Isles Talk 2015 Draft Preview

The end of the Stanley Cup playoffs means that the NHL draft is not too far away. To be specific, the draft is this coming Friday, June 26th in Sunrise Florida. In years past I have usually spent more time on the draft because the Islanders were usually picking in the top 7 of the first rounds, save for 2013. This year however is a completely different draft. As of this writing, the Islanders do not have a first or a second round pick, but that could change as the week progresses. As a fan of building through the draft, I am relieved that New York Islanders general manage Garth Snow will be making an attempt to move up in the draft. The Islanders have not faired very well when it comes to drafting any kind of talent in the third round under Snow’s watch. These players include: (2007) Mark Katic, Jason Gregoire, (2008) David Toews, Jyri Niemi, Kirill Petrov (To be continued), (2009) Anders Nilsson (To be continued), (2010) Jason Clark, Kirill Kabanov, and (2011) Andrey Pedan. Some have made it the AHL level, but never became fixtures with the big club.

With Snow’s desire to move up in the draft, and the rumors of wingers Kyle Okposo and Michael Grabner on the trading block, I shifted my player profiles and I’m going to literally guess where the Isles pick if certain moves are made. For example, I’ve asked around and what I’ve gotten from other writes (journalists, beat writers, bloggers) is that the value for Michael Grabner in this years draft would be a mid-low third round pick. So if Grabner were traded, the Isles begin the draft with three third round picks and I would anticipate Snow making a trade of two of those picks for a second. Could Kyle Okposo fetch a first rounder? I would say that is a fair assessment, maybe even a very high second. There’s no doubt the Islanders could land anywhere between the 25-30 picks late in the first if there was some kind of a packaged deal with Okposo involved. Could Snow not be able to move up in the draft and be forced to draft just his two choices in the third? I’m taking that into consideration as well. Having said that I’ve looked at 10 players who the Isles may select given certain transactions.

My criteria for player selection pretty much stays the same as the Isles will need every position in 3-5 years, so it this is definitely a best player available while swinging for the fences kind of draft. So the following players are potential first, second, or third rounder’s who could fall into the Isles laps with the right moves or just the luck of the draft. I will be going over each one this week, so stay tuned to Isles Talk. Like in years past, the rankings could change as the week continues. Remember, the number one ranked player is most likely to be drafted given the circumstances. As of now, the Isles only have two third rounder’s. As we get closer to the Isles picking in the draft, these players may move up. I’ve been pretty good in picking the correct players, so if the Isles select any of these ten players, I’ll take it.

1. Erik Foley LW
2. Mitchell Stevens C/RW
3. Gabrielle Gagne RW
4. Nicolas Meloche D
5. Stephen Desrocher D
6. Caleb Jones D
7. Travis Dermott D
8. Ryan Pilon D
9. Daniel Sprong RW
10.Jeremy Bracco RW


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