11. Nashville - Kevin Fiala (LW) HV 71
Fiala saw some time this season in the Swedish first division which is the third best league in the world after the NHL and KHL. He was sixth in scoring at the World U18 with five goals and nine points in five games. Fiala loves to handle the puck and is a good skater with great acceleration. He tried to do everything himself in the junior league but when he went to HV 71, he was a much better teammate on the ice.
Nashville needs – First line center, scorers at forward.
12. Arizona - Jared McCann (C) Sault Ste. Marie
McCann is a solid two-way player. He ranks first overall as the best defensive forward in the draft according to McKeen’s, as well as having the third best hockey sense, behind only the two Sams, Reinhart and Bennett. McCann had 27 goals and 62 points this past season. He has a great one timer and plays well on the half-boards in man-advantage situations. The Coyotes will likely give Max Domi, their first pick and also 12thoverall last season, a shot to make the team this season, and leave McCann in junior hockey.
Arizona needs – Second line players and a scoring center.
13. Washington – Travis Sanheim (D) Calgary
Sanheim is flying up the draft board as the defenseman has gone from 5’10” to 6’3” in the last three years. He started the season off slowly as he was a healthy scratch but really came on in the second half of the season as he started to rush with the puck more often. He managed to show his skills at the World U18 where he led Canadian defensemen with six points in seven games. The Capitals need defensive help and Sanheim could be a great selection at 13th overall.
Washington needs – Defensive help, Goaltending and depth on the wings.
14. Dallas – Julius Honka (D) Swift Current
The Stars are looking at an offensive defenseman and Honka looks like the best available at this point. McKeen’s has Honka rated as the top offensive defenseman as well as the fifth best skater in the draft. He was the Broncos best defenseman in his first year in the WHL and he aided his native Finland in helping them win gold at the 2014 World U20 championships. Honka had 16 goals and 56 points in 62 WHL games.
Dallas needs- Puck moving defenseman, Depth wingers.
15. Detroit – Brendan Perlini (LW) Niagara
The second best skater in the draft along with the third best shot according to McKeen’s, Perlini had 34 goals and 71 points for Niagara of the OHL. Every team is looking for a goal scorer and Perlini could be the best of this bunch. He had trouble in the playoffs as he is not a physical player and he still needs to work on his defensive game.
Detroit needs – Puck moving defenseman, Skilled Wingers.
16. Columbus – Dylan Larkin (C) USA NDTP 18
Larkin is a strong two-way center who is a better shooter than passer. He played on the USA NDTP 18 team where he had 31 goals and 56 points in 60 games. He plays a physical game but will need to fill out his 6’1”, 190 pound body before he can play effectively in the NHL.
Columbus needs – Depth at center and wingers with size who are playmakers.
17. Philadelphia – Alex Tuch (RW) USA NDTP 18
Another member of the USA NDTP 18 team, Tuch played on a line with Jake Eichel who is projected to go second behind Connor McDavid at the 2015 draft, and Sonny Milano who should go late in the first round or early in the second this year. Tuch is a finesse power forward who scores most of his goals within five feet of the net. He needs to use his 6’3”, 215 pound body better as he does not play a physical game yet.
Philadelphia needs – Help on the blueline offensively, scoring winger.
18. Minnesota - Robby Fabbri (C) Guelph
A talented but smallish center, Fabbri really started to produce offensively when Kerby Rychel was dealt to Guelph from Windsor. Fabbri had 45 goals and 87 points in only 58 games as he was suspended for 10 games in November. He was the OHL playoff MVP with 13 goals and 28 points in 16 games. Fabbri doesn’t mind the heavy going despite being only 5’10”, 170 pounds.
Minnesota needs – A skilled center, playmaking wingers and goaltending.
19. Tampa Bay – Kasperi Kapanen (RW) KalPa Kuopio
The son of Sami Kapanen, he played this season with KalPa alongside his father in the Finnish Elite League. Kapanen has a great release on his snap and wrist shot and scored seven goals to go with seven assists in 47 games. Kapanen is also a very good skater. He learned to be less selfish in the SM-liiga as he tried to do it all himself in the junior leagues.
Tampa Bay needs – Big and skilled wingers.
20. San Jose – Thatcher Demko (G) Boston College
The Sharks have been a gold mine for goalies of late but now are in flux as they are not thrilled with Antti Niemi. Thatcher Demko is the best goalie in this draft as he had a great freshman year at Boston College. Demko is 6’4” and 195 pounds and is a large presence between the pipes. He was 16-5 this season with a 2.24 GAA and a .919 save percentage. He was the youngest player in the NCAA this season.
San Jose needs – Goaltending and a puck moving defenseman.