Looking back at the past 12 picks at 15th overall

June 11 2015 01:00PM

Let's face it, picking at 15th overall isn't ideal for a rebuilding team. The Flames still need high end talent yet, particularly in the areas of defence and right wing (the jury's still out on goaltending, but that's looking okay for the time being).

One of the most surefire ways to get that high end talent? Pick high in the draft. Calgary was in that position not too long ago, and received what looks to be incredible centre depth - Sean Monahan and Sam Bennett - for the troubles of their less-than-stellar seasons. 

Making the playoffs has taken them out of that position. While they have the lowest possible pick of any playoff team (and how awesome is it to beat the Vancouver Canucks and still pick before them?), halfway through the first round isn't as likely to bring you that impact player to help get you over the hump from a team on the rise to a regular contender.

Here's a look back at the last 12 players to be picked at 15th overall, dating back to that monstrous 2003 draft, and whether they ended up being helpful, or busting.

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The Big Gainers: Part 4 St. Louis Blues

Kent Wilson
June 11 2015 11:00AM

Like all of the subjects of this series so far, the St. Louis Blues laboured in mediocrity for a long period before ultimately making the leap. They bottomed out in 2005-06, finishing last in the league with 56 points and only became a going concern again in 2011-12 when they finished 2nd in the West with 109 points. They have been heavy hitters (albeit playoff disappointment ever since).

The bad news for the Blues is they wasted their one terrible season by picking Erik Jonhson first overall. The good news is they managed to accrue a bunch of other good players during the dry years. 

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Attempting To Identify Players To Build Around (Or Jettison)

Ryan Pike
June 10 2015 04:00PM

So far this summer here at FlamesNation, we've invested a fair bit of time poking at the proverbial corpse of the Calgary Flames' 2014-15 season. As a result, now we have a bit of idea of how each regular player performed, particularly relative to their roles on the club.

After that process, it's likely prudent to take a look at the team at a glance and, perhaps, make some determinations regarding how the Flames should improve the team going forward. In particular: which players should Brad Treliving endeavour to retain, and which should be attempt to divest the team of?

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NHL Draft Scout Series: Sweden

Christian Roatis
June 10 2015 11:00AM


Continuing on with our NHL Draft Scout Series, we hop the pond over to the homeland of Hakan Loob and also probably the Book of Loob: Sweden.

Jacob Nystrom of Hockeysverige.se was kind enough to join me and chat Swedish prospects eligible for this month’s NHL Entry Draft. 

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Top-10 UFA countdown: #8 - Martin St. Louis

Thomas Drance
June 10 2015 09:00AM

Photo Credit: Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports

This is a series counting down the top-10 pending UFAs. It will be posted across the Nation Network over the next month! Enjoy!

Over the course of Martin St. Louis' Hall of Fame worthy career the 5-foot-8 winger has won a Hart Trophy, a Stanley Cup, an Olympic Gold Medal and two Art Ross trophies (including one as a 37-year-old). His resume is beyond reproach. 

Built like a bumper car, St. Louis has accomplished everything a hockey player can accomplish. And as much as hockey's trend watchers are fawning over undersized players now, St. Louis has been doing Tyler Johnson-like things for more than a decade. So how can a future Hall of Fame immortal find himself ranked eighth on our countdown of the top unrestricted free agents? 

It's simple really: age catches up to everyone, even the best among us, and St. Louis will turn 40 this month. Thanks to a variety of advances in the field of human performance, players are remaining effective for longer, and no one doubts St. Louis' work ethic or ability to be an outlier, but St. Louis' advancing age combined with his least productive offensive season in 13 years is sure to dampen the enthusiasm with which he's pursued on the free agent market this summer. 

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