Before tomorrow's Rounds 2-7 of the 2016 NHL Draft and the overall AIH reactions to follow, it seemed worthwhile to gather staff reactions to Round 1 alone. The results were as follows:
The Patrick Laine pick I'm absolutely thrilled about. It was an absolute no-brainer though. Not going to give Chevy any props for this, but no criticism is necessary either, which is definitely a good thing. Laine is a surefire stud.
As for Logan Stanley, uh it was an... "interesting" pick. I'm definitely not thrilled about it. Size is great, in fact I really enjoy size. But it looks like Stanley is all size and that is no good. And trading UP for him? I honestly thought the Jets were better drafters than that.
With no second rounder now and my prospect crush Lucas Johansen gone, it's hard to be thrilled. The Jets drafted literally the only player I actively did not want. The NHL draft is my Christmas, and I just opened some socks. Safe to say I'm pretty disappointed.
The good, the bad, and hopefully not the ugly tomorrow. Laine is a great pick and obviously will be a great player. This kid will step in immediately and make a huge impact. Some think he has the best shot since Stamkos.
But on the other side of the coin, there's the bad. Moving up for Logan Stanley is a great example of why you do not draft by need, but rather take the best player available. If they thought he was the best player available, oh boy. The moved reeked of desperation. Many think he easily would've been available at the 36th overall pick, or even later. The Flyers straight up hustled us on that trade, and it isn't the first time the Flyers have pulled a fast one (Coburn). I'm heading to my doctor tomorrow to get some medication!
Laine was the obvious choice, but I was nervous. There were enough rumors floating around to make me nervous. Laine is a dynamic talent. He has incredible hands, he can pass and he can shoot - oh boy can he shoot. He also moves better than people give him credit for. Laine isn't a blazing skater, but he reads the ice well enough to effectively "add a step" in many scenarios. Laine will score a pile of goals in this league and he should be an early favourite for rookie of the year.
Logan Stanley... I have some thoughts on Logan Stanley. I'll be honest, he was a guy that I did not want pre-draft. He didn't score much and scouting reports were all over the place. Some had him in the top-15, others have him as a player that they would not select within the first three rounds. There are players like this in every draft. Most of them are big. Many never amount to much. My initial reaction is not dissimilar to how I felt about the drafting of Lukas Sutter. I hope that I am wrong.
Can't go wrong picking Patrik Laine. The Jets would had to have really tried on purpose to screw up 2nd overall. As far as I'm concerned, Laine will definitely see top-6 minutes this year, and pairing him with either Scheifele or Little should seriously scare other teams. But Logan Stanley? Really?
I was not a fan of his at all entering the draft and something tells me the Jets have unfortunately fallen in love with big defencemen thanks to Tyler Myers. The fact that they even traded up and sacrificed their 2nd round pick to do so makes me feel like this is a typical Jets move: one step forward, two steps back. Maybe drafting Laine gave them a little too much confidence, so they decided to take a gamble with the 22nd pick. Doesn't make it any less questionable. He is a left-handed defenceman, but there were better left-handed defenceman still on the board. Literally anybody else would have been a better pick. I hope I'm wrong.
It's a good thing that the Jets won the lottery, as Patrik Laine makes this 1st Round a win pretty much no matter what. But Chevy did his best to lose the goodwill earned from the Laine pick, as moving the 22nd and 36th picks to move up four spots for Logan Stanley was questionable at best and awful at worst.
Stanley is a guy who analytical minds don't like, as big non-scorers in junior rarely turn out, and some scouts had him as low as a 3rd-rounder. Yes, you can't teach size, but can you teach talent? While I wouldn't have been happy with him at 22 I could have lived with it, but moving the 36th to move up to take him makes it so much worse. This strikes me as Lukas Sutter 2.0, taking a guy for old-school methods (bloodlines for Sutter, size for Stanley) while ignoring the new-school methods. Hopefully he turns out, but the odds seem longer than they need to be for the pick value, especially considering the trade.
Where are your reactions to the Winnipeg Jets 1st round? Did we all worry entirely too much about the possibility of selecting Puljujärvi? Do you feel Winnipeg should have rolled the Logan Stanley dice with the 22nd (if not 36th) pick instead of the 18th? And should Philadelphia Flyers general manager Ron Hextall be charged with grand larceny? Share your thoughts, questions and concerns in the Comments section below, and as always, thanks for reading!