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2017 NHL Draft: Eight prospects the Red Wings may have in their sights

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2017 CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game Photo by Mathieu Belanger/Getty Images

Months of preparation and excitement have come and gone, now it’s almost Draft time. We’re looking at a handful of prospects that the Red Wings will have in their scope come time the 9th pick is on the clock. The list is something I’ve put together gathering information in regards to what the team wants, looks for, and needs.

Without further adieu, we’ll break down the list now.

Miro Heiskanen
Defenseman
Heiskanen’s value has soared over the last few months. He’s a strong two-way rearguard with exceptional skating ability. He spent the year playing regular minutes in Liiga, so he’s well-seasoned with playing against strong competition. He won’t fall very fall, if at all. If the Red Wings are trying to get to him, they’ll be dishing up the assets to get him.

Casey Mittelstadt
Center
Some models have Mittelstadt falling down the rankings. If that were to happen, the Red Wings would be foolish not to cash in. He’s a tenacious fleet-footed playmaker who was a no-doubt top forward in the USHL. He’s got the tools to be star. We’ve been told the team is very interested in him. Could be a trade-up situation.

Lias Andersson
Center/winger
Lias Andersson is one of the more strong two-way forwards in the Draft. He has fantastic vision, and some dangerous offensive flare. He really follows the prototypical “Henrik Zetterberg” type. Do I think he’s a good pick at 9? It would be stretch. Andersson is gifted, but odds are there will be something more lucrative if the Red Wings retain their spot in the 1st round. This would be a trade down-er in my opinion.

Callan Foote
Defenseman
We’ve all made jokes about it -- how funny would it be to see Adam Foote’s kid put on the Winged Wheel? Well, I’ve been told there is legitimate interest. Foote reminds me a lot like Brendan Smith. Two-way defender, not much flare, but a sound style of play. This is a trade-down pick. Taking Foote at 9th overall would be an extreme blunder.

Michael Rasmussen
Center
Plenty of controversy surrounding Rasmussen and his Draft stock. I’m not calling him a bad prospect, but his big frame has inflated his value. Because of his size, it’s not surprising that the Red Wings have their eye on him. I think he’ll be a fine power-center-like player, but taking him at 9th overall would be going off the map. If the Wings really want him, they need to try and acquire him in a trade-down scenario. To be clear, I think the kid is good, just not as good as other options out there. Drafting a position of need with size as your number one concern is poor management.

Elias Pettersson
Center
Shocker! The Red Wings are interested in another Swedish centerman. Pettersson is an electrifying playmaking talent. The only concerns here are the “beanpole” narrative. Pettersson is lanky, without much muscle. The Red Wings know that with access to NHL training and nutrition, that’s an easy thing to fill out. Thing is, I think there would be concern for him as a center with the Wings, because they are extremely keen on two-way abilities — something Pettersson isn’t lauded for.

Eli Tolvanen
Winger
Of course they’re interested in Tolvanen, because who wouldn’t be? He’s emerged as the best goal-scorer in the Draft this year. The kid has an absurd shot with a lightning-quick release. Tolvanen was one name that I’ve heard the Wings should have a ton of interest in. It’d be a fine pick at 9th overall, but I still believe it’s best to look towards a center. Still, I wouldn’t complain if they wound up taking this kid. Tolvanen was previously committed to Boston College, but has since been given the thumbs down from their admissions department. He’ll likely play with the Oshawa Generals, who took him in the CHL Import Draft.

Jake Oettinger
Goalie
Yep. Believe it or not, the Red Wings are very much interested in bolstering their future in net. With so many question marks hovering over Petr Mrazek as of late, it’s no surprise they have interest in one of the best goalies in the Draft. Oettinger is a stretch in the 1st round, so this would likely be a trade-down situation. While drafting a goalie isn’t exactly a popular choice, it would give the team a little more stability going forward with their netminders.


So, what will they do? Rumors shift back and forth between trading up and trading down. I think the best bet in this draft is to stick with what you have, or trade down. Moving down the rankings could mean falling into multiple high-end prospects, which is more favorable than one. Tyler Wright said in a recent interview that the team is going to draft the best player at 9th overall, regardless of position. What I believe, at the very least, is that the eight prospects listed above are highly likely to be on the team’s list tonight.