This weekend is the NHL Draft in Pittsburgh and if you’re wondering why we haven’t heard much from the Bruins regarding the draft it’s because 24th pick isn’t quite newsworthy. From there the Bruins don’t have another pick until 3rd round with the 85th selections.
Yes friends the days of drafting in the top 10 (Tyler Seguin with the 2nd overall pick in 2010) and (Dougie Hamilton with the 9th overall pick in 2011) are over. So I guess we can finally stop thanking Phil Kessel and the Toronto Deal now?
So the Bruins staff buckled down and put a lot more into finding guys that’ll still be around when it comes the Bruins turn to pick. And Peter Chiarelli are staying optimistic despite a not so thrilling pick number. Chiarelli wants to build up our defense which is why the picks are mostly aimed at defensemen.
“There are a bunch of good defensemen that are available, and that’s not a bad thing. Those can be hard to find. We’re going to get a good player with the 24th pick.” (Via CSNNE)
Without anymore talk, here are the 5 players that the Bruins will have their eyes on when that 24th pick comes around.
1)Slater Koekkoek (defenseman): Currently a member of the Peterborough Petes, Koekkoek had a season ending shoulder injury this season which only allowed him to play in 26 games. However, in those games he managed 18 points which isn’t too shabby. If he had had an healthier season, he definitely would have been picked up before the No.24 so the Bruins could get lucky with the 6-foot-2, 184-pounder. Fingers crossed on this one!
2) Matthew Finn (defenseman): Finn finished sixth in the OHL in defensemen playing on the Guelph Storm with 48 points in 61 games. He has family ties in the NHL and the Bruins have their eyes on developing the 6-foot 196-pounder into a strong defenseman with an offensive edge.
3) Olli Maatta (defenseman): Not going to lie, his name intrigues me. Anyway, Maatta is a native of Finland but played in the OHL for the London Knights this season alongside Bruins prospect Jared Knight. The 6-foot-2, 202 pounder led the OHL rookie defenseman with 32 points in 58 games and the last two years had played for Finland in the World Juniors. In fact he was the youngest player to player for Finland as he qualified as a 16-year-old. Maatta would be a solid addition to the Bruins lineup.
4) Hampus Lindholm (defenseman): This Swedish defenseman is one of the top ranked European players eligible for the draft so there’s no doubt that picking him would be a good idea for the Bruins. The 6-foot-2 196 pound player though not producing ridiculously good stats had an excellent performance at the NHL combine. Definitely wouldn’t hurt to go for him.
5) Brendan Gaunce (center): The only non-defense player on the list should count for something. The 6-foot-2, 215-pound player led the Belleville Bulls in rookie scoring with 36 points in 65 games. He would be a great addition to the Bruins offense if he makes it to the 24th pick.
Will any of these boys join the Bruins organization come this weekend? Guess you’ll have to stay tuned to A Cup A Bruin to find out!
stats via CSNNE