Ottawa Wins and Loses at the Draft


Last Friday was a pretty hectic day for all Ottawa Senators fans alike. Waiting and waiting, hoping there would be a glimmer of hope that Brandon Gormley would fall al the way into the Senators’ laps. For me, sitting in the stands at the Staples Center, it was more nerve-wracking than weird silence, tryign to find out where Taylor Hall had left off. I was told right before the big event that Bryan Murray’s favourite was indeed Jaden Schwartz, the small LW from the USHL.

When Schwartz was taken at #14 by the St.Louis Blues, Murray lived by the moniker, “Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer”. The Blues wanted another forward, and hoped to have Vlad Tarasekno at #16. Since the scouts’ favorite was taken, The Byran instead took the gamble and traded away their first round pick for prospect defenseman David Rundblad.

A bit of a shock, no? Obviously it was the first time ever that the Senators never drafted in the first round. I said countless times before, there was no real favourite for the organization this time around, and instead they boosted their backend by acquiring Erik Karlsson’s future defensive partner, David Rundblad. Consider this, taken 17th overall in 2009, already is a year older and a year matured, and already has signed a 3-year entry level contract. Right now, this may be the trade of the draft.

Rundlbad, unlike Karlsson is big, nasty, but has great skills with the puck. Typical PP QB, coming to a city where there used to be none, and in the next couple of years there may be at least three. David’s going to play one more year in the SEL, beofre coming over to the pros. St. Louis was already stacked on D blue chip prospects, now the Senators may have one of the best backends in the years to come.

Some notes in general on the first round: the most unpredictable drafts of all time! I still can not believe my eyes that both Cam Fowler and Brandon Gormley fell to the early 10’s. What was Columbus thinking in selecting Ryan Johanasen? What was up with the New York Rangers? Did they seriously think that Dylan McIlrath were better than those two? Really, it was both the Anaheim Ducks and Phoenix Coyotes luck that those two fell. And talk about the Duck Luck, first Fowler falls into their laps at #12, then Emerson Etem somehow goes down to #29, going to the team he grew up cheering for. It’s too bad Ottawa didn’t take Etem, because he really would have been a steal.

With the Rundblad trade, Ottawa’s first selection in the Draft was in the third round, taking LW Jakub Culek. This first Czech Murray has ever taken in a Draft, Culek is already physically matured and has great, low shot. It’s a good thing the Oceanic product already is in North America. Anders Forsberg’s last draft brought Markus Sorensen, a RW out of Sodertalje Jr. Off the board, definetely. 156 pounds, and 5’10. He’s a project, but so was Andre Petersson and Daniel Alfredsson.

In the 6th round, with the pick taken in the Alex Auld trade with the Dallas Stars, the Sens took RW Mark Stone, the big guy from the Saint John Sea Dogs. Huge guy with potential according to Hockey’s Future, although his offensive abilites can be limited at times. Power forward, in my best opinion. With their last pick in the 2010 Draft, a defenseman came into the fold by the name of Bryan Aneloski, from the Cedar Rapids Roughriders. Overager passed on twice, finally taken likely for his puck moving skills.

Watch out in the next couple of days here at SenShot for exciting news, everything leading up to July 1st, the starts of Free Agency, the Summer Contest returning from a brief hiatus, interviews with Senators prospects (including Jakub Culek), and endless possibilities. I will be returning back to Montreal on Tuesday, now, time to hit the beaches!