Looking Back to 2016 aka What the Hell Ducks

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Looking Back to 2016 aka What the Hell Ducks

Post by GigantorTheGoalie » Fri May 27, 2016 5:59 am

As we near the 2017 NHL Entry Draft it’s fun to look back and see where the players from the past draft have ended up. Who is trending up, who is looking like a steal, who is trending down, who is ready to make the jump into the NHL next season and what late round picks are looking like they should have been taken higher?

1st Round Look Back

1st Overall: Auston Matthews (Hurricanes)

The obvious top pick in the 2016 draft and hasn’t relinquished that spot. Even though he played on the worst team in the NHL he was still a NHL player. He even had a rather good rookie season putting up 55 points in 82 games. The Hurricanes job will be to surround him with talent. Right now though things are looking up for Matthews.

2nd Overall: Jakob Chychrun (Bruins)

Unlike Matthews, Chychrun was sent back to the OHL after being selected 2nd overall. This is unexpected as it’s hard for any defenseman to make the NHL immediately after being drafted. It was a big surprise when he failed to make the Canadian WJC team. However Chychrun never let that bother him as he went to put up 71 points in 61 games in the OHL for the Sarnia Sting. His 12 points in 14 playoff games has helped his team to the OHL Final where they can secure a berth in the Memorial Cup.

3rd Overall: Jesse Puljujarvi (Ducks)

Jesse Puljujarvi was brought into the NHL right away by the former Ducks GM. While it’s understandable that you want him to have NHL coaching, it appears that the Ducks may have rushed him into the league a season or even two early. Puljujarvi ended up scoring 22 points in 67 NHL games this season. Thankfully Puljujarvi is only 18 years old and still has a lot of time to go. The Ducks now face the decision of putting him in the AHL next year to let him be the dominant offensive force he is.

4th Overall: Patrik Laine (Devils)

Under contact with the Devils but set to Sarnia anyways, Patrik Laine may not have exploded into a top flight NHL player in one season but he is not disappointing. Transitioning to North American hockey can be difficult. However playing with fellow Devils prospect Pavel Zacha, Laine put up 61 points in 60 games to help the Sarnia Sting take first in the OHL regular season standings. Laine hasn’t stopped there though, in the 13 playoff games he’s been in Laine has 23 points. Good enough for 2nd in points on the Sting behind Zacha. Next season the Sting can expect a changing of the guard with Zacha moving into the NHL and Laine leading the Sting.

5th Overall: Matthew Tkachuk (Maple Leafs)

The Leafs went with a youth movement this season which saw Matthew Tkachuk playing in the NHL right out of the NHL entry draft. While he didn’t light up the lamp, Tkachuk did post a respectable 39 points in 82 games. While Tkachuk did struggle in the NHL due to his skating needing work, chances are he’ll end up back in the NHL next season. Development wise, Tkachuk is where you would expect a player picked 5th overall after his draft year.

6th Overall: Logan Brown (Jets)

Considered a reach at the time, Logan Brown has taken tremendous steps in terms of his physical development this season. With a 6’ 6” frame you can usually expect average skating. With Brown though he is turning out to be one of the best skating players from the 2016 draft. While his season with Windsor has been disappointing, Logan Brown was a part of a Bronze Medal winning team at the World Junior Championships. Last but not least, although Brown has improved his skating immensely, he still needs to improve on his technical skills before becoming a NHL threat.

7th Overall: Max Jones (Canucks)

While there is a drop in skill from the 5th overall pick to the 6th overall pick, Max Jones is keeping pace as best he can at this stage. He time in London didn’t provide a huge boost that Vancouver was hoping. However Max Jones became the offensive dynamo on London while Tkachuk, Marner and Joulevi were all in the NHL. Jones showed he could be the “man” which should be promising to Canucks management. Like Logan Brown, Max Jones is a project so don’t expect to see him in the NHL for another three seasons.

8th Overall: Rasmus Asplund (Flames)

The young Swede had a decent season in development but everywhere else it could be considered a disappointment. It’s this disappointment that has the Calgary Flames looking to bring him over to play in the AHL next season. Asplund had a rough year in the SHL scoring only 18 points in 42 games. The season before he had 9 points in 19 games. Add that to the Swedish U-20 team losing out in the Quarterfinals and you have a disappointed player. A fresh start in North America will certainly be the boost this prospect needs.

9th Overall: Julien Gauthier (Avalanche)

The 6’ 4” winger had his worst QMJHL season since he was a rookie in 2013/14. Despite that Gauthier has made Avalanche management happy with his progress. While his point totals don’t reflect it, Gauthier showed his offensive skills which push him closer to making the NHL. Many scouts on the Avalanche staff are happy to compare Gauthier’s current level with 5th overall pick Matthew Tkachuk. Scouts are also happy to point out that Gauthier ended up in 5th for tournament scoring at the WJC.

10th Overall: Dimitri Sokolov (Islanders)

The first Russian taken in the draft and another small step down in terms of skill for the 2016 Draft. That didn’t stop Sokolov from being a huge part of the Sudbury Wolves. The Wolves went on to be the top team in the Eastern Conference in the OHL and made it to the Conference Finals only to lose out. Sokolov is a project. His skating is quite good and he’s well rounded in his technical skills. He’ll need another year in the OHL plus a few in the AHL before he joins a deep Islanders team.

11th Overall: Evan Fitzpatrick (Devils)

Fitzpatrick was the first goalie taken in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft and the second pick of the draft for the New Jersey Devils. It’s fair to say that this year was pretty much a wash for Fitzpatrick in the QMJHL. He missed the first part of the season due to a partially torn ACL. The injury caused Fitzpatrick to be named as the back-up goalie for the Canadian WJC team. Despite all of that happening Fitzpatrick has showed why he was the first goalie picked bringing his team to the Conference Final in the QMJHL. Development wise Fitzpatrick is looking like a NHL goalie with his physical skills. He just needs to keep working on his technical skills.

12th Overall: Dante Fabbro (Stars)

It’s hard to be positive about Fabbro’s 2016/17 season. Fewer points then last season plus no boost in development have the Dallas Stars organization not happy with Fabbro. Of course that’s not to say he’s a bust or not a first rounder in hindsight. He’s a young defenseman so it will take him a bit to get to where he wants to be. If there is a positive, Fabbro was a part of the Silver Medal Canadian team at the WJC.

13th Overall: Michael McLeod (Maple Leafs)

Second pick of the draft for the Maple Leafs and he’s looking great so far. His top notch skating had him lead his team in points with 88 points in the regular season. He’s followed that up with 20 points in the playoffs and will be playing in the OHL Final against the top team in the OHL, the Sarnia Sting. With him being a 13th overall pick, Maple Leaf scouts are smiling at his progress so far and are looking forward to what he does next season.

14th Overall: Jake Bean (Senators)

Jake Bean has Senators scouts smiling when they hear his name. Jake Bean was an absolute force on the Calgary Hitmen in the WHL putting up 67 points in 59 games as a defenseman. The accolades don’t stop there. Jake Bean was the number 1 defenseman as the Hitmen upset no. 2 seed Brandon Wheat Kings in the playoffs. Jake Bean was also awarded a Silver Medal at the WJC with Team Canada where he had 6 points in 7 games. Jake Bean’s top notch skating will allow Ottawa scouts to smile for the next few seasons.

15th Overall: Olli Joulevi (Ducks)

The only defenseman from the 2016 NHL Entry draft to play in the NHL this past season. The decision to play him for all 82 games had not only the London Knights confused but the entire hockey world. Some way, somehow, Joulevi managed to put up 20 points in the NHL and only ended up with a -7 rating. Anyone who watches him though can tell he is not NHL ready and should be back in London next season. The NHL season didn’t hurt his development, but it didn’t help it either.

16th Overall: Luke Green (Devils)

Yes it’s another New Jersey Devils first round pick. And he’s another success story for the New Jersey Devils scouting staff. He did have a drop in points this season. However he’s been a complete stud in the QMJHL playoffs this year helping his team go to the QMJHL Final. Add that he’s showing to be one of the best players in terms of skating from the 2016 NHL Entry Draft. Devils management is excited to see Green develop his offensive skills further to compliment his high level skating.

17th Overall: Xavier Couturier (Sharks)

The most raw prospect to be drafted in the first round of the 2016 Entry Draft. Also the tallest. Couturier is the definition of a risk and is it ever working out for the San Jose Sharks. Word has it that GM Luke smiles whenever someone brings him up in a conversation. It was important for the San Jose Sharks to get this pick right as it was their first pick in the 2016 draft. Their original pick ended up with Boston and ended up being Chychrun. In one season of development Couturier has the skills and physical ability to be a 3rd pairing defenseman. Who knows how a few more years of development turns out for him.

18th Overall: Charles McAvoy (Red Wings)

There are a few great skaters in this 2016 draft, especially on defense it seems. In a race though, not one of those defenseman will be able to beat Charles McAvoy. McAvoy was a monster in the NCAA with 43 points in 46 games for Boston University. He’s a defenseman on the brink of breaking out offensively and when you combine that with his speed, McAvoy could be reeking mayhem in the NHL before long. GM Zack and management will be awfully tempted to let him spend another year in Boston before sending him to the AHL.

19th Overall: Vitali Abramov (Ducks)

Finally a prospect that the Anahiem Ducks didn’t keep in the NHL. And this decision looks like it is working out. Abramov went back to Gatineau and had a great season scoring over a PPG in the regular season. He’s offensively gifted and a decent skater. His development hasn’t gone far though he’s looking good still. The Ducks will be happy with Abramov and will continue with their high hopes for him.

20th Overall: Tyler Benson (Oilers)

Oilers are awash in top young talent and Tyler Benson is looking like he’s getting ready to join that group in a few seasons. Benson’s skating is already at a NHL level. Right now the Oilers are waiting on his offense to catch up with his physical abilities. Another season in Vancouver will prove to be helpful for Benson where the Giants are hoping for one more year with their three big guns: Ronning, Comrie and Benson.

21st Overall: Sean Day (Maple Leafs)

A faller in the draft, the Maple Leafs are definitely happy with this young defenseman. Sean Day is showing to be the top physical ready player in the entire 2016 draft. The Leafs management will now be focused on getting Sean Day to work on his technical skills as they are very much under par right now compared to the top defensemen in the draft.

22nd Overall: Loik Levielle (Blackhawks)

Many consider Logan Brown to be the reach of the draft but many forget that Loik Levielle was 67th by the ISS. While Levielle doesn’t have the highest ceiling of the first rounders taken in the draft, he’s certainly developing just fine. The Hawks management is certainly happy that in the upcoming season they will be able to bring Levielle to the AHL to help his development.

23rd Overall: Mikhail Sergachev (Predators)

If there’s a comparable for Sergachev, it’s that he’s like Sean Day only without the straight line speed and Sergachev has the edge in technical skills. Sergachev did have a poor season offensively and just consistently was inconsistent. However that is to be expected with a player taken with the 23rd overall selection. Sergachev does have a ways to go. Despite that he has a solid foundation to build on.

24th Overall: Alexander Nylander (Stars)

Another Dallas Stars pick and this one had an even weirder season then Dante Fabbro. The Stars front office is absolutely inflamed at the Rogle organization in the SHL. Nylander only ended up playing 14 games but did end up scoring 10 points in those games. Impressive for a player under 20. Nylander did have a chance to show off his skill as he ended up as the 2nd leading scorer in the WJC tournament. Nylander’s skating will surely have the Stars sign him to a contract and put him in the AHL ASAP.

25th Overall: Pascal Laberge (Panthers)

This centerman still has a long ways to go before becoming a NHL player. Laberge did manage to make Team Canada and become a Silver Medalist despite not performing up to the standards of Panthers management. With the current center depth in Florida, the Panthers will be more than happy to let Pascal Laberge develop slowly in the QMJHL then the AHL.

26th Overall: Maxim Lajoie (Hurricanes)

With Auston Matthews you can pretty much declare the Hurricanes as winners of the 2016 draft. Lajoie however helps to confirm that. Lajoie is highly talented skater who, like nearly every defenseman in this draft, needs to work on his technical skills. His development so far has been promising and there’s a good possibility teams start asking in a few seasons, where did this guy come from?

27th Overall: Adam Mascherin (Coyotes)

For a late first round pick, Mascherin is everything that the Coyotes could hope for and more. His skating is as a NHL level and he is as mentally mature as nearly any NHL player right now. His 66 points led the Barrie Colts in the OHL. Mascherin even outshined a top NHL prospect in Adrian Kempe who belongs to Pacific division rival Kings.

28th Overall: Chad Krys (Canadiens)

There are a lot of teams happy in this draft and count the Montreal Canadiens as one of them. Chad Krys is on the right path for development and making some noise while doing so. Krys put up 74 points in 55 games as a defenseman. The Canadiens will be watching closely as Krys is choosing to go to college next season. Though the Habs could swoop in with an ELC and have Krys apply his skills at the AHL level.

29th Overall: Clayton Keller (Oilers)

Another young talented forward that belongs to the Oilers. This young prospect scored 75 points in 55 games. His skating and mental levels are pretty far along. Oilers management are in the same boat as the Montreal Canadiens, let him go to college or bring him into the pro system. With Keller’s age and height, there is a high possibility of the Oilers letting him go to the NCAA.

30th Overall: Ryan Bushett (Stars)

At 30th overall you never expect the player to be the best or even top 15 player in the draft. So far Bushett is what he is, a good prospect with a high ceiling but has an even furthers way to go compared to Pascal Laberge. The smallish center only scored 33 points in 42 games with Shawinigan of the QMJHL. Stars are definitely hoping he takes a bigger role next season on the team and his development will flourish.

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Re: Looking Back to 2016 aka What the Hell Ducks

Post by Axiaste » Fri May 27, 2016 2:09 pm

Great read. I do smilie every time someone brings up Couturier :joy:

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