Here is my mock draft of the top 10 prospects in the 2008 draft. I did pretty well last year, with the exception of that Thomas Hickey pick by Los Angeles. That threw my board off as far as defensemen go. He was supposed to be Karl Alzner, but whatever.
First Pick- Tampa Bay
Steven Stamkos. If you do not know why Stamkos is going first, you have not bothered to look. He is amazing and deserves to go first overall, but I just do not think Tampa Bay needs him. Congratulations Lightning fans you got Brad Richards back, but he’s a bit younger and much blonder. Tampa Bay still has no depth on offense or defense which they could have taken care of if they traded the pick. Now they have another first line center behind a top line center.
Second Pick- Los Angeles
Zach Bogosian. Assuming we do not have another Thomas Hickey incident, the Kings should take Bogosian. A lot of people think they should take Drew Doughty, but if I were the Kings I would think Visnovsky, Preissing, prospect Thomas Hickey, and prospect Peter Harrold would be enough puck moving defensemen. Zach Bogosian would be a replacement for the aging Rob Blake because he possesses the same hard-nosed style.
Third Pick- Atlanta
Drew Doughty. Outside of Tobias Enstrom, the Thrashers did not have a defenseman with over 15 points. I do not think any other team needs a puck moving defenseman like Atlanta does and Drew Doughty would be a perfect fit.
Fourth Pick- St Louis
Nikita Filatov. This is another pick where I disagree with most mock boards. Most people have the Blues picking up Alex Pietrangelo, but they already have plenty of first round defensemen. Ian Cole, Erik Johnson, Shawn Belle, Barret Jackman, and Christian Backman are the players St Louis has drafted in the opening round lately. An aging offense makes me think they should add this amazing Russian. Think about Lars Eller, Patrik Berglund, and Nikita Filatov as a possible top line. Scary.
Fifth Pick- New York Islanders
Alex Pietrangelo. To me, he seems like a better fit here than he would be in St Louis. Pietrangelo would bring some youth to the Islanders defense. I think the defense needs more work than their offense, which will get better next year. He could crack the New York line-up next year.
Sixth Pick- Columbus (probably to be traded)
Luke Schenn. He is sixth on almost every draft board I have seen and I think he will be regardless if the Blue Jackets trades the pick or not. I really have a feeling this pick will end up in the hands of another team. Schenn is the best shut-down guy in the draft.
Seventh Pick- Toronto
Mikkel Boedker. He is one of my favorite players in the draft. I think the Leafs need his youth and skill. This is another player that could crack the lineup next year. I have this terrible feeling that Toronto might go after Kyle Beach. They seem to be on a rebuild with really scrappy and physical players tirade.
Eighth Pick- Phoenix
Tyler Myers. Indeed this is a bit of a stretch, but the Coyotes already have more centers than any team could possibly need. This would make their defense much better. Their already young offense can do the rest.
Ninth Pick- Nashville
Colin Wilson. This is a gift for the Predators. He would fit their style of play very well and under the tutelage of Jason Arnott, Wilson will be an extremely effective second line Center for Nashville for years to come. I am actually excited for this team, if they end up getting Wilson.
10th Pick- Vancouver
Cody Hodgson. Hi, my name is baby Markus Naslund. Well he’s not exactly Naslund, but he may fool a lot of people into thinking that. Hodgson is about the same size and I see a bit of playing style resemblance. Trust me, picking him would be a step in the right direction for the Canucks.
Since the Blue Jackets are probably going to trade their first pick, I wanted to make sure the Columbus fans did not feel short-sheeted and I’m going to preview their second pick.
19th Pick- Columbus
Michael Del Zotto. I am amazed at how many boards agree with me that the Jackets will be able to pick Del Zotto up this late. He is a puck-moving defenseman who will do a lot to bolster Columbus’ defense and chip in offensively. I also wanted to talk about this pick because this is such a steal and perfect fit for this team.