On Second Thought: Last-Minute Mock Draft

A big part of being a good scout is trusting your gut.

Sticking with your initial instincts and not getting swayed by the consensus.

In saying that, another big part is being open-minded and avoiding complacency. A willingness to listen is certainly an asset as well.

Over the past 10 days since my fifth annual mock draft went live last Monday, I’ve fielded a ton of feedback from random fans, friends, THW and mainstream media colleagues, and even some actual scouts. Taking it all in, I came to the realization that I probably missed the mark in some cases.

All in all, I’m still relatively happy with my efforts from start to finish in predicting all 211 selections over seven rounds. In hindsight, I’d probably change a couple dozen picks that just seem ‘off’ based on those conversations and other observations, but I remain cautiously optimistic heading into the draft. However, I’m not one to sit on my hands or bury my head in the sand when something doesn’t feel right.

So, on the eve of the first round — with all things considered, including recent trades involving draft picks — I couldn’t resist the urge to change it up and see how this version plays out in comparison to my original mock. I only planned on tweaking the first two or three rounds, but once I got started, I just couldn’t stop and ended up doing the entire draft again. Some of these changes have been influenced by others and some are the result of second-guessing on my part, but here goes nothing — for better or worse.

First Round

1) Toronto Maple Leafs — Auston Matthews (C, ZSC Lions, Switzerland)

2) Winnipeg Jets — Patrik Laine (LW, Tappara, Finland)

3) Columbus Blue Jackets — Jesse Puljujarvi (RW, Karpat, Finland)

4) Edmonton Oilers — Matthew Tkachuk (LW, London, OHL)

5) Vancouver Canucks — Pierre-Luc Dubois (C/LW, Cape Breton, QMJHL)

6) Calgary Flames — Logan Brown (C, Windsor, OHL)

7) Arizona Coyotes — Mikhail Sergachev (LHD, Windsor, OHL)

8) Buffalo Sabres — Olli Juolevi (LHD, London, OHL)

9) Montreal Canadiens — Alex Nylander (LW, Mississauga, OHL)

10) Colorado Avalanche — Jake Bean (LHD, Calgary, WHL)

11) New Jersey Devils — Clayton Keller (C, U.S. National Development Team)

12) Ottawa Senators — Tyson Jost (C/LW, Penticton, BCHL)

13) Carolina Hurricanes — Kieffer Bellows (LW, U.S. National Development Team)

14) Boston Bruins — Charlie McAvoy (RHD, Boston University, NCAA)

15) Minnesota Wild — Luke Kunin (LW/C, University of Wisconsin, NCAA)

16) Detroit Red Wings — Dante Fabbro (RHD, Penticton, BCHL)

17) Nashville Predators — Jakob Chychrun (LHD, Sarnia, OHL)

18) Philadelphia Flyers — Max Jones (LW, London, OHL)

19) New York Islanders — Michael McLeod (C, Mississauga, OHL)

20) Arizona Coyotes (from New York Rangers) — Julien Gauthier (RW, Val-d’Or, QMJHL)

21) Carolina Hurricanes (from Los Angeles Kings) — Riley Tufte (LW, Fargo Force, USHL)

22) Winnipeg Jets (from Chicago Blackhawks) — Dennis Cholowski (LHD, Chilliwack, BCHL)

23) Florida Panthers — Brett Howden (C/LW, Moose Jaw, WHL)

24) Anaheim Ducks — Alex DeBrincat (C/RW, Erie, OHL)

25) Dallas Stars — German Rubtsov (C, Russian U18 Team)

26) Washington Capitals — Lucas Johansen (LHD, Kelowna, WHL)

27) Tampa Bay Lightning — Samuel Girard (LHD, Shawinigan, QMJHL)

28) St. Louis Blues — Rasmus Asplund (C/LW, Farjestad, Sweden)

29) Boston Bruins (from San Jose Sharks) — Logan Stanley (LHD, Windsor, OHL)

30) Anaheim Ducks (from Toronto via Pittsburgh Penguins) — Tyler Benson (C/LW, Vancouver, WHL)

Second Round

31) Toronto Maple Leafs — Nathan Bastian (C/RW, Mississauga, OHL)

32) Edmonton Oilers — Adam Fox (RHD, U.S. National Development Team)

33) Florida Panthers (from Vancouver) — Tage Thompson (C, University of Connecticut, NCAA)

34) Columbus Blue Jackets — Cam Morrison (LW, Youngstown, USHL)

35) Calgary Flames — Markus Niemelainen (LHD, Saginaw, OHL)

36) Winnipeg Jets — Kale Clague (LHD, Brandon, WHL)

37) Arizona Coyotes — Taylor Raddysh (RW, Erie, OHL)

38) Buffalo Sabres — Ryan Lindgren (LHD, U.S. National Development Team)

39) Montreal Canadiens — Pascal Laberge (RW/C, Victoriaville, QMJHL)

40) Colorado Avalanche — Carter Hart (G, Everett, WHL)

41) New Jersey Devils — Will Bitten (C, Flint, OHL)

42) Ottawa Senators — Boris Katchouk (LW/RW, Sault Ste. Marie, OHL)

43) Carolina Hurricanes — Carl Grundstrom (LW, Modo, Sweden)

44) Tampa Bay Lightning (from Boston) — Vitaly Abramov (RW/C, Gatineau, QMJHL)

45) Montreal Canadiens (from Minnesota via Buffalo) — Cam Dineen (LHD, North Bay, OHL)

46) Detroit Red Wings — Henrik Borgstrom (C, HIFK Jr., Finland)

47) Nashville Predators — Dillon Dube (F, Kelowna, WHL)

48) Philadelphia Flyers — Jordan Kyrou (RW, Sarnia, OHL)

49) Boston Bruins (from Islanders) — Adam Mascherin (LW, Kitchener, OHL)

50) Chicago Blackhawks (from Rangers via Carolina) — Jonathan Dahlen (C, Timra Div. II, Sweden)

51) Lose Angeles Kings — Libor Hajek (LHD, Saskatoon, WHL)

52) Philadelphia Flyers (from Chicago) — Givani Smith (LW, Guelph, OHL)

53) Arizona Coyotes (compensation pick) — Filip Hronek (RHD, Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic)

54) Calgary Flames (from Florida) — Wade Allison (RW, Tri-City, USHL)

55) Pittsburgh Penguins (from Anaheim via Vancouver) — Sean Day (LHD, Mississauga, OHL)

56) Calgary Flames (from Dallas) — Sam Steel (C, Regina, WHL)

57) Toronto Maple Leafs (from Washington) — Cliff Pu (RW, London, OHL)

58) Tampa Bay Lightning — Artur Kayumov (LW, Russian U18 Team)

59) St. Louis Blues — Trent Frederic (C, U.S. National Development Team)

60) San Jose Sharks — Filip Gustavsson (G, Lulea Jr., Sweden)

61) Pittsburgh Penguins — Chad Krys (LHD, U.S. National Development Team)

Third Round

62) Toronto Maple Leafs — Tyler Parsons (G, London, OHL)

63) Edmonton Oilers — Luke Green (RHD, Saint John, QMJHL)

64) Vancouver Canucks — Frederic Allard (RHD, Chicoutimi, QMJHL)

65) Columbus Blue Jackets — Matt Filipe (C/LW, Cedar Rapids, USHL)

66) Calgary Flames — Conner Bleackley (C, Red Deer, WHL)

67) Carolina Hurricanes (from Winnipeg) — Janne Kuokkanen (RW, Karpat Jr., Finland)

68) Arizona Coyotes — Andrew Peeke (RHD, Green Bay, USHL)

69) Buffalo Sabres — Evan Fitzpatrick (G, Sherbrooke, QMJHL)

70) Montreal Canadiens — Joey Anderson (RW, U.S. National Development Team)

71) Colorado Avalanche — Mitchell Mattson (C, Bloomington, USHL)

72) Toronto Maple Leafs (from New Jersey) — Victor Mete (LHD, London, OHL)

73) New Jersey Devils (from Ottawa) — Yegor Korshkov (RW, Lokomotiv, KHL)

74) Carolina Hurricanes — Aapeli Rasanen (C, Tappara Jr., Finland)

75) Carolina Hurricanes (from Boston) — Kasper Bjorkqvist (LW, Blues Jr., Finland)

76) Nashville Predators (from Minnesota via Buffalo) — Tim Gettinger (LW, Sault Ste. Marie, OHL)

77) New Jersey Devils (from Detroit) — Jacob Cederholm (RHD, HV71 Jr., Sweden)

78) Nashville Predators — Joseph Woll (G, U.S. National Development Team)

79) Philadelphia Flyers — Noah Gregor (C, Moose Jaw, WHL)

80) Ottawa Senators (from Islanders) — Jacob Moverare (LHD, HV71 Jr., Sweden)

81) New York Rangers — Mikhail Maltsev (LW, Russian U18 Team)

82) Philadelphia Flyers (from Los Angeles) — Jack Kopacka (LW, Sault Ste. Marie, OHL)

83) Chicago Blackhawks — Dylan Gambrell (C, University of Denver, NCAA)

84) Edmonton Oilers (from Florida) — David Quenneville (RHD, Medicine Hat, WHL)

85) Buffalo Sabres (from Anaheim) — Josh Anderson (LHD, Prince George, WHL)

86) Buffalo Sabres (from Dallas) — Connor Hall (LHD, Kitchener, OHL)

87) St. Louis Blues (from Washington) — Linus Lindstrom (C, Skelleftea Jr., Sweden)

88) Tampa Bay Lightning — Dmitry Sokolov (RW, Sudbury, OHL)

89) Buffalo Sabres (from St. Louis) — William Lockwood (RW, U.S. National Development Team)

90) Dallas Stars (from San Jose) — Mikhail Berdin (G, Russian U18 Team)

91) Edmonton Oilers (from Pittsburgh) — William Knierim (RW, Dubuque, USHL)

Fourth Round

92) Toronto Maple Leafs — Colton Point (G, Carleton Place, CCHL)

93) Anaheim Ducks (from Edmonton) — Zach Sawchenko (G, Moose Jaw, WHL)

94) Florida Panthers (from Vancouver) — Otto Makinen (C, Tappara Jr., Finland)

95) Chicago Blackhawks (from Columbus) — Anatoli Golyshev (LW/RW, Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg, KHL)

96) Calgary Flames — Josh Mahura (LHD, Red Deer, WHL)

97) Winnipeg Jets — Simon Stransky (LW, Prince Albert, WHL)

98) New York Rangers (from Arizona) — Rem Pitlick (C, Muskegon, USHL)

99) Buffalo Sabres — Dylan Wells (G, Peterborough, OHL)

100) Montreal Canadiens — Igor Svyrev (C, Magnitogorsk Jr., Russia)

101) Toronto Maple Leafs (from Colorado) — Vladimir Kuznetsov (LW, Acadie-Bathurst, QMJHL)

102) New Jersey Devils — Brandon Gignac (C, Shawinigan, QMJHL)

103) Ottawa Senators — Filip Berglund (RHD, Skelleftea Jr., Sweden)

104) Carolina Hurricanes — Jesper Bratt (RW, AIK Div. II, Sweden)

105) New Jersey Devils (from Boston) — Jonathan Ang (C, Peterborough, OHL)

106) Minnesota Wild — Connor Ingram (G, Kamloops, WHL)

107) Detroit Red Wings — Matthew Phillips (C, Victoria, WHL)

108) Nashville Predators — Mathias From (RW/LW, Rogle Jr., Sweden)

109) Philadelphia Flyers — Tanner Kaspick (LW/C, Brandon, WHL)

110) New York Islanders — Alex Limoges (C, Tri-City, USHL)

111) San Jose Sharks (from Rangers) — Markus Nurmi (RW/LW, TPS Jr., Finland)

112) Los Angeles Kings — Jacob Neveu (RHD, Rouyn-Noranda, QMJHL)

113) Chicago Blackhawks — J.D. Greenway (LHD, U.S. National Development Team)

114) Florida Panthers — Oskar Steen (C, Farjestad, Sweden)

115) Anaheim Ducks — Daniel Kurovsky (LW, Vitkovice Jr., Czech Republic)

116) Dallas Stars — Max Lajoie (LHD, Swift Current, WHL)

117) Washington Capitals — Matthew Cairns (LHD, Georgetown, OJHL)

118) Tampa Bay Lightning — Nicholas Caamano (RW, Flint, OHL)

119) St. Louis Blues — Colton Bobyk (LHD, Red Deer, WHL)

120) Arizona Coyotes (from San Jose) — Jordan Sambrook (RHD, Erie, OHL)

121) Pittsburgh Penguins — Eetu Tuulola (RW, HPK Jr., Finland)

Fifth Round

122) Toronto Maple Leafs — Nicolas Mattinen (RHD, London, OHL)

123) Edmonton Oilers — Veini Vehvilainen (G, YJP, Finland)

124) Montreal Canadiens (from Vancouver) — Stepan Falkovsky (LHD, Ottawa, OHL)

125) St. Louis Blues (from Columbus) — Brett Murray (LW, Carleton Place, CCHL)

126) Calgary Flames — Jack Walker (LW, Victoria, WHL)

127) Winnipeg Jets — Hudson Elynuik (LW, Spokane, WHL)

128) Dallas Stars (from Arizona) — Linus Weissbach (LW/RW, Frölunda Jr., Sweden)

129) Buffalo Sabres — Griffin Luce (LHD, U.S. National Development Team)

130) Buffalo Sabres (from Montreal) — Connor Bunnaman (C, Kitchener, OHL)

131) Colorado Avalanche — Maxime Fortier (RW, Halifax, QMJHL)

132) New Jersey Devils — Alan Lyszczarczyk (C, Sudbury, OHL)

133) Ottawa Senators — Graham McPhee (LW, U.S. National Development Team)

134) Carolina Hurricanes — Riley Stillman (LHD, Oshawa, OHL)

135) Boston Bruins — Ben Gleason (LHD, Hamilton, OHL)

136) Boston Bruins (from Minnesota) — Casey Fitzgerald (RHD, Boston College, NCAA)

137) Detroit Red Wings — David Bernhardt (LHD, Djurgardens Jr., Sweden)

138) Nashville Predators — Adam Brooks (C, Regina, WHL)

139) Philadelphia Flyers — Brandon Duhaime (LW, Tri-City, USHL)

140) Vancouver Canucks (from Islanders via Florida) — Ty Ronning (RW, Vancouver, WHL)

141) New York Rangers — Alexander Polunin (LW, Lokomotiv, KHL)

142) Los Angeles Kings — Nolan Stevens (C, Northeastern University, NCAA)

143) Chicago Blackhawks — Tanner Laczynski (C, Chicago-Lincoln, USHL)

144) Chicago Blackhawks (from Florida) — Jake Ryczek (RHD, Sioux City-Waterloo, USHL)

145) Washington Capitals (from Anaheim via Toronto) — Andrei Svetlakov (C, CSKA, KHL)

146) Dallas Stars — Stephen Dhillon (G, Niagara, OHL)

147) Washington Capitals — Ivan Kosorenkov (RW, Russian U18 Team)

148) Tampa Bay Lightning — Ondrej Najman (C, Dukla Jihlava Jr., Czech Republic)

149) Edmonton Oilers (from St. Louis) — Kody McDonald (RW, Prince George, WHL)

150) San Jose Sharks — Otto Koivula (LW, Ilves Jr., Finland)

151) Pittsburgh Penguins — Mitch Eliot (RHD, Muskegon, USHL)

Sixth Round

152) Toronto Maple Leafs — Axel Jonsson-Fjallby (LW, Djurgardens Jr., Sweden)

153) Edmonton Oilers — William Pethrus (RHD, Mora Jr., Sweden)

154) Vancouver Canucks — Daniil Miromanov (RW, Acadie-Bathurst, QMJHL)

155) Columbus Blue Jackets — Lucas Carlsson (LHD, Brynas, Sweden)

156) Calgary Flames —  Tomas Soustal (RW/C, Kelowna, WHL)

157) Winnipeg Jets — Brayden Burke (C/LW, Lethbridge, WHL)

158) Arizona Coyotes — Cole Candella (LHD, Hamilton, OHL)

159) Buffalo Sabres — Vojtech Budik (LHD, Prince Albert, WHL)

160) Montreal Canadiens — Gabriel Sylvestre (RHD, Shawinigan, QMJHL)

161) Colorado Avalanche — Matthew Boucher (LW, Quebec, QMJHL)

162) New Jersey Devils — Ross Colton (LW, Cedar Rapids, USHL)

163) Ottawa Senators — Pius Suter (C/LW, ZSC Lions, Switzerland)

164) Carolina Hurricanes — Hayden Verbeek (C, Sault Ste. Marie, OHL)

165) Boston Bruins — Max Zimmer (LW, Chicago, USHL)

166) Calgary Flames (from Minnesota) — Kristian Reichel (C, Litvinov, Czech Republic)

167) Detroit Red Wings — Daniel Marmenlind (G, Orebro Jr., Sweden)

168) Nashville Predators — Leevi Laakso (G, Sport Jr., Finland)

169) Philadelphia Flyers — Patrick Bajkov (LW/RW, Everett, WHL)

170) New York Islanders — Garrett Pilon (C, Kamloops, WHL)

171) New York Rangers — Collin Adams (LW, Muskegon, USHL)

172) Philadelphia Flyers (from Los Angeles) — Jakob Stukel (LW, Calgary, WHL)

173) Chicago Blackhawks — Artur Lauta (RW, Avangard Omsk, KHL)

174) Florida Panthers — Otto Somppi (C, Halifax, QMJHL)

175) New York Rangers (from Anaheim via Florida) — Joseph Raaymakers (G, Sault Ste. Marie, OHL)

176) Dallas Stars — Reid Gardiner (RW, Prince Albert, WHL)

177) Washington Capitals — Vladislav Sukhachyov (G, Russian U18 Team)

178) Tampa Bay Lightning — Anthony Salinitri (C, Sarnia, OHL)

179) Toronto Maple Leafs (from St. Louis) — Ondrej Kachyna (LHD, Hamilton, OHL)

180) San Jose Sharks — Ondrej Vala (LHD, Kamloops, WHL)

181) Pittsburgh Penguins — Jamie Armstrong (LW, Avon Old Farms, U.S. High School)

Seventh Round

182) Toronto Maple Leafs — Nikolaj Krag Christensen (C/LW, Rodovre, Denmark)

183) Edmonton Oilers — Braydyn Chizen (RHD, Kelowna, WHL)

184) Vancouver Canucks — Brennan Menell (RHD, Vancouver, WHL)

185) Columbus Blue Jackets — Antti Kalapudas (LW/C, Karpat/KalPa, Finland)

186) Calgary Flames — Calvin Thurkauf (LW, Kelowna, WHL)

187) Winnipeg Jets — Jordy Stallard (C/LW, Calgary, WHL)

188) Arizona Coyotes — Todd Burgess (C/RW, Fairbanks, NAHL)

189) Buffalo Sabres — Keaton Middleton (LHD, Saginaw, OHL)

190) Buffalo Sabres (from Montreal) — Kenny Johnson (LHD, Shattuck St. Mary’s Midget Prep)

191) Colorado Avalanche — Jake Kielly (G, Tri-City, USHL)

192) New Jersey Devils — Kyle Maksimovich (LW, Erie, OHL)

193) New York Islanders (from Ottawa) — Oleg Sosunov (LHD, Loko Yaroslavl Jr. B, Russia)

194) Vancouver Canucks (from Carolina) — Maxim Lazarev (LW/RW, Cape Breton, QMJHL)

195) Boston Bruins — Jeff De Wit (C, Red Deer, WHL)

196) Minnesota Wild — Joona Koppanen (C, Ilves Jr. Finland)

197) Detroit Red Wings — Tarmo Reunanen (LHD, TPS Jr., Finland)

198) Nashville Predators — Jesper Mattila (LHD, Ilves Jr., Finland)

199) Philadelphia Flyers — Travis Barron (LW, Ottawa, OHL)

200) New York Islanders — Joseph Masonius (LHD, University of Connecticut, NCAA)

201) New York Rangers — Beck Malenstyn (C, Calgary, WHL)

202) Los Angeles Kings — Tyler Soy (C, Victoria, WHL)

203) Chicago Blackhawks — Evan Sarthou (G, Tri-City, WHL)

204) Minnesota Wild (from Florida) — Brinson Pasichnuk (LHD, Bonnyville, AJHL)

205) Anaheim Ducks — Keenan Suthers (LW, U.S. National Development Team)

206) Tampa Bay Lightning (from Dallas via Edmonton) — Nick Pastujov (LW, U.S. National Development Team)

207) Washington Capitals — Tim Wahlgren (C, Modo Jr., Sweden)

208) Tampa Bay Lightning — Justin Brazeau (RW, North Bay, OHL)

209) St. Louis Blues — Lukas Doudera (LHD, HC Trinec, Czech Republic)

210) San Jose Sharks — Dawson Davidson (LHD, Kamloops, WHL)

211) St. Louis Blues (from Pittsburgh) — Sebastian Aho (LHD, Skelleftea, Sweden)

Honourable Mentions

Rodrigo Abols

Dmitri Alexeyev

Ty Amonte

Artem Artemov

Cameron Askew

Egor Babenko

Mitchell Balmas

Nikita Bashkirov

Joachim Blichfeld

Vladimir Bobylev

Michael Boyle

Anton Brandhammar

Jacob Bryson

Nikolai Chebykin

Blake Coffey

Dylan Coghlan

Luke Coleman

Domenic Commisso

Brandon Crawley

Jeremy Davies

Brendan De Jong

Josh Dickinson

C.J. Dodero

Konstantin Dubin

Reid Duke

Scott Eansor

Tobias Eder

Marcus Ersson

Mikey Eyssimont

Tye Felhaber

Oliver Felixson

Callum Fryer

Michal Gago

Zakery Galambos

Olivier Galipeau

Daniel Gazda

Max Gerlach

Michael Graham

Brandon Hagel

Mikael Hakkarainen

Dante Hannoun

Cameron Hebig

Ludvig Hoff

Frantisek Hrdinka

Mario Huber

Juha Jääskä

Grant Jozefek

Jiri Karafiat

Ilya Karpukhin

Erlends Klavins

Kevin Klima

Radek Koblizek

Jake Kryski

Samuel Laberge

Filip Lestan

Blake Lizotte

Carter Long

Nikita Makeyev

Seamus Malone

Luke McInnis

Carson Meyer

Marco Miranda

Liam Murphy

Justin Murray

Ivan Nikolishin

Nathan Noel

Sebastian Ohlsson

Brogan O’Brien

Michael O’Leary

Zach Osburn

Austin Osmanski

Christopher Paquette

Alex Peters

Michael Pezzetta

Zach Poirier

Greg Printz

Chase Priskie

Maxim Rasseykin

Sebastian Repo

Lee Roberts

Michal Roman

Sam Rossini

Kristians Rubins

Dante Salituro

James Sanchez

Mathieu Sevigny

Colby Sissons

Samuel Solensky

Ethan Spaxman

Tyler Steenbergen

Jacob Schmidt-Svejstrup

Filip Suchý

Derek Topatigh

Jeffrey Truchon-Viel

Carsen Twarynski

Nolan Volcan

Zach Walker

Nicolas Werbik

Gustaf Westlund

Manuel Wiederer

Yegor Zaitsev

Lukas Ziak

Kristaps Zile

Adam Brizgala (G)

Evan Cormier (G)

Ty Edmonds (G)

Wouter Peeters (G)

Alexander Georgiev (G)

Matthew Greenfield (G)

Jeremy Helvig (G)

Jack Lafontaine (G)

Matt Murray (G)

Jordan Papirny (G)

Cody Porter (G)

Antoine Samuel (G)