Being or answering to the president of an NHL team is akin to working as or with a head of state in that there is negligible downtime on one’s agenda. The complexion of the present constantly commands meticulous planning for the future, which is associated with the annual entry draft more than any other event.
Most franchises have the means to address their immediate needs for this season by way of swapping established players. That luxury allows them to make the 2013 draft more about, if not entirely about, the long-term shape of the organization.
For at least a handful of others, draft planning should be accelerated by conceding that it may be best to sacrifice some of this year’s picks in order to shore up the current roster for either this season or 2013-14.
Naturally, with three months still to come in this season and the picking order yet to be determined, the exact routes a given franchise should take are subject to change. With that said, these are the areas each organization should be monitoring the most at the moment as they plan ahead to the first major event of the offseason.