Photo Credit: Jason Payne
By Scott Rosenhek
Based on the success of my “Canucks at Five” mini-series, I wanted to further explore potential picks that I hope the Canucks will focus on in the second round of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft in a new series called Second Round Spotlight.
At the moment, the Canucks currently have one pick in the second round at 33rd overall. However, Trevor Linden did say the Canucks had 6 picks in the top 120 after the draft lottery. This may mean that the Columbus Blue Jackets are giving their second-round pick to the Canucks this year instead of next year.
These new prospect profiles will be done a little differently than the ones made for the 5th overall selection. Casey Mittelstadt, Cody Glass, Cale Makar, Timothy Liljegren and Elias Pettersson were selected based on rumors on who the Canucks were scouting and may have had a vested interest in a player.
Because the rankings from different media outlets are so variable after the 2nd overall selection, there could have been more profiles of prospects that could go later in the first round, but I wanted to focus on five players for the sake of time.
Regarding the second round, there will not be a lot of speculation to substantiate my selections. So in this case, I am going to pick a handful of players that I think could be available at 33rd overall. It won’t be guaranteed come draft day, so these articles will be more of a Canucks wishlist for the draft. I will also make estimates for players I would like near the Blue Jackets’ pick at 58th overall should the Canucks receive that pick this year.
So, why am I making such a fuss about the second round? Besides loving the scouting aspect of hockey, this should be an exciting time for Canucks fans. This is the first 2nd round selection the team has had since 2014 because Jim Benning had traded previous picks for Sven Baertschi and Erik Gudbranson.
At 33rd overall, the Canucks have a prime opportunity to draft a first-round faller that could be a hidden gem in the future. The first round gives the best chance of getting a future NHL player, but the best scouts are able to find the players that have enough potential to overcome any current shortcomings.
Examples of players that somehow fell to the 2nd round include Duncan Keith, Patrice Bergeron, and P.K. Subban. Keith was taken 54th overall in 2002, Bergeron was taken 45th overall in 2003 and Subban was drafted 43rd overall in 2007. That is one of the best two-way forwards in the game along with a pair of defenders who are among the best defencemen in the NHL.
I am not going to guarantee that whoever the Canucks select in the 2nd round will turn out as well as the players above. However, the pick(s) available in the second round will give our scouts the best chance to potentially find a player who could be a very important part of this rebuild.
*UPDATE*: I will be releasing individual profiles on these prospects that I like throughout the week.