2012 NHL Entry Draft Guide – The Next Ones

Consider this your live home page for information for the 2012 NHL entry draft. Bookmark and check back often as it will be constantly updated leading up to hockey’s version of Christmas. THW’s 2012 NHL Entry Draft Guide – The Next Ones is your quintessential draft resource featuring:

  • Detailed unique prospect profiles in The Next Ones format
  • Mock Drafts
  • Exclusive rankings
  • Fantasy based rankings
  • Team Previews
  • Looking ahead to the 2013 draft and beyond

Is it ever too early to think about the NHL’s next entry draft?

Many blistering shots will be taken. Many tantalizing saves will be made. Many devastating hits will be dished out. Many vigorous battles for loose pucks will be fought. Many pinpoint accurate passes will be delivered. Many savvy puck moves will be executed. Many coach tirades will fall on deaf ears.

All before the 2012 NHL Entry Draft takes place on June 22nd-23rd in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. For prior year’s detailed draft previews:

 

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Highlights:

2012 NHL Draft: The Next Ones Final Rankings (Top 150)

2012 NHL Entry Draft Fantasy-Based Top 100 Prospect Rankings

NHL Draft Preview: Top Goalies, Darkhorses and Teams That Could Use the Help

2012 NHL Draft Family Ties

2012 NHL Entry Draft Order Trivia

2012 NHL Mock Draft: The Next Ones – 2 Rounds

Mathew Dumba Redux – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

 

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Notes Up Front:

  • Draft rankings are based on the BPA (Best Player Available). This is not an attempt at predicting who will be drafted at a certain position. Mock drafts are constructed by various THW writers.
  • Check back to this article often. A series of prospect profiles, in The Next Ones format, will be released regularly, leading up to the June 22nd and 23rd NHL entry draft in Pittsburgh.
  • The rankings will be updated below simultaneously as the prospect profiles are released, with links to the respective profile. .
  • I am not a big fan of drafting a goalie in the first round unless the talent and potential are simply undeniable. In 2008, for instance, given the astronomical odds of actually being a NHL GM, I would have considered selecting Jacob Markstrom. In 2009, I would not have selected a netminder at all in the first round. In 2010, Jack Campbell is one of those rare exceptions worthy of a 1st round pick. In 2011, I would again not have selected a goalie in the first round.
  • “THW Close-Up heading is meant to be a synopsis of each prospect.
  • Scout’s Honour highlights what the hockey scouting world (and occasionally coaches) have to say about the prospect.
  • NHL Player Comparisons” are simply intended to give the reader a feel for the player’s style and ultimately likely equal the player’s ceiling potential being reached. It is often an exercise in futility, but does offer up some value. If you see the suffix “-lite” or “Jr.” after a NHL player comparison, it simply refers to the fact the prospect likely has no chance to reach that high a potential, but rather resembles or plays a style reminiscent of the respective NHLer.
  • “Scouting Combine Performance”: included where available to give the reader some insight on the prospects fitness levels. This is definitely not a sole basis for drafting a prospect, but might be a deciding factor when considering too closely rated players. It is also a good resource when a prospect is coming back from an injury as guidance to what his health level is.
  • “Risk/Reward Analysis”: Both “Risk” and “Reward” rated out of “5”. For the risk rating, the higher the rating out of five, the higher the risk of the prospect not turning out as projected. For the reward rating, also out of five, the higher the rating, the higher the potential the prospect has. For the latter, of course, the prospect has to still reach that potential.
  • “Fantasy Hockey Potential”: Offensive and defensive ratings out of 10 are given for forwards and defenseman based on perceived potential in each area. Offensive potential is obviously the key factor in most fantasy hockey leagues, but defensive potential should prove useful for those armchair hockey simulator GMs.
  • Legend: ETA = Estimated Time of Arrival to NHL

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Nail Yakupov: explosive for Russia at 2012 World Juniors {Alyonka Larionov Photography}

Rankings:

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2011 Flashback: to get an idea of what to expect for 2012 draft coverage:

 

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Mock Drafts:

Essential Links:

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The Next Ones: Prospect Profiles:

(click on name/link for detailed prospect profiles) (*THW Ranking in brackets – from May 2012 Top 120 Rankings)

(1) Nail Yakupov – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect ProfileExcerpt:

Hockey legend Igor Larionov, who just happens to be Yakupov’s agent, was amiable enough to provide me this quote in discussing Alex and Nail: Both Alex and Nail are what one would call raw talent. Both possess a great deal of rare skill sets. With their passion and love for the game, their work ethic on and off the ice, they will be the kind of players that bring the game of hockey to the next level.” The feisty, dynamic, explosive right-winger who possesses a heat-seeking one-timer (1:00 mark of video) is simply electrifying with the ability to cause a jaw-dropping reaction to all those watching his super array of skills. He is destined to become one of the true must-see players around the league. Fans in hockey cities everywhere will be circling the dates when Yakupov comes to town when he is inevitably donning NHL battle colours.

(2) Mathew Dumba – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

Red Deer Rebels Matt Dumba #24 (Darren Aucoin/Flickr)

Excerpt:

The X-Factor. The It Factor. The Oomph Factor. Select few players have that certain special quality that is difficult to define. Select fewer players effortlessly exude the passion for the game on and off the ice that take those who follow the game to a whole new stratosphere in terms of enjoying the game.  Mathew Dumba is one of those players – one of those players who is a rare breed when it comes to talent, production, and passion. But it cannot be defined simply as passion. Dumba’s love for the game and the pleasure he takes from playing the game is evident when you’re at the rink where he’s playing and whenever you see and hear him talking hockey. It’s simply not something easily captured by words. If there was a University of Hockey, then Mathew Dumba would soon be embarking on a PhD in hockey physics. The kid uses angles, momentum, positioning, powerful skating and timing to unleash highlight reel, but legal hits. He also possesses unbelievable spatial awareness and his anticipation is off the charts.

(3) Ryan Murray – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(4) Mikhail Grigorenko – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile: The Boom-Bust Factor Looms

(5) Filip Forsberg – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(6) Alex Galchenyuk – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

Alex Galchenyuk (Metcalfe Photography)

(7) Teuvo Teräväinen – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile – As Exciting as The TiVo

(8)  Morgan Rielly – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(9)  Griffin Reinhart – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile

Excerpt:

While his father was a primarily offensive-minded player, the Edmonton Oil Kings defender is much more balanced. Strangely, the same qualities that have made him a great WHL player are also what may put him “under-the-radar” as far as high-end prospects are concerned. Reinhart is a coach’s ideal of a two-way defender – he’s big (6-foot-4 and 200 pounds), surprisingly mobile for his size and positionally-strong. He’s also blessed with a good eye, something that has come in handy while quarterbacking the Oil Kings power-play (5 of his 12 goals this season have been scored with the extra man). That said, Reinhart is not one to steal the puck and go end-to-end on a rush. He’s not Paul Coffey. He’s also not prone to going for big crushing hits and taking himself out of position. He’s not Dion Phaneuf. But he’s a strong two-way defender and can help anchor a team’s back-end. The theme of this draft is “The Year of the Defenseman,” and Griffin isn’t getting quite the attention of the Ryan Murrays and Matt Dumbas of the world. That said, he could be just as crucial to his team’s success over the long-run. There’s also the question of intangibles.

(10) Olli Määttä – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(11) Cody Ceci – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile: Defending the Nation’s Capital

(12) Radek Faksa – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile – Ascending Up the Ranks

Radek Faksa is a prospect that can do it all (Aaron Bell/OHL Images)

Excerpt:

In every game Radek Faksa suits up in and on every shift Faksa skates the Czech pivot leaves a positive impression and it has reflected in his climb up the monthly draft rankings. Radek Faksa has propelled himself up to fourth among North American skaters on NHL Central Scouting’s mid-term ranking. Driven by a strong work ethic, Faksa is a player that competes with passion and a win-at-all cost approach. The offensive upside of Radek Faska is still relatively unknown but he does possess the skills to put up points at the next level. Faksa owns a hard accurate shot with good velocity and with soft playmaking hands and above-average puck protection skills he’s a difficult player to compete against. Radek’s best asset remains his overall balanced game and while he does not excel in one particular skill or area he offers a well-rounded package. The average spectator will notice that Faksa lacks a “wow” factor but his hockey sense is extremely underrated and it’s an area that has many people thinking he is capable of reaching another offensive level.

(13) Jacob Trouba – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile

(14) Brendan Gaunce – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile: Built for the NHL

(15) Sebastian Collberg – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile And Interview

(16) Dalton Thrower – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(17) Zemgus Girgensons – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – The Latvian Locomotive

(18) Scott Laughton – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile – A player you can bet a Laught-on

(19) Derrick Pouliot – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile

(20) Tomáš Hertl – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(21) Hampus Lindholm – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile

(22) Nic Kerdiles – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – From the Beaches to the “Bigs”

(23) Henrik Samuelsson – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile – International Man of Mystery

(24) Tom Wilson – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile – The Next Great Power Forward

(25) Slater Koekkoek – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile

(26) Brady Skjei – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – Defending His Climb Up the Rankings

(27) Tim Bozon–The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profiles

(28) Matt Finn – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – Taking the Draft by Storm

(29) Martin Frk – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile – Frk-ing good!

(30) Damon Severson – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(31) Malcolm Subban – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile

(32) Ville Pokka – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(33) Colton Sissons–The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(34) Scott Kosmachuk – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile – Chuk-ing Knuckles

(35) Stefan Matteau – The Next Ones 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – Like Father, Like Son

(36) Brett Kulak – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(37) Gemel Smith – the Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile

(38) Andrei Vasilevski – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – KHL Hopper or NHL Backstopper?

(39) Cristoval “Boo” Nieves – 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – The Pigeonholed Prospect

(40) Oscar Dansk – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – Dansk-ing His Way to the NHL

(41) Pontus Aberg – the Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile

(42) Mark Jankowski – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile – The Wild Card

(45) Jarrod Maidens – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile: Maidens’ Voyage

(46) Tanner Pearson – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – Third Time’s A Charm

(47) Daniil Zharkov – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – The Russian Bull

(48) Mike Winther—The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(49) Anton Slepyshev – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(50) Jordan Schmaltz – 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – Take a Gamble on a Gambler

(51) Charles Hudon – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile – How Hudo-ing?

(52) World Juniors Player Spotlight: Teodors Blugers Interview and Profile

(53) Lukas Sutter – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile

(54) Ludvig Bystrom — The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Entry Draft Prospect Profile — MODO’s Newest Gem

(55) Devin Shore—The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(56) Troy Bourke – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(57) Andreas Athanasiou – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – Beware the Greek

(62) Dane Fox – the Next Ones: 2012 NHL Prospect Profile

(68) Brady Vail – the Next Ones: 2012 NHL Entry Draft Prospect Profile

(69) Coda Gordon—The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(70) Matia Marcantuoni: The Usain Bolt Of Hockey

(71) Adam Pelech Carrying on Family Tradition

(72) World Juniors Player Spotlight: Nikita Gusev – The Undrafted Artist

(75) Jaynen Rissling – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile – Big Defenseman with Big Upside

(77) Sam Kurker — The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(78) Matthew Murray — The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile

(82) Mitch Moroz – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(85) Max Iafrate—The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

 (96) Andrey Makarov – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – The “Other” Russian Goalie

(99) Brendan Leipsic – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospects Profile

(104) Carter Rigby–The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(109) Chris Calnan—The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(110) Graham Black–The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(115) Chris Driedger – The Next Ones: NHL 2012 Draft Prospect Profile

(121) Kenton Helgesen – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile

(122) Joonas Korpisalo — The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile

(123) Anthony Stolarz – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – The Dark Horse Goalie

(124) Jon Gillies – The Next Ones: 2012 NHL Draft Prospect Profile – Big Man On Campus

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THW Overtime – Draft Feature Articles:

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THW Prospect Features:

Excerpt:

“After seeing the play both in real time and in slow motion, several questions need to be asked. First off, is what Halmo did a suspendable offense? Was there intent to injure on the play? And finally, is Yakupov actually partly to blame for this collision, and what does it tell us about one of the top prospects in the game?

To start with, the hit Halmo laid here was absolutely suspendable. Some will argue that Yakupov ducked into the hit, or something to that effect, but the fact of the matter is that even if Yakupov put himself in a prone position, Halmo still led with his elbow, left his feet, and was certainly deserving of the charging major that he received. He got up a huge burst of speed in order to drive through Yakupov, and when you add all of those factors together, he should be looking at a lengthy ban, and the OHL would be well served to make sure that he missed a good chunk of time.”

Excerpt:

If, as I previously claimed, Kuznetsov is a hockey surgeon, then hidden gem forward Nikita Gusev is a hockey artist.  If Gusev were a painter then the Saddledome was his masterpiece completed on December 29th, 2011. Lost in the shadow of line-mate Evgeny Kuznetsov’s near record-breaking 9 point performance, was Gusev’s equally impressive 7 point (2G, 5A) outburst. He sits tied atop the WJHC scoring leaderboard along with Kuznetsov with 9 points apiece. Gusev is an absolute artist with the puck, making those around him all the better. Kuznetsov is more of an individual dynamo, although the 6 assists in that same game may be grounds for debate. I’ve coined Gusev “Picasso“. I know choosing a Russian painter for his nickname seems more appropriate, but Valentin Serov (who was considered to be the greatest portraitist of his time) doesn’t have the same ring to it.

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Other 2012 Draft Feature Articles:

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2012 Memorial Cup:

 

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International Tournaments Prospects Coverage:

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Fantasy-Based Draft Coverage:

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Team Specific Prospect Articles:

hurricanes logo 1997 - present
  • Dallas Stars
  • Detroit Red Wings:
  • Edmonton Oilers:
  • Minnesota Wild:
  • Montreal Canadiens
  • New Jersey Devils:
  • New York Islanders:
  1. 2012 NHL Entry Draft: Eyes On The Islanders
  2. Islanders Possible Draft Targets

 

  • New York Rangers:
  • Ottawa Senators:

 

  • Philadelphia Flyers:
Philadelphia Flyers logo

The Philadelphia Flyers have used just one primary logo - THIS logo, in fact - in franchise history.

  1.  Who Should the Flyers Select in the First Round?

 

  • Pittsburgh Penguins
  • Tampa Bay Lightning:
  • Toronto Maple Leafs: 

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Post-Draft Analysis:

 

The Next, Next Ones – Beyond the 2012 Draft:

Eric Cornel hockey

Eric Cornel (right): selected 3rd overall in 2012 OHL Priority Draft by Peterborough Petes

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Extra Reading:

John Tavares Islanders

John Tavares enters into his 4th NHL season in 2012-13 (Icon SMI)

Excerpt:

In the era of in-depth analysis, sabermetrics and advanced statistics, more and more fantasy experts are talking about the magical fourth season for NHL players.

Most of you would ask, “What is exactly the magical fourth season?” Well, roughly speaking, offensive players make big jumps in their production in years two through six. In the fourth year, 24 percent of players see an increase in the offensive numbers by around 25 percent.

In 2011-12, several players saw their offensive numbers jumped considerably compared to the previous season. The most notable were James Neal, Blake Wheeler, Max PaciorettyWayne Simmonds and Jamie McGinn.

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Undrafted Prospects:

Excerpt:

The U.S. college free agent signing season for the National Hockey League has officially begun. The playoffs have commenced in some of the conferences in the NCAA, but the signing frenzy is just getting started. On March 6th, the party began when the Philadelphia Flyers agreed to a two-year contract with Ohio State University goaltender Cal Heeter. However, the real prize player available this year is Western Michigan University defenseman Danny DeKeyser. At nearly all of Western Michigan’s home games this season, NHL scouts have been swarming to Lawson Ice Arena, just so they can see DeKeyser play. He’s a 6’3”, 186 pound sophomore that most teams would love to have patrolling their blueline in the very near future. Being arguably the most coveted free agent available has certainly put a lot of pressure on DeKeyser, but he adjusted accordingly as the season went on. One of DeKeyser’s best known skills is his skating, and it’s made it really difficult for opponents to get around him this year.

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Video(s):

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Resource(s):

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Special thanks to fellow THW  writers and integral contributors:

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THW’s The Next Ones prospect profile template design architect: Chris Ralph Christopher Ralph is THW’s senior prospect and draft analyst & a Managing Editor at THW.

Follow ChrisRalphTHW on Twitter as he infiltrates, dissects and analyzes all happenings of hockey prospects & the NHL entry draft.

This document is the intellectual property of Christopher Ralph and cannot be used or duplicated in any way without expressed written consent. Any use of this document without the expressed written consent of Christopher Ralph will result in public exposure and legal prosecution.



Christopher Ralph

Christopher Ralph

Managing Editor/Lead Prospect &Draft Analyst at THW
Chris is THW's senior draft/prospect analyst and a Managing Editor. Watch for Chris' regular column "The Next Ones" Prospect Profile series as well as the annual THW NHL Entry Draft Guide. Follow @ChrisRalphTHW on Twitter as he infiltrates, dissects and analyzes all happenings of hockey prospects and the NHL entry draft. Email: cralph[at]thehockeywriters[dot]com

3 Comments

  1. In the battle of the Swedish ice-“Bergs”, doe anyone think Sebastian CollBERG has any chance to get drafted earlier than Filip ForsBERG?

    In depth Collberg profile & interview:
    http://thehockeywriters.com/sebastian-collberg-the-next-ones-nhl-2012-draft-prospect-profile-and-interview/

    In depth Forsberg profile:
    http://thehockeywriters.com/filip-forsberg-the-next-ones-nhl-2012-draft-prospect-profile/ 

  2. We have plenty of 2012 eligible prospects profiled with plenty more to come leading up to the draft. Your chance to influence the future: who would you like to see profiled that hasn’t been done thus far? 

  3. Updated:
    – New 2 round Mock Draft!
    – Top 120 Rankings (TN1 style; The Next Ones, that is)
    – Another Sutter NHL bound?
    – When prospects lose their lustre (Canadian spelling ;)
    – Team specific articles for: Ottawa, Pittsburgh, Islanders, Stars, Jets and many more

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