Hey everyone! With the off-season in full swing I’m sure many of you, like myself, can’t wait to get to October. Now that we are 5 drafts into Shero’s tenure with the Devils, I was wondering how the other fans on this site would rank their favorite picks of those 5 drafts. Of course it is far to early to get a fair evaluation of most of the picks Shero has made, even from the 2015 draft. Rankings can be based on whatever you like: what we’ve seen from them in the NHL, in their development leagues, or just a gut feeling! Feel free to give an explanation of each pick, or just list the name and move on!
My top 10 is as follows:
- Nico Hischier- Couldn’t be happier with how Hischier has grown as a player. Especially seeing that he was capable of production without Taylor Hall for most of last season.
- Jesper Bratt- Watching him the past two seasons has been so exciting, especially coming from someone drafted in the 6th round. His stickhandling and passing are lights out, looking forward to seeing how he does in year 3.
- Jack Hughes- You’ve all seen the highlights... it’s an exciting time to be a Devils fan.
- Mackenzie Blackwood- Although it was a small sample size, Blackwood was one of the few bright spots down the stretch last season. Looking forward to seeing a full season from him.
- Ty Smith- Ty Smith is looking like a great pick at 17th overall. Winning CHL defenseman of the year makes it even more exciting. Can’t wait to see what he can do in NJ this year.
- Jesper Boqvist- Watching some of his highlights from Sweden last year and he looks like he can really play. Seeing his even strength point totals at his age mentioned with Zetterberg’s and Pettersson’s make it even more exciting.
- Aarne Talvitie- I haven’t seen as much in the way of highlights front Talvitie as some of the higher ranked players on my list, but the highlights I have seen have looked good. Hopefully another 6th-round-steal ™ for Ray Shero.
- Pavel Zacha- I know many of us wish someone else had been taken at 6th overall in 2015, but Zacha has shown flashes of great playmaking ability, as well as good defensive ability. Really hoping this can be the season he puts all of it together.
- Jeremy Davies- Unfortunately he had to be included in the Subban trade, but I was very excited for him to be a part of the Devils. Kept improving every season at Northeastern, and looked like an excellent 7th round pick.
- Brett Seney- Number 10 was a tough pick to make. Seney edges out the rest of the picks simply because he got a decent amount of NHL time last year. I have 0 stats to back this up but I feel like he continuously got opportunities in close on goal only to have the goalie make a save. He’s also put up pretty good AHL numbers.
Honorable Mentions: Daniil Misyul, Nikita Popugaev, Reilly Walsh, Marian Studenic
Looking forward to seeing everyone’s rankings! Thanks for reading and, as always, Let’s go Devils!!!