2024 NHL mock draft: Projecting the first 32 picks

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Rachel Doerrie, ESPNApr 2, 2024, 07:30 AM ET

CloseRachel Doerrie is a professional data consultant specializing in data communication and modelling. She’s worked in the NHL and consulted for professional teams across North American and Europe. She hosts the Staff & Graph Podcast and discusses sports from a data-driven perspective.

The NHL season is coming to an end, with the playoffs kicking off later this month. With the postseason on the horizon, teams on the outside looking in will turn their attention to the NCAA tournament, CHL playoffs and the under-18 IIHF world championships in Finland. Rebuilding teams will focus on interviewing draft-eligible players, scrutinizing their play and building their list for the draft in June.

The trade deadline saw multiple first-round picks swapped, and makes for an intriguing mock draft exercise. Teams with more first-round picks are more likely to take swings on higher-risk players. That is, they are less risk-averse because they have more than one first-rounder; there is pressure to hit on your first-round pick when you only get one. Furthermore, teams are more likely to go off the board to get “their guy” when they have multiple selections. In recent drafts, Arizona did that with Maveric Lamoureux, New Jersey with Shakir Mukhamadullin, Ottawa with Jacob Bernard-Docker and Philadelphia with Jay O’Brien.

This is something that could be a trend in the 2024 draft. After Macklin Celebrini, there isn’t a consensus. Some teams like Ivan Demidov and Anton Silayev, while others are not prepared to use a top-5 pick on a Russian, similar to how Matvei Michkov fell to No. 7 in 2023. Cole Eiserman and Cayden Lindstrom are polarizing for different reasons, and they could go anywhere from fourth to tenth.

Once you are outside of the top 10, things get very murky and lists are all over the place. One team may have a player 11th, while another may have the same player 25th. Depending on team value and if GMs allow need to supersede “best…

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Source link : https://www.espn.com/nhl/insider/story/_/id/39848091/nhl-mock-draft-2024-top-predictions-players-order-best

Author : Rachel Doerrie

Publish date : 2024-04-02 11:59:08

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