We’re on Day 2 of the SB Nation NHL Mock Draft, where our NHL team sites come together and simulate the first round. Today, we get to picks seven through 12, including the San Jose Sharks’ first round selection at seventh overall.
Catch up on the picks so far here:
Onto the next six picks!
7. San Jose Sharks — Kent Johnson
From Fear the Fin:
It’s really difficult to watch Kent Johnson and not love the experience. Even when he’s a bit too confident and the play is a miss, you still have to appreciate his vision and creativity, which is head and shoulders above his peers.
The front office would be familiar with Johnson, as they kept an eye on the Wolverines, not only to track Bordeleau’s progress, but also checking on other 2021 draft talent on the roster. Ranked third among North American skaters by Central Scouting, Johnson stood out, with most final draft rankings placing him between sixth and tenth overall. Playing Armchair GM, I can see a world where he ends up in teal.
The Sharks need to take advantage of their draft position and get a top-six talent. Kent Johnson is one of the few players in this draft who can fast-track to that role.
8. Los Angeles Kings — Simon Edvinsson
From Jewels From The Crown:
Edvinsson is one of, if not the most technically sound defenders in this draft class. He spent the 2020-21 season busy, paying 14 games in each of Sweden’s junior league and second-tier men’s league, as well as 10 games in the top-tier SHL, though he did not see much ice time in those 10 games and was thus loaned to the lower league.
He also represented Sweden at the Under-18 World Championship, scoring one goals and three assists over seven games, as Sweden won Bronze.
Where the Swede truly shines is his transition game, something that inspires many scouts to speak poetics.
9. Vancouver Canucks — Brandt Clarke
From Nucks Misconduct:
That brings us to the Canucks pick at ninth overall, and if they should be fortunate enough that Brandt Clarke of the OHL’s Barrie Colts is still available at that stage, we could be looking at an absolute steal.
The 6’2” 185 lb rearguard was one of a number of OHL players to head to Europe with the cancellation of the season in Ontario. Clarke ended up playing for Nove Zamky in Slovakia’s top league. He was able to play a few games with his brother Graeme, before the New Jersey Devils assigned Graeme to their AHL affiliate in Binghamton.
Clarke is considered an elite offensive defenceman, but one that is more than competent in his own end and not one to shy away from physical play at all. With the Canucks looking to retool the back end around Quinn Hughes and Jack Rathbone, Clarke seems to be a no-brainer if he’s still available.
10. Ottawa Senators — Fabian Lysell
From Silver Seven Sens:
His skating not only serves him well when creating offense off sustained pressure, but it also allows him to be a threat off the rush. According to tracking data from Elite Prospects, Lysell was the top U18 Swedish forward in successful zone exits and entries and was also more efficient when setting up his teammates, relative to his peers. It also helps that he has the tools to score goals himself, and they’re the tools you’ll hate the most if you’re an opposing defender. [...]
It just so happens that in this case, the player we felt was the best available at tenth overall also fills one of the team’s most pressing needs — the right wing. Aside from Drake Batherson and Egor Sokolov, all of the organization’s notable young forwards are either centers or left wingers. Connor Brown and Evgenii Dadonov are currently holding down the fort with Batherson in the NHL, but reinforcements will be necessary in a few years.
11. Chicago Blackhawks — Jesper Wallstedt
From Second City Hockey:
Pick a favorite source for prospect scouting reports and they often return the same buzzwords/phrases with Wallstedt: rebound control, positioning, technique, angle control, effectiveness, etc. It all adds up to goalie who sees and thinks the game well, which is why he plays the game so well. Many scouting reports name Tuukka Rask as the best NHL comparison for Wallstedt, although portions of his scouting report do read eerily similar to that of former Blackhawks netminder Corey Crawford. We’ll take that.
Wallstedt has been playing above his age group for years, going back to the 2015-16 season when he was playing in the U16 division during the season he turned 14. In ‘17-18 he was up to the Sweden’s top level of junior hockey — at the age of 16 — and posted a 15-8 record with a .921 save percentage and 2.28 goals-against average. During the 2020-21 season, Wallstedt saw his first consistent action in the SHL — the top league in Sweden — and put up a 12-10 record with a .908 SV% and 2.23 GAA. Wallstedt’s numbers reportedly dipped in the second half of the postseason, but not enough to affect the growing spotlight on him.
12. Calgary Flames — Cole Sillinger
From Matchsticks and Gasoline:
Instead we settled on these seven players in hopes that one or a few would be available when we put on the Brad Treliving mask and picked at #12: Kent Johnson, Mason McTavish, Chaz Lucius, Cole Sillinger, Aatu Raty, Carson Lambos and Fabian Lysell. A few of those players went early, but we all agreed on one player and when it was time to pick, he was sitting right there waiting for us.
We also went back and forth with Die By The Blade a few times on trading the 12th pick for Jack Eichel, but the ultimately the compensation and trade packages didn’t work out.
So, with the 12th pick in the 2021 NHL Mock Draft we selected Cole Sillinger of the USHL’s Sioux Falls Stampede. At 6’1 and over 200 lbs, Sillinger is a bigger body that can put the puck in the net from the either the centre or forward position. In case you missed it, here’s our Cole Sillinger Prospect Preview and below is his highlight package. We’re not saying we’re great at predicting the draft, but we’ve been right a few times with Matthew Tkachuk and Jeremie Poirier (albeit a round later). Now all that remains to be seen is if Sillinger will be available at #12 or if the Flames do something different like a trade down or a player/pick trade during the draft.