Friday, June 22, 2007

Your Obligatory Mock Draft

This could get pretty ugly…

As you all know, I don’t have much talent as a prognosticator. I’m still hurting from the whooping I took thanks to my SC Finals prediction. Frankly, I probably wouldn’t even make predictions if it wasn’t for the spectacle and the laughs that you probably get out of it. That being said, what good is a blog if the author doesn’t randomly spout off opinions?

I feel almost obligated to follow the lead of the general populous, and write about those topics that everyone feels the need to chime in on with their two cents. You know, everyone’s got their preseason predictions and playoff projections. This time of year, the favorite topic around the internets is the mock draft. It seems as if everyone and their uncle’s neighbor’s cat has made and talked to no end about their mock draft. So, I present to you BMR’s mock draft. Take its opinions at your own risk. While you’re at it, take a shot, too. It makes everything that much more fun!

Of course, there are all sorts of trades that will happen between now and draft time. I’m going to ignore those possibilities to keep from going in way over my head.

Pick #


Projected Pick


Chicago Blackhawks

Patrick Kane – Kane is #1 on a lot of draft boards, but it’s not a lock. Let’s face it, Chicago needs a lot of help, but offense is probably their biggest need. If they keep the pick, they should go with the guy who has the biggest offensive upside. He’s also a player who can (and should) make the jump right now.


Philadelphia Flyers

James Van Riemsdyk – It’s a tough call for Philly between Turris and Reemer, but the latter is probably the better fit. Both have tremendous upsides, but Reemer probably won’t impact the league this season. The Flyers can afford to wait, even if their fans may say otherwise. They have added Hartnell, Timonen and Biron already, and who knows what tricks they have up their sleeve for July 1st. They’re already improving and should continue to do so throughout the off season.


Phoenix Coyotes

Kyle Turris – This is essentially a three man draft, if you count the fact that teams might be scared to take Cherepanov, thanks to the lack of a transfer agreement (and reports about his effort level). At this point, there’s no doubt Turris is the best player left. It’s a no brainer for Phoenix, if he’s still around.


Los Angeles Kings

Alexei Cherepanov – The Kings have taken a European in the first round three out of the last five years, and somehow I think they wouldn’t be afraid to take Cherepanov. He’s got tremendous upside, including the highlight of breaking Pavel Bure’s Russian rookie scoring record. Los Angeles also needs a RW, and he fits the bill.


Washington Capitals

Sam Gagner – Another one that should be a no brainer. Gagner is a playmaker who may be able to step into the NHL soon. Who better to put alongside Ovechkin and Semin?


Edmonton Oilers

Karl AznerWashington and Los Angeles need a blue liner too, but Azner could drop given the lack of top tier defensemen available (to be specific, none). Edmonton needs help defensively, and they’ll get it with Azner. He’s no Pronger, but he should be solid for years to come. Yikes, I just said the P word to Oiler fans. Sorry!


Columbus Blue Jackets

Keaton Ellerby – At 6’4” Ellerby would be a great addition to the Columbus blue line. They could use a big body to go along with Rusty Klesla. Hopefully Ellerby can bulk up.


Boston Bruins

Jakub Voracek – The word is that Voracek is a real “good guy.” He’s also a big guy who can make plays and should be able to jump in right away. I think the Bruins have their man.


St. Louis Blues

Logan Couture - The Blues need offense. Plain and simple. This guy should help bolster their corps of forwards, and they should be getting great value. If it wasn’t for Couture’s bout with mononucleosis, he might have been a top five pick.


Florida Panthers

Brandon Sutter – The word is that Sutter could easily move over and become a winger. If that’s possible, then he fits in nicely in Florida. They’re lacking any real size on the wing, and the Todd Bertuzzi experiment didn’t go as planned, so Sutter should be a nice addition.


Carolina Hurricanes

Kevin Shattenkirk - Carolina’s biggest need, as with a lot of teams in this draft, is a defenseman. Shattenkirk is captain of the US U-18 team, and how can you pass up a guy with the skills and the ability to lead?


Montreal Canadiens

Angelo Esposito – If he falls this far – and there’s a good chance – the Habs have to take the home town boy with a famous bloodline.


Toronto Maple Leafs

Mikael Backlund – Mats Sundin is on the outs in Toronto. Not next year, and probably not the one after that, but his time is coming. Potentially, they could replace him with another Swedish center in Backlund. Just had to point out an interesting storyline there. Anyway, Backlund is probably the best available at this point. The Leafs are pretty deep all around, and would probably rather have a defenseman, but I think any blue liners worthy of the #13 pick are gone at this point .


Colorado Avalanche

Maxim Mayorov – If you’re not afraid of that transfer agreement, you’d probably want to take this guy. I might be overvaluing him a bit, but he’s #8 overall on ISS and is still available. I think a risk could pay off here, and the Avs have a ton of young talent as it is. They can afford it. But who am I kidding, no one’s going to have the cajones to take him this high.


Edmonton Oilers

Lars Eller - If I hadn’t already picked the Oilers to take Azner, I would of pegged them on Petrecki here (look for that if they don’t get a d-man at the #6 spot). That being said, Eller is another talented European and may be better than Mayorov. He’s the safer pick, and if Colorado doesn’t take him, Edmonton will.

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