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The Best of the Rest: Winnipeg’s Picks in Rounds 2-7

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Winnipeg had an intriguing, if controversial, second day at the draft table.

2020 NHL Draft - Round One Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images

After yesterday’s mile-high dopamine shot of Cole Perfetti, the Winnipeg Jets had work to do in rounds 2 through 7 of the NHL draft. With only a handful of picks remaining in the metaphorical locker, the Jets needed to get good value in every spot they picked. The results are...interesting, to say the least.

Pick 40. Daniel Torgersson (LW) - Frolunda J20

Torgersson is going to be a hotly debated pick for many years to come, in part because high-end attacker Noel Gunler was drafted directly after. Many fans may be wondering if the Swedish winger, noted for his size and strength, is the next Logan Stanley. The truth is something much more intriguing. While Torgersson is certainly not the dynamic creator that Gunler is, he brings strong skating, a quality release, good defensive instincts, and a powerful net-drive to create offense.

2020 NHL Draft - Round One Photo by John Delaney/NHLI via Getty Images

The projection is currently somewhere in the middle-6. Torgersson is someone who was probably a fair choice in isolation at 40th overall, but given the talent available, could have been taken later. I do like his strength while in possession and feel he might have some effective forechecking ability if he harnesses his frame to its full potential. Obviously, his agility and turning speed need some work. His acceleration, given his size, is also a bit lacking. With continued development and ice-time, though, the Jets might have a quality 2nd or 3rd line power-winger to offer offensive play-driving ability.

Pick 133. Anton Johannesson (D) - HV71 Jr.

If Torgersson was a bit of a miss at 40th overall, Johannesson is a bonafide steal at pick 133. The gifted Swedish defender is actually far more attuned to the attacking side of the game. His up-ice passing, especially from deeper positions, was often effective at springing breakouts and creating offensive opportunities for linemates. Johannesson also has decent positional awareness when backchecking and forcing turnovers.

While Anton is offensively gifted, he has some notable cosmetic issues that could hold him back. He’s genuinely a small kid, and often gets outmuscled along the walls and in corner battles against other skaters. He also has a tendency to lose track of opposing forwards and can struggle to make the proper defensive reads near the net.

Johannesson’s passing, while dangerous for his opponents, can also be a double-edged sword. He frequently attempted stretch passes that got picked off, or if they did work, would never make it at the NHL level. Anton will need to have his tendencies reigned in, but the raw tools are unbelievable. He has the skillset of an offensive wunderkind, especially when controlling the puck. If he can stay healthy, he could become a killer backend QB.

Pick 164. Tyrel Bauer (D) - Seattle Thunderbirds

I’ll be honest...I don’t know much about Bauer, beyond some limited details. He’s apparently one of Seattle’s better blueliners, which says a surprising amount given how bad the team is. He’s a big right-handed D with decent mobility and vision. Supposedly, he’s also been effective at using his stick to break up offensive rushes, but additional details are scarce. He seems like someone Winnipeg could eventually turn to on the third-pairing but I’m not eyeing him for an NHL role as much as I am with Johannesson.

Seattle Thunderbirds at Kelowna Rockets Photo by Marissa Baecker/Getty Images