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2018 NHL Draft: Recapping Red Wings’ Picks

Day 1 was a blessing that saw exceptional talent slide to us. Would Day 2 be more of the same?

2018 NHL Draft - Portraits Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

Well, THAT was a whirlwind! For those of you who missed it live, Day 2 of the NHL Draft flew by at breakneck speed. With 11 total picks across both days, the Detroit Red Wings had 9 picks left today after taking Filip Zadina last night at #6 overall and Joseph Veleno (more like Vele-yes, right?) with the #30 pick. Here’s how it all shook-out.

At #33, the Wings selected Jonatan Berggren. The 17-year-old C/RW was profiled by our own Edubbnaz prior to the draft, and he thinks Berggren could have been a steal at #30 overall. Given that, picking him at #33 feels like a good move. For those interested in extra credit, Patrik Bexell of Habs Eyes On The Prize further broke down the offensive upside of Berggren.

Now... I know there’s a large contingent of fans ready to throw things right now because “OMG MLH, YOU’RE LIKING ALL THESE FORWARD PICKS BUT WE NEEDED TO TAKE DEFENSE!” Well, Ken Holland had you guys more than covered at pick #36. Defender Jared McIsaac was available, so Kenny pounced and took the left-shot blueliner. McIsaac was actually a teammate of Zadina in Halifax, which is also where last year’s #1 overall pick Nico Hischier played prior to being drafted. Will playing with and practicing against such elite talents help McIsaac grow into the defenseman the Wings desperately need? I don’t know, but it certainly can’t hurt his chances...

After a lull of about 30 picks, the Red Wings were back on the clock with pick #67. Snagging another sneaky sleeper, Holland opted for right-shot defenseman and West Bloomfield, MI native Alec Regula. Fun bit of trivia: Regula’s father used to be the dentist for the Wings. We look forward to watching you keep your dad’s patient list full of opposing players, Alec!

With two more picks close together, the Wings used #81 to grab right-handed defenseman Seth Barton and #84 to take goalie Jesper Eliasson. Barton feels like Holland’s first real reach of the draft, with many outlets ranking him as a 5th-round-or-later prospect, and little is known about Eliasson. But, late in the third round, that’s ok - as long as you nail Round 1 (spoiler alert: we think we did) and preferably Round 2 as well, you can start taking gambles when you see something you really like in a player. Hopefully we can see what Holland saw in these guys soon!

Gently moving into the 4th round, Detroit selected power forward and Texan Ryan O’Reilly at #98. Our next picks were 6th rounders #159 and #160, where we took... wait a second... WE HAVE A TRADE! The Columbus Blue Jackets apparently saw something they were willing to move for, and took our #159 in exchange for their 5th round pick next season. Yay for moving up!

Pick #160 of the 6th round was used to bring in goalie Victor Brattstrom from the Swedish SuperElit league. Finishing the proceedings, 7th round pick #191 was used on center Otto Kivenmaki. This kid needs to bulk up, but was also ranked as one of the biggest possible sleepers of this draft. I was only about 5’8” and 130lbs when I was 18 and exercising daily, so him being 5’8” and 137lbs doesn’t really bug me. He will fill out, and has the potential to be a great pick for us this late in the draft.

Overall, we as a staff really liked this draft. Time will tell how right we are to do so, but Ken Holland did a lot of smart things in the past 24 hours. We grabbed highly rated talent when it fell to us, grabbed a few defenders with big upside, and even made a move to grab a better pick next year. It’s tough for us to give this draft anything but an A... so we didn’t!

My grade: A+


Kyle: A

Peter: A

Prashanth: A

Jeff: Thumbs-up

You little devil, Jeff...


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Talking 2018 NHL Draft, how the Red Wings did, and where they go from here.

Posted by Winging It In Motown on Saturday, June 23, 2018