Red Wings 2001 Draft Pick Season Review

By Zoran Manojlovic

Going into the 2001 draft without a first round pick the expectations were not high on landing a future NHL impact player in Motown, and with only seven picks it didn’t look like the depth chart would get much deeper either. But now, almost one year after the draft we can once again say that the Red Wings did a good job and proved that they have a very good scouting staff. Now let us take a look at those seven players and their first season as Detroit Red Wings prospects.

1.Igor Grigorenko

Position: RW/C
Team: Lada Togliatti
Born: 1983
Height: 5.11
Weight: 185
Drafted: 2nd round (62nd overall)
Ga – Go – Ass – Po – Pim
Stats: 45 – 9 – 9 – 18 – 58

With their first pick in the 2001 draft, Red Wings chose to pick a small, speedy Russian that according to Ken Holland they had ranked 15th overall. After this season there is not much to question about the pick. Grigorenko has had a fantastic season in Russia with both his Super League team, Lada Togliatti and with the junior national team where he won a gold medal at the U-20 WJC in Czech Republic.

At the start of the season Grigorenko didn’t receive much ice time with Lada and therefore played some games with the junior team where he didn’t have problems with the scoring. Midway through the season Igor started to get more quality ice time with the Super league team on the 2nd and 3rd lines and responded very well to the promotion. At the end of the season he was one of the best offensive players on the team and finished the breakthrough year with 9 goals and 9 assists in 45 games, which is very respectable for an 18-year-old.

Although he had a great season with Lada, his performances on the junior national team were even more impressive. He was the best scorer and most consistent offensive threat on the team throughout the season. In the last tournament that was played in St. Petersburg, Grigorenko was voted MVP and led the tournament with impressive 5 goals and 1 assist in 5 games. He finished the year with an impressive 15 goals in 19 games with the junior national team.

FUTURE: The future looks very bright for the speedy Russian. He is only 19 years old and should stay for at least one more season in Russia to develop his two-way game. Although his two-way game has improved a lot since the draft day he still needs to work even harder and gain some more muscle before making the trip to North America. With his superb stick handling skills, great hockey sense and speed he has the upside to become a top line winger in the NHL some day.

DRAFT CONCLUSION: Phenomenal season. 2nd round steal.

2.Drew MacIntyre

Position: G
Team: Sherbrooke
Born: 1983
Height: 6.1
Weight: 185
Drafted: 4th round (121 overall)
Ga – Gaa – So – SvP
Stats: 45 – 3.98 – 1 – .890

MacIntyre has had a tough year in QJMHL where he has been holding down the fort. He chose to play in the QJMHL because he thought that it would be better for his development if he faced more shots, and this year he certainly got plenty of work. In many games he faced 40+ shots and still managed to hold his team in the game. He is one of the best
net minders in the league and can only hope that the team will get some quality players for the next season so that he can get some playoff experience before moving on to the AHL.

FUTURE: MacIntyre will play at least one more year in the Q and hopefully he will have a little bit better defense that can help him more. He is a very young and important prospect for the Red Wings with his great reflexes and confidence. With the right development he will need at least two years in the AHL before he can challenge for an NHL spot.

DRAFT CONCLUSION: Tough season in the Q. Solid 4th round pick.

3.Miroslav Blatak

Position: D
Team: Zlin
Born: 1982
Height: 6-00
Weight: 176
Drafted: 4th round (129th overall)
Ga – Go – Ass – Po – Pim
Stats: 39 – 4 – 7 – 11 – 18
P-off : 11 – 1 – 2 – 3 – 8

Blatak enjoyed a very good season with Zlin, where he was one of the better defensemen all year long. He received a good amount of ice-time and showed that he was worth it. When he was drafted he was known as a stay-at-home defenseman with good patience on the ice. This year he has developed his two-way game and is more comfortable in the offensive zone, which has led to increased numbers offensively. During the regular season he picked up 4 goals and 9 assists in 42 games while in the playoffs he scored 1 goal and assisted on two more.

At the WJC he led all defensemen in scoring with 3 goals and 4 assists in 7 games while all his goals came on the power play. Blatak once again showed up his great hockey sense and patience while playing.

FUTURE: He was a surprising pick, but he’s a small, smart and effective defenseman. He still needs to bulk up a bit (10-15 pounds) and be a “little” more physical to translate to the North American style. Blatak could develop as a solid top 6, two-way defenseman in 2 to 3 years.

DRAFT CONCLUSION: Strong season. Looks like a steal in the 4th.

5. Andreas Jamtin

Position: RW
Team: AIK
Born: 1983
Height: 5.11
Weight: 185
Drafted: 5th round (157th overall)
Ga – Go – Ass – Po – Pim
Stats: 42 – 2 – 3 – 5 – 55
P-off : 10 – 1 – 2 – 3 – 4
J-20 : 13 – 14 – 17 – 31 – 63

Andreas Jämtin is another solid mid-round pick by the Red Wings. He has had a very good and positive season in 2001-2002. Andreas played with both the Elite team and the J-20 team. With the big boys on the Elite league team, Andreas didn’t get much quality ice-time in many games, but when he did he made a good job. He played both on the right wing and as centre, which has helped in the development of his two-way game. He finished the season with 2 goals and 3 assists and 55 pim in 42 games which is not that impressive.

If he wasn’t that impressive with the Elite league team, he sure made up for that with the junior team. Jamtin amassed 14 goals and 17 assists in just 13 games. His overall game was very good but it could have been even better if he had was more focused on it. I had the opportunity to see him in one junior game where he had one assist, 3 shots on goal and a game misconduct for roughing with fellow Wing prospect, Jimmie Svensson in two periods. He didn’t show much hunger and looked pissed of all game long (2 periods).

FUTURE: Jamtin is a very talented hockey player, but he still has some problems with his discipline. When playing with the junior team he has not shown any hunger or will and still produced over 2 points per game, but when playing with the seniors he has been more focused and disciplined. He will mature as he gets older and smarter.
His team, AIK didn’t secure a spot in the Elite league for the next season and will therefore play in Allsvenskan. This could be a great opportunity for Andreas to receive tons of quality ice time and develop his game in a senior league. Jamtin has very good overall skills and likes to be aggressive which means that he could eventually develop into a 3rd line winger with offensive upside in 3 years.

DRAFT CONCLUSION: Good 5th rounder. Tons of skill.

5.Nick Pannoni

Position: G
Team: Seattle
Born: 1982
Height: 6.0
Weight: 170
Drafted: 6th round (195th overall)
Ga – Gaa – So – SvP
Stats: 45 – 4.13 – 1 – .886

Before the start of the season Seattle lost some good players in Jamie Lundmark, Barret Heisten and that effected the season a lot. Even when Lundmark and co. played last season the team still had problems and was not a front-runner in WHL. This year they were even worse but Nick still managed to keep up his own game to complete a solid season. Just as last year when the playoffs began Nick picked up his game and was a wall in the series versus Portland where the Seattle managed to upset the No. 1 ranked team in WHL.

FUTURE: Now that Detroit have its own farm team Pannoni could after a strong camp find himself in AHL next year because he is born late 82 which means that he would be an overager in WHL, while Detroit will need a young goalie in AHL for development. He is still several years away from the NHL but he has shown in the WHL playoff two years in a row that he has some potential.

DRAFT CONCLUSION: Good season on a poor team. Solid 6th rounder.

6. Dmitri Bykov

Position: D
Team: AK Bars Kazan
Born: 1977
Height: 6.1
Weight: 195
Drafted: 8th round (258th overall)
Ga – Go – Ass – Po – Pim
Stats: N/A 1 – 2 – 3 – N/A

Bykov has had another good year with AK Bars Kazan where he was one of the best. He didn’t put up any remarkable numbers, but he played a safe defensive game that earned him a spot on the WC roster for the second time in his career. At the world championships he was the best and most consistent defenseman on the team and would have probably been on the All Stars lineup if not for a leg injury. He played 5 games and had 3 goals and 1 assist.

During the season in Russia he was selected to play in the All Stars game.

FUTURE: The 25 year old D-man could be in the NHL next year. Bykov has played in two World Championships and has a lot of experience of senior hockey. He will attend at the training camp in Traverse City in September where a spot on the NHL roster is not impossible, but he will likely start the year with the Grand Rapids in AHL.
His potential is a top 6 stay-at-home defenseman.

DRAFT CONCLUSION: another solid season in Russia. North America next stop.

7. Francois Senez

Position: D
Team: R.P.I (ECAC) / Drummondville (QJMHL)
Born: 1982
Height: 6.3
Weight: 225
Drafted: 9th round (288th overall)
Ga – Go – Ass – Po – Pim
Stats: 19 – 0 – 0 – 0 – 51

Francois Senez started the year with R.P.I of ECAC where he had been playing for the last 2 years. But only 6 games into the season he decided that it would be better for him to move on to the Q where he would receive more ice time and have a chance to attend the Red Wings training camp with hopes of earning a minor league contract.

He played the final 19 games with Drummondville where he did not register any points but 51 penalty minutes.

FUTURE: The future looks pretty good for the second-to-last pick in last years draft. The decision to move to QJMHL was smart. Now he will have a chance of attending the training camp in September and with a good showing he could land himself a contract and move on to Grand Rapids. Another whole year in Q might be better to show what he can do.

DRAFT CONCLUSION: Hulking D-man split time in Q and ECAC. 2nd to last pick.