2015 NHL Entry Draft Results
Round 1 Picks 1-15
Posted By: Chris Ransom Last Updated: June, 26, 2015
Edmonton Oilers: Connor McDavid, C, Erie Otters (OHL) A+ Grade
- Warning the following conversation between Boston Bruins GM Don Sweeney and former Bruins GM now Edmonton Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli took place at 5:21 PM Eastern. Enjoy!
- Don Sweeney (Bruins GM): Peter it's Don the new Bruins new GM we'd like to offer you the 13th, 14th, and 15th pick for Connor McDavid.
- Peter Chiarelli (Oilers GM): Haha I heard. You morons traded Dougie Hamilton to the Flames and gave the Kings another shot at a Stanley Cup by relinquishing Milan Lucic.
- Don Sweeney (Bruins GM): I also got 3 second round picks at 37, 45, and 52. With those 6 picks we can work something out Mr. Chiarelli.
- Peter Chiarelli (Oilers GM): The Sabres offered us the #2 pick and 2 more firsts for Connor McDavid and I told them to piss off. Enjoy unmployment Don.
- Chiarelli hangs up the phone and takes Connor McDavid in Florida. Edmonton will win a cup with Chiarelli and McDavid at some point while Boston will likely enter a brutal rebuilding phase thanks to their trades leading up to todays NHL Draft. Here's our thoughts on the Connor McDavid pick which clearly got an A+ grade.
- Connor McDavid will be awesome. Connor McDavid had 99 points in 56 games in 2013-2014 with 19 more points during the 2014 OHL Playoffs in 14 playoff games. After being named captain the following season, McDavid posted 120 points during the regular season and followed that up with a mind boggling 21 goals, 28 assists, and 49 points in 19 OHL Playoff Games. His brilliant play got the Erie Otters to the 2015 OHL Championship game where they lost to the Oshawa Generals who went 4-0-0 in the 2015 Memorial Cup before winning the 2015 Memorial Cup. McDavid is the best OHL prospect to enter the NHL since Steven Stamkos and the best overall prospect since Sidney Crosby.
- Adding McDavid does so much for Edmonton after getting former Boston Bruins GM Peter Chiareli to be the new Oilers general manager while hiring Todd McLellan the former San Jose Sharks HC to be the new Oilers head coach.
- The Oilers' forward lines will look like this after they take McDavid assuming Chiareli keeps all of his current forwards. Line 1 Hall LW, McDavid C, Eberle RW, Line 2 Benoit Puliot LW, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins C, Teddy Purcell RW, Line 3 Leon Draisaitl LW, Derek Roy C, Nail Yakupov RW, Line 4 Matt Hendricks LW, Anton Lander C, and Matt Fraser RW. That's a lot of depth with the Oilers' top 4 lines of forwards. McLellan can create all different kinds of line combinations for the Oilers with those 12 forwards.
Buffalo Sabres: Jack Eichel, C, Boston University A+ Grade
- Jack Eichel is a smart instinctive player who may be the second line 1 center that can play right away in the 2015 NHL Draft assuming he doesn't return to Boston University for his sophomore season.
- Prior to being at Boston University, Eichel played for the United States National Team Developmental Program after turning down a chance to be Nate MacKinnon's successor on the Halifax Mooseheads. Eichel dominated for Team USA in the USHL before enrolling at Yale only to transfer to Boston University because Yale thought he was a line 3 center while Boston University thought he was line 1 material.
- Eichel scored a game winning goal against Boston College in a live TV game on NBC Sports. He also scored against Michigan and Zach Werenski.
- Jack Eichel helped Boston University win the Beanpot and gets bonus points for defeating my mom's Alma Matter in the Beanpot Championship Game against Northeastern to win a tournament that makes you the best College Hockey Team in the state of Massachusetts. Boston University got by his original college Yale in the Elite 8 and North Dakota in the 2015 Frozen Four only to lose to Providence in the 2015 NCAA College Hockey Mens Championship Game while winning the Hobey Baker Award which is like the Heisman Trophy in College Hockey.
- You cannot blame Eichel for the Terriers third period meltdown against the Friars. Eichel led the entire NCAA with 70 points in the 2014-2015 NCAA Division 1 Mens Hockey League at the mere age of 17 which is simply phenomenal. Not only that, Eichel was also team captain for Team USA in the World Junior Championships.
- Like McDavid, Eichel will be a line 1 center from the first day unless he decides to return to Boston University for his sophomore season. The Sabres hired Tim Murray as their GM who drafted Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry with the Ducks while bringing in Dan Bylsma to be their new head coach.
- Edmonton and Buffalo both have a lot in common. Both teams hired excellent GM's, both teams hired excellent coaches, and both teams are getting franchise players with McDavid and Eichel. Sure, McDavid and Eichel will headline this years draft, but who Chiarelli and Murray select in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft after these heralded centers of attention will define how both GMs perform for the Oilers and Sabres down the road.
- Buffalo traded their 21st pick to Ottawa for David Legwand and a third string goalie. Then they dealt the 31st pick to the Colorado Avalanche. If Buffalo doesn't take someone with the Islanders pick in the second round, I wouldn't fault him for announcing his decision to return to school to play for Boston University for one more season. At the end of the day, I see Eichel in the NHL.
Arizona Coyotes: Dylan Strome, C, Erie Otters (OHL) A+ Grade
- Dylan Strome has the ability to be a line 1 center. He has some skating issues and struggles with the face off. His defensive awareness needs to improve as well. Acceleration when skating was one of his weaknesses as well. Besides that he has everything you look for in a line 1 center.
- Strome does have the versatility to play left wing or right wing. In 2014-2015, Strome led the OHL with 129 points. He also won the OHL MSP Most Sportsmanlike Player which illustratees his integrity.
- I thought Arizona would take Noah Hanifin. Strome is the better player and I'm glad they made this pick because I see Hanifin as more of a line 2 defenseman rather than a sure fire #1 defenseman.
- The Erie Otters offered Strome the right to be captain if he returns to Erie. I think he's NHL ready if you put him into a third line role and slowly work him up the lines. At the same time, I think it's very possible if Strome returns to the juniors.
Toronto Maple Leafs: Mitch Marner, C, London Knights (OHL) A Grade
- Mitch Marner has the versatility to play anywhere at forward at left wing, center, or right wing. This guy had 126 points at right wing in 2014-2015 next to Max Domi, the Coyotes 2013 first round pick.
- The year before that, Marner was a line 2 center as a rookie. Marner is NHL ready. My one issue with him is shooting accuracy. I saw Marner struggle to pass the puck and display inconsistent shooting accuracy on his wrist shots.
- At the end of the day you have to look past that because he can hit hard on defense and displays outstanding vision on both sides of the puck.
Carolina Hurricanes: Noah Hanifin, D, Boston College A- Grade
- I think Noah Hanifin is a line 2 defenseman at best. Despite that, I think Carolina is a perfect fit for the 6-3 205 lb Noah Hanifin.
- Ryan Murphy will move up to the top line in 2015-2016 after being the Hurricanes 2011 first round pick. Also Haydn Fleury the 7th pick from the 2014 NHL Draft will compliment Murray on that top line. Hanifin can anchor that second line giving Carolina tremendous depth on the blue line for years to come.
New Jersey Devils: Pavel Zacha, C, Sarnia Sting (OHL) B+ Grade
- Pavel Zacha is a god given talent in terms of physical tools, shooting power, and upper body strength at 6-3 215 lbs. He's played left wing, center, and right wing.
- Zacha can win face offs. Still his best role is left wing. I'm curious to see how Shero builds around Zacha. He's not Crosby, Malkin, or Staal, but unique in his own right.
- Earlier in the season, Zacha got suspended twice in under 2 weeks. Durability issues kept him out for six weeks in January. Zacha could be an effective two way forward down-the-line. For now he needs one more season in Sarnia. It's too early to say if he plays left wing or center in the NHL because I could see this guy playing anywhere at forward in the NHL even right wing.
Philadelphia Flyers: Ivan Provorov, D, Brandon Wheat Kings (WHL) A Grade
- Ivan Provorov had 61 points in 60 games in 2014-2015. The 6-0 201 lb defenseman will be the face of the Flyers top line at some point.
- He has even more upside than Noah Hanifin. At the same time he's raw. Philadelphia can take as much time as possible with Provorov with guys like Travis Sanheim, Samuel Morin, and Robert Hagg in their system.
Columbus Blue Jackets: Zach Werenski, D, Michigan A Grade
- Zach Werenski had 5 more points than Noah Hanifin. He can return to Michigan, sign with the London Knights, or sign with Columbus.
- Werenski has the ability to be an All Star defenseman. This guy is a stud at blocking shots and unleashing hard hits. I think he's the safest bet to develop into a line 1 defenseman.
San Jose Sharks: Timo Meier, RW, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL) A- Grade
- Timo Meier has the versatility to play left wing or right wing. He posted 27 consecutive games with a point and had a career high 90 points in 2014-2015. Meier played with McDavid in the CHL Prospects game and has the versatility to play left wing, center, or right wing.
- Most expected one of the defenseman to be there. Pavel Zacha was gone as well. I think the Sharks were smart to avoid taking Lawson Crouse here.
Colorado Avalanche: Mikko Rantanen, RW, TPS (SM Liiga) A+ Grade
- Mikko Rantanen was the top player on the board. He's NHL ready right away as he displays elite playmaking and precise shooting with tremendous shooting power on his slap shots and his wrist shots. He's a very accurate shooter at 6-4 209 lbs with the versatility to play left wing, center, or right wing.
- The only concerns with Rantanen are his contract with TPS that runs through 2016-2017 and his small hands. Other than that he's a complete player. If Rantanen palyed in the CHL or USHL there's no doubt in my mind he'd be gone long before this. Great pick by Colorado.
Florida Panthers: Lawson Crouse, LW, Kingston Frontenacs (OHL) B+ Grade
- Lawson Crouse has the best shooting power in the 2015 NHL Draft outside of Connor McDavid. His penalty killing is also pretty deadly.
- Crouse looks like a line 2 left winger at best with his lack of production in terms of points which is why I think he will bust. Still, to get him at 11 is kind of a steal. That's the one reason why the Florida Panthers landed a B grade.
Dallas Stars: Denis Guryanov, RW, Lada Togilatti (KHL) C Grade
- Denis Guryanov is a reach here with Matthew Barzal and Kyle Connor still on the board. Denis Guryanov was a Day 2 pick until the Sabres moved him up as a first round pick.
- I was about to give my favorite NHL team the first F grade of the night. The fact that Craig Button graded Guryanov out as his only player with a 5/5 in shooting is why Guryanov was spared with a C grade.
Boston Bruins: Jakub Zboril, D, Saint John Sea Dogs (QMJHL) C- Grade
- Jakub Zboril won 3 straight state titles in Middle school. He had to go through an adjustment in high school when he was on the Czech Repbulic. Once he moved to North America to play for Saint John, he got his confidence back.
- Boston traded Dougie Hamilton and Milan Lucic. They get 3 first round picks and do not move up. You can also argue that Oliver Kylington and Jeremy Roy were better defenseman. Some feel Zboril's teammate Thomas Chabot should have gone higher.
- I love that Bruins GM Don Sweeney ran off the stage like a bad guy fleeing the scene of a crime knowing that he screwed the Bruins over.
Boston Bruins: Jake DeBrusk, LW, Swift Current Broncos (WHL) C- Grade
- Jake DeBrusk is a good skater. His 42 goals and 81 points make him an effective sniper. He struggles on penalty killing and is undersized.
- There are guys like Kyle Connor and Paul Bittner that would do better at the wing. Don Sweeney is laughing again knowing he set the Bruins back.
Boston Bruins: Zach Senyshyn, RW, Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds (OHL) F Grade
- Zach Senyshyn is a 2nd to 3rd round pick. This was a huge reach.
- Don Sweeney is an absolute disgrace of a GM. Not only does he trade Dougie Hamilton he replaces them with the second best player at those positions on most teams draft boards. Sweeney will need all the luck he can get with these picks.
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