So, now its the time of the year where FRB will profile a handful of candidates that we think Minnesota could take at pick #46 (let's be honest, doing a 46 for 46 would be ridiculous, a ton of work, and very likely that we wouldn't nail it again this year.) I covered the local high school players when we first started our Draft Coverage:
All three of these I believe could very well be still on the board when Minnesota ambles up to the podium. I know Montreal is hot on Vannelli (Their bigwigs were seen at a Minnetonka section game this Spring), and from what I've been told Peterson is highly coveted, but teams are trying to be very stealthy about their interest- its my belief that Peterson will be one of those Draft surprises in that he'll go so much higher than many thought. Hurley is another guy who could be taken late in the 1st, maybe early in the 2nd. I have seen a handful of Wild scouts at Edina games; the largest contingent of Wild staff I saw was at the USNTDP U-18/University of St. Thomas game in October, although most scouts were gone by the 3rd period because the game became a one-sided blowout.
Back in March I profiled two hulking Team USA wingers in Michael McCarron and John Hayden as two guys Minnesota could have interest in. Both have their flaws; McCarron can be maddeningly inconsistent (although he had a strong U-18 Tournament), and Hayden's skating is an issue, but "you can't teach size" and these two certainly could be there at 46.
This Draft, because it is deep with talent, may see some surprises in where players go; if there is a large tier of players with the same perceived upside, its possible we'll see guys fall into our laps, and maybe even the guys I profile this week go well before #46.
With all the trade speculation, this is one of the most exciting weeks ever for Hockey fans...