2022 NHL Draft Rankings: Baracchini’s Top 128 May Rankings

Welcome back to my 2022 NHL Draft Rankings.

In March, I released my top-96 rankings. Like any rankings, there has been a lot of movement as a result of multiple events being held for prospects to showcase their talents. There was the CHL Top Prospects Game where there were quite a few notable standouts and let’s not forget about the entertaining World U18 Championship where a few prospects displayed great skillset and impact for their respective nations. 

Baracchini's 2022 Draft rankings Shane Wright Brad Lambert and Ivan Miroshnichenko
Shane Wright, Brad Lambert, Ivan Miroshnichenko (graphic by Vincent Richard / The Hockey Writers)

It should come as no surprise that there are quite a few prospects who stood out at those events to improve their draft stock.

Jiri Kulich is a name that has been a very consistent riser this season on many draft boards, as he hasn’t looked out of place playing in the Czechia league against older competition. The U18 World tournament MVP and All-Star Team selection, Kulich displayed a powerful shot, soft hands and great speed when on the attack. While he’s extremely effective on the attack, he’s just as effective when he doesn’t have the puck, providing great pressure and a responsible 200-foot game. Kulich was 54th in my pre-World Junior rankings and was 35th in March. This time, he’s in the top-20. 

Related: THW 2022 NHL Draft Guide

Speaking of putting on a show, Swedish forward and member of the notorious dangerous Djurgårdens IF trio, Noah Östlund wanted to make sure he wasn’t getting lost in the noise surrounding Jonathan Lekkerimäki and Liam Öhgren. Östlund was just an absolute offensive dynamo for Sweden at the U18s, helping them win gold. He was elusive and crafty when the puck was on his stick, showing off his speed and stick handling in the process to make some high-end plays. He definitely had a memorable tournament and improved his value as he could have a high ceiling. 

Kevin Korchinski Seattle Thunderbirds
Kevin Korchinski, Seattle Thunderbirds (Brian Liesse / Seattle Thunderbirds)

Like Kulich, Seattle Thunderbirds defenseman Kevin Korchinski has shot up in my rankings, cracking my top-10. I’m a big fan of his. A two-way defender, Korchinski shines with his mobility, confidence and high-end play-making vision. In the regular season, he finished fourth among Western Hockey League defenders with 65 points and was second overall in assists with 61. That strong production has carried over into the playoffs as he has three goals and six assists in five games. He’s always making smart decisions with the puck and is great at breaking up plays in the defensive end. This is why he’s ranked seventh among North American skaters

The final standout riser is Jagger Firkus. He does an excellent job at playing at such a quick pace and possesses a strong release with his shot. Once viewed as a potential second-round pick, Firkus recently saw his name jump into the top-15 North American skaters in Central Scouting’s final rankings, being 13th overall. He has excellent speed and displays excellent patience to escape defenders and catch them off guard with his puck skills. He went on a torrid scoring pace in the second half of the season to finish in the top-15 in WHL with goals (36) and points (80). To top it all off, he earned player of the game honours at the CHL Top Prospects Game.  

Those are just few names, I thought I would highlight. Without further ado, let’s get into my top-128.

First Round

1.Shane Wright, C, Kingston Frontenacs (OHL)

2. Logan Cooley, C, USA U18 (USHL)

3. Simon Nemec, D, HK Nitra (Slovakia)

4. Juraj Slafkovsky, LW, TPS (Liiga)

5. David Jiricek, D, HC Plzen (Czech)

6. Joakim Kemell, RW, JYP (Liiga)

7. Jonathan Lekkerimäki, C, Djurgårdens IF (SHL)

8. Brad Lambert, C/RW, JYP (Liiga)

9. Matthew Savoie, C, Winnipeg Ice (WHL)

10. Kevin Korchinski, D, Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL)

11. Danila Yurov, RW, Stalnye Lisy Magnitogorsk (KHL)

12. Pavel Mintyukov, D, Saginaw Spirit (OHL)

13. Cutter Gauthier, LW, USA U18 (USHL)

14. Conor Geekie, C, Winnipeg Ice (WHL)

15. Rutger McGroarty, C, USA U18 (USHL)

16. Frank Nazar, RW, USA U18 (USHL)

17. Liam Öhgren, LW, Djurgårdens IF J20 (Nationell)

18. Noah Östlund, C, Djurgårdens IF J20 (Nationell)

19. Gleb Trikozov, LW, Omskie Krylia (VHL)

20. Jiri Kulich, C, HC Karlovy Vary (Czech)

21. Luca Del Bel Belluz, C, Mississauga Steelheads (OHL)

22. Isaac Howard, LW, USA U18 (USHL)

23. Calle Odelius, D, Djurgårdens IF J20 (Nationell)

Related: 2022 NHL Draft: Zator’s Top 96 April Rankings

24. Owen Beck, C, Mississauga Steelheads (OHL)

25. Marco Kasper, C, Rögle BK J20 (Nationell)

26. Denton Mateychuk, D, Moose Jaw Warriors (WHL) 

27. Seamus Casey, D, USA U18 (USHL)

28. Jagger Firkus, RW, Moose Jaw Warriors (WHL)

Jagger Firkus Moosejaw Warriors
Jagger Firkus, Moosejaw Warriors (Nick Pettigrew/Moosejaw Warriors)

29. Filip Mesar, RW, HK Poprad (Slovakia)

30. Ryan Chesley, D, USA U18 (USHL)

31. Tristan Luneau, D, Gatineau Olympiques (QMJHL)

32. Lian Bichsel, D, Leksands IF (SHL)

Second Round

33. Owen Pickering, D, Swift Current Broncos (WHL)

34. Nathan Gaucher, C, Quebec Remparts (QMJHL)

35. Ivan Miroshnichenko, LW, Omskie Krylia (VHL)

36. Jimmy Snuggerud, RW, USA U18 (USHL)

37. Mattias Hävelid, D, Linköping HC J20 (Nationell)

38. Ty Nelson, D, North Bay Battalion (OHL)

39. Danny Zhilkin, C, Guelph Storm (OHL)

40. Lane Hutson, D, USA U18 (USHL)

41. Filip Bystedt, C, Linköping HC J20 (Nationell)

42. David Goyette, C, Sudbury Wolves (OHL)

43. Simon Forsmark, D, Örebro HK (SHL)

44. Vladimir Grudinin, D, Krasnaya Armiya Moskva (MHL)

45. Bryce McConnell- Barker, C, Soo Greyhounds (OHL)

46. Adam Ingram, F, Youngstown Phantoms (USHL)

47. Paul Ludwinski, C, Kingston Frontenacs (OHL)

48. Rieger Lorenz, C, Okotoks Oilers (AJHL)

49. Hunter Haight, C, Barrie Colts (OHL)

50. Noah Warren, D, Gatineau Olympiques (QMJHL)

Noah Warren Gatineau Olympiques
Noah Warren, Gatineau Olympiques (Dominic Charette/Gatineau Olympiques)

51. Sam Rinzel, D, Waterloo Blackhawks (USHL)

52. Elias Salomonsson, D, Skellefteå AIK J20 (Nationell)

53. Alexander Perevalov, LW, Loko Yaroslavl (MHL)

54. Jack Hughes, C, Northeastern Univ. (NCAA)

55. Matyas Sapovaliv, C, Saginaw Spirit (OHL)

56. Artyom Duda, D, Krasnaya Armiya Moskva (MHL)

57. Vinzenz Rohrer, RW, Ottawa 67’s (OHL)

58. Viktor Neuchev, LW, Avto Yekaterinburg (MHL)

59. Janni Nyman, LW, Ilves U20 (SM-sarja)

60. Matthew Poitras, C, Guelph Storm (OHL)

61. Aleksanteri Kaskimäki, C, HIFK U20 (SM-sarja)

62. Julian Lutz, LW, EHC München (DEL)

63. Kasper Kulonummi, D, Jokerit U20 (SM-sarja)

64. Tomas Hamara, D, Tappara U20 (SM-sarja)

Third Round

65. Cruz Lucius, LW, USA U18 (USHL)

66. Otto Salin, D, HIFK (Liiga)

67. Maveric Lamoureux, D, Drummondville Voltigeurs (QMJHL)

68. Jordan Dumais, RW, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)

69. Christian Kyrou, D, Erie Otters (OHL)

70. Jordan Gustafson, C, Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL)

71. Fraser Minten, LW, Kamloops Blazers (WHL)

72. Topi Rönni, C, Tappara U20 (SM-sarja)

73. Isaiah George, D, London Knights (OHL)

74. Beau Jelsma, C, Barrie Colts (OHL)

75. Mats Lindgren, D, Kamloops Blazers (WHL)

76. Cedrick Guindon, C, Owen Sound Attack (OHL)

77. Spencer Sova, D, Erie Otters (OHL)

78. Fabian Wagner, C, Linkoping J20 (Nationell)

79.Grayden Siepmann, D, Calgary Hitmen (WHL)

Jake Karabela Guelph Storm
Jake Karabela of the Guelph Storm (Luke Durda/OHL Images)

80. Jake Karabela, C, Guelph Storm (OHL)

81. Michael Buchinger, D, Guelph Storm (OHL)

82. Nicholas Moldenhauer, C/RW, Chicago Steel (USHL)

83. Ludwig Persson, C, Frölunda HC (SHL)

84. Pano Fimis, C, Niagara IceDogs (OHL)

85. Elias Pettersson, D, Örebro HK J20 (Nationell)

86. Arseni Koromyslov, D, SKA-1946 St. Petersburg (MHL)

87. Matthew Seminoff, RW, Kamloops Blazers (WHL)

88. Ryan Greene, C, Green Bay Gamblers (USHL)

89. Adam Sykora, RW/LW, HK Nitra (Slovakia)

90. Jake Livanavage, D, Chicago Steel (USHL)

91. Alexander Suzdalev, LW, HV71 J20 (Nationell)

Related: 2022 NHL Draft Rankings: Forbes’ Top 96 March Rankings

92. Gavin Hayes, RW, Flint Firebirds (OHL)

93. Jace Weir, D, Red Deer Rebels (WHL)

94. Brendan Lisowsky, LW, Saskatoon Blades (WHL)

95. Servac Petrovsky, C, Owen Sound Attack (OHL)

96. Devin Kaplan, RW, USA U18 (USHL)

Fourth Round

97. Miko Matikka, RW, Jokerit U20 (SM-sarja)

98. Alex Bump, C, Prior Lake (HIGH-MN)

99. Brayden Schuurman, C, Victoria Royals (WHL)

100. Tyler Brennan, G, Prince George Cougars (WHL)

Tyler Brennan Prince George Cougars
Tyler Brennan, Prince George Cougars (James Doyle / Prince George Cougars)

101. Kirill Dolzhenkov, LW, Krasnaya Armiya Moskva (MHL)

102. Reid Schaefer, LW, Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL)

103. Josh Filmon, LW, Swift Current Broncos (WHL)

104. Cameron Lund, C, Green Bay Ramblers (USHL)

105. Hugo Hävelid, G, Linköping HC J20 (Nationell)

106. Matthew Ward, RW, Swift Current Broncos (WHL)

107. Jeremy Langlois, D, Cape Breton Eagles (QMJHL)

108. Kocha Delic, C, Sudbury Wolves (OHL)

109. Daniil Orlov, D, Sakhalinskiye Akuly (MHL)

110. Ludvig Jansson, D, Södertälje SK (HockeyAllsvenskan)

111. Kasper Lundell, F, HIFK U20 (SM- sarja)

112. Topias Leinonen, G, JYP U20 (SM-sarja)

113. Quinn Finley, LW, Madison Capitals (USHL)

114. Angus Booth, D, Shawinigan Cataractes (QMJHL)

115. Jack Devine, RW, University of Denver (NCAA)

116. David Gucciardi (O/A), D, Michigan State (NCAA)

117. Sandis Vilmanis, LW, Luleå HF J20 (Nationell)

118. Jeremy Wilmer (O/A), C, Tri-City Storm (USHL)

119. Connor Hvidston, LW, Swift Current Broncos (WHL)

120. Ivan Zhigalov, G, Sherbrooke Phoenix (QMJHL)

121. James Hardie (O/A), LW, Mississauga Steelheads (OHL)

122. George Fegaras, D, North York Rangers (OJHL)

123. Alexander Pelevin, D, Chaika Nizhny Novgorod (MHL)

124. Zam Plante, C, Chicago Steel (USHL)

125. Filip Nordberg, D, Södertälje SK (HockeyAllsvenskan)

126. Michael Mastrodomenico, D, Lincoln Stars (USHL)

127. Tnias Mathurin, D, North Bay Battalion (OHL)

128. Cole Spicer, RW, USA U18 (USHL)

Honourable Mentions: David Spacek (O/A), D, Sherbrooke Phoenix (QMJHL), Jake Furlong, D, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL), Alex Sotek, RW, Bratislava (Slovakia)Liam Arnsby, C, North Bay Battalion (OHL)Lucas Edmonds (O/A), RW, Kingston Frontenacs (OHL)David Moravec, D, BK Mladá Boleslav (Czechia)Tyler Duke, D, USA U18 (USHL).

Final Thoughts

Continuing the trend of players who impressed at the World U18 Championship, defenseman Ryan Chesley showed why he’s viewed as one of the top players at the position. He displays great poise, strong transitional play and is a steady and consistent presence in the defensive end with his positioning and ability to break plays up effectively. Although he may not be a strong offensive producer, he does have that type of skillset that most teams look for in a steady two-way defender.

Ryan Chesley USNTDP
Ryan Chesley, USNTDP (Jenae Anderson / The Hockey Writers)

Brothers Mattias and Hugo Hävelid were extremely noticeable during Sweden’s gold medal performance. Mattias led all defenders in goals (four), assists (eight) and points (12) in the tournament and was a top three player for Sweden in the process. He’s an undersized, puck-moving defenseman, but he’s extremely crafty and effective with his mobility, puck control and movements in the offensive zone. He could definitely be a great addition for any team as an early second, or even late first selection.

Mattias’ twin brother Hugo is just like him in every way, except he’s a goaltender. You rarely see goalies that are 5-foot-10, but Hugo has been terrific in his draft season. He’s posted some strong numbers in the Nationell league as he has a .920 save percentage and 1.82 goals against average with Linköping. His stellar play carried over to the U18 Worlds, backstopping Sweden to gold and winning best goaltender as he finished with a .929 SV%. In a draft where the goalie class isn’t the best, Hugo could definitely be one of the top ones to keep a close watch on.

Who has caught your eye so far for the 2022 NHL Draft? Have your say in the comment section.