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Monday, January 17, 2011

TSN/Bob McKenzie's Midseason Draft Rankings Released

TSN's mid-season top-60 was released tonight.

To read them yourself go to the TSN's website- they've got 'em.

Bob is the media master of such things. He has an unparalleled network of NHL scouting sources and an interesting system for creating a draft range for each player that is strictly by the numbers and not subjective. He explains it at the beginning of his post, so no reason to re-hash it here.

Adam Larsson is not a surprise at the top of the list, but Ryan Nugent-Hopkins at No. 2? Now that is an intriguing twist!

Gabriel Landeskog at 3 is about where he should project to go, but because of the intangibles, there's always the chance that a team could take him in the top-two. Or, if he doesn't come back from the high ankle sprain, he might go a tad lower.

Sean Couturier dropping to 4th...his WJC is primarily responsible for that, but to be honest, he's been playing very well since returning to the QMJHL, so expect him to rebound a bit.

Dougie Hamilton at 5 two spots ahead of Ryan Murphy at 7 jives with what my own NHL sources have been telling me. Those 6-4 guys who can skate always have more appeal than the highly skilled smaller guys, which is what Murphy is. Throw in Hamilton's production (38 pts) and it's a bit of a no-brainer, at least right now. We'll see how the season finishes out.

Ryan Strome at 6th- again, no real surprise. His production and creativity/skill have bolted him up the lists since coming out like gangbusters to start.

Tyler Biggs in the top-10. Central had him fifth. Power forwards like Biggs tend to bring out the NHL teams, so he might end up going higher than most think.

Jonas Brodin at 12th overall is another surprise. All-around Swedish defenseman doesn't have the offensive game of Larsson, but he's one of those guys who's developmental curve is on the up and up-- in time, he could become a lot better than people think based on what he's shown thus far. Interesting selection there...too bad he wasn't in Buffalo.

I'm keeping a close eye on Scott Mayfield at 25th...if the Bruins were to draft a forward with the Toronto pick and still have their own selection later in the round, he makes sense there for them in terms of upside, even if he's not getting much production in the USHL on a cellar-dweller.

David Musil's precipitous drop to 27th is not surprising...but Daniel Catenacci at 30 is. Former top overall OHL priority selection is highly skilled but very small. His 20 goals, 50 points is no doubt keying his surge higher than people thought to start the season, when he wasn't projected to have all that high of a pro ceiling in certain circles.

Seth Ambroz at 50 is falling after being thought of as a consensus top-30 pick to start the year. If he keeps failing to put up points, he could drop lower. Mike Paliotta at 59 is also a surprise, but the lack of points/offensive upside is likely a reason. It's kind of like what happened with Brian Strait five years ago...good player, but just not productive enough.

Overall, though-- this is a solid list. And, you can't argue with McKenzie's methodology.

It's sure to keep people talking through the winter months until the next round of lists and rankings come out.


  1. Only place to have a decent conversation with you anymore is here Kirk :(. No problem for me though !

    I dont have a problem with Bobby Mac's list at all, and if there is one thing i have learned from you over the past couple of years it's that it only takes one team to think differently and it throws everything out of wack.

    But i do have a question, and i'm not sure if you can answer it publicly or not, But do you know if the Bruins are in on McKenzie's survey of Scouts? And if so, who might that be?

    About the top prospects game though, or the skills competition to be more exact, I was surprised to see Dougie Hamilton in the fastest skater competition. Maybe cuz he's so big he doesnt look fast. I would have liked to see him in the hardest shot competition myself.

    All in all, a great 2 days for these kids. You can tell by Dougie's twitter how in awe he was walking into the Leafs dressing room today :)

  2. Thanks- won't be posting there until further notice. But will still read.

    I don't know if the Bruins are in on the survey or not. I would imagine that Bob McKenzie would try if at all possible to poll all 30 NHL GMs or scouting directors or a mix of both. But, can't confirm it right now.

    I always like McKenzie's lists, but there is always some variation due in part to certain teams trying to throw others off the scent of players they target for selfish reasons. Charlie Coyle being in the 40s last year on TSN's final list is a good example of this. I doubt he was ranked so low by many that would make his average as low there, but if the Sharks were involved in polling, I could see why they would throw the curve off in hopes of giving teams hope that they could steal Coyle in the 2nd.

    I think there is always some gamesmanship involved-- even when you run a blind survey like TSN's. Probably as good a method as any short of sitting in a team's war room and seeing exactly where they have the players ranked.