Good morning. Welcome to the first day of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft. The New Jersey Devils will finally get to make their selection at eleventh overall tonight. Here's a breakdown of how to watch and what will happen today in Buffalo, New York for the draft.
The First Day: Friday, June 24, 2016
The Rounds Selected on the First Day: The First Round
The First Day Start Time: 7 PM EST
The First Day Broadcast: TV - NBC SN, SportsNet, and TVA Sports
The First Day Pick for the Devils: 11th overall.
The Expected Time of the Pick for the Devils: According to Devils PR, about 8:15 PM. Err on the side of it being earlier as picks made quickly will shorten the time the draft takes.
The Devils' Coverage: Do you use Facebook? The Devils' will be using Facebook Live to provide a livestream of the draft with Julie Robenhymer hosting along with Ken Daneyko. It will go live on the team's and the NHL's Facebook page when the Devils make their pick. They will interview the team's selection as well as members of the organization. They'll even answer a few questions from you live if you tweet your question to the Devils' account with the hashtag #NJDraft2016. All details plus a chance to win a jersey is at the team's official website.
Then there’s the second day, which is tomorrow.
The Second Day: Saturday, June 25, 2016
The Rounds Selected on the Second Day: The Second through Seventh Rounds
The Second Day Start Time: 10 AM EST
The Second Day Broadcast: TV - NHL Network, SportsNet
The Second Day Picks for the Devils: 41st overall (second round), 73rd overall (third round), 77th overall (third round), 102nd overall (fourth round), 105th overall (fourth round), 132nd overall (fifth round), 162nd overall (sixth round), 192nd overall (seventh round)
Now some potentially asked questions answered in advance:
Who Are These Prospects?: We've done many prospect profiles so you can get up to speed on some of the players that may be picked in the next two days. All of them are here. Just keep on scrolling.
Likewise, go check out good sites like OHL Prospects, the Draft Analyst, the NHL Draft section at SBN College Hockey, Top Shelf Prospects at the Last Word on Sports, and the NHL Draft coverage at The Hockey Writers among others. Youtube
What Do the Devils Need?: I wrote about this back in May and it still holds true. They need offensive talent. They need skaters - not just forwards - who are skilled on the puck. This includes but is not limited to distributing the puck, moving with the puck, handling the puck. and firing the puck. Ideally, they would be at least good at all of that and project that talent out to the professional levels. Whether or not you like the young players currently in the system, there can be little doubt that they need offensive players to eventually fill the current dearth of offense at the NHL level.
What about the "Best Player Available?": The Best Player Available should have the offensive skills the Devils sorely could use in their system.
Should the Devils Trade Up/Down?: I never say never to trades, but I don’t think the Devils have the assets to trade up and I believe if a team likes a guy at a spot, then they should take him at that spot instead of risking not being able to pick him after moving down. The Devils are re-building and they need to make these picks count.
Who Would Others Pick?: Here's a collection of mock drafts from around the Internet focusing on picks #9 through #12.
Is This the Discussion Post for the Draft?: No. You are more than welcome to discuss the hockey news of the day in the comments to this post. But we will have discussion posts specific for each day of the draft. The one for the first day should be up at 5 PM EST. The one for the second day should be up at 9 AM EST.
Thank you for reading. The 2016 NHL Draft begins tonight. See you then.