2016 NHL Mock Draft: Final Mock 7 Rounds
Posted By: Chris Ransom Last Updated: June 24, 2016.
Toronto Maple Leafs: Pascal Laberge, C, Victoriaville Tigres (QMJHL)
- The 6-1 172 lb Pascal Laberge was drafted second overall in the 2014 QMJHL Draft. The Gatineau Olympiques traded him to Victoriaville despite this, Laberge had 10 goals, 21 assists, and 31 points as a rookie along with a -9 +/- ratio.
- This year Laberge had 23 goals, 45 assists, 68 points, and a -3 +/- ratio. Laberge had 3 goals, 2 assists, and 5 points in 5 QMJHL Playoff games. Laberge had 2 goals, 1 assist, and 3 points in the 2016 CHL Prospects Game.
- Pascal Laberge can be a great prospect to develop as he knows how to disrupt his opponents by playing physical on both ends with offense and defense. Toronto needs to take the best player available with picks 1, 30, and 31 and then draft for need with their remaining picks.
Edmonton Oilers: Kale Clague, D, Brandon Wheat Kings (WHL)
- Edmonton goes with the best defensive player. That has to be Kale Clague.
- The Brandon Wheat Kings drafted Kale Clague sixth overall in the 2013 WHL Bantam Draft. There's a chance that Clague finally cracks the top line in Brandon with Ivan Provorov potentially making an immediate jump to the NHL with the Flyers. Even if Clague remains on the second line, he's still a first round pick.
- Kale Clauge was the only WHL player to represent Team WHL in the CHL VS Russia prospects series. In 52 games Kale Clague had 6 goals, 37 assists, 43 points, and a +25 +/- ratio. Clauge had 6 goals, 8 assists, 14 points, and a +5 +/- ratio in 21 WHL Playoff games. The downside is that he plays on the Brandon Wheat Kings second line rather then their first line. Despite this being the only WHL player to get invited to an international series does separate him from other WHL prospects eligible for the 2016 NHL Draft to an extent this year.
- Clauge did not just get invited to the CHL VS Russia prospects series. He also got invited to the 2016 CHL Prospects Game. Clauge played on the first line next to Jacob Chychrun. Clague struggled in that game on NHL Network. He also struggled on Friday in another game on NHL Network that was televised the following day.
Florida Panthers: Chad Krys, D, United States National Team Developmental Program (USHL)
- Florida goes with the best defensive player after getting this pick from the trade with the Vancouver Canucks in the Erik Gudbranson trade. That has to be Chad Krys. Krys is the top defensemen available at this point and has great ability as an offensive defender with 2 goal, 11 assists, and 13 points in 18 games in the USHL. He'll have plenty of time to bulk up and improve his defensive game at Boston University before joining the Panthers in the NHL.
- Krys entered midseason as the #3 USHL player behind teammates Clayton Keller and Keiffer Bellows. Riley Tufte of the Fargo Force jumped him.
Columbus Blue Jackets: Tyler Benson, LW, Vancouver Giants (WHL)
- Columbus drafts a left winger to pair up with Jesse Puljujarvi here. Tyler Benson is a great value pick here and having him and Paul Bittner gives Columbus two left wing prospects for the future.
- Tyler Benson was named team captain of the Vancouver Giants for the 2015-2016 WHL season. He was also named captain of Team Cherry in the 2016 CHL Prospects Game before being ruled out with an injury. Benson has suffered 3 different injuries in the past 12 months and durability concerns are really starting to pile up on Benson.
- The 6-0 196 lb Benson was the top pick in the 2013 WHL Bantam Draft for the Western Hockey League up in Canada. Benson posted 45 points in 2014-2015 and looks to have another big season now that he's been named team captain for the Giants.
- Tyler Benson played most of the 2014-2015 season before getting injured down the stretch. An early season injury kept him out to start the 2015-2016 season. Scouts believe Benson has durability issues, and that's caused him to fall out of the top 10.
- That's a big reason why Benson fell to the Blue Jackets in the second round. Despite this Benson has 9 goals, 19 assists, and 28 points in 30 games this season. Benson is finally back from his third injury in twelve months and is finally starting to show flashes of that top 10 pick he was made out to be back in the preseason.
- He's been receiving double teams and continues to deliver when healthy. Benson's leadership and Hockey IQ is at such a high level that he got named Team Captain for Team Cherry in the 2016 CHL Prospects game despite missing time with injuries.
Calgary Flames: Filip Gustavsson, G, Lulea HF (Elitserien)
- Calgary drafts the top goalie prospect to develop with this pick. The 6-2 185 lb Gustavsson had a 2.17 GAA and a .910 save percentage in 6 games in the Elitserien league this season. Gustavsson may be rough around the edges, but Winnipeg can develop him into a franchise goalie.
- I found it strange that Gustavsson did not start for Sweden in the 2016 World Junior Championships at goalie. That makes this goalie race wide open with Gustavsson being the only goalie to get an A grade from NHL scouts in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft.
Winnipeg Jets: Sam Steel, C, Regina Pats (WHL)
- am Steel posted 54 points in 2014-2015 after being the second overall pick in the 2013 WHL Bantam Draft picked one spot after Tyler Benson. Steel had 23 goals, 47 assists, and 70 points in 72 games. Sam Steel had 6 goals, 10 assists, and 16 points through 12 WHL Playoff games.
- Sam Steel did get promoted to alternate captain for the Regina Pats in 2015-2016. The four concerns with Steel are that he is 5-11 176 lbs, is a center only, has a -7 +/- ratio, and that he barely made Team Cherry at the 2016 CHL Prospects Game.
- Sam Steel was a line 4 center at the 2016 CHL Prospects Game for Team Cherry. He did set up an assist so that's why I think he's a good late first round prospect that could fall to the second round.
Arizona Coyotes: Max Lajoie, D, Swift Current Broncos (WHL)
- Max Lajoie has a first round grade and is one of 34 players in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft with an A grade. The downside is that he did not get invited to the 2016 CHL Prospects Game and that's something scouts are going to take into consideration as well as the fact that Lajoie is an offensive defender who needs to work on his defensive fundamentals.
Buffalo Sabres: Jonathan Dahlen, C, Timra I.K. (Allsvenskan)
- Buffalo grabs the best available player. Jonathan Dahlen has built a lot of momentum lately. He could very easily slip into the late first round, but I got Buffalo taking him in the early second round.
- Jonathan Dahlen has excellent versatility with the ability to play any of the three forward spots at left wing, center, or right wing. He's also extremely agile. Dahlen could go anywhere between the first and the third round. Getting him at 40 in the second round is terrific value.
Montreal Canadiens: Simon Stransky, LW, Prince Albert Raiders (WHL)
- The 6-0 170 lb Stransky posted 12 goals, 30 assists, and 42 points in 70 games in 2014-2015. This season Stransky had 19 goals, 43 assists, and 62 points in 62 games in 2015-2016. Stransky also had 4 assists in 5 WHL Playoff games. Stransky is expected to be a two-way forward on the fourth line in the 2016 CHL Prospects Game for Team Orr. Team Orr is considering using him at both left wing and center on the fourth line to see if he's a pure left winger or a two-way forward with the versatility to take control of games and win some face offs. Stransky looks like a strong possibility for Montreal if he slips out of the first round.
Colorado Avalanche: Lucas Johansen, D, Kelowna Rockets (WHL)
- Lucas Johansen of the Kelowna Rockets is the top prospect left. Johansen has 10 goals, 39 assists, 49 points, and a +11 +/- ratio this season. Johansen has 2 goals, 2 assists, and 4 points in 9 WHL playoff games. Johansen played on Line 3 for Team Cherry in the 2016 CHL Prospects Game. He'd be a great pick for Colorado here who needs defense. Johansen could go anywhere from the late first round to the early third round so getting him in the middle of the second round is great value.
New Jersey Devils: Boris Katchouk, LW, Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds (OHL)
- New Jersey gets a left winger. Boris Katchouk has more points than Tim Gettinger. Both left wingers are second round picks. Katchouk had 24 goals, 27 assists, and 51 points in 2015-2016.
Ottawa Senators: Jacob Moverare, D, HV71 (Elitserien)
- Some NHL Draft boards have the 6-2 198 lb Jacob Moverare going ahead of his more experienced teammate Jakob Cederholm. Ottawa may double dip on defense since they like Jacob Moverare.
Carolina Hurricanes: Ty Ronning, RW, Vancouver Giants (WHL)
- Carolina needs to add a right winger for depth to develop. Ty Ronnie filled in for Tyler Benson in the 2016 CHL Prospects Game and scored the first goal for Team Cherry in that game. The emergence of Ronning makes him a coveted prospect here. Ronning had 31 goals, 28 assists, and 59 points in 2015-2016 as Ronning continues to build momentum.
Tampa Bay Lightning: Markus Niemelainen, D, Saginaw Spirit (OHL)
- Markus Niemelainen transferred from HPK in the SM Liiga league in Finland over to the CHL to play with the Saginaw Spirit. The 6-5 190 lb defenseman has 1 goal, 26 assists, and 27 points in his first year with the Saginaw Spirit. Niemelainen is a quarterback on the power play and will get some time as a line 3 defenseman and line 2 power play defenseman for Team Cherry at the 2016 CHL Prospects Game.
Montreal Canadiens: Luke Green, D, Saint John Sea Dogs (QMJHL)
- Montreal takes the best player available. At this point you would think that player would have to be Luke Green, the #1 overall pick in the 2014 QMJHL Draft.
- The 6-0 190 lb Green possesses exceptional defensive awareness. As a rookie, Green had 6 goals, 30 assists, and 36 points along with a +0 +/- ratio. This year in 2015-2016 Green had 10 goals, 25 assists, and 35 points along with a +18 +/- ratio. Green had 1 goal, 2 assists, and 3 points in the 2016 QMJHL Playoffs.
- Green played on the Saint John Sea Dogs second line each of the past two seasons. Green will get line 1 action in a year from now once Jakub Zboril or Thomas Chabot gets called up to the NHL after both defensemen were first round draft picks in 2015.
- Luke Green will play for Team Orr at the 2016 CHL Prospects Game. It's uncertain which defensive line he ends up on, but he will play in the 2016 CHL Prospects Game. At this point, I'd guess Green would be a front 4 player on line 1 or line 2.
Detroit Red Wings: William Knierim, RW, Dubuque Fighting Saints (USHL)
- Detroit can take the best player on the board. At this point that player has to be the 6-3 218 lb right winger William Knierim of the Dubuque Fighting Saints in the USHL. Knierim got Duqubue to the 2016 Clark Cup where they lost to the Tri-City Storm.
Nashville Predators: Samuel Girard, D, Shawinigan Cataractes (QMJHL)
- Nashville grabs one of the top offensive defenseman in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft in Samuel Girard. Girard is a top 40 talent who may fall to as far as 50 due to size while some think Girard has an outside shot at making the first round.
- Samuel Girard had 10 goals, 64 assists, and 74 points in 67 games. Girard has 1 goal, 17 assists, and 18 points through 3 rounds of the 2016 QMJHL Playoffs in 16 games. Girard may only be 5-10 161 lbs. He plays with a ton of heart though and deserves to go in the first two rounds. Girard is a guy who could shoot up boards if he continues to impress.
Philadelphia Flyers: Tage Thompson, RW, Connecticut
- Tage Thompson is listed as a center prospect. He plays right wing for Connecticut though with 14 goals, 18 assists, and 32 points in 36 games with Connecticut. Unlike Wisconsin center Luke Kunin who excels in leadership, Tage Thompson thrives in being versatile. Thompson came in as the 24th best North American skater, so he should go fairly early in the second round.
Boston Bruins: Cam Dineen, D, North Bay Battalion (OHL)
- The Bruins need a defenseman after losing Dougie Hamilton. Jakub Zboril may still need another year to develop after this season plus the Bruins will need someone else when Chara retires.
- Dineen had 13 goals, 46 assists, and 59 points this season. Dineen also had 8 assists in 11 games during the 2016 OHL Playoffs making him the latest defenseman to join the Bruins. Dineen has the awareness, hockey IQ, and passing to be an offensive defenseman in the NHL.
Chicago Blackhawks: Cliff Pu, RW, London Knights (OHL)
- The Blackhawks grab a right winger for depth. Cliff Pu really did well during the 2016 OHL Playoffs and the 2016 Memorial Cup.
Los Angeles Kings: Otto Somppi, C, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)
- The Halifax Mooseheads are the one team in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League that consistently produces first round picks. Otto Somppi is their top prospect this year. With the Kings losing Jarrett Stoll and Mike Richards you would have to think they would reload at center in 2016 since they don't have a first round pick.
- Somppi is from Finland. He had 13 goals, 33 assists, and 46 points in 2015-2016 with the Halifax Mooseheads. Somppi lined up as a line 2 center in the 2016 CHL Prospects Game For Team Orr.
Philadelphia Flyers: Adam Mascherin, C, Kitchener Rangers (OHL)
- Philadelphia drafts a center for depth. Adam Mascherin had 35 goals, 46 assists, 81 points, and a +19 +/- rating in 2015-2016. The 5-10 201 lb center also has the versatility to play left wing or right wing. Mascherin had 6 goals, 5 assists, and 11 points in 7 OHL Playoff games. He wins faceoffs well and was drafted second overall in the 2014 OHL Priority Selection. Maschern already moved up from line 3 to line 1 on the Kitchener Rangers this season.
Arizona Coyotes: Carter Hart, G, Everett Silvertips (WHL)
- Hart started 30 games in 2014-2015. He posted a 2.29 GAA and a .915 save percentage before playing 11 games with a 2.28 GAA and a .929 save percentage in the 2015 WHL Playoffs.
- Hart has started 61 games in 2015-2016. He had a 2.14 GAA and a .918 save percentage in 63 games this year. Hart had a 2.39 GAA and a .929 save percentage in the 2016 WHL Playoffs Carter Hart is playing like a first round goalie right now so Arizona would be smart to get him as someone that could challege Adin Hart to be a future Arizona Coyotes goalie.
- Carter Hart started for Team Orr in the 2016 CHL Prospects Game. Hart gave up an early goal, but bounced back. It wasn't Hart's best game.
Calgary Flames: Tim Gettinger, LW, Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds (OHL)
- Calgary gets a pure left winger. Pierre-Luc Dubois can play all three positions at forward. Tim Gettinger got promoted to alternate captain for the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds in 2015-2016. Gettinger was also a Line 2 left winger for Team Cherry In the 2016 CHL Prospects Game.
Pittsburgh Penguins: Evan Fitzpatrick, G, Sherbrooke Phoenix (QMJHL)
- Pittsburgh gets a goalie to develop. Evan Fitzpatrick of the Sherbrooke Phoenix is the top goalie left . Fitzpatrick a top 5 pick in the 2014 QMJHL Entry Draft. The 6-2 223 lb Fitzpatrick had a 3.42 GAA and a .896 save percentage. Fitzpatrick had a 3.51 GAA and a .920 save percentage in the 2016 QMJHL Playoffs. Fitzpatrick started in the 2016 CHL Prospects Game where he went 17/17 when making saves. Fitzpatrick could remain in the QMJHL. Over time he could develop into a solid backup for Matt Murray when Marc Andre-Fleury is gone.
Calgary Flames: Jordan Kyrou, RW, Sarnia Sting (OHL)
- Calgary gets a right winger with Jiri Hudler gone. Jordan Kyrou had 15 goals, 27 assists, 42 points, and a +10 +/- ratio in 59 games. Kyrou was a line 1 right winger for Team Cherry in the 2016 CHL Prospects Game.
Toronto Maple Leafs: Dmitri Sokolov, RW, Sudbury Wolves (OHL)
- Toronto drafts a forward for depth. Dmitri Sokolov was a borderline top 10 pick at one point before an awful 2015 season.
Tampa Bay Lightning: Keaton Middleton, D, Saginaw Spirit (OHL)
- Keaton Middleton seems like a good pick to add here at 6-5 233 lbs. He is a big physical imposing defender with great size at the next level.
St. Louis Blues: Jakob Cederholm, D, HV71 (Elitserien)
- Jakob Cederholm is a first round prospect on some NHL draft boards. Even though the Blues are literally stacked with defensive prospects, they would simply be taking the best player available here.
San Jose Sharks: Victor Mete, D, London Knights (OHL)
- Victor Mete may not be a top 50 pick after not playing in the 2016 CHL Prospects Game. Mete should still be a late second round pick, and a team like San Jose who could use more defense would love to add Victor Mete. Mete has posted more points then his teammate Olli Juolevi.
Pittsburgh Penguins: William Bitten, C, Flint Firebirds (OHL)
- Pittsburgh drafts one more center for depth. William Bitten has been effective this season with 30 goals, 35 assists, and 65 points. He provides tremendous value in the late second round.
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