Detroit 2001 Draft Review

By Zoran Manojlovic

The Detroit Red Wings had a very tough time to pick an impact player since thay didn`t have a first round pick, and only having 7 picks in the whole draft. That is a big loss since this draft was probably the deepest and the best ever. Let`s take a look at the picks that Detroit had.

1. Igor Grigorenko

Position: Right Wing
Team: CSK VVS Samara (Rus-2)
Born: 1983
Height: 5.11
Weight: 185
Drafted: 2nd round (62nd overall)
Rating: 6.5 / 10
Last season: 39 games 10 goals 10 assists 20 points

Igor Grigorenko played last year in his hometown of Samara in the Russian high league and was one of the best players on the team, and he also produced good numbers for a 17-year-old. Igor was also member of the Russian World U-18 team where he also was one of the best players and was second in the scoring on the team with 6 goals and 4 assists and a plus-11 in 6 games, while playing on the first line with no.1 pick Ilya Kovalchuk.

Igor showed up a lot great stuff offensively with nice moves and great plays and that led to Igor being named to the U-18 first All-Star team. When he returned to Russia he was recalled by Lada Togliatti to play in the Super league playoffs and Igor didn`t dissapoint anyone even dough he only had one goal in 5 games he caused much trouble for the opposite defenseman and played good overall.

Grigorenko is a very gifted young player who possesses impressive offensive talent, he has a very well developed hockey sense, he is very quick on the skates and he loves to make shifty moves at high speed, he also has nice playmaking skills and is a dangerous shooter.

Grigorenko will probably stay in Russia and try to make the Super League team next year.

2. Drew MacIntyrePosition: Goalie
Team: Sherbrooke (QMJHL)
Born: 1983
Height: 6.1
Weight: 180
Drafted: 4th round (121 overall)
Rating: 6.5 / 10
Last season: 48 games 17-22-3 W-L-T 3.27 GAA .902 pct.

Last year Drew finished his second season in the QMJHL. Even though he had some problems in the early season Drew came back and showed up impressive play and took over as the starting goaltender on a poor club. He was high in all the league leading departments, second in shotouts (4), sixth in GAA (3.27), third in save procantage (.902) and he also recived two defensive player off the week awards. MacIntyre was ranked 5th among the North American goaltenders, (2nd only to top selection Pascal Leclaire from QMJHL).

Drew is a very quick netminder who uses his good frame to stop pucks effectively, he is also strong mentally and stays calm under high-pressure. He also has a great work-ethic and always looks to improve his game.

MacIntyre is a very good and important prospect for Detroit, and I`m very happy and exciting with this pick. I think that he was a top 5 golie in this draft and can develope into a future NHL starting goaltender.

3. Miroslav Blatak

Position: Defence
Team: Zlin (CZE jr)
Born: 1982
Height: 5.11
Weight: 175
Drafted: 4th round (129th overall)
Rating: 5 / 10
Last season: 36 games 1 goal 12 assists 13 points 26 pim

Blatak was eligible for last years draft but he wasn`t drafted even though he had a solid season in Zlin jr. He was ranked 62 in Europe. This year he once again showed that he can play a confident two way game with Zlin jr and got a late-season call-up to Zlin`s Extraleague club where he also played solid hockey and picked up two assists in eight games. When the playoffs began he was on the team but he didn`t see much action and didn`t register any points.

Miroslav is a very smart young defenseman who doasn`t make many errors. He plays a confident two-way game with good intensity. He can make nice passes and is willing to join the rush. Even though he`s not much involved physiclly he is he is a steady defenceman. Blatak will probably spend another year in Czech Republic, but this time with the senior team of Zlin.

5. Andreas Jamtin

Position: Right Wing
Team: Farjestad (J20 Swe)
Born: 1983
Height: 5.11
Weight: 185
Drafted: 5th round (157th overall)
Rating: 6 / 10
Last season: 13 games 5 goals 8 assists 13 points 83 pim

Andreas was in born Stockholm, Sweden but he spend the last two years with Farjestad in the junior league. He started this year very well, and had 13 points (5+8) in the first 13 games, he also picked up 83 pim in a league that isn`t very rough. Than he got suspended several times by the club for disciplinary reasons, and he decided to leave for Stockholm where he joined AIK`s organisation. Because of Swedish regulations, Jamtin was kept from playing for the remainder of the season. But he still made the Swedish World U-18 team and displayed great talent throughout the whole tournoument and finished as the best scorer on the team with 7 points (3+4) in 6 games, and as usually he spend some time in the penalty box, 26 minutes.

Jamtin might not be a big player, but he sure is an aggressive forward who gets involved all over the ice. He has a good vision and solid playmaking ability. Jamtin is good skater who also possesses fine stick-handling and always make things happen offensively.

I think that Andreas will be a solid NHL player in the future, the only thing you can complain on is his undisciplined game, but he`ll sure muture with the time and take more responsibillity.

5. Nick Pannoni

Position: Goalie
Team: Seattle (WHL)
Born: 1982 (november)
Height: 6.0
Weight: 170
Drafted: 5th round (195th overall)
Rating: 5.5
Last season: 41 games 17-17- 5 W-L-T 4.16 GAA .878 pct

Pannoni was a WHL rookie last year, where he played with Seattle Thunderbirds. Nick splitted time with Tomas Vicars and started 41 games and had a solid 17-17-5 record while playing on the league’s third-worst defensive team. After being backup in the two first games Pannoni took over in the Thunderbirds’ crease and did it with style. Pannoni posted a 2.54 goals against average in seven games along with an impressive .930 save percentage.

Pannoni is a technically sound netminder who can make BIG saves under rough situations. He has good positioning and always trys to clear the puck on his own, and sometimes it get`s him into truble.

Pannoni showed some promising stuff in the post-season and is also an important prospect with fellow draft selection Drew MacIntyre to add organizational depth in goal. Next year he`ll probably be starting goalie in Seatle and try to take his game to another level.

6. Dmitri Bykov

Position: Defence
Team: AK Bars Kazan (RUS)
Born: 1977
Height: 6.0
Weight: 181
Drafted: 8th round (258th overall)
Rating: 5 / 10
Last season: Not important

Bykov who is teammate of current Detroit prospect Pavel Datsyuk in AK Bars Kazan, was a member of Russia’s 1998-99 World Championship and played in six games this season with the Russian National Team. Over the last two seasons Bykov has scored 6 goals 15 assists in 74 games.

Dmitri is a stay-at-home defenseman although he is willing to join the rush when needed. He has excellent work-ethic and is willing to work hard to succed.

Bykov is 24 years of age and is not really a prospect but he`ll sure add some depth to the organisation and will probably move to North America and AHL next year.

7. Francois Senez

Position: Defence
Team: R.P.I (ECAC)
Born: 1982
Height: 6.3
Weight: 225
Drafted: 9th round (288th overall)
Rating: 5 / 10

Senez is a 6-foot-3, 225-pound stay-at-home defenseman from R.P.I. (ECAC). He was ranked 58th overall by Central Scouting at mid-season but Senez suffered injury problems early in the season and when he returned to action he dropped to 121st at the season-end.

Senez is a good stay-at-home defenseman who possesses great strength and plays a good physical game. He has average skateing ability but is not a speedster.

Senez is young defenseman who is a solid prospect and well needed in Detroit`s organisation. With a injury-free year he`ll sure show what he is capable of.

Draft Comments

I think that Detroit did a good job on the draft even though the only had 7 picks. Thay improved those areas thay needed to improve, netminders, wingers and defence. Even if thay maybe didn`t draft any franchise players thay added some depth.

At 62nd they picked Igor Grigorenko, a right wing that has potential to be a great 2nd line winger. Detroit knows what they picked and they know that he is a gamble, I would have probably picked Yared Hagos who went 70 to Dallas, he`ll sure play in NHL maybe not as a star but a solid 2nd or 3rd liner.

Drew MacIntyre was picked at 121st place and he is maybe the best and most important player Detroit picked this year. He was a top goalie in the draft and he has potential of becoming a starting netminder in NHL.

129th was Mirosalv Blatak who also is a gamble because of his size. He is a solid two-way defenseman but he needs to improve his game physically and get stronger and bigger if he is going to play in NHL.

Detroit made a deal with Calgary to move up in the draft to get Andreas Jamtin at 157th. Andreas is a great pick in my eys, he has a lot of good ingredients, skill, strength and willigness to get physical. Only minus is his discipline, but I don`t think that will be a big problem to fix.

At 195th Detroit picked their second goalie, Nick Pannoni, who also is a good prospect with some nice upside. He exploded in the WHL playoffs and showed great promise, but he now needs to become a top goalie in WHL and perform on constant basis before moving to the next level.

Dmitri Bykov was picked to provide some direct depth to the organisation. He`ll sure come over and play in Ahl next year.

The last pick was Francois Senez, 288th overall. Senez, a stay-at-home defensman who had a season interrupted by a bad injury. He could maybe become a minor league player in the future.