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SportNHL Draft 2019 winners and losers: Best, worst moves from a surprising, strange first round

16:05  22 june  2019
16:05  22 june  2019 Source:   sportingnews.com

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NHL Draft 2019 winners and losers: Best, worst moves from a surprising, strange first round © Provided by Perform Media Channels Limited

There weren't too may surprises to start the first round of the 2019 NHL Draft on Friday night, but once the first two picks (Jack Hughes and Kaapo Kakko, respectively, as expected) were out of the way, things got strange.

In a forward-heavy draft, the night became one of defensemen, with four blue liners going in the top 11. Some players, such as Moritz Seider and Kirby Dach, unexpectedly jumped up from their projected positions while others, such as Cole Caufield and Peyton Krebs, dropped far down.

What wasn't surprising was that a record number of Americans were taken in the first round, many of them from the U.S. National Team Development Program.

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NHL DRAFT DAY 1: Three takeaways from the first round

Sporting News lists the winners and losers from the first round:

NHL Draft 2019 winners

New Jersey Devils and New York Rangers

NHL Draft 2019 winners and losers: Best, worst moves from a surprising, strange first round © Provided by Perform Media Channels Limited Jack Hughes and Kaapo Kakko It's to be expected that the teams with the top two picks in the draft hit the jackpot, and the Devils and Rangers made no mistakes this year with Hughes and Kakko.

Hughes is a franchise center around whom a team can build. Like Connor McDavid, he has outstanding speed and talent with the puck, and his skill is accompanied by superior vision and quick decision-making ability. He's an outstanding skater, passer and goal-scorer who also plays a complete 200-foot game. This past season, he became the all-time points leader in USNTDP history. Hughes has been playing beyond his years for a while, and he will make an immediate impact in the NHL.

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It was an entertaining first round at the NHL Draft on Friday with plenty of storylines. The United States National Team Development Program set a record, there was a run on defenseman and a goalie was taken in the Here are the best and worst picks from the first round in the NHL Draft

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The Rangers didn't lose much picking second; they got a franchise winger in Kakko. The Finn has already accomplished much as an 18-year-old, including playing in Liiga, the highest level of professional hockey in his home country. Kakko is an excellent goal-scorer and flashy playmaker who can create time and space on offense with his size and poise. His stickhandling ability and hockey mind allow him to be highly creative with the puck.

Hughes and Kakko both look like players who will have legendary careers. They will establish a new generation of hockey in North America.

Colorado Avalanche

NHL Draft 2019 winners and losers: Best, worst moves from a surprising, strange first round © Provided by Perform Media Channels Limited (left to right) Bowen Byram and Alex Newhook The Avalanche pretty much won when they got the Senators' first-round pick, which turned out to be No. 4 overall, in the Matt Duchene trade. They didn't go wrong with the selection, taking defenseman Bowen Byram after the Chicago Blackhawks shockingly passed on him at third.

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Ballard moved out of the first round on Thursday, acquiring a 2020 second-round pick from the Redskins in the process. Again, this is a DAY TWO losers and winners post only. And because of that This is actually a surprising veer by Dave Gettleman, who has traditionally locked in on bigger

After Hughes and Kakko, the offense-first Byram is the next best thing in this draft. He will be a No. 1 guy in the NHL. Byram's skill is defined by his skating ability; he can move the puck quickly up ice, either by passing to an open forward or carrying the puck and shooting. He had 71 points in 67 games with the WHL's Vancouver Giants last season while also being solid on the back end.

Not only did the Avs get Byram, they also took advantage of their own first-round pick and took Alex Newhook at 16th overall. He had 102 points in just 53 games with the Victoria Grizzlies in the BCHL in 2018-19 and has the makings of a top NHL forward. He has outstanding speed, a quick release and terrific hands. He was projected to go a couple of picks higher than he did, but the Avalanche were not wrong to nab him.

Colorado did a lot for its future with these two top-end prospects.

Montreal Canadiens

Drafting by position last year, the Canadiens got a star in Jesperi Kotkaniemi. They didn't disappoint with their 15th overall selection this year, either. adding another high-end forward in winger Cole Caufield, who could be the steal of this draft.

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It was shocking when the American-born forward dropped below the top 10, likely because of his small stature (5-7). Montreal ignored Caufield's size and instead looked at his skill, and that's why they're winners this draft. Caufield set a USNTDP record with 72 goals in 2018-19.

He's a pure goal-scorer in the mold of Patrick Kane and Alex DeBrincat, two forwards who aren't the biggest but are stiill major threats. Caufield is another player from this draft who can make an immediate impact in the NHL. He's capable of making the Canadiens out of camp.

Montreal took another step in revamping their roster and becoming a playoff-ready club powered by young talent.

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NHL Draft 2019 losers

Chicago Blackhawks

The Blackhawks did get a top-10 forward in Kirby Dach, but he isn't the player they needed, let alone the best player available. Instead, they chose to draft by position and took the Saskatoon Blades center third overall, a significant jump for the 18-year-old.

Dach is a gifted offensive player with a pass-first mentality and a nose for the net, but he has to add more aspects to his game, including speed, skating and pace. Additionally, the 6-4 Dach needs to fill out and work on playing a tougher, more physical game as he makes the transition to the NHL. Chicago also has a reasonable amount of center depth with Jonathan Toews, Dylan Strome, Artem Anisimov and Marcus Kruger.

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While Dach is bound to become a top-six forward, he likely won't win a roster spot right away. Even if he does make the opening night roster, he should instead be playing in juniors, where he would be better served at this point in his development.

Passing on Byram makes the Dach pick even more questionable. Given the Blackhawks didn't make the playoffs last season and need to make changes, it may have been wiser for them to take an NHL-ready defenseman who would bring stability to the back end rather than another center who needs more time to develop.

Detroit Red Wings

In a move that no one saw coming, the Red Wings took a gamble at No. 6 with German defenseman Moritz Seider, who was expected to go later in the draft and perhaps fall beyond 20th overall. Detroit drafted for need — part of a pattern that formed Friday.

The 6-3, right-handed Seider rarely makes mistakes with the puck and is an excellent skater. The 18-year-old was named the DEL's Rookie of the Year this past season after an impressive stint with Adler Mannheim. He was ranked sixth among draft-eligible European skaters.

So, why wasn't this a win?

Seider wasn't the best available talent. The Red Wings passed on forwards like Caufield, Trevor Zegras and Matt Boldy, and defensemen such as Victor Soderstrom and Cam York. Detroit likely needs a top-four right-handed defenseman to come in right away, especially considering it wants to return to the playoffs after missing out the last three seasons. Seider can provide organizational depth, but the Wings may be expecting too much from a player who was drafted much higher than expected.

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Edmonton Oilers

Don't get us wrong, Broberg is bound to make an impact in the NHL, but he isn't what the Oilers needed from this draft. Yes, he's an offensive-minded blue liner who can rip the puck, join the rush and generate scoring chances while maintaining defensive awareness, but the Oilers most needed a forward, and a winger in particular.

Jesse Puljujarvi has requested a trade and is not expected to return anyway as a restricted free agent, so the Oilers lost a chance to replenish their forward depth with an elite prospect. Edmonton is stacked down the middle, but the centers need scoring reinforcements. The Oilers could have chosen from the forward-heavy selection available in Round 1; instead, it passed on players like Caufield, Boldy, Zegras and Krebs in favor of a left-handed defenseman.

The Oilers also have a number of highly touted defensive prospects who aren't on their NHL roster, including Ethan Bear, Caleb Jones, Keegan Lowe, Evan Bouchard and Ryan Mantha, as they've replenished their blue-line depth over the past few years. Some of these players will be ready to make the jump next season, especially Bear and Jones. That's another reason why taking Broberg shouldn't have been the biggest priority in this draft. He does add promise, but one of the many available high-caliber forwards could have done that, too.

Who are the winners and losers from the Ayoze Perez deal?.
Leicester have announced the signing of Newcastle United’s Ayoze Perez for a fee reported to be around £30 million. The Spaniard becomes Brendan Rodgers second signing as Leicester City boss, joining Justin James who became the first signing of the window after joining from Luton Town. Perez netted 12 goals in the Premier League last season, assisting two in the process. However, the Spaniard’s move leaves a huge hole in the Newcastle United attack, with only Dwight Gayle and Japanese forward Yoshinori Muto remaining as the club’s two strikers. Perez brings Leicester some good depth up front, and will challenge Jamie Vardy for the lead striker role.

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