Monday, June 25, 2012

Bruins Draft Recap

Before I start, I want to thank for being such a comprehensive and easy to use resource for this post.

With all that happened this weekend in sports, you can be forgiven for overlooking the NHL Draft. And as a Bruins fan, even I was a bit disinterested. After back-to-back drafts with premium picks, the B's would be selecting a very ho hum 24th.

The Bruins, however, made an interesting selection with their uninteresting pick. They took Malcolm Subban, a 6' 1" 188 pound 18 year old currently playing for the Belleville Bulls of the Ontario Hockey League. Three things make this pick interesting.

#1, Malcolm Subban is a goalie. Which means we get to mention Tim Thomas. And he wears the number 30.

#2, Malcolm Subban has an older brother named PK Subban, an easy to hate defenseman on the Montreal Canadiens. This guy:

#3, He also has a younger brother named Jordan, so he is Malcom in the Middle. He's also Malcolm S. This guy is a blogger's dream come true.

Subban had a 2.50 GAA with Belleville in 39 games last season. He had a save percentage of .923. Considering his age, and how much time it will take him to learn the position, I seriously doubt Tim Thomas leaving the Bruins had anything to do with this selection. And just because the Bruins got him doesn't mean their long-term plans for Rask have changed.

You're not going to get an instantly impactful player with the 24th pick. This guy has talent, room to improve, and could one day be a good NHL goalie. He'll likely stay in the OHL, get some playoff and national team experience (he played 5 games for Canada in the 2011 Under-18 World Junior Championship, Canada finished 4th), and in a few years he'll contend for a spot on the Bruins' depth chart.

The Bruins also traded the rights to restricted free agent Benoit Pouliot to Tampa Bay in exchange for Michel Ouellet and a 5th round pick.

I was never a fan of Benoit Pouliot. He just didn't fit in. He scored 16 goals, had 16 assists, but he never really seemed like a Bruin. He wasn't particularly physical, he wasn't a talented scorer, and he made more mistakes with the puck than most of the other forwards. He was a restricted free agent and I'm not upset that he's gone.

Michel Ouellet isn't an improvement though. He's 30 years old and hasn't played in the NHL since 2008. In the last three years he's played in Virginia, Germany, and Switzerland. Don't expect to see him play in Boston.

In the 3rd round, the Bruins selected Matthew Grzelcyk, a native of Charlestown, MA. He turned 18 in January. He's a 170 pound 5' 9" defenseman. He'll be playing at BU next season, where Coach Jack Parker turns regular defensemen into puck movers and scorers.

In the 5th round, the B's took Seth Griffith, a 19 year old center out of the OHL. He's 5' 9" and 180 pounds and plays for the London Knights. He's a scorer. In 68 games for London last season, he scored 45 goals and added 40 assists. In 19 playoff games he had 10 goals and 13 assists. The word on him is that he doesn't amaze you with talent, but he gets results.

Later in the 5th round, the Bruins made their only European selection. And it was an English winger. Cody Payne is from London, England but plays Juniors in Plymouth of the OHL. He's 18 years old, 6' 2" and 200 pounds. And he does this (he's in white and red):

In the 6th round, the Bruins selected Matthew Benning of the Spruce Grove Saints of the Alberta Junior Hockey League. He's 18 years old, 6' 0", and 216 pounds. That's a good frame for a defenseman. He's also able to score once and awhile and accumulate penalty minutes. His father and uncle both had lengthy NHL careers.

With their final pick in the 7th round, the B's took Colton Hargrove (who I think needs to be called Colton Hargrove III with a name like that). He turned 20 yesterday, he's 6' 1" and 215 pounds. He's from Dallas and played left-wing for the Fargo Force of the USHL. He'll be playing for Western Michigan this upcoming season. He scored 16 goals in 54 games last year, and earned 140 penalty minutes. Impressive.

So that's the Bruins' draft. Not spectacular, but there's some potential future Bruins there. Subban could get to Providence in 2 years. Grzelcyk should develop well at BU, where some quality NHL talent has recently been produced. Griffith can score. Payne can fight. Benning can hit. Hargrove can sit in the penalty box.

I like it.

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