Sunday, June 22, 2008

Flyers Draft Recap

Here is a rundown of the players the Flyers took in the 2008 NHL Draft, held this past weekend. Click on the player's name to see their profile from

Round 1, Pick 19: Luca Sbisa, D
Round 3, Pick 67: Marc-Andre Bourdon, D
Round 3, Pick 84: Jacob DeSerres, Goalie
Round 6, Pick 178: Zac Rinaldo, C
Round 7, Pick 196: Joacim Eriksson, Goalie

My thoughts: I am not going to pretend like I know all these players and their strengths and weaknesses, but I like what the Flyers did in the draft, addressing their organizational need for more defenseman. The Flyers are loaded with young forwards both in the NHL and still in the minors but they have very few top defenseman that are coming through the system, besides Ryan Parent. Sbisa and Bourdon appear to be players that can fill that void, although nothing is guaranteed. Sbisa looks especially promising, considering he has decent size and will continue to get bigger and he can move the puck. Bourdon also was the QMJHL's best defenseman and looks to be offensive-minded, picking up 59 points in 69 games.

The Flyers also lack a true goalie of the future, so they took a flier on a pair of goalies in the draft. No goalie drafted by the Flyers would help for several years, so everyone calling for someone to replace Martin Biron needs to relax. The Flyers will need to look elsewhere for their next goalie, getting one via free agency or a trade.

The NHL Draft does not hold the same prestige and instant gratification as the NBA and NFL drafts, but the Flyers have done pretty well in the last few years, and I see no reason for this year to be any different. If we are lucky, we might see the fruits of the 2006 draft this season if Claude Giroux makes the team this year. As for this current crop of rookies, I expect Sbisa to make his impact sometime next decade.

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