It’s A Wrap
Every team is generally happy with its draft in the moments immediately following the draft’s conclusion. You won’t find a single GM or scouting director who will speak ruefully of “the ones that got away.”
Given that it will take years to make any real sense of the draft and to figure out which teams hit the home runs and which struck out, that stance is understandable. We’ll be able to look back at this draft sometime around 2012 or 2013 and see which players lived up their billing and their scouting reports, and which did not.
Caps GM George McPhee and director of amateur scouting Ross Mahoney have been at this for a long time. The duo has worked drafts together for a decade and they’ve honed their skills over that span, something that shows in the team’s improved draft record in recent years. Both men were happy with their haul this year, and it’s not just lip service. They accomplished what they hoped to accomplish, and hopefully the steady stream of talent that has flowed into the Washington organization for the last half decade will get another jolt with some of the eight players chosen this weekend.
The Caps had multiple first-round picks for the fourth time in five drafts and the fifth time in the last seven drafts. Fourteen first-rounders have been chosen in those seven drafts, and Steve Eminger is the only one who has departed the organization. The Capitals dealt Eminger to the Flyers on Friday for the pick that enabled them to select defenseman John Carlson.
In the last seven Entry Drafts, Washington has collected nine defensemen in the first or second rounds. In the previous eight drafts (1994-2001), the Caps took seven blueliners in the first two rounds. Those seven defensemen played a total of 146 games for Washington.
Of the recent blueline bunch, Eminger and Mike Green have already surpassed that modest games played total all on their own, and Jeff Schultz is likely to do so this season.
In taking Braden Holtby with the 93rd pick, the Caps chose a goaltender for the fifth straight year. Washington has selected five goaltenders in the last four drafts, taking one in the first, second, fourth, fifth and sixth rounds. The rights of all five still belong to the Caps.
For a more thorough and insightful review of Washington’s weekend, I urge you to watch the videos we shot of McPhee and Mahoney as they talked about the Caps’ picks, as well as the other video from this week and weekend. Finally, as is our custom at this time of the year, we will attempt to book Mahoney as our guest on this week’s Capitals Report podcast.