Friday, May 14, 2010

It's all over but the cryin': Bruins draft pick position update

Here's where Boston will be picking in next month's draft:

1st round
2nd overall (Toronto)
15th overall (Boston )

2nd round
32nd overall (Toronto)
45th overall (Boston)

3rd round
No pick- Buffalo (Daniel Paille)

4th round
97th overall (Carolina)- acquired in Aaron Ward deal
No Boston pick- to Anaheim for Steven Kampfer

5th round
135th overall (Boston)

6th round
165th overall (Boston)

7th round
195th overall (Boston)


  1. As painful as it is to reflect on this season. This series loss to the Flyers really just emphasizes the B's need for a sniper on the front line wing position. I don't know a ton about Taylor Hall but from everything I've read and heard he appears to be the real deal. Hopefully he's not the lone big name difference maker to join the team when the season starts in October. I truely feel resigning Sidenberg is going to be an extremely important move in the offseason as well. As for Thomas. I can definitely think of a few teams who would love to have a seasoned veteran netminder to lead the way next year.... Washington would be one for sure.

  2. Nice analysis, Ben. Thanks for posting that.

    Seidenberg's going to be tough to re-sign because he's due to collect somewhere around the neighborhood of $4M. Maybe the injury will be a blessing in disguise and give the Bruins a chance to bring him back, but the contract they gave to Andrew Ference puts that in the "hard to do" category. If Seidenberg walks, the Bruins will have given up the 36th pick for 17 games of a good, solid D and a kid who I refuse to buy into any hype about being "tough" because he plays with a full face shield in the NCAA and I've heard it all before. Until Bartkowski proves his toughness at the AHL/pro level, it's all just talk at this point.

    But, what's done is done. Good luck to PC in being able to find a legitimate scoring presence with the cap dollars he has to dole out, while finding a team that will be willing to even trade Boston one without demanding the moon and stars in return.

    Not a good place to be right now if you're a GM.

  3. we need to get offense to seguin as he is a good player but he would be a consolation player if we dont get hall.hall is fast. tough.gritty. he likes to go to the dirty areas. he doesnt shy away from being hit.we need to package wheeeler,ryer and the 32 pick to edmonton to get hall we might even add one of our first next year.we taylor hall.he is thr type of player we need.

  4. Claude Julien needs to be fired

  5. I agree (about Hall), but it will take an overpayment to land that top pick.

    As I said in my article for it remains to be seen whether the Bruins are willing to meet what will be a significantly-inflated asking price to move up just one spot.

  6. I disagree on Hall. Not necessarily on the question of whether Hall is better than Seguin (or vice versa), but on whether the Bruins "need" him.

    Hall and Seguin have basically been rated 1 and 1A all season long. Most, but not all, people seem to give Hall the nod as the better of the two, but I haven't really heard anyone suggest that the gulf between them is wide. The uncertainty involved in projecting how a couple of elite 18 year old kids are going to perform throughout their NHL careers is almost certainly larger than the apparent talent difference between the two, so that aspect of it is, to me, a crapshoot.

    To me, the Bruins' position of strength here is to be happy to draft whichever one is left on the board at #2. If the decide that they "need" to make the first pick, they will be fleeced in a trade with the Oilers.

    There are only 2 solid reasons I can think of to STRONGLY prefer one over the other. One would be character issues, two would be injury issues. I haven't read anything to suggest that either players has character or injury red flags, so neither applies.

    Positional need is a good reason to prefer one player over another,but not to STRONGLY prefer one to another. Sure, the Bruins need a scoring winger more than they need another center... today. However, that will very likely change before Hall and Seguin have had their entry level contracts expire.

    Patrice Bergeron's contract will be up after next season, and the way the Bruins manage their salary cap it is far from a sure thing that there will be money for him. Marc Savard is a legit #1 center, but he is also on the downside of a career. And at this point Krejci looks more like a very good #2 than like a #1. And any good NHL center can shift to wing anyway, while it is rare to ever see a wing slide over to center. To me, positional need isn't a good reason to fork over a king's ransom to Tambellini. If Seguin can score at the NHL level, he can absolutely contribute to Bruin success as a wing or a center.

    Hall seems to have pulled ahead recently based on his Memorial Cup showing, but to me that isn't a good reason to fork over the king's ransom, either. Isn't Hall on a loaded team, where Seguin was not? I think star players tend to get too much credit for the success of their teams (Hall) and too much of the blame when their teams lose (Seguin).

    There is also a very strong reason NOT to make this deal... we are talking about 18 year old kids here. If the Bruins fork over a bundle of picks to move up and grab Hall (or Seguin for that matter), that is only going to ramp up what will already be unreasonable high expectations. Neither of these guys is likely to be the Bruins' savior during the 2010-11 season, but fans will expect/demand that level of performance. And those expectations will be all the higher if Boston trades for the top pick. The last elite scorer the Bruins drafted was not ready for the NHL during his first year, and it doomed his career as a Bruin. I don't want to see a repeat of that situation.

    I'd much rather use whatever Edmonton would rdemand as part of a package to move into the top 5 and grab one of the top defensemen. Seguin + Gormley or Fowler would be a better outcome for the Bruins than Hall alone, IMO.

  7. Wow, have you been taking writing lessons from Leo Tolstoy, Mike? That was a mouthful.

    I don't think your Kessel analogy is all that valid in the context of your argument because he wasn't an elite scorer in his one year at the University of Minnesota; his production was actually a source of disappointment and was one of the reasons he dropped to No. 5 overall in 2006. His scoring bones were hyped based more on what he did prior to 05-06 when he was with the U.S. NTDP than what he actually accomplished at the NCAA level.

    As for Hall, he's been a consistent 40-goal man for three seasons in the OHL, while Seguin only emerged this year as a legitimate force. I think that although Seguin could be the better NHLer in time, he's going to need more time than Hall will to make an impact. Working against Hall in this debate is the fact that he's been on some very good teams and surrounded with a lot of talent. But, anyone who's seen some of his goals this season would have to be blind not to see the creativity and dynamic offensive skill set he brings.

    I don't disagree about holding onto the assets, but I'm not of the belief that Chiarelli should just be passive and let Seguin fall to him, either. If there's a chance to get Hall, then he should try to seriously explore it rather than simply accept the fate at No. 2. His passivity/reactionary style and inability to be proactive at critical moments during his tenure as GM in Boston are some of the reasons the team is all wet right now.

    Who dares, wins.

  8. Not if it's a rash, foolish dare, though.

    I'd rather see some proactivity outside of the Seguin/Hall question. If the upgrade from Seguin to Hall isn't huge, then the Bruins would be shooting themselves in the foot to give up a lot.

    If think the fate of the next few years' Bruins team will be determined more by what kind of team theybuild around Hall/Seguin than by whether they build around Hall or build around Seguin.

    Now, if Hall is the next 500 goal scorer and Seguin is the next David Krejci, then it's an obviously different story. But I'd have to be damned sure of that before making a serious run at Hall.

  9. Well, your last sentence sums it up perfectly then.

    If the Bruins believe that Hall is that guy, they should move to get him. If they're not sure, then obviously they just sit tight and take whomever falls to them.

  10. Only losers sit around at the end and openly admit/lament the fact that they knew someone was going to be special, but didn't have the intestinal fortitude to go and get them.

    Neither you nor I have a crystal ball to see which player will be better in another 10-15 years, but the point is-- Hall is a proven winner and gamebreaker. If the Bruins think he's special, then go get him. Otherwise, you'll just reap the kind of mediocrity you sow by waiting for providence to fall into your lap.

    Sometimes, it isn't all about the assets. It's about following your instinct and grabbing the talent who is going to help you win. That's Boston's job to figure out. Not yours, not mine.

  11. Do you think that Hall is a much better player than Seguin, taking both talent and intangibles into account?

  12. I haven't seen Seguin enough to make that call, but the Bruins might feel that way, and that's what matters in the debate-- not what I think.

    I'll tell you this, though-- even with the superior team and teammates, Hall has managed to come through time and time again. He scored the winning goal in Game 4 of the OHL Western Conf. final when his team was down 3-0. He got the ball rolling in Windsor's Philly-like comeback. He's the reigning Memorial Cup MVP and the proverbial straw that stirs the drink for the Spits. You have to admire the way he got blown up in the first game against Brandon and then came back to score not one, but two goals afterward.

    We can talk all we want about Seguin's ability and upside (and I mean no disrespect to him at all by saying this), but when it comes down to it, Hall has found a way to step up and be productive at the most crucial of times during his OHL career; last year when Windsor dropped the first two games of the Memorial Cup to become the only team in history to win it all after going 0-2 to start, and this year against Kitchener.

    If the Bruins place a priority on getting a player who finds a way to be the difference-maker, then enough with the excuses about Seguin's inferior team in Plymouth-- Hall is the guy who's proven he can be that player who takes his game to a whole nother plane when it matters most. Isn't the lack of a player like that what cost Boston against Philly?

    That's really it in a nutshell. But again-- it's not up to me. The whole point of this debate is that if the Bruins really see Hall as the prize, they should go out and get him and not just settle for whomever drops to them. If they don't, then let the chips fall where they may and go from there.

    Either way, they're getting an outstanding forward. It's who they grab with their second pick that is now the real rub. Do they move up to grab Brandon Gormley or Derek Forbort or someone else as you intimated, or do they stand pat at 15 and maybe get a Jeff Skinner or Austin Watson or Emerson Etem or maybe even Alexander Burmistrov? Probably won't get a prime D at 15 without moving up, but there are some more scoring forwards they could certainly add.

  13. Now who's channeling Tolstoy? Whew.

  14. I am just naturally skeptical of the "difference maker" business. Taking nothing away from Hall, I don't think the ability to make the plays you noted on a loaded OHL team automatically translates to the ability to do the same on a lesser team or at a much higher level of hockey (i.e. the Stanley Cup playoffs).

    If the Bruins see a significant talent gap between Hall or Seguin, then fine, go for Hall. If the Bruins see some character traits in Hall that suggest he is a significantly better bet to fulfill his promise and get the most out of his natural skills, then fine. After all, I'm sure there are plenty of good hockey guys who would still argue that Alexandre Daigle had the talent to star in the NHL.

    I am just suspicious of putting too much stock in just a few weeks of recent events where team quality is such a huge factor. And I think part of what has put the Bruins in their current hole is too much focus on intangibles at the expense of talent and production.

    Having said all that, I have no idea which player is better or by how much.

    If the Bruins held a top five pick, I'd be all for them doing whatever it took to jump up to the top 2.

    Whichever one the Bruins get, I think it is important to have realistic expectations. Look at a guy like Stamkos... 20 goals as a rookie, then 50+ in year 2. I'm reading too much talk about what this draft pick will do for the Bruins immediately, and I don't really expect either of them to be THE FRANCHISE in year 1.



  15. Well, I explained to you that Hall has done it for more than just a few weeks.

    If you didn't watch him in the Memorial Cup last year doing the same thing, then I don't know what else to tell you.

    I guess you either want the last word, which you can have after this. OR- you just don't want to hear it.

  16. I'm not arguing that Hall has "only" done it for the last few weeks, or that I would be in any way disappointed to have him in Boston. He seems like he has the potential to be exactly what the Bruins need.

    I'm more just saying I'd rather "settle" for Seguin - a player who at least until the past few weeks was basically rated just as highly as Hall - than go "all in" for Hall. Because Seguin is rated as highly as he is, I don't really see it as settling. My opinion would be completely different if someone had managed to leapfrog the Bruins in the lottery and Boston was holding the #3 pick instead of #2. Then I'd be "all in" for moving up one spot or two.

    I just think that if I'm looking at, say, Jarome Iginla and Pat LaFontaine (just to use two names Chiarelli has thrown out there), I don't offer up a ton of value for the right to choose between the two. I "settle" happily and look to build around whichever one I get. If I'm looking at Jarome Iginla and Marco Sturm, then I'm all for going all in for the right to choose.

    Your comments on this blog are really the first indication I've seen that anyone important (i.e. the Bruins) might view it as Hall being very clearly the better prospect of the two. That being the case I guess I'm just surprised. And nervous, because I don't think the Bruins have a very good track record when it comes to building a legitimate cup contening team.


  17. Whoops, cut off. That's MY last word, but you get THE last word if you want to respond.

  18. Kirk, What will it take to wrestle the top pick from Edmonton?

  19. I'm not sure, Alycat, but it will be more than a standard move up one slot.

    Hall has been so impactful offensively this spring that I think it's pretty much a fait accompli that he's going to Edmonton.

    As the debate above will illustrate, if the Bruins feel strongly enough about Hall, then they should at least explore it. Ultimately, the decision to meet Edmonton's asking price or not will likely be up to Jeremy Jacobs and Peter Chiarelli, but at the end of the day, the Bruins are in position to get something done.

    Mike and I debated the wisdom of surrendering the assets, but even the most energetic discussion doesn't matter one iota if the team feels differently about the situation than we do.

    But to answer your question-- I'm thinking a combination of multiple picks and an impact younger roster player who doesn't have a bad contract. Maybe even a prospect. Who knows? Steve Tambellini is in the position to ask for the moon and stars on this one-- and I have little doubt that he will do just that.

  20. If the Oilers are smart they will take Hall. That kid is a beast. We should still be happy with Seguin though. Considering that Toronto pick shouldn't have been anywhere near the top.

  21. Exactamundo, Mike.

    Seguin is getting unfairly diminished in all of this, and I agree about the point about Hall being on a better team.

    That said, Hall's stepping up and producing-- the straw that stirs the drink in Windsor. There's a lot to be said for that, even with all of the talent and skill around him.

  22. I'll be happy with Seguin, for a number of reasons.
    1. He can play C/W
    2. He can play without the hype that surrounds Hall.
    3. He is creative and responsible.
    4. Hall's dynamic skills will likely take a hit, literally, as he won't have the room/time he has in junior. He will be smoked often if he thinks otherwise. See Phil Kessel.
    5. Seguin will be the better professional hockey player.

  23. After reading more about Tyler, I really think he is a good fit in Boston and what we need as he is versitile and can easily play both center and wing, there is a reason he is the league MVP and I like his character and from the sound of the Bruins comments on locker room issues I say he is a fit more so than Hall... I saw somewhere else that Hall may blow his interview with Edmonton because he supposedly hates em and wants to be a Bruin, interesting thought to ponder, I dont buy it...

  24. Nah, don't buy into that stuff about Hall, either.

    Hallsie's a native Albertan (although he grew up a Flames fan) and I'm sure will be a pro about the whole situation. Being the top overall pick is a huge honor, so the thought that he'd purposefully try and blow it so that he gets picked 2nd is silly, even if he may secretly prefer Boston to Edmonton at this point.

    Both players are outstanding young prospects, but people need to understand that they are probably not quite on par with the elite/generational talents like Alex Ovechkin or Sidney Crosby...that's what the Hockey News said in their draft preview and I agree. However, either guy will give Boston a nice shot in the arm. We're just not sure how soon they can develop their game to where they will be front line guys. It may take a little while.

    FWIW- I've talked to both Tyler and Hallsie and they are model interviews as far as their willingness to give of their time and diplomacy goes. Mature, polished guys who know what to say and appear to have a bright future ahead of them.