hard work.
New Jersey Devils 2001 Draft Review
Every NHL Draft seems to follow a similar pattern for Lou Lamerillo and David Conte and this year was no different. The Devils went in with a substantial amount of draft picks, added to their deep pool of young talent, and threw in a few surprises as well. Here is a brief summary of what the Devils did and who they picked at this years’ draft.
New Jersey trades this pick to the Florida Panthers for two 2001 2nd rounders(#44 and #48)
Analysis: I think that if Marcel Goc had fallen to this slot, the Devils would have grabbed him. I was a little surprised they didn’t select Krajicek, because I thought he would have been a perfect pick for the Devils, but I also wasn’t surprised the pick was traded. Anytime Lamoriello gets a chance to gain an extra pick, he’ll do it.
1st Round(#28): Adrian Foster, C/LW, 6’1″, 200, Saskatoon(WHL)
Player Notes: Has played only 12 games the last two seasons for Saskatoon as a result of an abdominal injury from the junior A ranks in his hometown of Calgary. Played in only 5 games last season, recording 5 assists. Played midget hockey with Thrashers top prospect Dany Heatley. Described as a smooth skater that can accelerate well. Good puck-handling skills, compared to Doug Weight. Will play physical.
Analysis: As per usual, the Devils pulled of a draft day surprise. The CSB didn’t even have Foster ranked. This pick will be high-risk, high reward, and if the Devils did their homework on this guy(which I’m sure they did) he Read more»