9:15 am: Well, I slept in a little and missed the first few picks so here we go. First let’s cover some of the big stuff from yesterday. Philadelphia put all their eggs into the Pronger basket yesterday early on when they acquired him for Joffrey Lupul, Luca Sbisa, and two first round picks. No one can deny Tim Sassone’s erection for Pronger but that was a HUGE price the Flyers paid. If they don’t win the Cup next year, the trade is a failure. Plain and simple. For that, I have no problem with the Hawks passing on him.
Dave Bolland reportedly re-signed with the Hawks for 5 years, $18 million and a cap hit of $3.6 million. I’m no Steve Konroyd so I don’t see Bolland as a point per game player and a shutdown center. That being said, this deal is just pure evil. It can either be a huge steal or a massive log jam in the cap. I still wish the Hawks would have the guts to play chicken with some of these guys on the open market. I have a hard time believing anyone would be willing to pay that kind of money for Bolland on the open market. This also officially kills my Andrew Cogliano-Sam Gagner fantasy.
The Hawks picked Dylan Olsen with the 28th pick. Whatever. I have no idea if this was the right guy or if they reached. It’s hard to reach at 28.
9:25 am- Here’s my number one pet peeve with the draft now and this happens in every sport. Whenever someone is selected, some dope on the network puts a comparable player next to the guy. 95% of the time, the guy they are compared to is either a current All-Star or a Hall-of-Famer.
This is patently ridiculous in every way. Did you know the St. Louis Blues got Mike Green with the 19th pick? Or the Vancouver Canucks got a young Steve Yzerman late in the first round? If Jordan Schroeder really is a young Yzerman, why the hell is he lasting so long on the board? He should have been the first overall pick. These comparisons put ridiculous expectations on guys who will bust out at a 60% rate.
9:33 am– Calgary Flames acquired the rights to Jay Bouwmeester for Jordan Leopold and a third round pick. Whoa. They’re going to chew up a lot of that $9 million in cap space pretty quickly. We’ll see what he ends up signing for but Darryl Sutter is quickly becoming one of the gutsiest GM’s around. Now if we can only get him a chin job, he’ll stop breaking my television.
9:37 am- Toronto breaks Josh’s heart and takes Jesse Blacker right before the Hawks at 58. The Hawks respond at 59 by taking center Brandon Pirri from the tier 2 Ontario Hockey League. This is right up Fork’s alley as he sounds like a project type player who won’t be ready for a couple years.
9:44 am- We’re into the third round. Hawks just have one pick in this round and it doesn’t come until the end. So cinch it up and hunker down.
I must say, the coverage of the draft by the NHL Network is sub-par. I have no idea who is picking, who is being selected, who is next on the clock. Is it so hard to copy the NFL and have a running ticker? This isn’t rocket science. I feel like I’m watching a draft from 1988.
9:52 am– If the NHL Network were smart, they’d have a camera on Brian Burke the entire time. I can’t get enough of this guy. He looks like he’s been at a happy hour since last Thursday. He’s wearing a shirt with a tie that’s loosened up at the top. You can’t tell if he’s ready to kiss the guy sitting next to him or knock his lights out. What more could Toronto want out of it’s General Manager?
9:56 am– It’s been 12 minutes and we’re already half way through the third round. This is a like a fantasy draft where guys are just pointing to names on a board. “Yeah, we’re not sure how to pronounce it, but we’re going to take this guy Heesketh. Oh, I mean Hesketh. He sounds good.”
9:58 am- Kudos to one of the suits that’s not Bob McKenzie for stomping on one guy’s comparison of Nashville’s pick Michael Latta to Mike Richards. I would know your name if the NHL Network flashed an ID up every once in a while. I’ll call him the Canadian Kiper.
10:04 am– Whoever just interviewed Minnesota third round pick Matthew Hackett didn’t get the memo that Jacques Lemaire was replaced behind the bench. He asked him how he’ll like playing behind the Wild’s defensive trap. If I hear the words ‘Wild’ and ‘trap’ one time next year, I’m going to turn into Ben Eager going after Drew Stafford.
10:22 am– With the 89th pick, the Hawks take 6’4″ center/left wing Daniel Delisle from Minnesota. That’s another big boy. Dylan Olsen was rather large and this guy is no Napoleon either. So it appears the biggest (pun intended) thing the Hawks are going after is size.
Now allow me to ask another question: If anyone can give me a good reason why the Hawks decided to have their Prospects Camp at Johnny’s Ice House, feel free to let me know. Johnny’s has some of the worst ice around and when it gets warmer, it only gets worse. I had a game there last night and the puck was bouncing like a tennis ball. How can the Hawks properly evaluate their prospects when the ice has scores of divets and its softer than Christian Ruutu? What was wrong with the Edge? I’ll hang up and wait for your answer.
10:42 am– The fourth round is really dragging. We’re twenty minutes in and just barely half way through. There must be a long line for the bathroom or something. Notable picks so far are Buffalo taking Marcus Foligno, son of former NHL’er Mike Foligno and brother of current NHL’er Nick Foligno, and Edmonton grabbing Toni Rajala. The Canadian Kiper could barely contain himself when talking about Rajala. Apparently he broke some scoring record of Alex Ovechkin’s and the CK called him, ‘possibly the steal of the draft’. I won’t argue against that.
10:51 am– Fantastic interview with my newest mancrush Brian Burke. Highlights included him still being disappointed he couldn’t snag Tavares but wasn’t going to give up Luke Schenn for him, said Pronger was born to wear orange, and the Leafs are still in their crawling stage of development which is why they passed on Pronger. He also said anyone who makes a move just to get their face on TV is an idiot. You hear that, Darryl Sutter?
10:55 am– With the 119th pick, the Hawks select 5’11” center Byron Froese from Everett of the Western Hockey League. He was a teammate of Kyle Beach’s before Beach got shipped to Lethbridge. Froese was third on the team in scoring with 19 goals and 38 assists. Looks good to me. We’ll see you in 2013 Byron.
11:01 am– For those keeping score at home, the Hawks have selected three centers and one defenseman thus far. No big shock there. They are the two biggest needs right now in the Hawks system. I’m expecting them to go defensive the rest of the way in with a couple of forwards sprinkled in.
11:05 am– Riveting interview with Darryl Sutter. What he lacks in personality, he makes up for with his giant balls. There’s no truth to the rumor that TSN is planning a reality show next year called, “One Sutter, Two Sutters” following the trials and tribulations of Brent and Darryl.
On that note, I’m going to call it a morning. The Hawks have one pick in the fifth, none in the sixth, and two in the seventh. Enjoy the rest of the day. And if anyone knows anything about Brandon Pirri or Daniel Delisle, feel free to share your expertise.
Updated: 1:53 pm- So the draft concluded with the Hawks taking only centers and defensemen. They also picked up a sixth round pick from the San Jose Sharks. Here’s a more in-depth look at all the players they selected on Day 2.