Drafting Skills: Arizona Coyotes

Recent Draft History – Evaluating the first 3 rounds of the last 5 Drafts for each team. I’ve left out 2016, as it’s way too early to tell on 95% of the picks. Instead, this will be examining drafts from 2011 to 2015.

Arizona Coyotes

2011 NHL Entry Draft

Round 1 – Connor Murphy (D) 20th overall – Murphy has played in 258 NHL games since being drafted, which is good for where he was picked in comparison to some who went before him. He played OK for Arizona, but was flipped this past week to Chicago with Laurent Dauphin for Niklas Hjalmarsson. Great trade for Arizona, as they’ve definitely found an upgrade for their backend.

Round 2 – Alexander Ruuttu (F) 51st overall – Ruuttu has been a bust for the Coyotes, never playing a game in North America. Arizona had so many better options here, with William Karlsson taken 2 picks later who has played 183 NHL games to date. Awful pick by Arizona here.

Round 2 – Lucas Lessio (LW) 56th overall – Traded Daniel Carcillo to the Flyers for Scottie Upshall and this pick. Upshall alone was more productive and effective than Carcillo ever was, however the pick didn’t turn out for Arizona. He was flipped to Montreal in 2015 for Christian Thomas, who again didn’t turn out. Nikita Kucherov was taken 2 picks later, soooooo…

Round 3 – Harrison Ruopp (D) 84th overall – Awful pick by the Coyotes, as he’s fallen down to the ECHL permanently it appears. He was traded to Pittsburgh in 2012 with a couple other pieces for Zbynek Michalek, but in the end the Coyotes would have been better if they had drafted someone else, say JG Pageau or Johnny Gaudreau?

2012 NHL Entry Draft

Round 1 – Henrik Samuelsson (C) 27th overall – Samuelsson looks like a bust, and was traded this year to Edmonton for Mitch Moroz who was drafted in the 2nd round of this same draft. Who was taken after Samuelsson in this draft? In the first round alone were Brady Skjei and Tanner Pearson. Big miss here by Arizona, an all too common theme throughout this.

Round 2 – Jordan Martinook (C) 58th overall – Martinook has played in 166 NHL games since being drafted, putting up only 50 points. Those are pretty good numbers for a 58th overall pick, and I don’t think the Coyotes would undo this one.

Round 3 – James Melindy (D) 88th overall – Bad pick here, as he played most of the past 3 seasons in the ECHL. He’s turned himself into a fighter, putting up over 250 PIMS this past year, and a rock solid -35 rating. Taken immediately after him was Brendan Leipsic, who looks like he’ll have a much better career now with Vegas.

2013 NHL Entry Draft

Round 1 – Max Domi (C) 12th overall – Domi plays a much better rounded game than his father ever did, providing some physicality with a lot of offensive upside. He scored 38 points this year in 59 games, cut short due to an injury suffered in a fight. He needs to work on his discipline, as he takes too many penalties, and the Coyotes need him on the ice. He was a great pick at 12th overall by the Coyotes.

Round 2 – Laurent Dauphin (C) 39th overall – Dauphin was traded out of Arizona with Connor Murphy for Niklas Hjalmarsson. Sitting at 4 points in 32 career NHL games, Dauphin isn’t exactly a highly-touted prospect, but there haven’t been a ton of players taken behind him who have blown up the scoresheet either. The fact they were able to use him as a piece to upgrade to Hjalmarsson is great, but they could still have picked better here.

Round 3 – Yan-Pavel Laplante (LW) 62nd overall – Currently playing in the ECHL, Laplante is likely a longshot to make the NHL at any point in his career. The Coyotes don’t have a massive amount of prospects, and the fact he can’t cut it at the AHL level speaks volumes.

2014 NHL Entry Draft

Round 1 – Brendan Perlini (LW) 12th overall – Perlini made his NHL debut this year, with 21 points in 57 games. That’s a little low for a 12th overall pick, 2 years after being drafted. His 14 goals are a positive sign that he can score, and may just need to be surrounded by better players. He’s likely at most a 2nd line/3rd line winger at this point, which is lesser than some of the guys drafted after him such as Dylan Larkin and David Pastrnak.

Round 2 – Ryan MacInnis (C) 43rd overall – MacInnis had a weak AHL rookie campaign that saw only 17 points in 68 games. He scored 38 goals in his final year in junior, but will need far better numbers at the AHL level if he ever hopes of cracking an NHL roster. At this point, this looks like a bad pick by Arizona.

Round 2 – Christian Dvorak (C) 58th overall – Traded David Rundblad and Mathieu Brisebois to Chicago for this pick. Dvorak has turned out to be a much better pick than MacInnis out of this second round, as he scored 33 points in 78 NHL games this year. The Coyotes didn’t have a great team this year, and Dvorak will likely increase his point production next year, once he has some better linemates to work with. Good pick here in late round 2 by Arizona, as he looks like a great young player.

Round 3 – Anton Karlsson (LW) 87th overall – Miss here by Arizona, as Karlsson had weak numbers this year in the Swedish league. One notable still on the board at this point were Viktor Arvidsson, who the Coyotes would much rather have right now.

2015 NHL Entry Draft

Round 1 – Dylan Strome (C) 3rd overall – I’m not entirely sure Strome will pan out as an NHL star, and being drafted 3rd overall, it’s not looking like they made the right pick. There are plenty of players the Coyotes would have been better off with, and missing out on a true star with the 3rd overall pick is brutal. He’s still young, but hasn’t impressed me with his play to this point.

Round 1 – Nick Merkley (RW) 30th overall – Received this pick from Chicago for Antoine Vermette. Merkley had a good year in junior this year, with 63 points in 63 games, but as a 1st round pick, and playing your 4th season in junior, you’d expect much more out of him. He still has time to develop, but seeing some guys behind him already having good starts to their career is a tough pill to swallow.

Round 2 – Christian Fischer (RW) 32nd overall – Played in 7 NHL games this year scoring 3 goals, while scoring 47 points in 57 AHL games. He looks like he’ll develop into a good power-forward for the Coyotes, and will have a shot at the NHL roster next year in camp. They need the help, and this was a pretty good pick in early round 2. Obviously they’d rather have Aho, who was taken 3 picks later, but so would 29 other teams.

Round 3 – Kyle Capobianco (D) 63rd overall – Finished his junior career strong, with 45 points in 65 games. Needs big time work on his defensive game, with a combined -115 rating for his junior career! That’s massive!

Round 3 – Adin Hill (G) 76th overall – Traded Oliver Kylington to Calgary for this pick, plus the 83rd overall pick. Played 40 games in the AHL this year, with a SV% of 0.906 and a GAA of 3.16. Not crazy numbers by any means, but pretty good for a 20 year old netminder. He’ll have some time to develop, but the Coyotes need a goalie soon, so they’re hoping he can progress quickly.

Round 3 – Brendan Warren (LW) 81st overall – Traded Devan Dubnyk to the Wild for this pick. Could be one of the more lopsided trades in recent history, as Dubnyk went on to win 27 games in his first season in Minnesota. He’s since become one of the top goalies in the league, while Warren has yet to play an NHL game. Rough trade and bad pick.

Round 3 – Jens Looke (RW) 83rd overall – Looks like a bad pick, as he managed only 16 points in 46 games in Sweden this year. Not great, doesn’t look like he’s grown any since being drafted.

Arizona has had a lot of bad picks, which makes sense given their current roster situation. They’ve done well in the past couple drafts, picking up the likes of Jakob Chychrun and Clayton Keller, but will need a lot more of that if they ever hope to be a constant team pushing for the playoffs year in and year out.

Drafting Skills: New York Islanders

Recent Draft History – Evaluating the first 3 rounds of the last 5 Drafts for each team. I’ve left out 2016, as it’s way too early to tell on 95% of the picks. Instead, this will be examining drafts from 2011 to 2015.

New York Islanders

2011 NHL Entry Draft

Round 1 – Ryan Strome (C) 5th overall – Strome is a curious case, as he’s had stretches of exceptional play, and also been demoted to the AHL level as recent as the 2015-2016 season. The biggest issue here is that he was drafted top 5, in a draft where he now ranks 18th in scoring. He’s been passed by over a dozen players in terms of current worth, and struggles to find time on the top unit in NY. This looks like a bad pick for the Islanders at this point.

Round 2 – Scott Mayfield (D) 34th overall – Mayfield is another player who has been passed over by players drafted behind him. He’s played in only 36 games at the NHL level, and hasn’t been all that impressive at the AHL level. It’s tough to imagine Mayfield becoming an everyday defenseman.

Round 2 – Johan Sundstrom (C) 50th overall – Sundstrom played a total of 11 games before heading back to Sweden 2 years ago. He’s put up some impressive stats there, but in his last full AHL season he only had 19 points in 72 games. Yet another player in this draft that turned out to be a disappointment for the Islanders. The other bad part is that the Islanders traded away Wisniewski, who played in 266 NHL games after this trade.

Round 3 – Andrey Pedan (D) 63rd overall – Another miss, with only 13 NHL games played. Pedan is now in the Vancouver organization, but will never likely make the jump to the NHL. Bad news? Vincent Trocheck was taken directly after him. Yikes.

2012 NHL Entry Draft

Round 1 – Griffin Reinhart (D) 4th overall – Reinhart has been a massive bust. Somehow, the Islanders were able to flip Reinhart to the Oilers (shocker) for a 1st and 2nd in 2015 (Mathew Barzal), and the Islanders flipped the 2nd round pick to get a 2nd 1st rounder (Beauvillier). I will never understand this trade by Edmonton (among many others).

Round 2 – Ville Pokka (D) 34th overall – Pokka has yet to make his NHL debut, despite being drafted 5 years ago. He was traded to Chicago in the package that brought in Nick Leddy, which has turned out to be great for the Islanders, so I’ll give them a pass on this pick. But in reality, it’s a bad pick.

Round 3 – Adam Pelech (D) 65th overall – Pelech played the majority of this year at the NHL level. He didn’t have much of an impact on the scoring sheet, and the Isles would likely want to upgrade him going into next year, but he will come into camp next year with the probability of making the team. Not bad for a 3rd round pick.

2013 NHL Entry Draft

Round 1 – Ryan Pulock (D) 15th overall – Pulock took a step back this year, like a lot of the current Islanders. He played in 1 game at the NHL level, but scored 46 points in 55 AHL games. I can’t imagine a scenario where he’s not on the opening day roster of an NHL team next year.

Round 2 – Pick was traded to Anaheim for Lubomir Visnovsky. He never excelled in NY, but played fairly consistently for the Islanders. The pick was used on Nick Sorensen, who just made his pro debut this year (22 pts in 48 AHL games).

Round 3 – Eamon McAdam (G) 70th overall – This pick was brough in as part of the Cal Clutterbuck for Nino Niederreiter. McAdam played parts of this year in the AHL and ECHL, posting better numbers in the ECHL. He’s 22 years old, and likely needs to prove himself at the AHL level for a full season if he ever expects to make the jump to the NHL.

Round 3 – Taylor Cammarata (C) 76th overall – Cammarata just finished his 4th year in the NCAA, but didn’t put up impressive numbers. He scored only 5 goals in 34 games, and only hit double digits goals once in his 4 years there. I can’t imagine Cammarata being a legitimate prospect for the Islanders.

2014 NHL Entry Draft

Round 1 – Michael Dal Colle (LW) 5th overall – Dal Colle is shaping up to be a bust just like Reinhart. He has yet to play an NHL game, and only managed 41 points in 75 AHL games. He was taken 5th overall! Taken behind him in the draft: William Nylander, Dylan Larkin, David Pastrnak, Nikolaj Ehlers, Viktor Arvidsson, Robby Fabbri, etc, etc, etc. This is another massive miss for the Islanders.

Round 1 – Josh Ho-Sang (RW) 28th overall – The Isles got this extra pick by trading their 2nd round pick in this draft, and another 2nd round in this draft that they had previously obtained. Ho-sang has been labelled as a prospect with an attitude, but this year he finally made his NHL debut. He put up 10 points in 21 games, and looked more and more comfortable as his time went on. He should be riding shotgun to Tavares next year, and could put up big numbers. This was a nice pick for the Islanders after missing on Dal Colle.

Round 3 – Ilya Sorokin (G) 78th overall – Sorokin is growing into the goaltender of the future for NY. He put on a show in the KHL this year, with 5 shutouts in 39 starts, with a GAA of 1.61 and a SV% of 0.929. In 2015-2016, he had 10 shutouts in 28 games, with a GAA of 1.06 and a SV% of 0.953. He has been a beast. What a steal in the 3rd round!

2015 NHL Entry Draft

Round 1 – Mathew Barzal (C) 16th overall – This is comical, the Islanders traded Griffin Reinhart to the Oilers for this pick, and a 2nd round pick that they used to get another 1st round pick. So that’s two picks for a player who didn’t play a single game at the NHL level this year, 4 years after being drafted 4th overall! Meanwhile, Barzal looks to be a steal at 16th overall. He played 2 games before being sent to the WHL, where he put up 79 points in 41 games. He has incredible playmaking ability, and will make the team out of camp next year. He will immediately make an impact for the Islanders.

Round 1 – Anthony Beauvillier (LW) 28th overall – The Islanders actually gave up their own pick to the Sabres in this round in sending out Matt Moulson – which turned out to be a blessing in disguise. They received this pick from the Lightning in giving up a 2nd and 3rd rounder. Beauvillier made his NHL debut this year, suiting up for 66 games. He didn’t light the lamp much (24 points), but showed high-end skill at times. He played minutes with John Tavares on the top line, and played down in the lineup as well. This was a great experience for the youngster, a year after scoring 40 goals in 47 games in the QMJHL. He will likely see an increased role next year, and is an important part of the future in NY.

Round 3 – Mitchell Vande Sompel (D) 82nd overall – He finished up his final junior year, with 16 points in 30 games. He’s a small defenceman at 5’10”, but skates well. He will need a couple years adjusting to playing against men before he has any chance of making the big club.

I would classify the Islanders as a poor drafting team. Other than this past draft, they’ve missed on MANY of their picks. Not to mention their free agency signings, this team needs an overhaul. They’ve had plenty of chances to add quality players and seem to nearly always miss.

Sources: www.hockeydb.com ; http://www.prosportstransactions.com/hockey/DraftTrades/Years/index.htm

Monday Pick-Ups – Feb 13th/2017

I’ve been playing fantasy hockey for years, and often finish in the top couple spots after the regular season ends. We won’t talk about my playoff performance, which often derails due to injuries/players resting. I tend to have a great draft each year, but where I find I really set myself above others is on the waiver wire. Starting today, each Monday I’ll outline 5 players which I have on my radar for the upcoming week. Here’s week 1:

Teams Playing 4 games:

  • Arizona
  • Buffalo
  • Colorado
  • Columbus
  • New Jersey
  • New York Islanders
  • Ottawa
  • Pittsburgh
  • Toronto
  • Vancouver

Teams Playing only 2 or less (bye week) games:

  • Carolina
  • Chicago
  • Nashville
  • Tampa Bay
  • Washington
  • Boston (1 game)
  • Montreal (1 game)

Waiver-Wire Pickups (Percentages owned are via Fantrax.com)

1) Jason Pominville (Forward – 41%) – Pominville has been on fire in his last 20 games really. If he’s still available, which he is in over half of leagues, he is a MUST have. In 20 games since December 31st, Pominville has 5 goals and 16 assists. He has been known to be streaky throughout his career, and over his past 5 games he has 9 points. The time is now if oyu want to pick him up. Minnesota is in for a tough week, with 3 very strong teams on the schedule, but Pominville is still a rare find on the waiver wire.

Matchups this week: Anaheim, Dallas, Nashville

2) Ryan Strome (Forward – 45%) – Strome has failed to live up to expectations he set for himself after a great rookie campaign. Last year even had a long trip to the AHL for the forward. In his last 10 games, Strome has put up 3 goals, 5 assists. Could he have found his touch? It’s difficult to say, but new coach Doug Weight seems to be trusting Strome more as his ice-time has been increasing.

Matchups this week: Toronto, NY Rangers, New Jersey x2

3) Connor Brown (Forward – 38%) – He rides shotgun on a line with Auston Matthews, and has been a streaky goal scorer all season long. His line has been quiet since coming out of the All-Star break, however expect them to heat up this week as Matthews and Brown look to get back on track with 4 games on the schedule.

Matchups this week: NY Islanders, Columbus, Ottawa, Carolina

4) Radek Faksa (Forward – 34%) – Faksa has taken advantage of an injury to Jason Spezza and used his increased ice-time as best as he could have hoped. Since drawing back into the lineup on January 31st, Faksa has chipped in with 2 goals and 3 assists. He’s averaged 17 minutes a night in that timeframe, and is currently lining up with Tyler Seguin. That right there is enough for a chance on Faksa for a week or two.

Matchups this week: Winnipeg, Dallas, Tampa Bay

5) Brady Skej (Defense – 56%) – The rookie blueliner for the Rangers has been playing well with increased ice-time over the last handful of games. He’s managed to put up 1 goal and 7 assists in his last 10 games, which is amongst the elites in that timeframe. If you’re looking for help on the blue-line, he’s definitely your guy.

Matchups this week: Columbus, NY Islanders, Washington