Final 2019 NHL Mock Draft1. New Jersey Devils: Jack Hughes
Although Kakko put on quite a show at the worlds, and played remarkable against men this season, the Devils still prefer Hughes to Kakko. Personally, Kakko is my choice and I could very well see Kakko going #1, but New Jersey has been dropping major hints with their social media and management.
2. New York Rangers: Kaapo Kakko
Rangers make the easiest pick of the draft, even more so than #1, Kakko will fit in very nicely and come into the league as an impact player next season.
3. Chicago Blackhawks: Bowen Byram
Chicago takes BPA in Byram. Had a lights out season with Vancouver and he would very well likely end up as the best player of the draft in a few years. Byram and Boqvist is going to be a lethal pairing to an already deep defensive pool in Chicago.
4. Colorado Avalanche: Alex Turcotte
Colorado goes with BPA in Turcotte, who had an injury riddled season, but when he was playing, posted a 1.68 ppg. I could very well see many different outcomes from this pick, like Zegras, Cozens, or Dach, but Colorado takes the player who makes a perfect 2nd line center behind Big Mac and can play a terrific two way game and still put up points.
5. Los Angeles Kings: Trevor Zegras
This pick makes way too much sense. Maybe a year or two ago Dach or Cozens would make the most sense, but more recently, LA has made it quite evident (and publicly stated) that they put a premium on speed and hockey IQ. Zegras shows both of those very well too and has a little bit of grit. Measured roughly a tad over 6’0, and will probably end up 6’1 200 and be a very effective centerman for LA for many years to come.
6. Detroit Red Wings: Moritz Seider
This pick is almost identical to Lindholm going 6 in 2012. Lindholm was a D man ranked in the teens that played against men in his draft year. He ended up getting picked 6th, much like Seider. Seider has an absolute cannon of a shot and has amazing size to add to it. What really makes him special is that he’s a big RHD and can skate. I truly believe he has #1D upside and the Red Wings will ultimately see that and “reach” for him at 6.
7. Buffalo Sabres: Peyton Krebs
Buffalo is excited to get a very good winger in Krebs. He plays a very fast game, and is a very effective 2 way player. He will be a very good finisher to Eichel’s wing or #2 centerman for many years to come.
8. Edmonton Oilers: Kirby Dach
Edmonton takes the hometown kid at 8. He is a perfect fit in Edmonton and is a player with high upside. I believe he can play a #2 center role very nicely and him and McDavid will be insane on the powerplay with Bouchard and Draisatl. They also have Yammamoto, so picking from the dub is no stranger to them.
9. Anaheim Ducks: Dylan Cozens
Seems like such a Ducks pick, and he falls slightly to 9 due to IQ concerns, yet I believe his size and speed with scoring ability will translate quite nicely at the next level. I truly do see #1 center material in Cozens and fits the Ducks style very well with his physicality and tenacious play.
10. Vancouver Canucks: Alex Newhook
They are familiar with the BCHL, as they are next door to the Nucks. He will be a terrific addition to an already future solid top 6. Will add a lot of skill and will be fun to watch play with Petey and Boeser. Krebs could be another solid pick here, although I see the Nucks leaning a bit more towards skill than two way play.
11. Philadelphia Flyers: Matthew Boldy
Philly takes best player available, I believe he slips slightly because teams will believe that he was a product of his line mates at the NTDP program. That being said, he will make a very good Flyer that plays their simple, grinding, bruising game quite well.
12. Minnesota Wild: Spencer Knight
The Wild aren’t afraid to make a splash at the draft, and with Dubnyk regressing in age, Knight can be a good goalie to build around moving forward. I looked at all options here and the most logical move for the Wild is Knight. Personally, I’d take BPA, but here is where the talent starts to mix. I don’t see them taking Caufield or any of us he Swedish D, who I would take here. Suzuki and Tomasino would be my dark horses for this pick as well.
13. Florida Panthers: Vasili Podkolzin
Florida takes the faller in Pod. Podkolzin can do it all and has the tools and toolbox of a top 5 pick. What he lacks is commitment to the NHL, which makes him fall to Florida, who likes Russians and persuading him to come over with the are and potentially Panarin and Bobrovsky in addition to Dadanov makes too much sense.
14. Arizona Coyotes: Cole Caufield
Arizona takes a pure sniper to compliment their centers coming up. Arizona drafter Hayton and he plays for Soo in the OHL, who holds Caufield’s rights. Maybe Cole leaves, and plays with Hayton in his D+1. Arizona will look back at the DeBrincat pick as an indicator that selecting smaller scoring wingers can be rewarding.
15. Montreal Canadiens: Thomas Haley
Montreal needs a LHD and has shown interest in Harley. He has #1 potential written all over him.
16. Colorado Avalanche: Victor Söderström
Colorado gets a very good RHD to play with under Maker moving forward. Will fit well with Colorado's already fantastic prospect pool. If Timmins does not pan out Söderström can take his place in the depth charts and will be a reliable two way d to have on their 2nd pair as a #3 D man.
17. Vegas Golden Knights: Philip Broberg
Vegas gets a faller in Broberg and a potential #1 D man. I have him falling because of IQ concerns but he could be an amazing pick a few years from now as well. Losing Brannstrom will look way less painful with Vegas having Broberg now.
18. Dallas Stars: Raphaël Lavoie
19. Ottawa Senators: Philip Tomasino
Sens get a riser in this draft and a potential elite forward in Tomasino. He is a fast, tenacious forward with tremendous upside. Very solid pick at 19 here.
20. New York Rangers: Brayden Tracey
Rangers have a solid C and D core, so they elect to fill out their winger situation with Tracey. Tracey is a very solid two way scoring winger. He will be a solid addition to compliment their centers very well.
21. Pittsburgh Penguins: Tobias Björnfot
Pens fall in love with Björnfot’s game and takes him at 21. They have a dry D core moving forward and reaches a bit to take Bjornfot.
22. Los Angeles Kings: Cam York
Kings have a new developed fetish for speed and IQ, two things York has. He lacks D zone awareness, which is why he is not picked in the teens and is selected 22nd.
23. New York Islanders: John Beecher
Isles take a very, very safe pick in the big, fast skating Beecher. He will be a perfect center for the Isles contending in the future.
24. Nashville Predators: Ville Heinola
The preds are known for knowing a good D man when they see it and Heinola has the potential to do so. Can be an absolute home rub pick moving forward.
25. Washington Capitals: Pavel Dorofeyev
Could see Washington take a very good Russian that could learn a lot from Ovie and eventually play with Kuz. All the Russians could also help persuade him to come over earlier to North America.
26. Calgary Flames: Brett Leason
Calgary gets the double overager that could be a huge a boom pick. Calgary probably watched him a lot since he played in the Dub, he should be a solid pick for them moving forward. I could also see them take Kalyiev.
27. Tampa Bay Lightning: Arthur Kaliyev
Tampa goes for a huge boom or bust pick. He fell slightly, but should be a tremendous pick for the Bolts.
28. Carolina Hurricanes: Ryan Suzuki
They have said they won’t take a D, and Suzuki is the perfect pick for them. I can see Brink or Rees at this spot as well but I ultimately see Suzuki going here as his IQ is something they can not pass up.
29. Anaheim Ducks: Matthew Robertson
Anaheim takes BPA here and Robertson looks like a prototypical Ducks defenseman. He is big, good defensively, and has an amazing first pass. He could use some work on his transitions but he is a solid pick at 29 for the Ducks.
30. Buffalo Sabres: Bobby Brink
Buffalo takes a high upside player in Brink. He falls slightly due to size and I could very well see him falling out of the first round. His offense is good but his skating shows that it needs work.
31. Boston Bruins: Jamieson Rees
B’s take the next Marchand in Rees. He can do a little bit of it all and could’ve been much higher if he played a who season, but he is a perfect Bruins pick at 31.
As always, feedback is appreciated!