The 2022 draft class, while deep, is an average one, and there are not many clearly defined tiers throughout many draft boards. The Nashville Predators currently hold seven picks next week: picks #17, 82, 84, 114, 122, 146, and 210 overall.
Below is my final top 96 2022 NHL Entry Draft ranking. This is purely an evaluation of who has the best chance to become a top player in the NHL, not a mock draft or a commentary on other draft-day factors (like a potential hesitancy to draft Russian players).
1. Shane Wright | C | Kingston Frontenacs (OHL)
Although it’s been an up and down year for Wright, he’s still firmly the top prospect in this draft class. He may not be as exciting Slafkovský or Cooley, but Wright already plays a pro-style game. He doesn’t have elite speed, but his skating mechanics are excellent. Wright plays a methodical game; he doesn’t overhandle pucks and rarely finds himself out of position in any zone. He reads the ice well and thinks his movements and puck touches several steps ahead of those around him.
2. Juraj Slafkovský | W | HC TPS (Liiga)
Slafkovský’s draft stock has been rising all season, and it’s been well-deserved. He’s everything an NHL club wants: a 6’4” winger who skates smoothly, has good hands, and is a threat to score from anywhere in the offensive zone. He’s got a powerful shot release that can deceive goalies, and he’s an excellent puck protector who can stickhandle his way out of tight spaces. There’s some work to do on his defensive positioning here and there, but Slafkovský is an electrifying talent who could easily end up being the highest-scoring player from this class a decade from now.
3. Šimon Nemec | D | HK Nitra (Slovakia)
Many evaluators may have Logan Cooley in this spot, but anytime I watch his games, I can’t take my eyes off of Šimon Nemec. He’s a 6’1” right-shot defender who has no serious flaws in his game. Nemec is subtle with his skill, but he rarely makes a bad outlet pass and is willing to jump into the rush when it’s smart to do so. He never panics with the puck and has the skating skills and hands to evade forecheckers and circle back to make the right play. With added strength and maturity, Nemec’s gap control and closures will improve. He projects to be a number one defender in the NHL.
4. Logan Cooley | C | U.S. NTDP (USHL)
In another deep group from the U.S. National Team Development Program, Logan Cooley is by far their best player. He’s a dynamic skater with great accelerating crossover steps that allow him to win many puck races. Nearly every time he touches the puck, he makes some sort of smart play due to his dazzling puck skills and excellent awareness of his teammates and opponents at all times. I have some mild concerns about his shift-to-shift consistency, but he’s a top-line center in the making.
5. David Jiříček | D | HC Plzen (Czechia)
Jiříček and Nemec have been battling all year long for who’s the best right-shot defender in this draft class. I don’t think there’s much separation between these two, but the Czech does have a size advantage (6’3”). Jiříček doesn’t have elite-level speed, but his skating mechanics are phenomenal for his size. He handles the puck well, albeit clumsily at times, but he can make forecheckers miss with ease and spring into a transition through the neutral zone. On top of that, Jiříček has a great shot from the point and is constantly conducting shoulder checks on and off the puck to plot his next move.
6. Matthew Savoie | C | Winnipeg Ice (WHL)
If there’s any challenger to Logan Cooley’s puck skills, it’s Matthew Savoie. The 5’9” center has size limitations, but he’s so comfortable with the puck on his stick that he can work his way out of any tight space, handle the puck on either side of his body, and control small-area play in the offensive zone better than most. Savoie is a good skater, but he doesn’t have the acceleration to blow by NHL defenders, which may cause problems moving forward. Regardless, he’s got pinpoint accuracy with his passes and shots, and he can rip the puck past goalies from nearly any position.
7. Brad Lambert | F | Pelicans (Liiga)
Once thought to be a challenger for the first overall pick, Lambert has had a challenging year. But, I still think there’s an excellent NHL prospect here. He’s a dynamic, powerful skater who attacks the offensive zone with great forechecking angles. He isn’t afraid to engage physically, and he’s frequently searching out soft spots of the ice to get open for a scoring chance. He’s a good puck handler but could tighten up his skills under pressure and work on his neutral-zone decision-making.
8. Liam Öhgren | W | Djurgårdens IF J20 (J20 Nationell)
I may be higher on Öhgren than most, but I think he’s closer to being NHL ready than he’s given credit for. He doesn’t have the offensive ceiling that those above him do, but Öhgren frequently executes difficult passes, makes crisp plays with the puck, attacks open ice in the offensive zone, and buries a lot of his scoring chances, especially at even strength. His defensive pace and coverage could improve, but he’s got the skating fundamentals to do so.
9. Cutter Gauthier | F | U.S. NTDP (USHL)
Gauthier is a 6’3” center who plays a game that’s a hybrid of Shane Wright’s and Logan Cooley’s. He’s methodical off the puck, patrolling the ice in a good puck-support position, and then he attacks when he has possession with his powerful skating stride that allows him to excel in transition. He’ll shoot from anywhere, and that sometimes leads to careless turnovers, but developing at Boston College should tighten up his game well.
10. Joakim Kemell | W | JYP (Liiga)
While Brad Lambert struggled to start the year, Kemell came out of the gates scoring at a scorching rate. He plays with a good motor but doesn’t have elite speed. He can pull pucks off the wall and turn up the ice with quickness, but his standing accelerating steps aren’t amazing. He’s a phenomenal shooter and uses that threat to buy time and space for teammates in the offensive zone. I’d like to see some improvements to his skating mechanics and more aggressive forechecking, and I worry he’s more of a one-dimensional scorer at higher levels.
11. Frank Nazar | F | U.S. NTDP (USHL)
Nazar may be the most technically sound skater in this draft class; there’s no noticeable flaw in his stride, and his speed through the neutral zone is impressive. He’s constantly weaving in and out of open space in the offensive zone, finding passing lanes to exploit with teammates or soft spots to sneak behind the defense into. He’s difficult to knock off the puck but more of a playmaker than a shooter. I like his defensive positioning, but he doesn’t engage physically that much and sometimes gets caught chasing the play in his own end.
12. Danila Yurov | F | Stalnye Lisy Magnitogorsk (MHL)
Yurov is such a mature player in my eyes but didn’t earn a ton of ice time in the KHL this year. He scans the ice well, putting his stick into traffic on defense and away from it on offense. He’s a good, not great skater but has a power to his stride that helps him drive to the net with the puck. I’d like to see some increased speed to better his forechecking skills and transition abilities.
13. Jonathan Lekkerimäki | W | Djurgårdens IF (SHL)
Lekkerimäki is one-third of a Djurgårdens trio that could all be taken in the first round next month. He’s a pure goal scorer that lacks size (5’11”) but has a dynamite wrist shot and can sneak his way behind lines of defense regularly. He could add consistency to his skating mechanics, and that will help bring stability to his stickhandling skills, which are already quite good.
14. Ivan Miroshnichenko | W | Omskie Krylia (VHL)
A Hodgkin’s Lymphoma diagnosis has created much uncertainty about where Miroshnichenko will be picked, but on the ice, he’s a dynamic talent and disruptive force in all three zones. His hands and feet coordinate so well when the puck is on his stick, and he’s a lethal shooter that needs little time or space to score. His stride extension is wonky, but he can still direct the pace of play through so much manipulation in his game.
15. Pavel Mintyukov | D | Saginaw Spirit (OHL)
Mintyukov is another defender who is a net positive in all three zones. He’s a good, physical defender (for the most part), but he does make mistakes here and there in attacking his gaps or staying with the play after his man dishes the puck. He smartly decides when to join the rush or when to drop low in the offensive zone, and he’s a good shooter from the point. If he cleans up some careless puck errors in the middle of the ice, he could be an impactful top-three defender in the NHL.
16. Marco Kasper | C | Rögle BK (SHL)
Kasper is a tenacious forechecker who has a good reach with his stick and can pressure defenders into making mistakes. He conducts regular shoulder checks off the puck and stays in good defensive and puck-support positions. Kasper is a good skater with an okay pace and decent but not great hands. He’s dynamic as a screener for opposing goalies.
17. Filip Mešár | F | HK Poprad (Slovakia)
Mešár’s engine is constantly running in all three zones. While he has a slight and small frame, he compensates with excellent awareness of those on the ice and solid defensive abilities for his age. He’s creative with the puck, tempting defenders to bite while he prepares a crafty cross-zone pass or an evasive punch turn to set up a scoring chance.
18. Jiri Kulich | C | HC Karlovy Vary (Czechia)
Though lanky, Kulich is a good-skating center who uses a long stride extension to his advantage. He’s got good hands and can maintain his pace whenever he receives the puck. He can overskate plays and needs to be stronger on his stick, but he also comes with an underrated shooting release.
19. Gleb Trikozov | F | Omskie Yastreby (MHL)
In comparing the first three Russian skaters, Trikozov may be the most talented; he would be a real swing-for-the-fences pick over Yurov or Miroshnichenko, and that could be okay! Defense is frequently optional for Trikozov, and his skating has a lot going on, but he peels pucks out of corners and away from defenders constantly, creatively protects and pushes it in transition, hunts down loose pucks in the offensive zone, and lulls opponents into his orbit before ripping a wrist shot into the back of the net from all over the offensive zone.
20. Conor Geekie | C | Winnipeg Ice (WHL)
Geekie is a 6’3” center who handles the puck very well for someone of his size. His skating is his big limitation, but his flaws are very fixable. He’s never going to be a burner at the pro level, but he can improve his mechanics to increase his pace and allow himself to better take advantage of his puck protection skills, shooting talent, and scanning ability in the offensive zone.
21. Lian Bichsel | D | Leksands IF (SHL)
Bichsel is a bruising, physical defender who stands at 6’5” and 225 pounds. He loves to engage opponents with shoulder and stick checks, and he can be extremely effective at tying opponents up in front of the net. He’s very offensive-minded and loves to blast the puck from the blue line. Bichsel isn’t a bad skater, but I think he can improve some things to get better separation from forecheckers and improve his pivot timing against opposing puck-carriers.
22. Denton Mateychuk | D | Moose Jaw Warriors (WHL)
Mateychuk is a good skater who is one of the most active defenders I’ve ever evaluated. He loves to lead or join the rush up the ice and is constantly directing play in the offensive zone. At top speed, some of his skating mechanics begin to falter, and I have concerns about his gap control abilities in the pros. But he’s a crisp passer and confident in his puck touches in all three zones.
23. Isaac Howard | W | U.S. NTDP (USHL)
Howard is a scoring winger with a powerful shot and a good ability to exploit the most difficult passing or shooting lanes in the offensive zone. He’s got great puck skills, but there are still inconsistencies in his handling, and he stares at his own pucks too much. Another benefit to his game is that he rarely stops moving his feet and is always willing to attack high-danger scoring areas.
24. Kevin Korchinski | D | Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL)
Korchinski is a good example of a modern-day NHL defender in the making. He loves carrying the puck out of his own zone and will double or triple back if he doesn’t have the right lane. He evades opponents with great edge work and solid concentration with possession, and he manipulates the ice with his above-average passing skills. But, he’s a weak shooter and has his defensive deficiencies, particularly when it comes to winning footraces to loose pucks.
25. Rutger McGroarty | C | U.S. NTDP (USHL)
Like Conor Geekie, McGroarty’s biggest weakness is his skating. He stumbles when accelerating often, and his stride drives down into the ice before extending out. He’s got tons of power in his legs and is a dangerous puck-carrier with how well he can protect the puck, but he lacks NHL-level speed right now. Regardless, he competes for every puck, has above-average puck skills, and never hesitates to pull the trigger on his accurate passes or shots.
26. Calle Odelius | D | Djurgårdens IF J20 (J20 Nationell)
Odelius is an extremely mobile defender who’s constantly buzzing around the offensive zone with his head on a swivel. He’s got great balance and control on his inside and outside edges that allows him to time his defensive pivots well. He’s constantly attacking open ice in the neutral zone or below the offensive-zone circles, and that’s where he’s most dangerous with the puck. He’s solid defensively, but I’d like to see him engage opponents first more and keep a more active stick.
27. Nathan Gaucher | C | Quebec Remparts (QMJHL)
Gaucher is another 6’3” center who feels like he could carve out a role in the NHL sooner rather than later. He generated a ton of even-strength, primary-point production this season for a player who doesn’t dazzle you with the puck. He works hard to make life difficult for opponents with his backchecks and forechecks. Gaucher isn’t the fastest skater but he leverages his body in puck battles so well and has surprisingly good hands (although he is careless with his offensive zone passing at times).
28. Owen Beck | C | Mississauga Steelheads (OHL)
Beck is a strong-skating center who plays a heavy north-south game. He rarely moves laterally through the neutral zone and uses his powerful, albeit not overly fast strides to bully his way up the ice with the puck. He’s got excellent vision and can find teammates with creative, difficult passes. He’s also strong on his stick but needs to work on his puck-protection skills and decision-making speed when breaking out of the defensive zone and when pressured by defenders.
29. Mattias Hävelid | D | Linköping HC J20
Hävelid is a smooth puck-mover who flies through the neutral zone in transition with linear crossovers and strong stride extensions. He’s not great at confronting forwards off the rush and reaches with his stick as a crutch too often. He’s confident in his lateral movements, so when he times his gap closures well, he can really pin opponents to the perimeter of the zone. Hävelid has a good wrist shot from the point but could improve his timing and passing decisions.
30. Ryan Chesley | D | U.S. NTDP (USHL)
Chesley does so many things well but won’t likely stand out to the casual viewer on most nights. He’s got average speed but is a good skater who can explode well in all four directions. You can tell he scans the ice well, but he needs to make his passing decisions a little quicker. He’s not a strong shooter, but he can distribute the puck well from the blue line and recover to defend against the rush and crowd opponents’ passing and shooting lanes.
31. Noah Östlund | C | Djurgårdens IF J20 (J20 Nationell)
Östlund is a shifty center who has a noticeable fluidity to his game. He covers so much of the ice so quickly and doesn’t shirk his defensive responsibilities. If he can improve his stride recovery just a bit, he’ll be that much quicker. He’s a playmaker first and foremost and won’t just commit to the first passing lane he sees but has the stick skills to hang on for options two or three while evading defenders.
32. Jimmy Snuggerud | F | U.S. NTDP (USHL)
Snuggerud is a 6’2” winger who’s really improved his skating skills this season. His posture is still a little too upright at full speed, and his accelerating crossover steps are often slow. He anticipates plays wells but will need to work on his feet so that they can match that pace, which will allow him to better capitalize on his unbelievable release and adept passing skills.
33. Tristan Luneau | D | Gatineau Olympiques (QMJHL)
A smart defender who reminds me a bit of Alexandre Carrier in his QMJHL Days. Luneau keeps opponents in front of him with active stick checks and proper body checks. He moves well in transition but doesn’t have an elite set of hands. His playmaking after puck recovery is inconsistent, and he struggles with pivot timing against faster opponents.
34. Adam Sýkora | W | HK Nitra (Slovakia)
An energetic player who competes hard all over the ice. He works beyond his size and average skating skills, taking proper forechecking angles, playing in decent defensive positioning, and using his creative hands to set up teammates.
35. Owen Pickering | D | Swift Current Broncos (WHL)
Pickering is a raw 6’5” defender with decent skating mechanics. He’s great in transition, executing clean outlet passes or making opponents miss with a variety of dekes coming out of the zone. You want to see more power in his backward skating and more usage of his body to force giveaways.
36. David Goyette | C | Sudbury Wolves (OHL)
Goyette is a very skilled forward who can really shoot the puck under pressure. He frequently manipulates his stick to execute high-level passes in the offensive zone. His defensive positioning doesn’t always feel productive, and he lacks a bit of NHL-level speed.
37. Jack Hughes | C | Northeastern University (NCAA)
Physical center who competes with smart body checks and battles hard to win puck battles. Skating mechanics are NHL average, and puck protection skills should improve with added strength. The skill is certainly there, but it’s hard to evaluate as a college freshman.
38. Isaiah George | D | London Knights (OHL)
A very intelligent defender who reacts well to changing attack angles from opposing forwards. He thinks ahead well on his outlet passes, but there is some inconsistency in his pass execution from time to time. George is an excellent skater and a force in front of the net.
39. Lane Hutson | D | U.S. NTDP (USHL)
Hutson is even smarter than George in all three zones. His mobility is solid but he has some deficiencies in his skating mechanics. He jumps into gaps to steal pucks and leads his teammates to open ice with excellent passing. His shooting power needs work, but he often plays as a fourth forward. The only problem is he’s 5’8”.
40. Seamus Casey | D | U.S. NTDP (USHL)
Casey is similar to Hutson in his propensity to jump up into the play. His skating mechanics are better, and he plays with great balance and edge control. He loves moving the puck up the ice on his own but sometimes lacks explosiveness coming out of dekes. Turnover prone too.
41. Sam Rinzel | D | Chaska High School (USHS)
Rinzel is a big defender who handles the pick very well up the ice, evading forecheckers, forcing them into mistakes, and often conducting offensive all on his own. His defensive game is all over the map and often poor, and his backward skating needs more power.
42. Jani Nyman | W | KOOVEE (Mestis)
Nyman is a fairly simple forward who can dominate pockets of the offensive zone to set up goals for teammates. His skating is fine but he lacks above-average NHL speed. He’s a good shooter but doesn’t have elite-level hands.
43. Vladimir Grudinin | D | Krasnaya Armiya Moskva (MHL)
Grudinin is another small defender who is an efficient skater with long stride extensions and a balanced center of gravity. He engages his gaps in the neutral zone well and can explode up the ice after recovering the puck. Defensive positioning once the other team establishes possession in his zone needs work.
44. Jagger Firkus | F | Moose Jaw Warriors (WHL)
Firkus could likely be a first-round pick as he has one of the best shooting arsenals in this draft class. He can manipulate his body and weight transfer to receive errant passes and fire them right away. His puck-handling skills are nearly elite, but his skating is inconsistent and frequently lacks a long enough stride extension. He’s also 5’10”.
45. Julian Lutz | F | EHC München (DEL)
Lutz is a big power forward with good skating mechanics and decent speed. He’s patient away from the puck but can explode into open spaces to generate scoring chances. He needs to be stronger on his feet and improve his puck protection skills.
46. Elias Salomonsson | D | Skellefteå AIK J20 (J20 Nationell)
Salomonsson is a big, right-handed defender who has a heavy wrist and slap shot from the point. He’s got decent balance but his puck recovery skills can be lazy, and he lacks coordination between his body and stick when pivoting against rushing forwards.
47. Luca Del Bel Belluz | C | Mississauga Steelheads (OHL)
Del Bel Belluz is a creative puck handler who can attack defenders and force them into mistakes with his skill. He doesn’t have the quickest release in the world, but he’s forceful and accurate with his wrist shot. I have concerns about his skating speed and his passive defensive game.
48. Matyáš Šapovaliv | F | Saginaw Spirit (OHL)
Šapovaliv is a big center who has pretty decent puck skills for his size. He can protect the puck well but also doesn’t hold onto it too long, relying on creative give-and-go sequences to spring teammates up the ice. His skating needs major work, but regardless, he has good timing and exploits open ice well.
49. Fraser Minten | F | Kamloops Blazers (WHL)
Minten is another power forward with okay skating mechanics, but he lacks above-average NHL speed. He’s a physical player who has become a menace along the boards and lays good open-ice hits. He uses his frame to snap deceptive shots on the net, but his defensive play needs work.
50. Alexander Perevalov | F | Loko Yaroslavl (MHL)
Perevalov is a hard-working forward who covers both ends of the ice very well. He forechecks well, but I would like to see him pounce on loose pucks a little quicker. Skating mechanics are fine, but he lacks NHL speed.
51. Cameron Lund | C | Green Bay Gamblers (USHL)
Exciting forward who buzzes all over the ice on his best nights. Plays a physical game to force turnovers and win board battles. Slick puck skills but concerns about shift-to-shift consistency.
52. Filip Bystedt | C | Linköping HC J20 (J20 Nationell)
Big center who skates extremely well and could go as high as the first round. Uses his wingspan well and is hard to stop with the puck and a full head of steam. Creativity and playmaking break down at higher speeds.
53. Danny Zhilkin | C | Guelph Storm (OHL)
Hounds defenders into frequent giveaways on his best nights. Decent skater but doesn’t have elite foot speed, and his crossover steps limit his acceleration. Would like to see him improve his off-puck positioning and defensive engagement.
54. Arseni Koromyslov | D | SKA-1946 (MHL)
Decent puck skills and provides helpful pinches from the blue line. Shooting skill is fine, but he’s careless with his passes here and there. Rush defense is solid but needs to improve his pivot timing and reaction speed.
55. Michael Buchinger | D | Guelph Storm (OHL)
Solid defender who is constantly monitoring opponents’ movements all over the ice. Challenges well against the rush but could tighten up how he attacks cycles in his own zone. Smooth skater but he should use that more to his advantage when he recovers giveaways.
56. Kasper Kulonummi | D | Jokerit U20 (U20 SM-sarja)
Solid moving defender who has good four-way mobility. Closes gaps well but would like to see him attack the puck even quicker. Probably not much of a puck mover at higher levels but is fine handling the puck and getting pucks to the net.
57. Hunter Haight | C | Barrie Colts (OHL)
Undersize center who flashes amazing puck skills on his best nights. Skating could be improved with a better knee bend and his foot speed is explosive only in spurts. Needs to protect the puck better to capitalize on his ability to pull pucks off the boards and from battles and reverse play.
58. Rieger Lorenz | C | Okotoks Oilers (AJHL)
Good-sized forward who handles the puck very well. Deceives opponents by pulling the puck across his body, using his frame to protect possession, and opening up his blade before executing high-level passes. Defaults to his shot, which is good, when he skates his way into a dead end and there are concerns about his skating mechanics.
59. Noah Warren | D | Gatineau Olympiques (QMJHL)
Towering 6’5” defender who is a pro at shutting down opposing forwards and often throwing them down to the ice too. Has a massive wingspan that makes him tough to beat in his own zone. Outlet passes and offensive game have room to improve.
60. Tomas Hamara | D | Tappara U20 (U20 SM-sarja)
Quietly confident player in all three zones who won’t wow you but does many little things right. Average foot speed but good skating mechanics and he develops momentum through confident puck rushes in transition. Can quarterback offense from the blue line but won’t score much himself.
61. Jordan Gustafson | F | Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL)
Not an elite-level offensive force but he has so many NHL-ready tools to his game. Gustafson is an excellent shooter and is confident with the puck but prefers give-and-go’s and small-area passing to long possessions. Can exploit defenders with good explosiveness here and there but is an overall average skater.
62. Viktor Neuchev | F | Avto Yekaterinburg (MHL)
Neuchev oozes skill and plays like he has the puck on a string all over the ice. Skating is a bit of an issue but his mobility at the junior level is fine. Manipulates time and space so well in the offensive zone and knows when to speed up or slow down to make a play—often out of nothing.
63. Maveric Lamoureux | D | Drummondville Voltigeurs (QMJHL)
A 6’7” right-shot defender who I expect to go much higher than this. Physically, he’s dominant on the ice and is hard to battle in front of the net. Skating is fine but there is work to be done there. Shooting talent is okay but not an amazing amount of offense to his game right now.
64. Adam Ingram | F | Youngstown Phantoms (USHL)
Ingram was two different players this year. In the first half, opponents couldn’t get him off the puck as he was generating tons of high-danger chances with his above-average puck skills. In the second half, he was reserved and reactive and a step too slow for even average USHL defenders.
65. Aleksanteri Kaskimäki | C | HIFK U20 (U20 SM-sarja)
Average to below-average foot speed but works hard to win puck battles and reacts well to changes of direction from opponents. Good forechecking pace and angles but his puck-support positioning could be better. Can execute with the puck at top speed and drives hard to the net to score.
66. Devin Kaplan | W | U.S. NTDP (USHL)
Very poor skating mechanics that are defined by a limited stride extension, a heel kick, and a busy upper body. Regardless, Kaplan competes hard in all three zones and is constantly bothering opponents with the puck. Physical winger who doesn’t hold onto the puck for long but often makes a smart play when he does.
67. Ty Nelson | D | North Bay Battalion (OHL)
Undersized defender with tons of creative puck skills. Solid skater but his backward balance dips here and there. Can be an excellent asset in the offensive zone but too reactive playing rush defense and forces too many plays in transition.
68. Mats Lindgren | D | Kamloops Blazers (WHL)
Fine skater who has okay pace in transition. Small details to his game allow him to make good outlet passes and solid dekes (most of the time) to beat forecheckers out of the zone. Could be a good power play QB at higher levels.
69. Christian Kyrou | D | Erie Otters (OHL)
Doesn’t generate tons of power with his skating and is inconsistent in his ability to win puck races. Gap control and pinches are inconsistent too and I have concerns about his awareness when he challenges puck carriers. Lots of flashes of skill on the offensive side of the ice.
70. Elias Pettersson | D | Örebro HK J20 (J20 Nationell)
Good sized defender who earned regular pro minutes this year. Not an offensive asset by any means but he’s an aggressive defender who uses decent skating mechanics to conduct smart pinches, force turnovers near the blue line and engage physically low in the zone.
71. Topias Leinonen | G | JYP U20 (U20 SM-sarja)
Covers the net well with his 6’4”/6’5” frame even in the butterfly without playing overly aggressive. Glove looks stronger than his blocker side but overall a solid puck tracker. Fights for loose pucks well with his paddle but too much inconsistency this season.
72. Simon Forsmark | D | Örebro HK (SHL)
His skating is not great but it’s not as dramatically bad as some think. Does well to keep opponents mostly in front of him. He’s not the most physical defender, but he scans the ice well to not get caught out of position. If he’s beat, it’s game over though.
73. Jordan Dumais | W | Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)
An elite scorer in the QMJHL this year who may be one of the smartest players in this draft class. He thinks the game at such a high level and is a creative playmaker as a result. Shooting and skating skills are severely lacking and that doesn’t pair well with his size.
74. Jack Devine | W | University of Denver (NCAA)
Devine is a very good defensive forward who displays good division in advancing play after forcing turnovers. Engages low in the defensive zone to help his defenders in difficult puck battles. Good puck skills and shot but isn’t a high-end scorer and his pace is just average.
75. Vinzenz Rohrer | W | Ottawa 67’s (OHL)
Another defensively-responsible forward who plays his position well in all three zones and is regularly scanning the ice around him. Smart forechecking game and decent skating mechanics overall. He can manipulate defenders with the puck but will be more of an around-the-net scorer at higher levels.
76. Nicholas Moldenhauer | F | Chicago Steel (USHL)
Good skater but has choppy accelerating steps and his base may be too wide for proper puck protection. Decent hands but gets caught trying to do too much on his own. Excellent, creative passer.
77. Ryan Greene | C | Green Bay Gamblers (USHL)
Pro-style shooter already, including a mid-range one-timer that can be very dangerous. Skating profile is fine but he may have below-average speed at the NHL level. Chases the play too much in his own end but can execute good playmaking abilities at top speed with the puck.
78. Miko Matikka | W | Jokerit U20 (U20 SM-sarja)
Big winger with a long reach who has tons of raw talent with the puck. Feet flare out wide when he’s skating at top speed but plays a decent forechecking game overall. When he’s at his best, he’s an offensive zone force on and off the puck and has a powerful shooting arsenal.
79. Paul Ludwinski | C | Kingston Frontenacs (OHL)
Excellent motor and is constantly chasing pucks all over the ice but concerned about how many of those battles he actually wins. Thinks a few steps ahead of those around him with the puck on his stick but I don’t think he’s particularly creative or manipulative in transition or on offense.
80. Artyom Duda | D | Krasnaya Armiya Moskva (MHL)
Engages physically off the puck against non-puck carrying forwards to set the tone in the defensive zone. Powerful shot that he keeps low to the ice. Decent mobility breaking out of his own end but concerned about the consistency of his outlet passes.
81. Otto Salin | D | HIFK U20 (U20 SM-sarja)
Skating is just okay and he lacks high-end speed which may limit him without more offensive inputs to his game. Can be elusive with the puck but doesn’t always commit enough to leading breakouts and throws the puck away too often.
82. Topi Rönni | C | Tappara U20 (U20 SM-sarja)
Fairly milquetoast forward who is just okay at a lot of things. Confident with the puck and decent at protecting it. His skating needs a lot of work but he’s willing to battle along the boards and plays a good puck-support game.
83. Sandis Vilmanis | F | Luleå HF J20 (J20 Nationell)
A slippery forward to can carve behind defenses and be a legit scoring threat on his best nights. Good shooter and doesn’t need a big wheelhouse to fire deceptive pucks at the net. With a little more knee bend, he can unlock a lot more skating power.
84. Matthew Poitras | F | Guelph Storm (OHL)
Creative with the puck but struggles to attack in a north-south way while coordinating his hands and feet. Okay skater but he’s clumsy in acceleration and has below-average NHL foot speed. Needs to be stronger on his stick.
85. Reid Schaefer | W | Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL)
Another big winger who is an older skater in this draft class. Anticipates play and times breakouts well in his own zone but lacks an identity in transition. Has okay hands and a good scoring touch but I want to see him win more puck battles.
86. Ludwig Persson | F | Frölunda HC J20 (J20 Nationell)
Great hockey sense and poise with the puck. He’s confident in small areas and creative enough to evade defenders without amazing speed. Pulls pucks off the wall and out of scrums and moves up the ice quickly and is a decent shooter.
87. Cedrick Guindon | C | Owen Sound Attack (OHL)
Effortless skater who has nearly flawless form moving up the ice. Undersized but competes hard and is good in transition, weaving through defenders and pausing just enough to open up more passing options. Not an amazing shooter but takes a lot of attempts.
88. Jake Richard | F | Muskegon Lumberjacks (USHL)
One of the youngest players in this class, Richard has powerful legs and a good puck protection frame. Solid puckhandling skills but overhandles in transition and lacks knee bend and stride extension right now.
89. Servác Petrovský | C | Owen Sound Attack (OHL)
Nifty player around the net who gets his stick on lots of pucks and has good hands to navigate tight areas. Can spin off defenders to execute passes but isn’t very physical, and I think his game slows down the longer he handles the puck.
90. Ben Hemmerling | F | Everett Silvertips (WHL)
Solid pace to his game and great consistency shift to shift. He’s strong on the puck and can execute nice scoring chance assists from high-danger areas often. Can be tenacious forechecking defenders but is just an okay skater.
91. Matthew Seminoff | W | Kamloops Blazers (WHL)
Seminoff’s motor never stops, and he’s never seen a puck battle he won’t fight tooth and nail to win. Digs hard along the boards and below the goal line to set up teammates but skating is hampered by nearly no ankle bend and a limited stride extension.
92. Dylan James | W | Sioux City Musketeers (USHL)
Takes a while to pick up speed in transition and doesn’t possess the puck a lot as a result. A menace around the net who sees the offensive zone well and converts good puck-support position to tons of high-danger scoring chances.
93. Kirill Dolzhenkov | W | Krasnaya Armiya Moskva (MHL)
Massive 6’6” forward who has great skill and a quick, active stick that helps him make plays out of takeaways. Skating is a major issue and his lack of acceleration may render his skill moot at higher levels.
94. Pano Fimis | C | Niagara IceDogs (OHL)
Fimis has been a highly-touted prospect for some time now but had little chance to possess the puck and showcase his skill on an awful Niagara team this year. Thinks the game a few steps ahead of his peers but needs to work on converting that anticipation to playmaking.
95. Bryce McConnell-Barker | C | Soo Greyhounds (OHL)
Moves okay in transition but lacks the speed to burn defenders or chase down dump-ins. Serious flaws to his skating mechanics that make it hard for him to be properly engaged in plays and showcase his puck protection and shooting skills.
96. Ilya Kvochko | F | Stalnye Lisy Magnitogorski (MHL)
Kvochko flashes tons of skill as a smooth passer and high-end playmaker. On his best nights, his motor helps him chase down pucks and exploit good defensive coverage. But, he’s 5’9” and looked completely invisible on too many nights this season.
2022 NHL Entry Draft: July Ranking
|1||Shane Wright||C||Kingston Frontenacs||OHL||2004|
|2||Juraj Slafkovský||W||HC TPS||Liiga||2004|
|3||Simon Nemec||D||HK Nitra||Slovakia||2004|
|4||Logan Cooley||C||U.S. NTDP||USHL||2004|
|5||David Jiříček||D||HC Plzeň||Czechia||2003|
|6||Matthew Savoie||C||Winnipeg Ice||WHL||2004|
|8||Liam Öhgren||W||Djurgårdens IF J20||J20 Nationell||2004|
|9||Cutter Gauthier||F||U.S. NTDP||USHL||2004|
|11||Frank Nazar||F||U.S. NTDP||USHL||2004|
|12||Danila Yurov||W||Stalnye Lisy Magnitogorsk||MHL||2003|
|13||Jonathan Lekkerimäki||W||Djurgårdens IF||SHL||2004|
|14||Ivan Miroshnichenko||W||Omskie Krylia||VHL||2004|
|15||Pavel Mintyukov||D||Saginaw Spirit||OHL||2003|
|16||Marco Kasper||C||Rögle BK||SHL||2004|
|17||Filip Mešár||F||HK Poprad||Slovakia||2004|
|18||Jiri Kulich||C||HC Karlovy Vary||Czechia||2004|
|19||Gleb Trikozov||F||Omskie Yastreby||MHL||2004|
|20||Conor Geekie||C||Winnipeg Ice||WHL||2004|
|21||Lian Bichsel||D||Leksands IF||SHL||2004|
|22||Denton Mateychuk||D||Moose Jaw Warriors||WHL||2004|
|23||Isaac Howard||W||U.S. NTDP||USHL||2004|
|24||Kevin Korchinski||D||Seattle Thunderbirds||WHL||2004|
|25||Rutger McGroarty||C||U.S. NTDP||USHL||2004|
|26||Calle Odelius||D||Djurgårdens IF J20||J20 Nationell||2004|
|27||Nathan Gaucher||C||Quebec Remparts||QMJHL||2003|
|28||Owen Beck||C||Mississauga Steelheads||OHL||2004|
|29||Mattias Hävelid||D||Linköping HC J20||J20 Nationell||2004|
|30||Ryan Chesley||D||U.S. NTDP||USHL||2004|
|31||Noah Östlund||C||Djurgårdens IF J20||J20 Nationell||2004|
|32||Jimmy Snuggerud||F||U.S. NTDP||USHL||2004|
|33||Tristan Luneau||D||Gatineau Olympiques||QMJHL||2004|
|34||Adam Sýkora||W||HK Nitra||Slovakia||2004|
|35||Owen Pickering||D||Swift Current Broncos||WHL||2004|
|36||David Goyette||C||Sudbury Wolves||OHL||2004|
|38||Isaiah George||D||London Knights||OHL||2004|
|39||Lane Hutson||D||U.S. NTDP||USHL||2004|
|40||Seamus Casey||D||U.S. NTDP||USHL||2004|
|41||Sam Rinzel||D||Chaska High School||USHS||2004|
|43||Vladimir Grudinin||D||Krasnaya Armiya Moskva||MHL||2003|
|44||Jagger Firkus||F||Moose Jaw Warriors||WHL||2004|
|45||Julian Lutz||F||EHC München||DEL||2004|
|46||Elias Salomonsson||D||Skellefteå AIK J20||J20 Nationell||2004|
|47||Luca Del Bel Belluz||C||Mississauga Steelheads||OHL||2003|
|48||Matyáš Šapovaliv||F||Saginaw Spirit||OHL||2004|
|49||Fraser Minten||F||Kamloops Blazers||WHL||2004|
|50||Alexander Perevalov||W||Loko Yaroslavl||MHL||2004|
|51||Cameron Lund||C||Green Bay Gamblers||USHL||2004|
|52||Filip Bystedt||C||Linköping HC J20||J20 Nationell||2004|
|53||Danny Zhilkin||C||Guelph Storm||OHL||2003|
|55||Michael Buchinger||D||Guelph Storm||OHL||2004|
|56||Kasper Kulonummi||D||Jokerit U20||U20 SM-sarja||2004|
|57||Hunter Haight||C||Barrie Colts||OHL||2004|
|58||Rieger Lorenz||C||Okotoks Oilers||AJHL||2004|
|59||Noah Warren||D||Gatineau Olympiques||QMJHL||2004|
|60||Tomas Hamara||D||Tappara U20||U20 SM-sarja||2004|
|61||Jordan Gustafson||F||Seattle Thunderbirds||WHL||2004|
|62||Viktor Neuchev||F||Avto Yekaterinburg||MHL||2003|
|63||Maveric Lamoureux||D||Drummondville Voltigeurs||QMJHL||2004|
|64||Adam Ingram||F||Youngstown Phantoms||USHL||2003|
|65||Aleksanteri Kaskimäki||C||HIFK U20||U20 SM-sarja||2004|
|66||Devin Kaplan||W||U.S. NTDP||USHL||2004|
|67||Ty Nelson||D||North Bay Battalion||OHL||2004|
|68||Mats Lindgren||D||Kamploops Blazers||WHL||2004|
|69||Christian Kyrou||D||Erie Otters||OHL||2003|
|70||Elias Pettersson||D||Örebro HK J20||J20 Nationell||2004|
|71||Topias Leinonen||G||JYP U20||U20 SM-sarja||2004|
|72||Simon Forsmark||D||Örebro HK||SHL||2003|
|73||Jordan Dumais||W||Halifax Mooseheads||QMJHL||2004|
|75||Vinzenz Rohrer||W||Ottawa 67's||OHL||2004|
|76||Nicholas Moldenhauer||F||Chicago Steel||USHL||2004|
|77||Ryan Greene||C||Green Bay Gamblers||USHL||2003|
|78||Miko Matikka||W||Jokerit U20||U20 SM-sarja||2003|
|79||Paul Ludwinski||C||Kingston Frontenacs||OHL||2004|
|80||Artyom Duda||D||Krasnaya Armiya Moskva||MHL||2004|
|81||Otto Salin||D||HIFK U20||U20 SM-sarja||2004|
|82||Topi Rönni||C||Tappara U20||U20 SM-sarja||2004|
|83||Sandis Vilmanis||F||Luleå HF J20||J20 Nationell||2004|
|84||Matthew Poitras||F||Guelph Storm||OHL||2004|
|85||Reid Schaefer||W||Seattle Thunderbirds||WHL||2003|
|86||Ludwig Persson||F||Frölunda HC J20||J20 Nationell||2003|
|87||Cedrick Guindon||C||Owen Sound Attack||OHL||2004|
|88||Jake Richard||F||Muskegon Lumberjacks||USHL||2004|
|89||Servác Petrovský||C||Owen Sound Attack||OHL||2004|
|90||Ben Hemmerling||F||Everett Silvertips||WHL||2004|
|91||Matthew Seminoff||W||Kamploops Blazers||WHL||2003|
|92||Dylan James||W||Sioux City Musketeers||USHL||2003|
|93||Kirill Dolzhenkov||W||Krasnaya Armiya Moskva||MHL||2004|
|94||Pano Fimis||C||Niagara IceDogs||OHL||2004|
|95||Bryce McConnell-Barker||C||Soo Greyhounds||OHL||2004|
|96||Ilya Kvochko||F||Stalnye Lisy Magnitogorski||MHL||2004|