Nico Hischier Selected No. 1 Overall by New Jersey Devils in 2017 NHL Draft

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistJune 23, 2017

BOISBRIAND, QC - OCTOBER 15:  Nico Hischier #13 of the Halifax Mooseheads skates the puck during the QMJHL game against the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada at the Centre d'Excellence Sports Rousseau on October 15, 2016 in Boisbriand, Quebec, Canada.  The Blainville-Boisbriand Armada defeated the Halifax Mooseheads 4-2.  (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)
Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images

The New Jersey Devils selected Halifax Mooseheads center Nico Hischier on Friday night with the first overall selection in the 2017 NHL draft at the United Center in Chicago.

Here's what the internet had to say about the Devils adding Hischier to the roster:

Hischier failed to make much of an impact as a teenager playing against older competition in his native Switzerland during the 2015-16 campaign. His first season in North America showcased his game-changing offensive potential, though.

The 18-year-old scored 86 points (38 goals and 48 assists) across 57 QMJHL games for the Mooseheads. He added three goals and four helpers in six postseason contests.

It vaulted him into the conversation alongside Brandon Wheat Kings center Nolan Patrick to become the first pick in a class without a clear-cut top prospect like the Edmonton Oilers' Connor McDavid or the Toronto Maple Leafs' Auston Matthews.

Will Scouch provided a comparison between the two coveted rising stars:

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While his difference-making ability in the offensive zone is why he was ranked so high, Halifax general manager Cam Russell doesn't want fans to think that's all the center brings to the table. He told Guillaume Lepage of LNH.com about the Swiss sensation's well-rounded skill set.

"He plays a complete game; he's not one-dimensional," Russell said. "He's got world-class skills, great hands, great vision, but he's also our best defensive player. When you have a player that is your most skilled and basically your best player on the team, and he's also your best defensive player, it provides great leadership for your younger players."

All told, the immediate success of McDavid, Matthews and the Buffalo Sabres' Jack Eichel, the second overall pick in 2015, has changed the outlook for early draft picks in recent years.

Hischier likely won't produce at a similar level early on. His initial play in Switzerland combined with a frame he must continue to bulk up to find consistent success against bigger, stronger NHL players suggest it could take him two or three years before he becomes a high-end pro player.

He'll probably still be given a chance to win a spot in the Devils lineup during training camp and the preseason. But it wouldn't be a major surprise to see him spend another year developing his game before he becomes a regular at the NHL level.

For now, he joins a talented New Jersey prospect group that also features Michael McLeod, John Quenneville and Blake Speers.

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