When will we find our Jeff Skinner?
Below is the list of players drafted 7th overall ever since the draft was turned into a seven round event rather than the previous nine rounds.
|Year||Team Name||Player Name||Position|
|2011||Winnipeg Jets||Mark Scheifele||C|
|2010||Carolina Hurricanes||Jeff Skinner||C|
|2009||Toronto Maple Leafs||Nazem Kadri||C|
|2008||Nashville Predators||Colin Wilson||C|
|2007||Columbus Blue Jackets||Jakub Voracek||RW|
|2006||New York Islanders||Kyle Okposo||RW|
|2005||Chicago Blackhawks||Jack Skille||RW|
Those are the previous 7th overall picks and those are some impressive names. While the jury is still out on Mark Scheifele and Nazen Kadri, with the exception of Jack Skille, all have produced relatively good talent. Arguably, all of them have top six potential.
Some might call it superstition, but I think its interesting to see who has gone before with the 7th overall pick. It is a pick that isn't quite high enough to get the top talent in the draft and not valuable enough to ask for a huge return through trade.
It is that pick that is JUST outside the top 5, looking in through the glass with a sad face, hoping it could have picked up a lottery pick prospect.
But fear not, the 7th overall pick has produced quite well since the NHL lock out and revamp of its draft system. It has produced four regular top six NHLers (Jeff Skinner, Colin Wilson, Jakub Voracek, and Kyle Okposo), including Calder Cup winner Skinner, who looks to be a key player for the Carolina Hurricanes for several years.
As I am writing this post, I decided to go further back and see how the other 7th overall picks turned out. Surpringsly, since 1990, there have only been around 3 1/2 picks that did not play as a regular NHLer. Those names include Jack Skille, Lars Jonsson, Kris Beech, Jamie Storr, Ryan Sittler and Alek Stojanov. You could also argue Rostislav Olesz and Storr both ways, and Sittler was derailed by injuries.
So from 2010-1990, twenty years of hockey, there were around 5-7 busts with the 7th overall pick. That is amazing in my books. No, some did not turn out as star players like Erik Rasmussen, but he played eight seasons as a regular NHLer.
What to know who did become very good NHLers? Names include Shane Doan, Jason Arnott, Mike Komisarek, Joffrey Lupul, the other youngsters mentioned earlier, and yes, the future 12/13 Wild defenseman Ryan Suter. Paul Mara and Manny Malhotra deserve some recognition as well.
Honestly, there really isn't a concrete point to this post, other than pointing out that the 7th overall pick has the potential of producing some top talent. Obviously, it can bust as well, but you don't NEED to be in the top 5 to produce talent. It can come two spots away.
This post is really to hype up our pick that we will get to see in around 5-6 hours. We can get a special player.
And hopefully, that is what we will get. Our own Ryan Suter, playing alongside Ryan Suter.