Last week, I brought you the first round of the NHL Millennium Megadraft, which is a reorganized collection of NHL draft picks between 2001 and 2006. The first round was comprised of players selected between first and fifth overall, thrown together into a ranked list of 30 players.
This time we'll do the second round, which includes players drafted between sixth and 10th overall during the same time range.
Sadly, the second round of the Megadraft features just 29 players. The death of Vancouver defenseman Luc Bourdon in a motorcycle accident in May shocked the hockey world. Bourdon, who was selected 10th overall in the 2005 draft, surely would have ended up near the top of this list.
Here are the players who will make up Round Two of the NHL Millennium Megadraft:
2001: Mikko Koivu, Mike Komisarek, Pascal Leclaire, Tuomo Ruutu, Dan Blackburn
2002: Scottie Upshall, Joffrey Lupul, Pierre-Marc Bouchard, Petr Taticek, Eric Nystrom
2003: Milan Michalek, Ryan Suter, Braydon Coburn, Dion Phaneuf, Andrei Kostitsyn
2004: Al Montoya, Rostislav Olesz, Alexandre Picard, Ladislav Smid, Boris Valabik
2005: Gilbert Brule, Jack Skille, Devin Setoguchi, Brian Lee
2006: Derick Brassard, Kyle Okposo, Peter Mueller, James Sheppard, Michael Frolik
Now comes the hard part: ranking all 29 players in a new list. Once again, keep in mind that young players who haven't yet established themselves will be ranked lower.
31. Dion Phaneuf: No contest here. NHL's best young d-man and future Norris winner.
32. Pierre-Marc Bouchard: Wild playmaker hit 63 points last year and climbing.
33. Milan Michalek: Physical winger had an off-year, but is still dangerous.
34. Mike Komisarek: Hard-nosed blueliner led NHL in hits last year.
35. Joffrey Lupul: Philly was perfect change of scenery for sniper; he is beginning to hit stride.
36. Pascal Leclaire: Had a breakout season with nine shutouts, but must avoid injuries.
37. Mikko Koivu: Saku's brother starting to find offense; he is a strong two-way forward.
38. Ryan Suter: Edges out Coburn; he's a two-way player becoming a mainstay on Preds blue line.
39. Braydon Coburn: Finally put it all together last season and has great offensive instincts.
40. Andrei Kostitsyn: Had a 26-goal, 53-point rookie campaign; there's nowhere to go but up.
41. Peter Mueller: 54-point rookie year; big things in store for this 'Yotes forward.
42. Tuomo Ruutu: Injuries have derailed progress for this former blue-chipper.
43. Scottie Upshall: Offense hasn't translated to NHL, but energy sure has.
44. Rostislav Olesz: Struggling to find his offense, but is dripping with potential.
45. Ladislav Smid: Hasn't been a standout in Edmonton, but he hasn't been bad either.
46. Devin Setoguchi: Played 44 games last year, and didn't look out of place.
47. Gilbert Brule: Struggling in a big way. Will be in tough for him to get big minutes in Edmonton.
48. James Sheppard: Didn't produce much in rookie year, but Wild will develop him right.
49. Kyle Okposo: Five points in nine games last year for sniper.
50. Derick Brassard: Slick playmaker struggled in cameo last year, but impressed at AHL level.
51. Michael Frolik: Yet to see NHL, but loaded with offensive potential.
52. Boris Valabik: Towering Slovak got a cup of coffee last year; looks poised to grab full-time spot.
53. Jack Skille: 16 games with Hawks last year. He's a gritty player that's likely just a year away.
54. Brian Lee: Picked over Bourdon, Staal, and could crack roster this year.
55. Al Montoya: Dealt to Phoenix and is coming off a subpar year; his stock has fallen considerably.
56. Eric Nystrom: This defensive forward is having trouble making Flames. He played 44 games last year.
57. Alexandre Picard: He was picked far higher than his ranking; one point in 43 career games. May not make NHL at all.
58. Dan Blackburn: A promising career cut short by nerve damage in shoulder. 63 career games.
59. Petr Taticek: He played three games with Florida before being traded to Pens; he's in Switzerland now.
Check in next time when Josh compiles Round Three of the NHL Millennium Megadraft!
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