Chris Ransom follow @DraftUtopia Last Updated: January 31, 2017.
Calgary Flames: Nick Suzuki, C, Owen Sound Attack (OHL)
- The Flames get the 5-11 183 lb Nick Suzuki. Suzuki has 23 goals, 34 assists, and 57 points in 45 games this season. Suzuki's defense has improved despite being undersized. Suzuki is an excellent skater with the offensive awareness and vision that you look for.
St. Louis Blues: Ivan Lodina, RW, Erie Otters (OHL)
- The 5-10 183 lb Ivan Lodina is the next NHL Draft prospect on the Erie Otters. Right now his role is limited, but St. Louis can develop him.
Philadelphia Flyers: Maxime Coitos, LW, Victoriaville Tigres (QMJHL)
- Maxime Coitos would be a top 10 talent if he wasn't so inconsistent on defense. Coitos is an awesome value pick here.
Previous Pick: Juuso Valimaki, D, Tri-City Americans (WHL)
Nashville Predators: Eeli Tolvanen, LW, Sioux City Musketeers (USHL)
- Eeli Tolvanen was my top USHL prospect at the beginning of the season. This is a good spot for him to fall to in the back half of the first round.
Previous Pick: Michael Rasmussen, C, Tri-City Americans (WHL)
Boston Bruins: Grant Mismash, LW, USNTDP (USHL)
- Grant Mismash of the United States National Team Developmental Program is the top player on the board. Mismash entered the year as my fourth best USHL prospect.
Previous Pick: Isaac Ratcliffe, LW, Guelph Storm (OHL)
Ottawa Senators: Ryan Poehling, LW, St. Cloud State
- The 6-3 185 lb Ryan Poehling has the same versatility as Matthew Strome. I think Ottawa would draft Poehling here and patiently develop him.
New York Rangers: Lias Andersson, C, HV71 (Elitserien)
- The 5-11 198 lb Lias Anderson has done well at center with HV71. Andersson is the top skater available at this point.
Previous Pick: Lukas Elvenes, RW, Rogle B.K. (Elitserien)
Anaheim Ducks: Kristian Vesalainen, RW, Frolunda Indians (Elitserien)
- The 6-3 207 lb Kristian Vesalainen is versatile to play both left wing and right wing with his versatility. Vesalainen could end up going in the top half of the draft so this is a huge steal here.
Edmonton Oilers: Miro Heiskanen, D, Helsingfors IFK (SM Liiga)
- The 6-0 174 lb Miro Heiskanen was the top SM Liiga prospect back in the preseason. Edmonton needs one more defenseman for depth so this is a good pick.
Pittsburgh Penguins: Shane Bowers, C, Waterloo Blackhawks (USHL)
- Pittsburgh adds a future center to develop. Shane Bowers can go to Boston University for a year before signing his NHL contract with the Pittsburgh Penguins. Bowers entered the season as the third best USHL prospect.
Chicago Blackhawks: Kasper Kotkansalo, D, Sioux Falls Stampede (USHL)
- The Blackhawks draft the 6-2 190 lb Kasper Kotkansalo. Kotkansalo is a defensive defenseman who will play for Boston University for a year before signing with the team that drafts him.
Columbus Blue Jackets: Jocktan Chainey, D, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)
- The 6-1 196 lb Jocktan Chainey has first round ability. I feel like Columbus can go best player available with all the depth and draft picks they have.
San Jose Sharks: Lukas Elvenes, RW, Rogle B.K. (Elitserien)
- San Jose drafts the 6-0 174 lb Lukas Elvenes. Elvenes has the versatility to play left wing, center, or right wing in the NHL once he develops.
Previous Pick: Lias Andersson, C, HV71 (Elitserien)
Montreal Canadiens: Kole Lind, RW, Kelowna Rockets (WHL)
- The 6-1 176 lb Kole Lind is a goal scoring right winger. Lind may have the best shooting power and shooting accuracy of any right winger in the 2017 NFL Draft. He's a sound passer, but needs to improve defensively.
Minnesota Wild: Luke Martin, D, Michigan
- I expect the Wild to take the top US born skater at 30. There will be guys like left winger Jason Robertson who did not get a prospects game invite, players like Luke Martin who can defend the blue line, and Sault Ste. Marie center Morgan Frost. I'm not sure which one of those three Minnesota has the biggest need at, and personally I feel like Minnesota can go with the best player of those 3 at 30. Luke Martin is 6-2 201 lbs. He's capable of being a good two-way defender if he corrects his offensive game.
Previous Pick: Grant Mismash, LW, USNTDP (USHL)
Washington Capitals: Roger Karrer, D, ZSC Lions (National League A)
- Roger Karrer is the top player on the board. Karrer is my top National League A prospect currently playing in Switzerland.