Flames 2012 First Round Targets: Derrick Pouliot



The Flames have plenty of positional and skill needs that have been discussed in regards to the draft: big centers, skill wingers, and so on. So how does a silky, offensive defenseman sound?

With 59 points in 72 games (11-48-59), Pouliot was potent from the blueline for SVEN’s Portland Winterhawks. He has a reputation for having an excellent stride, good puck moving and possession skills, and being offensively adept.

Scouting Report

To quote one anonymous NHL executive from Buzzing the Net’s Pouliot profile:

“He really doesn’t get as much publicity as he should, playing out in Portland."

"Such a good skater. He has mobility and the ability to jump into the attack and he can play both sides of the puck. He might be the best of the group.’”

That’s high praise, and while Brodie is showing a lot of potential, it couldn’t hurt to have another offensive defenseman around.

Unfortunately, it’s not all good news. There’s a number of growing concerns with the Winterhawk.

From Cory Pronman at Hockey Prospectus:

…others say [Pouliot is] very soft and is so bad defensively he should be converted to forward. I stand around the middle as I think he can be decent physically, although his size/strength still make it a weakness. I think he can be fine in his own end as well, but he hurts himself with getting too cute in his own end or having a brain cramp as opposed to not having a feel for the position.


Probable Target?

While there’s an outside chance Pouliot could turn into Mike Green someday, there’s a far greater chance he ends up as Filip Kuba or even Anton Babchuk. And while there’s nothing wrong with drafting a Kuba at the end of the first round, you should aim a bit higher in the first half.

Furthermore, with so many decent defenseman ahead of him in the rankings (Maatta, Ceci, Rielly, Dumba, Trouba, Murray, Lindholm, and Reinhart), the Flames are almost assured that one will be available; and if not, some very very good forwards will be available.

Probability he will be around at 14: Near certain

Probability the Flames will pick him: Low

The Targets List

  • ChinookArchYYC

    Yeah that’s what the Flames need another Anton Babchuck. Hey Jay sign him for $2.5M to boot.

    It sounds like his ceiliing is quite high, but this is too risky for the Flames at this point in time. There are 8 other defensemen I rather see the Flames draft in the 14th slot, and if they’re going to take a flyer, then go for Grigorenko. We might not know how old he really is, but the dude has skills.

  • everton fc

    Girgensons or, if available, perhaps the dice-role on Grigorenko. Perhaps.

    But I still hope we get Girgensons. If we could trade down to get Wilson, then grab Emil Lundberg with our 3rd pick, if he’s still around…

    One can dream! (And, yes, I know that’s three big forwards, no defencemen)

  • ChinookArchYYC

    come on feaster pull the trigger on a blockbuster and move up. torontos fifth pick in a kipper deal, the habs pick in a jbust deal as long as rainy bork isnt involved. gawd even call the tanbourine man in eddy.

  • T&A4Flames

    At 14, Ceci is still my choice. However, if Grigerenko slips all the way to 14, how could we possibly pass him up? We have been searching for a 1st line C forever. Could be a risk but one that has to be taken, I think. If we trade down, I like Koekkoek and with a 2nd rounder, either Frk or Jankowski.

  • ChinookArchYYC

    I don’t really like Pouliot at 14th and, as i mentioned in another comment, I prefer Brady Skjei to Pouliot if the Flames trade down.

    That said, I imagine Feaster, Button and co. have a pretty good read on Pouliot, better than most teams, given that Baertschi and Wotherspoon are both teammates of his. So, if they take him… you have to think that just maybe they really see something in him. Dan Boyle anyone?

  • Bikeit

    I saw this kid cut through a Blazers team like a hot buttered knife and put it in the back of the net. His skating is very good, puck sense good and north south game very good, but the scouts are right about his defensive game. Maybe it is just being young and needing some mass. He almost reminds me of a Poor Man’s Phil Housley. Reward could be great, but risk is great also.

  • Bean-counting cowboy

    Are the morning guys completely out to lunch? All Walker talks about is Pouliot & Brendan Gaunce, yet there are several other players I’d take before them.

    • Bean-counting cowboy

      Yeah, I would definelty stay away from Brendan Gaunce at #14, especially when guys like Girgensons, Maata, Ceci, and potentially Grigorenko could still be available.

  • xis10ce

    I sort of wary of Grigorenko, if that many teams pass on him and he falls to us somehow, however unlikely that is, shouldn’t there be a reason that we pass on him too?

  • xis10ce


    um… what? I was saying that the Flames might see Pouliot turning into a Boyle type player eventually. How on earth did you translate that into me wanting the Flames to trade for him?

  • xis10ce

    Assuming Murray and Dumba are gone by 14 (lets be honest they will be), the order in which I would take a Defenseman if any and all are available would be:

    1) Reinhart 2) Rielly 3) Trouba 4/5) Ceci 4/5) Maatta (I really can’t decide between Ceci and Maatta)

    Meaning Pouliot is so far down the list he isn’t even worth considering. Not to mention some forwards that were already discussed in Grigorenko, Faksa and maybe even Girgensons I would take before Pouliot if they were available.

  • xis10ce

    Well, I think most of us can agree that the top 14 are as follows(not in any order):
    Yaks, Murray, Galchenyuk, grigorenko, Forsberg,Reinhart, Dumba, Rielly, Trouba, Ceci,Maatta, Faska, Girgenson,Teravenian.

    This is just a no brainer & any of these top 14 will be a very good prospect in the Flames system. It’ll come down to who will fall to us.

  • BurningSensation

    For me Grigorenko is the home run swing. Top end talent who will slide because his stats are depressed from his bout with mono. Logan Couture slid on his draft day for the exact same reason. He could be a franchise pivot for far less than what they should cost.

    Re: xis10ce

    My D-Man rankings;


    Which illustrates the wide disparity in how the D-Men might go. The team that does its homework the best wins.

  • I agree, I pay most attention to what Pronman says, and on his top 1-10 players I don’t think that he ever saw Grigorenko falling out of the top 10, which he likely won’t. Washington has the 11th pick they’ll take him in a heart beat , but maybe this spurs Feaster on to trade up for a pick if he sees Grigorenko falling. Who knows? I see it as a 5-10% chance that Grigorenko falls to us. Even that is a doubtful percentage.

  • MC Hockey

    Great to hear someone things “Grigy” is worth taking if avilable at 14 or wherever we end up. A Logon Couture type would be fine and I think he could be better…let’s hope Feaster gets a campaign going to spread more rumors about him and then get him.