The Curse of #1

Over the past two years, 3 different people have been projected to be taken first overall in the draft. So far all three of them have taken a significant drop in the rankings, while other players have taken advantage of this.So far Phil Kessel, Michael Frolik, and Jesse Joensuu have fallen from the #1 prospect of the 2006 draft. Erik Johnson, currently ranked first overall currently, has held the position pretty much the entire spring. Will the curse catch up to him? Or will he ride out and still end up first overall. I don’t think he’ll last. Primarily for this:

Jordan Staal has consistantly moved up in the rankings and could now go as high as second overall. With his strong showing in helping Peterborough to the Memorial Cup his reputation is sure to blast off, especially considering the last CSS and ISS rankings were released in the thick of the OHL play-offs.

As well, I think that teams might be scared off by the rising and falling of players in and out of top positions. One player, however, has consistantly been ranked in the top 3 for a fair while now and has managed to retain his position: Jonathan Toews. He may not come to mind when talking about the draft amongst players such as Johnson, Kessel, Staal, Frolik, Backstrom, or Mueller, but he’s probably the steadiest of any of the top candidates.

Finally, I think that St. Louis, considering their lack of prospects upfront, and faced with what could just been an off season for the former phenom Phil Kessel, could end up taking a chance on him.

I’m not saying count Johnson out yet, but I think he’s far from the sure bet he’s purported to be and much more like just another fad player in the carousel of picks.

***A further note, it has been remarked my several experts that because of the amount of overage players in junior during the lockout, that the ’88s didn’t receive alot of playing time and are behind where most draft classes are. This would probably lead to there not being a player available who would end up sticking with a team throughout the length of next season. Even if this is said, the size of Jordan Staal and the decent rookie season his brother put up as an 18 year old might convince a team to add him to their roster. As he would likely be the only player ready to jump into the NHL, his stock may be further boosted.

16 Responses to The Curse of #1

  1. simplyhabby says:

    The number one draft pick outside of phenom years is about as stable as oil prices driven oddly enough by pure speculation as well.

    This was considered the Phil Kessel draft but all that changed since his poor showing after the 2nd game at the world Juniors. Frolik to my understanding had a mediocre at best juniors (correct me if I am wrong) and players in the Euro leagues really have to stand out to maintain their positions as the North American leagues are more known for talent depth hecne, this is why a lot of top Europeans are now playing here.

    I would not be supirsed to see Toews going first. I do agree that Johnson is the better commodity as a good defenseman is at a premium but if a team like the Blues is looking for a forward, a strong 6’2 200lbs player like Toews who can perfrom under pressure like the WHJC, a team player and has great hockey instinct with a scoring touch would be my choice but hey I guess thats me just being Canadian biased.

  2. Marky2Fresh says:

    If I had the first overall pick, I”d take Staal.

  3. SabresFan220 says:

    This year’s draft should be interesting, I think the Blues will probably bolster their lineup with Kessel or Staal. I wouldn’t base what Jordan can do on what his brother did though, ask Marcel Hossa why not to do that.

  4. Aetherial says:

    Given the lack of solid D-men in the league, I would not hesitate for a second to take Johnson.

  5. toronto77 says:

    I would take Eric Johnson because a really strong defencman is really hard to come by. There are plenty of forwards in the league that can score goals like lecavalier, richards, heatly, cheechoo, kovalchuk, jokinen, ovechkin, crosby, jagr, gionta, gagne, staal and the list goes on, but how many star defencemen are there in the league? only neidermayer, pronger, redden, phaneuf, soon to be marc staal, lidstrom, zubov, blake, and Eric Johnson is predicted to be one of those defencmen, so I would definalty go after him.

  6. captainjoefish says:

    say for fedor federov

  7. WelcomeBackHockey says:

    or Brent Gretzky

  8. BruinsGM says:

    Simple fact… The Staals SHOULD (not gaurenteed of course) become the next big NHL family – think the Sutters. From all reports that I’ve heard, Erik might be the least talented of his brothers. After seeing Staal play so far in the 2006 playoffs, the prospect of Jordan Staal coming into the league next year is very exciting.

    I would definitely take Jordan Staal number one.

  9. wheresthesoda says:

    erik staal least talented????….the guy had a point in 15 straight games

  10. 19AVSFANFoLIFE19 says:

    if barret jackman and eric brewer can stay healthy then johnson would be a waste for the blues.

  11. Maximus says:

    This is what I think….(my predictions are seldom right)….I think St. Louis will keep the first overall pick….I think Pittsburgh will throw them a mid range prospect like Eric Christensen to pass on Johnson…The Blues are more than happy to accept a player that can possibly play with them next year and still get a great forward prospect. The Blues will take Phil Kessel (American = Entertaining = increase ticket sales). The Blues are much better with D-men prospects than forward). 1. Phil Kessel St. Louis 2. Eric Johnson Pitts

    It is funny how people on some internet sites are already predicting who will be the top prospects in 2007, 2008, even 2009. It is hard to identify that player. It will be like trying to identify a future doctor in a grade 12 science class. Nearly impossible. In my opinion Kessel started the season with unrealistic expectations. He will be a star in the NHL. If he does not go first he might be that player in 10 years people will think what was St. Louis doing not picking him. Anyways…the best player in the draft usually does not go number one.

  12. LeafsJaysRapsBillsManU says:

    Let’s not forget that the Blues don’t have a GM in place right now, but it’s a pretty awfully-kept secret that John Davidson is going to be their guy. Whomever the current Blues scouting staff have had their eye on might not be the guy JD wants, but there really aren’t that many different ways he can go. I figure the prospect of a stud D-Man like Johnson should be the right call, but the allure of a sniper like Kessel who can put butts in the seats like a Sid or Alex might be too much to ignore.

  13. tacitus says:

    If im St Louis, i know a forward will be better for the early rebuilding years of the Blues. Id trade my 1st pick to the penquins cuz i think and alot of others think they would rather get Johnson to go with Crosby, Muelkin (i cant spell his name), Fleury and Suter, not to mention Armstrong and Malone who are still young. So if im the blues i opt for Jordan Staal over toew even. I take Kessel over toews also. To me Toews is the third best forward in the draft and 4th best prospect. St Louis also has promising Dmen in Backman, Jackman and Brewer.

  14. tacitus says:

    I kinda gotta disagree, over the past 3 years i think Crosby and Ovechkin kinda owned the top spot didnt they for there respective drafts???

  15. NiittymakiForVezina says:

    I think he means the past two years people have been speculating the first overall for thie 2006 draft, and it’s changed many times.

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