2012 NHL Draft Grades: Team-by-Team Report Cards and Results

Kevin Goff@@BrgBrigadeKevinContributor IJune 23, 2012

2012 NHL Draft Grades: Team-by-Team Report Cards and Results

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    The 2012 NHL entry draft is in the books, and now we all have to put on our wizard hats and look into the future.

    Judging the winners and losers of the NHL draft is one of the hardest jobs because so many of these players will not be in the NHL next year.

    The NHL is all about how you can develop your prospects.

    Still, teams which managed to pick up sleepers or guys who dropped that shouldn't have are readily visible to most hockey fans.

    So here's each team's report card for the NHL draft.

Anaheim Ducks

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    Round 1: Hampus Lindholm (D)

    Round 2: Nicolas Kerdiles (LW)

    Round 3: Frederik Andersen (G)

    Round 4: Kevin Roy (C), Andrew O'Brien (D)

    Round 5: Brian Cooper (D)

    Round 7: Kenton Helgesen (D), Jaycob Megna (D)


    Grade: B

    Size was the name of the game with the Ducks, as all but three of Anaheim's picks were over 6'3".

    Anaheim also looked to build some depth on the blue line through this draft, taking five defensemen.

    A pretty standard Ducks draft—I'll give them a B.

Boston Bruins

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    Round 1: Malcolm Subban (G)

    Round 3: Matthew Grzelcyk (D) 

    Round 5: Seth Griffith (C) , Cody Payne (RW)

    Round 6: Matthew Benning (D)

    Round 7: Colton Hargrove (LW)


    Grade: B+

    The Bruins addressed some needs in their system in this draft, most notably with Malcolm Subban in goal.

    Seth Griffith could be a steal in this draft for the Bruins; time will tell.

    All in all, this was a good draft for the Bruins to create some better organizational depth in all areas.

Buffalo Sabres

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    Round 1: Mikhail Grigorenko (C), Zemgus Girgensons (C)

    Round 2: Jake McCabe (D) 

    Round 3: Justin Kea (C)

    Round 5: Logan Nelson (C)

    Round 6: Linus Ullmark (G)

    Round 7: Brady Austin (D), Judd Peterson (C/RW)


    Grade: A

    Buffalo accomplished its main goal for the offseason in this draft, and that is getting bigger.

    Linus Ullmark could also be an under-the-radar pick in net. Ullmark has performed well in Sweden and will get a decent amount of time to develop.

    Will he be the goalie of the future? It's way too early to tell, but he could be a positive member of the Sabres' system.

Calgary Flames

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    Round 1: Mark Jankowski (C)

    Round 2: Patrick Sieloff (D)

    Round 3: Jon Gillies (G)

    Round 4: Brett Kulak (D)

    Round 5: Ryan Culkin (D)

    Round 6: Coda Gordon (LW)

    Round 7: Matthew Deblouw (C)


    Grade: B

    Calgary surprised a lot of people with its first-round draft pick, but made some pretty solid picks for developmental purposes.

    Nobody in here is going to be making the team next season, and maybe even the following season.

    Calgary focused three-to-five years down the line with this draft.

Carolina Hurricanes

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    Round 2: Phillip DiGiuseppe (LW), Brock McGinn (LW)

    Round 3: Daniel Altshuller (G)

    Round 4: Erik Karlsson (C/LW), Trevor Carrick (D), Jaccob Slavin (D)

    Round 5: Brendan Woods (LW)

    Round 6: Collin Olson (G)

    Round 7: Brendan Collier (LW)


    Grade: C+

    Carolina didn't make a lot of gains from an offensive standpoint in this draft, other than trading for Jordan Staal.

    Some good defensive picks for the Canes, but this was not their best draft.

Chicago Blackhawks

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    Round 1: Teuvo Teravainen (LW)

    Round 2: Dillon Fournier (D)

    Round 3: Chris Calnan (RW)

    Round 5: Garret Ross (LW), Travis Brown (D)

    Round 6: Vincent Hinostroza (C)

    Round 7: Brandon Whitney (G), Matt Tomkins (G)


    Grade: B+

    The Hawks got a good pick in the first round with the skilled Fin, Teravainen. They also made some solid goaltending picks very late in the draft.

    All in all, pretty strong.

Colorado Avalanche

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    Round 2: Mitchell Heard (C)

    Round 3: Troy Bourke (LW)

    Round 5: Michael Clarke (C)

    Round 6: Joseph Blandisi (C/RW)

    Round 7: Colin Smith (C)


    Grade: C+

    With only five picks in this year's draft, it isn't that much of a surprise that the Avalanche didn't make too big of a splash.

    The theme among the guys that they did pick is endurance. Each of the guys has a strong motor and plays with a bit of an edge.

    System guys that won't crack the big team for a couple of years.

Columbus Blue Jackets

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    Round 1: Ryan Murray (D)

    Round 2: Oscar Dansk (G)

    Round 3: Joonas Korpisalo (G)

    Round 4: Josh Anderson (RW)

    Round 6: Daniel Zaar (RW)

    Round 7: Gianluca Curcuruto (D)


    Grade: A

    The Blue Jackets made some great picks during both days of this draft to help their team now and down the road.

    Ryan Murray will likely jump into the lineup right away, but their second- and third-round picks are the ones that really stick out to me.

    In these spots, they picked two of the best European goaltending prospects out there to increase the skill level inside their crease.

    Really solid draft by Columbus.

Dallas Stars

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    Round 1: Radek Faksa (C)

    Round 2: Ludwig Bystrom (D), Mike Winther (C), Devin Shore (C)

    Round 3: Esa Lindell (D)

    Round 4: Gemel Smith (C)

    Round 5: Brandon Troock (RW), Henri Kiviaho (G)

    Round 7: Dmitry Sinitsyn (D)


    Grade: A-

    A good draft by the Stars, who managed to round out pretty much every single position in their organization.

    Faksa was a very solid selection and will be a good replacement for Mike Ribeiro, whom Dallas traded to Washington.

    Gemel Smith may be the Stars' golden pick, as he made great progress during this past season with Owen Sound. 

    Nice job by Dallas.

Detroit Red Wings

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    Round 2: Martin Frk (RW)

    Round 3: Jake Paterson (G)

    Round 4: Andreas Athanasiou (C/LW)

    Round 5: Michael McKee (D)

    Round 6: James de Haas (D)

    Round 7: Rasmus Bodin (LW)


    Grade: A

    Detroit is just good at drafting. Martin Frk had Detroit's name written all over him when he slipped into the second round, and the Wings snatched him up.

    Then, the Wings made another great selection in the fourth round, nabbing the super-talented and incredibly speedy Andreas Athanasiou.

    They manage to do it every year—find these players with huge skill sets that teams are passing on, and the Red Wings develop them into star players. 

Edmonton Oilers

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    Round 1: Nail Yakupov (RW)

    Round 2: Mitchell Moroz (LW)

    Round 3: Jujhar Khaira (LW), Daniil Zharkov (LW)

    Round 4: Erik Gustafsson (D)

    Round 5: Joey Laleggia (D)

    Round 6: John McCarron (RW)


    Grade: B

    A very forward-heavy draft from Edmonton; all but two of their picks are forwards. But it does make sense, considering that the Oilers' system is pretty full of defensive prospects.

    Yakupov is a good pick, and Daniil Zharkov is another solid pick later in the third round.

Florida Panthers

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    Round 1: Michael Matheson (D)

    Round 3: Steven Hodges (C)

    Round 4: Alexander Delnov (LW)

    Round 6: Francis Beauvillier (C/LW)

    Round 7: Jonatan Nielsen (D)


    Grade: C+

    Another team that didn't have a lot of draft picks, so you didn't expect that much out of them.

    Matheson was a decent pick, but the entire lot of picks from the Panthers is pretty much full of developmental prospects.

    Nobody is going to jump up and make the squad this year, and not too many of them have put up really great numbers for their junior teams.

    A big-picture approach from the Panthers.

Los Angeles Kings

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    Round 1: Tanner Pearson (LW)

    Round 4: Nikolai Prokhorkin (LW)

    Round 5: Colin Miller (D)

    Round 6: Tomas Hyka (RW), Paul LaDue (D)

    Round 7: Nick Ebert (D)


    Grade: A-

    The Kings must have been chomping at the bit when they saw Tanner Pearson still available at the end of the first round.

    What a great pick.

    Then, Prokhorkin and Hyka are guys that were also putting up solid numbers for their teams. 

    The Kings did a very good job with this draft.

Minnesota Wild

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    Round 1: Matt Dumba (D)

    Round 2: Raphael Bussieres (LW)

    Round 3: John Draeger (D)

    Round 4: Adam Gilmour (C)

    Round 5: Daniel Gunnarsson (D)

    Round 6: Christoph Bertschy (C)

    Round 7:  Louis Nanne (LW)


    Grade: B

    Matt Dumba was definitely Minnesota's best pick in this draft, as he provides an offensive threat from the blue line without giving up any defensive ability.

    Dumba also brings a lot more energy to a team that is usually on the boring side of things.

Montreal Canadiens

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    Round 1: Alex Galchenyuk (C)

    Round 2: Sebastian Collberg (RW), Dalton Thrower (D)

    Round 3: Tim Bozon (LW)

    Round 4: Brady Vail (C)

    Round 5: Charles Hudon (LW)

    Round 6: Erik Nystrom (LW)


    Grade: A

    Home-run draft for the Montreal Canadiens. Galchenyuk, Collberg, Thrower and Bozon are all guys who will be making differences for this team both in the near and distant future.

    You have to like a draft which has players that can step in and make differences immediately and ones that you know will develop into impact players as well.

Nashville Predators

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    Round 2: Pontus Aberg (LW), Colton Sissons (C)

    Round 3: Jimmy Vesey (LW), Brendan Leipsic (LW)

    Round 4: Zachary Stepan (C), Mikko Vainonen (D)

    Round 6: Simon Fernholm (D), Max Gortz (RW), Marek Mazanec (G)


    Grade: B+

    For having picks in only four rounds, the Predators did a good job of finding solid players.

    Pontus Aberg and Colton Sissons were both great picks in the second round, and Jimmy Vesey is one who might surprise a lot of people as he develops.

    Another good draft for Nashville.

New Jersey Devils

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    Round 1: Stefan Matteau (C)

    Round 2: Damon Severson (D)

    Round 3: Ben Johnson (C/LW)

    Round 4: Ben Thomson (LW)

    Round 5: Graham Black (C), Alexander Kerfoot (C)

    Round 6: Artur Gavrus (C/LW)


    Grade: B-

    New Jersey got tougher and better defensively, which is always a plus in any league.

    One guy to keep an eye on is Alexander Kerfoot. This little guy racked up a ton of points this past season and could have a huge future ahead of him.

New York Islanders

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    Round 1: Griffin Reinhart (D)

    Round 2: Ville Pokka (D)

    Round 3: Adam Pelech (D)

    Round 4: Loic Leduc (D)

    Round 5: Doyle Somerby (D)

    Round 6: Jesse Graham (D)

    Round 7: Jake Bischoff (D)


    Grade: C

    While the picks at the top of this draft are pretty solid for the Islanders, New York picked only defensemen.

    Perhaps that is their greatest organizational need, but it certainly doesn't help provide any more depth to the rest of their system.

New York Rangers

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    Round 1: Brady Skjei (D)  

    Round 2: Cristoval Nieves (C)

    Round 4: Calle Andersson (D)

    Round 5: Thomas Spelling (RW)


    Grade: B

    Not a lot of picks, but all guys that have both offensive and defensive upside. 

    Good picks to fit into what is a very solid Rangers system.

Ottawa Senators

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    Round 1: Cody Ceci (D)

    Round 3: Chris Driedger (G), Jarrod Maidens (C/LW)

    Round 4: Timothy Boyle (D)

    Round 5: Robert Baillargeon (C)

    Round 6: Francois Brassard (G)

    Round 7: Mikael Wikstrand (D)


    Grade: B-

    Ottawa got a good local pick with its first-round selection of Cody Ceci. It also collected a couple of decent, young goalies that can develop over the next couple of years.

    Not a great draft, but not a bad one, either.

Philadelphia Flyers

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    Round 1: Scott Laughton (C)

    Round 2: Anthony Stolarz (G)

    Round 3: Shayne Gostisbehere (D)

    Round 4: Fredrik Larsson (D), Taylor Leier (LW)

    Round 5: Reece Willcox (D)

    Round 7: Valeri Vasiliev (D)


    Grade: B-/C+

    Laughton is a solid pick for the Flyers because he's exactly their type of player: offensively skilled with a physical edge.

    Stolarz is a good get at goalie because Ilya Bryzgalov is nothing but a huge question mark for Philadelphia, and developing somebody behind him should hopefully light a fire under him.

    Some of their later picks don't seem to have been very productive and may be rolls of the dice.

Phoenix Coyotes

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    Round 1: Henrik Samuelsson (C/RW)

    Round 2: Jordan Martinook (LW)

    Round 3: James Melindy (D)

    Round 4: Rhett Holland (D)

    Round 5: Niklas Tikkinen (D)

    Round 6: Samuel Fejes (LW)

    Round 7: Marek Langhamer (G), Justin Hache (D)


    Grade: B+

    A pretty solid draft, overall, for the Phoenix Coyotes. They managed to put together a mixture of skill, grit and offensive and defensive abilities.

    Phoenix may have gotten some late-round gems in this one.

Pittsburgh Penguins

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    Round 1: Derrick Pouliot (D), Olli Maatta (D)

    Round 2: Theodor Blueger (C)

    Round 3: Oskar Sundqvist (C), Matthew Murray (G)

    Round 4: Matia Marcantuoni (C/RW), Sean Maguire (G)

    Round 5: Clark Seymour (D)

    Round 6: Anton Zlobin (RW)


    Grade: A-

    Pittsburgh was aggressive during this draft and was given the opportunity to move up in the first round, thanks to the big Jordan Staal trade.

    The first picks of the Penguins will provide fantastic defensive depth. From then on, Pittsburgh also found more solid offense and some goalies to develop over the next few years.

    Good draft by the hosts.

San Jose Sharks

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    Round 1: Tomas Hertl (C)

    Round 2: Chris Tierney (C)

    Round 4: Christophe Lalancette (RW)

    Round 5: Daniel O'Regan (C)

    Round 6: Clifford Watson (D)

    Round 7: Joakim Ryan (D)


    Grade: B-

    Nothing terribly exciting out of San Jose, but Tomas Hertl is a good piece for the future.

    More offensive depth than anything for the Sharks in this draft.

St. Louis Blues

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    Round 1: Jordan Schmaltz (D) 

    Round 2: Samuel Kurker (RW)

    Round 3: MacKenzie MacEachern (LW), Colton Parayko (D)

    Round 4: Nicholas Walters (D)

    Round 5: Francois Tremblay (G) 

    Round 6: Petteri Lindbohm (D)

    Round 7: Tyrel Seaman (C)


    Grade: B+

    Good size and ability drafts by the Blues. Nobody is under 6'1", and everybody has seemingly good two-way ability.

Tampa Bay Lightning

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    Round 1: Slater Koekkoek (D), Andrey Vasilevskiy (G)

    Round 2: Dylan Blujus (D), Brian Hart (RW)

    Round 3: Tanner Richard (C)

    Round 4: Cedric Paquette (C)

    Round 6: Jake Dotchin (D)

    Round 7: Nikita Gusev (LW)


    Grade: A

    Solid draft from top to bottom. Tampa's early picks address immediate needs and the future of their goaltending situation.

    As the rounds went, Tampa continued to select solid players with a good outlook on both the offensive and defensive sides of the puck.

Toronto Maple Leafs

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    Round 1: Morgan Rielly (D)

    Round 2: Matthew Finn (D)

    Round 5: Dominic Toninato (C)

    Round 6: Connor Brown (RW), Ryan Rupert (C)

    Round 7: Viktor Loov (D)


    Grade: B-

    It's hard to have a great draft when you don't have any picks in the meat of it. That being said, Toronto got two good ones at the top of the draft.

    There's a lot of interesting potential on the bottom of Toronto's board, but also a lot of small guys that need to get stronger.

    Time will tell on this one.

Vancouver Canucks

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    Round 1: Brendan Gaunce (C)

    Round 2: Alexandre Mallet (LW)

    Round 5: Ben Hutton (D)

    Round 6: Wesley Myron (LW)

    Round 7: Matthew Beattie (LW)


    Grade: B

    Vancouver got bigger and a bit meaner, which is something it desperately needed to do.

    The Canucks got beat up physically in the Stanley Cup Finals against Boston and again in the first round by the Kings.

    Good size added to a good team that needs it. I especially like Brendan Gaunce, among their picks.

Washington Capitals

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    Round 1: Filip Forsberg (C), Thomas Wilson (RW)

    Round 3: Chandler Stephenson (C/LW)

    Round 4: Thomas di Pauli (C), Austin Wuthrich (RW)

    Round 5: Connor Carrick (D)

    Round 6: Riley Barber (RW)

    Round 7: Christian Djoos (D), Jaynen Rissling (D), Sergei Kostenko (G)


    Grade: A

    Washington had the most picks out of all of the teams in this year's draft, and they made them count.

    They got a great pick in Filip Forsberg and got a lot meaner in the same round with Thomas Wilson.

    Washington increased the depth of its system big-time in this draft.

Winnipeg Jets

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    Round 1: Jacob Trouba (D)

    Round 2: Lukas Sutter (C)

    Round 3: Scott Kosmachuk (RW)

    Round 5: Connor Hellebuyck (G)

    Round 6: Ryan Olsen (C)

    Round 7: Jamie Phillips (G)


    Grade: A-

    Winnipeg made great character and leadership picks in the first two rounds, with Trouba and Sutter. These guys play a physical game, and they like punishing their opponents.

    Kosmachuk is making solid progress in juniors, and it will be interesting to see how he continues to develop.

    All in all, Winnipeg had a very solid draft.