It is that time of year. Only 2 weeks away from the 2012 NHL Draft. Leading up to the draft I plan on doing a few draft previews, and before that I will review the last 3 drafts for the Anaheim Ducks starting with 2009.
This was one of the biggest drafts in Ducks history. Most notably because it was the day the Ducks traded Chris Pronger to the Flyers. I have seen many different opinions on this trade including one person saying it was the wort trade in Ducks history. I personally think it was a great trade. Although Pronger is a great star player and one of the best defensmen in the league he is clearly still not the player he was when the Ducks won the Cup, and if last season is any indication his career might be almost over. In return that Ducks got what essentially was 4 first round picks. The picks were already, or eventually became Joffrey Lupul, Luca Sbisa, Kyle Palmieri, and Emerson Etem. While Lupul is gone already, it isn’t a big stretch to think the other 3 players could be Ducks long after Pronger is done playing.
Now on to the draft: I think the 2009 draft was a successful one. GM Bob Murray has signed the first 5 players taken in the draft (something he has also done with the first 5 players in the 2010 draft) which is a great sign especially how poor the drafts went in the Burke years.
1st round- The Ducks took Peter Holland at #15. At the time I was really hoping the Ducks would take Chris Kreider. Both players however look to have a bright future, and may be a few years before we can tell who is the better player, but with as well as Kreider performed in the playoffs for the Rangers I stand by my first feelings that the Ducks should have taken Kreider. Holland however is still a great prospect for the Ducks. The best thing about Holland is likely the coveted Center with good size. At 6’2″ 195 lbs, Holland has the size that teams looks for at the center position. Putting up 60 points in 71 games in his first year as a pro for Syracuse shows that he also has the skill to put up points as well. Holland still looks like he has the potential to be a 2nd line center for the Ducks, and at the very least a good 3rd line center. It will be interesting to see if he can make the team out of camp for the 2012-2013, but if he doesn’t he is likely to be one of the first forward call ups if he does not.
For part 2 of the 2009 draft review, more Ducks draft previews, and other Ducks news be sure to check back HERE often.