The First Round of the (virtual) 2020 NHL Draft begins tonight at 6:00 p.m. Central Standard Time and with the Winnipeg Jets selecting in the 10th spot overall there isn’t really a consensus as to which player the Jets will take.
There is much that can change from the time the New York Rangers make the 1st overall selection to when Winnipeg Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff is on the clock with the 10th overall selection. Keeping that in mind, here is a list of players that folks have ranked in the 10 spot:
Cam Robinson (Director of Film Scouting Elite Prospects | Managing Editor Dobber Prospects)
Jamie Drysdale, RD, Erie Otters (OHL): A fluid, puck-possessing rearguard who plays with terrific pace. Has his head up at all times, and can bomb outlets the length of a football field. Can be guilty of missing opportunities. The offensive upside is tremendous though. You can read Cam’s full draft report here.
Craig Button (Director of Scouting for TSN)
Hendrix Lapierre, C, Chicoutimi Saguenéens (QMJHL) – “He reminds me of Patrice Bergeron….when he has been healthy and a player he has been an outstanding two-way player…the way he plays the game, the way he understands how to contribute with and without the puck, offensively, defensively, I think he’s superb. I think if he had been healthy throughout the course of the year he’d be a top five pick.” His full answer starts at 43:12.
Sam Cosentino (Junior hockey analyst for Sportsnet).
Alexander Holtz, RW, Djurgarden (SHL): Safe pick in that there is attention to detail all over the ice, yet pure goal-scoring is his greatest asset. His full list is here.
Eetu Siltanen (Finnish scout for Dobber Prospects)
Anton Lundell, C, HIFK (Liiga): The best 200-foot player available in the draft. Very smart two-way center with pretty good offensive skills and amazingly responsible defensive game for a teenager. Lundell’s hockey IQ is excellent; he reads plays and is just always in the right position. Read his full comments on Lundell here.
Ryan Wagman (McKeen’s Hockey lead prospect writer).
Anton Lundell, C, HIFK (Liiga): For a team with only one high end forward in the pipeline in Kristian Vesalainen, expect the Jets to be looking at the same group of forwards I listed up above discussing the Sabres’ choice. With Rossi and Raymond now off the table, that leaves Holtz, Jarvis, Quinn, Lundell. Holtz and Lundell are closest to NHL-ready, Jarvis might be the most dynamic offensive driver, and Quinn is a late bloomer who might not yet have reached his peak. The Jets have gone to Finland in the first a few times recently, between Vesalainen and 2019 first rounder Ville Heinola…..Considering how the Jets seem to prefer players who are well-rounded, I am giving a slight lean here to Lundell considering all of the factors already mentioned. Look for him to be a top six staple very soon. Full report here.
Corey Pronman (NHL prospects writer for The Athletic)
Alexander Holtz, RW, Djurgarden (SHL): Winnipeg’s organizational depth needs centers and defensemen, but the board likely doesn’t play out that way minus an outside chance that Rossi gets this far. Holtz would be the best player available in this scenario, but I could see someone like Portland center Seth Jarvis be in the discussion, too. You can check out his full mock draft here. (Paywall).
Adam Kimelman (NHL.com staff writer)
Jake Sanderson, LD, USA U-18 (NTDP): Depth at defenseman was a problem for the Jets last season but Sanderson (6-2, 185) could play a big role in fixing it. He’s an outstanding skater whose game got better as the season went on. His defensive play is already strong, and his offense is catching up quickly. Sanderson was also the captain of the USA Hockey National Team Development Program U-17 and U-18 teams the past two seasons, which shows the respect he’s earned among his coaches and teammates. His NHL.com colleagues Mike G. Morreale and Guillaume Lepage also felt the Jets would select Sanderson.
Stay tuned to find out what the Jets end up doing with the 10th overall pick. As always we are getting lots of comments on our Instagram post surrounding this pick. Join the conversation here. The 1st round gets underway at 6 PM CT.