Predators in position to do some draft day dealing ... again

Tuesday, June 23, 2009 at 8:51am

David Poile would not trade his current set of circumstances in regard to the 2009 NHL draft, which will take place this weekend.

With 12 overall picks, including two in the second round, two in the third round and three in the fourth round, the Nashville Predators’ general manager sees a world of possibilities – including the potential to trade.

“It affords us many opportunities to interact with other teams in the National Hockey League, whether that be moving up and down in the draft or start discussing trades,” Poile said. “It’s a big week for us.”

The franchise’s draft history actually dates back to a deal.

Nashville held the third overall pick in 1998, but Poile worked a deal with San Jose to move up one spot and select David Legwand, who universally was considered the second-best forward available that year. Legwand since has become the franchise’s all-time leading scorer.

Last year, Poile again showed his willingness to move early. Nashville had multiple picks but made two deals within the first round and ultimately made seven total selections.

First was a deal with the New York Rangers to move up and take center Colin Wilson, then came one to drop back later in the first round and selected goalie Chet Pickard.

“Last year with the extra draft picks, it afforded us the opportunity to move up in the first round and to move back in the first round,” Poile said. “I think there’s a good chance you might see some of that based on what breaks or what doesn’t break in the draft.”

Whether or not he is inclined to make a move again this week (the draft will be held Friday and Saturday in Montreal) will be dictated by what happens in the first 10 picks. Nashville has the 11th overall choice, and Poile suggested there are fewer than 11 layers he and his scouting staff feel are worthy of that selection.

“The dynamic of putting together a list and going after and getting what you want is sort of the key to having a successful franchise,” Poile said. “I really have a lot of faith in our scouts.

“We have a finite list of what we want to get on the 11th pick. If that’s not there, I think there’s a chance we could move back in the draft.”

If Nashville makes all of its scheduled selections, it will make for the team’s largest draft class since 2003 (the year the draft was held in Nashville) and the fourth time it has selected at least that many players.
“The entry draft, to me, is sort of the official start to the 09-10 season,” Poile said. “It’s always an important event for the Predators. We primarily build our team through the draft, and this draft again ranks up their in importance.

“With having extra draft picks, I think it afford us at least the ability to try to get what we want. I think the track record speaks pretty well for itself.”

PREDATORS PICKS

FIRST ROUND (1)
• Regularly scheduled pick

SECOND ROUND (2)
• Regularly scheduled pick
• Pick from Minnesota, acquired with forward Ryan Jones for defenseman Marek Zidlicky

THIRD ROUND (2)
• Regularly scheduled pick
• Pick from Ottawa, acquired along with 2008 first-round selection (18th overall) for 2008 first-round selection (15th overall)

FOURTH ROUND (3)
• Regularly scheduled pick
• Pick from Toronto, acquired along with a 2008 seventh-round selection (207th overall) for 2008 fourth-round selection (106th overall)
• Pick from New York Rangers, acquired along with a 2008 seventh-round selection (201st overall) for 2008 fourth-round selection (111th overall)

FIFTH ROUND (2)
• Regularly scheduled pick
• Pick from Carolina, acquired along with a 2010 fifth-round selection for forward Darcy Hordichuk

SEVENTH ROUND (2)
• Regularly scheduled pick
• Pick from Philadelphia, acquired along with forward Tristan Grant for defenseman Janne Niskala

 

1 Comment on this post:

By: courier37027 on 6/23/09 at 9:17

Since this is OUR TEAM NASHVILLE, I say we make a referendum, take a vote and let the taxpayer decide which players to draft. Our tax dollars should buy some seats next to David Poile, to listen while he wheels and deals.