I’ve found that people get a little aggressive regarding their picks as to whom the Red Wings should draft with the 4th overall pick in the 2020 NHL draft, and that has me hesitant to write up a piece summarizing my takes on the best North American and European players available to the Wings…
But we’re three weeks away from said draft’s first round, and that means that I’ve got to try to grind one out for you shortly.
In the interim, DetroitRedWings.com’s Dana Wakiji has penned an article “getting to know” a possible Wings pick at #4 in Erie Otters defenseman Jamie Drysdale…
“Jamie Drysdale is the of player that every team is looking for, very smart puck-moving defenseman who can beat you with his vision, beat you with his hockey sense, able to use that great quickness and thinking to defense and strip a puck and turn it around and before you know it it’s going the other way and can find the open man on the attack, makes him too tough to pass up if he’s available when you’re picking,” NHL Central Scouting’s David Gregory said on the April 8 video conference call.
The Otters had claimed a playoff berth as the eighth team in the Ontario Hockey League’s Western Conference with 63 points (26-26-4-7).
But on March 23, the OHL, along with the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, Western Hockey League and the Canadian Hockey League, announced the cancellation of the 2020 President Cup Playoffs a week after canceling the rest of the regular-season games due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Obviously it’s a bit unfortunate that playoffs aren’t able to be played,” Drysdale said on the video conference call. “I think everyone was looking forward to that time of year so obviously unfortunate not on that part. I think like everyone else said, it’s important that everyone just stays home and stays safe as well as making sure they’re staying in shape and doing everything they can to just at the kind of level of hockey they are, whether it’s shooting pucks or working out.
“I think that’s still important to do. It’s not just time off so I think everyone’s just kind of trying to stay in hockey shape and do what they can.”
Wakiji continues, and The Athletic’s Hailey Salvian penned an article discussing the case to be made for the Ottawa Senators drafting Swedish winger Lucas Raymond with the 5th overall pick. Her article is still instructive for Red Wings fans:
Raymond is a right-shot winger who currently plays in the Swedish Hockey League for Frölunda.
He’s an elite, playmaking winger and one of the most highly skilled players in the 2020 draft. According to [Corey] Pronman, Raymond’s pure skill level is “right up there with someone like Alexis Lafreniere,” the consensus No. 1 pick.
Raymond didn’t blow the doors down last season in the SHL against men (as a 17-year-old), but his elite skill and ability to dominate against his peers in the junior league and at the international level has him ranked as one of the top draft eligibles.
As a 16-year-old in 2018-19 in Sweden’s SuperElit junior league, Raymond scored 48 points, which was the most ever for a U17 player in that league and 17th all-time in single-season scoring. And, last spring at the under-18 world championships, Raymond scored four goals and eight points in seven games, including a hat trick in the gold medal game to defeat Russia.
Raymond has shown incredible talent, hockey sense and that he is dangerous in any zone with the puck on his stick. Those skills will only continue to develop and translate to the pro level as he gets comfortable playing against men.
Continued (paywall); I’m a Drysdale fan, but I’ll be happy with whoever the Wings pick at #4.