The Washington Capitals surprised no one with the players they selected early on in the 2000 Entry Draft. The top three selections all came from the Western Hockey League, where the Caps have gone for several high picks before. The unexpected moves came when the Capitals made four trades involving nine draft picks and one player – 1995 first-rounder Miika Elomo. Elomo had survived Friday’s expansion draft and was expected to make the jump to the NHL next season.
In the first round (26th overall), they chose Brian Sutherby from Moose Jaw. He is a two-way center, and is very physical. The Caps needed more offensive forwards, but could not pass on Sutherby. He suffered a shoulder injury in November and missed some time. He plays a similar style to current Capital Jeff Halpern, but is a bit bigger.
With the first of their two second-round picks (43rd overall), the Capitals grabbed Matt Pettinger. He is a big winger who has some offensive ability. He left college mid-season to enter the WHL and scored seven goals in his first 12 games. He is the fourth member of the 1999-2000 Calgary Hitmen on the Capitals’ reserve list – joining Kris Beech, Rastislav Stana and
The other second-round pick (61st overall) was used to select big defenseman Jakub Cutta from Swift Current. He is an stay-at-home defenseman but likes to carry the puck. He is originally from the Czech Republic, but has adjusted to the North American game very quickly.
Canadiens Stay Close To Home on Draft Day
In a draft which was dominated by players overseas, the Canadiens opted to stay close to home with their draft selections. Despite adding several full-time European scouts, specifically Dave King, the Habs focused on American-born players in the College and high school ranks for a second year in a row after neglecting the NCAA route for years. To continue the trend started in ’99, Montreal primarily drafted blueliners, particularly when they drafted south of the border; all five college and high school players drafted over the last two years are defensemen.
This trend surprisingly started quickly in this year’s draft. With Montreal’s first pick, they selected Ron Hainsey: a College player with offensive tools. The swift skating defenseman out of Hockey East plays with poise, intelligence and has terrific vision to make crisp outlet passes out of his own zone; something the Canadiens desperately need. However, he was pegged as a late first round draft pick, and perhaps even an early second rounder. Is this yet another foolish move by the Canadiens’ management?
At this year’s draft the Oilers with the first three players drafted at 6’5″,
6’4.5″ and 6’3″ Edmonton took huge steps to ensure the future looms
larger than life.
After stealing defense man Eric Brewer and left winger Josh Green with a
second round pick 35th overall in this years draft for defense man Roman
Hamrlik from the New York Islanders right before the beginning of the
second round only added to the success felt by the Oilers brass. General
manager Kevin Lowe and director of player personnel fulfilled their
mandate of adding size and gritty players to a fairly decent list of
prospects whom rate in the top ten in the league on regular basis, the
retiring of long time chief head scout Barry Fraser they wanted to go
out with a bang.
1st Rnd – 17th pick: LW/RW Alexei Mikhnov 6-5/200 Team: Yaroslavl
(RUS) Dob: 08-31-82 Sh: Left
Notes: This young man remains a bit of a enigma due to the infrequency
and lack of availability to see the native of Ukraine play, with the
cancellations of games and tournaments some scouts were reluctant to
make a full evaluation on him. With comparisons to Oleg Kvasha, Nik
Antropov and Andre Nazorov what to expect from Alexei may be hard to
gauge however his upside and potential could very well make him one of
the steals in the draft. with a large Ukrainian and Russian community in
Edmonton they will receive him with open arms and make Alexei fell like Read more»