Anaheim Ducks 2020 Draft: Mocking the First Fifteen

Alexis Lafreniere #11 of the Rimouski Oceanic (Photo by Mathieu Belanger/Getty Images)
Alexis Lafreniere #11 of the Rimouski Oceanic (Photo by Mathieu Belanger/Getty Images) /
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Connor Zary #18 of the Kamloops Blazers (Photo by Marissa Baecker/Shoot the Breeze) /

#11 Nashville Predators – Yaroslav Askarov. G, Russia, SKA-Neva St. Petersburg (VHL)

In some circles, Askarov is considered the best goaltending prospect since Carey Price (John Gibson will personally come to fight you if you agree) was taken top 5 in 2005. New Jersey isn’t particularly hurting for netminders, but when the potential to find a franchise-altering voodoo master is available, the team will have to go for it and hope it all works out.

Pekka has been amazing for the Predators, despite his crippling contract and the inability of management to build a remotely competent team around him. Nashville needs someone to replace him with somewhere down the track and will have to hope that one-day Askarov will be able to do so. He probably will be. He’s really good.

But, seriously? A Goalie? In the first round? Fail.

Pre-Draft Grade: F

#12 Florida Panthers – Connor Zary, C, Kamloops (WHL)

A reliable and hardworking two-way pivot, that was always bound to catch someone’s eye and go early. He has good speed, good skills, and is equally adept with his pass and shot. He is a puck possession monster who is the primary play driver for his team.

Everything about the Panthers is just kind of mediocre, and this is no different. Another two-way pivot who’s good but not great. They could have gone and done something that would make at least one person take notice of them, but instead, they went ahead and made a draft selection like the dull chumps they are. Yawn.

Pre-Draft Grade: F

#13 Carolina Hurricanes (from Toronto Maple Leafs)  – Jake Sanderson, LHD, USA U18 (NTDP)

Rawer than a greyhounds dinner, the Hurricanes take the up and coming defenceman just to spite Toronto fans who desperately desire a brilliant defenceman to be somewhere near their team. A relatively mobile skater with a good frame, Sanderson has a bit to work upon over the next few years.

He can improve his offensive game and his defensive chops while adding some size to his frame. At this stage, he appears to be a jack of all trades but has yet to master any facet of the game. An allrounder who has a tantalizing upside. The Hurricanes can afford to be patient and bring him along slowly while molding him to their desires.

It doesn’t even matter if Sanderson makes it as a star player or not. What really matters is the enjoyment we’ll all get from Leafs twitter self-destructing as they will surely do after realizing they gave up the chance to get what their team desperately needs, just to offload some old guy they paid too much for.

Pre-Draft Grade: B