The Next Ones: 2015 NHL Draft First Round Picks

Connor McDavid: The generational talent is finally officially a member of the Edmonton Oilers. (Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports)
Connor McDavid: The generational talent is finally officially a member of the Edmonton Oilers. (Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports)

The first round of the 2015 edition of the NHL Entry Draft is now in the books having been completed at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, Florida. The Oilers selected first overall for the fourth time in six years. The Sabres picked second overall for the second consecutive year. We all know who they picked.

Oilers’ shiny new generational talent Connor McDavid on being drafted:

“I think it was even better than I was expecting. I didn’t know exactly how I was going to feel. I wasn’t too nervous, I was just anxious. It was just so exciting to hear your name called and go through all that. It was unbelievable.”

Sabres’ shiny new franchise cornerstone Jack Eichel:

“It’s tough to put into words. I think just looking back on the entire year, it’s been the best year of my life. This just really caps it off. You hear a lot about the draft and everything that goes on here, but until you hear your name called and you go on stage and put a jersey on, there’s nothing like it. It’s an unbelievable feeling.”

Countries Represented

The first round saw players taken from seven different nations and may have marked the end of the Russian Factor:

  • Canada (12)
  • United States (seven)
  • Russia (four)
  • Sweden (three)
  • Czech Republic (two)
  • Finland (one)
  • Switzerland (one)

[RELATED: The Next Ones Draft Guide]

Picks as Bargain Chips

Eight trades were completed in a wild first day of the draft, making for an intriguing Saturday with round two through seven to be completed. The Calgary Flames did not make a selection in the first round, but GM Brad Treliving and crew have been quickly praised as winners. The Boston Bruins made three picks in the first with some raised eyebrows in the end, as the results of some of their moves today went from picks to actual players. The New York Islanders entered the day with no first rounders and ended the night with two very savvy picks in Mathew Barzal and Anthony Beauvillier.

The Picks

The following are the first round picks from the 2015 draft complete with where the players were ranked in The Next Ones Final Rankings as well as NHL Central Scouting’s Final Ranking (lists combined). The remaining players seen in the table below are those at the top of my version of the Big Board, highlighting the plethora of talent that remains for the remaining rounds.

*Click the bottom right-hand corner icon of the spreadsheet to display it in full including Prospect Profiler Notes.


  • The table display approximately 35-40 of the prospects at a time; simply scroll down to view the other prospects.
  • Only a portion of the table displays by default; you can scroll over to see the rest of the player demographics and Prospect Profiler Notes or select “View full-size workbook” option, which is the icon in the bottom right hand corner, to view the full table.
  • The 1st column (TN1) is The Next Ones ranking of the prospect
  • The 2nd column on the left is players’ rankings based on the combination of NHL Central Scouting Service’s four separate rankings (NR = player was not ranked by NHL-CS).
  • The Last column is Eldon MacDonald’s War Room Rankings May Edition.
  • A link to Elite Prospects statistics for most of the players is also included (click on individual player name).
  • The table is searchable – CTRL/Command “F” on the table brings up the search feature.