As part of our 2011 NHL Draft coverage, The Detroit Sports Site is hosting a mock draft, with all the picks made by home-town bloggers. We’ll reveal the selections one at a time leading up to the June 24 draft.
Not a bad deal for the Boston Bruins, who just won the Stanley Cup and, thanks to a trade with Toronto, also hold the No. 9 pick in the 2011 NHL Draft. Two Bruins parties weighed in on this pick: Anthony Travalgia from TheHubofHockey.net and Shawn Hutcheon, Bleacher Report’s featured Bruins columnist.
The vote was unanimous: Ryan Murphy, a defenseman who posted a whopping 79 points for Kitchener of the OHL last season.
Travalgia gives us the reasoning behind Boston’s pick:
With the Bruins having depth at the forward position at both the NHL and AHL level, it makes sense to target a defensemen. Murphy led all OHL draft-eligible defensemen in points with 79. Murphy is also very skilled on the power play, something the Bruins struggled with all season long. With injured forward Marc Savard most likely not coming back, Murphy could be looked upon to quarterback the Bruins’ power play.
Hutcheon also liked Murphy’s offensive potential and how that game fit in with Boston’s current roster:
Murphy is a small defenseman (5-foot-10, 166 lbs.) who relies on his quick feet and skating ability to beat defenders one on one, offensively. He is a highly-skilled puck handler with hands as quick as his feet, which is hard to find in most players. It is those skills that give Murphy the confidence to take the puck end-to-end and set up teammates for scoring chances. His shot is NHL-ready. Murphy is the offensive defenseman Boston lacks and will only enhance an already strong blue-line corps.
Our current draft board:
1. Edmonton Oilers: Adam Larsson, D (Pick by Derek Zona, The Copper & Blue)
2. Colorado Avalanche: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, C (Pick by David Driscoll-Carignan, Mile High Hockey)
3. Florida Panthers: Gabriel Landeskog, F (Pick by Staff of Litter Box Cats)
4. New Jersey Devils: Jonathan Huberdeau, F (Pick by Tom Mantzouranis)
5. New York Islanders: Doug Hamilton, D (Pick by Daniel Friedman, Bleacher Report)
6. Ottawa Senators: Sean Couturier, C (Pick by Peter Raaymakers, Silver Seven Sens)
7. Winnipeg (Atlanta Thrashers): Mika Zibanejad, C (Pick by Ben Wendorf, BehindTheNetHockey.com)
8. Columbus Blue Jackets: Nathan Beaulieu, D (Pick by Dan Parker, The Cannon)
9. Boston Bruins: Ryan Murphy, D
10. Minnesota Wild:
11. Colorado Avalanche:
12. Carolina Hurricanes:
13. Calgary Flames:
14. Dallas Stars:
15. New York Rangers:
16. Buffalo Sabres:
17. Montreal Canadiens:
18. Chicago Blackhawks:
19. Edmonton Oilers:
20. Phoenix Coyotes:
21. Ottawa Senators:
22. Anaheim Ducks:
23. Pittsburgh Penguins:
24. Detroit Red Wings:
25. Toronto Maple Leafs:
26. Washington Capitals:
27. Tampa Bay Lightning:
28. San Jose Sharks:
29. Vancouver Canucks:
30. Toronto Maple Leafs: