Dynasty Hockey League

Toronto YR 20 Draft – Where are they now?

Toronto had twelve draft picks in the YR 20 entry draft. Quantity does not equal quality and predicting the future of an professional hockey player is extremely difficult. So, after half a season of development since the draft we beg the question, where are they now?

12th: Boston Bruins – Zane McIntyre – Providence (AHL)

2015/16 Stats: 15GP, 2.99GA, .855SV%, 

The goaltending situation in Boston is going to get more complicated before it settles down. There was a three-way battle for who would be the Bruins back-up to Rask this offseason. With Subban and McIntyre battling it out before Boston opted for veteran presence when signing the Monster. However, McIntyre’s development has been progressing fairly well. Aside from a shaking start (typical when transitioning to pro level hockey for tenders) he’s settled in well and has looking like he’s on an upward swing. I can see him dethroning Subban as Boston’s next in line.

11th: Chicago Blackhawks – Kyle Baun – Rockford (AHL)

2015/16 Stats: 12GP, 0pts

Baun has had a rough go of it this season. A highly touted NCAA free agent he signed with the Blackhawks and got some playing time, from there he came into his first pro pre-season and seemed to play well. However, he has stalled after being sent back to the minors. Ultimately traded to DHL Chicago in the Jeff Skinner deal, Baun should still become a serviceable NHLer and have some fantasy relevance in bottom six role.

10th: Boston Bruins – Austin Czarnik – Providence (AHL)

2015/16 Stats: 27GP , 9G, 17A, 26pts

The diminutive forward has been doing very well in his first full pro-season. Czarnik, another NCAA free-agent signed with NHL Boston as the conclusion of his college season and made an immediate impact. His progression has been well documented and apparently he wasn’t required to attend the Bruins development camp as they felt it wouldn’t truly serve him any good. He’s started the 2015/16 season off very well scoring at a .96/ppg pace in the AHL. He should be one of Boston’s first call-ups. Currently sitting third in team scoring, his point production isn’t the most intriguing part of his game. He’s currently the only player on the Providence club within the top 12 in scoring to be a + player. He has shown maturity and two-way game. Julien is going to love his kid.

9th: Toronto Maple Leafs – Casey Bailey – Toronto (AHL)

2015/16 Stats: 29GP, 3G, 9A, 12pts

Another NCAA free agent signing, Bailey came to Toronto with high regard. The sniper has found respectible success at the pro-level in his first season. While his NHL potential is still in the air and he may not be the next Bozak, Bailey has the size, speed and shot to at least be a threat in the NHL. Under Babcock’s tutilige and system that impact may be end up being significant.

8th: Chicago Blackhawks – Radovan Bondra – Vancouver (WHL)

2015/16 Stats: 30GP, 7G, 9A, 16pts

The gigantic Slovak has been impressive in his first year in North America. Just over a .5 PPG pace on underwhelming 9th place team in the Western Conference, Bondra is somewhat of a fan favourite. Just as likely to make a big hit, or use his skating and power to crash the net his progression is a nice reward given his somewhat late draft selection. He’s most definitely a project, but there is potential there.

7th: New York Rangers – Aleksi Saarela – Assat Pori (SM-Liiga)

2015/16 Stats: 27GP, 10G, 5A, 15pts

Once touted as a top 3 overall talent the wheels came off for Saarela a couple of seasons prior to his draft year. Mired with injuries, including concussions, Saarela has to change his game to become successful. He’s no longer just an offensive dynamo, he’s become a very strong two-way player with explosive skating and exceptional offensive ability. We’re finally getting a chance to see what this kid (18 years old) can do, and he’s doing it against men in the SM-Liiga. A very strong showing at the 2016 WJC’s has demonstrated his skill, poise and all-around game for Finland. New York and DHL Toronto might have nabbed a gem.

6th: Boston Bruins – Daniel Vladar – Chicago (USHL)

2015/16 Stats: 2.12GAA, .925SV%

It’s been a successful move to North America for the large Czech-born goaltender. Vladar was a highly touted goaltending prospect that could reap benefits in a few years. He has immense size, standing over 6’6′ and great athletic ability. Unfortunately, he couldn’t land the starting job for the Czech’s at the WJC’s but his progression so far is promising.

5th: Tampa Bay Lightning – Mitchell Stephens – Saginaw (OHL)

2015/16 Stats: 9GP, 7G, 4A, 11pts

Stephens started the season off well, with over a PPG pace and an impressive prospect camp for Tampa, however, injuries derailed his strong start and shelfed him until the WJC selection camp where he played well enough to earn a roster spot on Team Canada. While the team’s play was questionable throughout the tournament, Stephen’s performance was admirable. It will do well for his progression to jump back into the Spirit’s roster and start performing. A strong two-way forward, he could be in the running for steal-of-the-draft.

4th: Colorado Avalanche – A.J. Greer – Rouyn-Noranda (QMJHL)

2015/16 Stats: 18GP, 1G, 4A, 5pts

The budding power forward was a bit a of reach at the DHL draft and has been less than impressive thus far. There’s legitimate concerns that he was being misused at BU but it should always fall on the player to play well enough to leave no questions. Now, Greer has left BU and joined the Huskies of the QMJHL. Hopefully, the move to his home province and the Q spark his progression. This could be seen as the bust of the first round picks.

3rd: Ottawa Senators – Colin White – Boston College(NCAA)

2015/16 Stats: 16GP, 8G, 15A, 23pts

It’s tough to say that a 1st round NHL draft pick surprises you when they perform well, but White might just be the exception. White was tearing the NCAA apart before leaving for the WJC’s, scoring at a 1.43PPG pace. Might I add that he’s doing it as a Freshman, no less. While College players have much more control over their career’s than players in the Junior ranks, it’s likely White will turn pro very quickly and join the Senators in some capacity.

2nd: San Jose Sharks – Jeremy Roy – Sherbrooke (QMJHL)

2015/16 Stats: 26GP, 6A, 22A, 28pts

Roy has been quietly putting in another strong season in the Q. After being high regarded as one of the best defensemen in the 2015 draft he fell into the laps of San Jose. Scoring at over a PPG pace for a defender is impressive in any level of hockey and the fact he’s doing it on a weak Sherbrooke team and he’s been injured [else he would have challenged for a roster spot for Team Canada] is impressive.

1st: Edmonton Oilers – Connor McDavid – Edmonton (NHL)

2015/16 Stats: 13GP, 5G, 7A, 12pts

What a disappointment. Seriously, just as McDavid was starting to truly find his groove he was questionably shoved into the end boards and broke his collar bone. On the cusp of returning to the NHL, I fully expect him to come back with a fire under his ass that should propel him into the undisputed top of the rookie scoring and Calder race. He’s a stud, nothing else needs saying.

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