McKeen’s discusses the Atlantic Division’s 2021 draft classes, Detroit included

I’m a little late to this one, but that happens sometimes, so: McKeen’s Hockey’s Ryan Wagman posted a review of the Atlantic Division teams‘ respective 2021 draft classes, and here is part of what his behind-the-paywall article says about the Red Wings’ selections:

As General Manager of the Red Wings, Steve Yzerman knows who he wants at the top, and grabs them, no matter how iconoclastic the selection is at that point. See Seider, Moritz from two years ago. Seen as a surprising overdraft at the time, he is now one of the top prospects in the sport and seemingly ready to break into the NHL now. The Wings took an elite-skilled forward up top last year in Lucas Raymond, but returned to building from the back out this year. At sixth overall, they selected a defender who holds some similarities to Seider in Simon Edvinsson, as big, smooth skaters with men’s league experience and untapped athleticism. Edvinsson may not be as advanced now as Seider was when he was drafted, but his tools give him a slightly higher upside if he can put it all together. Not long after selecting the big Swedish defender, Detroit traded a late 1st rounder (part of the return from the Anthony Mantha trade) to Dallas to pick up the #15 pick, which they used to select the first goalie in the draft, the towering Sebastian Cossa. Many had Cossa ranked behind Sweden’s Jesper Wallstedt, but Yzerman likes who he likes and Cossa is a Wing.

Pick shuffling was a bit of theme for Detroit in this draft, as they did it again in the second round to grab USHL defender Shai Buium, and then traded down in the fourth round in order to acquire an extra pick in the fifth round. In the end, the eight players selected by the Red Wings were nicely divided between the positions, with two other defenders taken after Edvinsson, four forwards, and the one goalie in Cossa. They drafted two out of Sweden, three college-bound players from the USHL, and one player from each of the three CHL leagues. When the final chapter of this draft class is written, it will be judged on the top three picks’ (Edvinsson, Cossa, Buium) abilities to prevent goals far more than the production numbers any of the forwards may eventually put up.

First first round pick – Simon Edvinsson, D, Frolunda HC, SHL, 6th overall

If Moritz Seider is the right-side first pairing defender of the future, we have to see Edvinsson as his partner on the left. A massive blueliner who has – by far – the best combination of speed and puck skills of any defender in this draft class, he spent most of his draft year playing against men in Sweden after the junior league was shut down, playing double digit games in both of Sweden’s top two leagues. He is rawer than Seider was in the latter’s draft year, but I expect him to continue to develop in the SHL this year, and his upside is as a Norris Trophy finalist.

Second first round pick – Sebastian Cossa, G, Edmonton Oil Kings (WHL), 15th overall

The first goalie selected in the 2021 draft, Cossa was practically unbeatable in the WHL this year, with a .941 save percentage, and 17 wins in 19 games. The latter stat is not really that telling, but the first number is, and is a continuation of stellar netminding that Cossa has provided as far back as he has trackable stats. Between his size, athleticism, and ability to read the play develop, he should be expected to be the heir apparent to the crease in Detroit, even if we believed that Jesper Wallstedt, who Minnesota drafted five picks later, was the better prospect.

Continued (paywall)

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George Malik

My name is George Malik, and I'm the Malik Report's editor/blogger/poster. I have been blogging about the Red Wings since 2006, when MLive hired me to work their SlapShots blog, and I joined Kukla's Korner in 2011 as The Malik Report. I'm starting The Malik Report as a stand-alone site, hoping that having my readers fund the website is indeed the way to go to build a better community and create better content.