Thank you hockey gods! Somehow, the Washington Capitals were able to draft Filip Forsberg; who was predicted to be in the Top three.
After it took a considerable amount of deliberation, George McPhee approached the podium. There, he was welcomed by “Boo’s” coming from the stands as he announced that the Capitals were drafting Filip Forsberg. I have to give kudos to McPhee for responding to the “Boo’s,” handed-out by Penguin fans, with “We’re touched.” You have to appreciate and love the sarcastic, witty reply.
No one predicted this would happen; it was only in Washington’s wildest dreams. Forsberg joins the list of Swedes who were drafted in the first-round by the Capitals, which didn’t come as much of a surprise given their success. Nicklas Backstrom (2006), Anton Gustafsson (2008) and Marcus Johansson (2009) are Swedes who also had the same fate.
Caps fans may question why a player predicted to be third-overall slides down eight spots. When this happens I first look at whether or not the character of the player is being questioned, but that’s not the case here. Forsberg is proven to be a dominate player at least at the international level. The reason why I believe he fell so many spots is because most of the NHL clubs were in the market for defenseman. There were eight picks in the Top 10 who were defenseman and that was the main reason why the Capitals were able to snatch-up Forsberg up with their 11th pick.
Filip Forsberg, 17, is a good-sized forward coming in at six-foot-one and 188lbs. He is a strong, physical and an elite power-forward. What Capitals fans can expect from Forsberg is a winger who shoots the puck and can score goals. He is compared to be of the same caliber as Johan Franzen of the Detroit Red Wings.
Now you may ask, “Who would the Washington Capitals pick as their 16th overall pick?” If you answered Tom Wilson, which I’m not so sure you did, you nailed it.
Actually, after this year’s draft I might start using the saying, “You Yakupov‘ed it.” Heh..heh.
Wilson, is another winger selected by the Capitals only this guy is NFL player-esque. At a whopping six-foot-four and 200lbs, this player will provide the Capitals with a more physical presence as his ruggedness and size ables him to punish his opponents. Expect to see Sport Center highlights from this man as his open-ice hits and knuckles are a force to be reckoned with.
It was rumored that the Philadelphia Flyers were taking a liking to the idea of drafting Tom Wilson since he fits in well with the Broad Street Bullies prototype. Unfortunately for them, the Caps rained on their parade. To get a feel of how Wilson may play in a NHL role, he is compared to be like Ryan Malone of the Pittsburgh Penguins.
If I were to give the Washington Capitals a grade based on their choice of first-round picks, I’d give them an A-.
Undoubtedly, prayers were answered when the Caps were able to steal Filip Forsberg with their 11th overall pick. With Alexanders Semin’s bags already packed, the Caps were desperate for a power-forward and they got that in Forsberg. As for Wilson, the Caps bulked up and become more physical. That most definitely isn’t a bad thing in my book.
Now that I’ve finished my first-round draft analysis for the Washington Capitals, I move on to another important acquisition. It was announced earlier in the draft that the Caps traded their 54th overall pick, in this year’s draft, and center Cody Eakin for the Dallas Star’s Mike Ribeiro. I am extremely pumped about this. I was a huge fan of Ribeiro in Dallas and I’m sure he would fit in quite nicely on Washington’s second-line.
It is evident that the Caps have never found an answer for a second-line center who could help out Nicklas Backstrom. Again, Washington’s prayers might be answered with Ribeiro. I love that they added a veteran presence who has playoff experience. Now if Washington can miraculously get Semin to stay, the Capitals may just be the team to beat next season.