A long time ago, in a comment section far, far away, someone requested we do a roundtable to see who each FN writer foresees the Flames drafting at 15th overall.
Well we here at FlamesNation are people pleasers, so we did just that.
I didn’t want to do just the generic “So who do you think they’ll take at 15” question, so I instead I asked 3 questions tailored to the 15th overall, and one other 1st round related inquiry.
Joining me for this exercise are FN personalities Kent Wilson, Ryan Pike, Ari, Byron Bader, Beloch and Taylor McKee. Let’s get this party started!
Who is the one guy you dream of falling to the Flames?
Kent: Timo Meier. I think he’s the guy I’d realistically like to see fall to the Flames. It would be great to see one of the top-3 defenders get there (Hanafin, Provorov or Werenski), but I really doubt they make it our of the top-10.
Ryan: Timo Meier
Ari: Timo Meier (though some mock drafts, including Craig Button’s, have Mathew Barzal falling to 15th, and if that actually does happen… man. What a dream that would be)
Byron: Timo Meier
Taylor: Though this seems entirely implausible, I’m sure the Flames would love to see Mikko Rantanen fall to them at 15. 6’4, 211lb Right winger seems to tick a lot of boxes and by all accounts he has some scoring touch as well. For many of the same reasons, I’d also love to see Pavel Zacha in Flames’ silks, but that seems inherently unlikely as well.
Beloch: Zachary Werenski – He’s one of the top three defencemen in the draft and there is a slim chance he’ll fall into the Flames’ reach, although it may be necessary to trade up a couple of slots to grab him. Cross your fingers and hope he has problems with pull-ups!
Christian: Zach Werenski or Mikko Rantanen are my dream fallers – although Werenski is probably the only realistic one. Have heard some ranking him in the 20s. It’s beyond me why, but it’s hope.
Who do you realistically see the Flames taking at 15?
Kent: That’s almost impossible to guess. The Flames sit right at the intersection of this draft, where opinions and lists start to really diverge. My guess is they look at a RW or D there and take they guy they think is the better player. For now, I’ll guess Nick Merkley.
Ryan: Nick Merkley
Ari: Nick Merkley
Byron: Oliver Kylington
Taylor: I have a sneaky suspicion that it will be Nick Merkley but I hope it will be Oliver Kylington.
Beloch: Jakub Zboril – Yeah… I bet you guys can tell I want the Flames to take a defender in the first round.
Christian: Travis Konecny, see my Mock Draft for why.
Who is the one guy you pray the Flames DO NOT take at 15?
Kent: I have a few guys.
Ryan: Daniel Sprong
Ari: Lawson Crouse
Byron: Lawson Crouse
Taylor: I would say Paul Bittner because I get Niemsz’y vibes from him.
Beloch: David Jankowski
Christian: Jakub Zboril or Pavel Zacha. Zacha’s numbers just scream bust and Zboril has strange reviews, a lot of people questioning how he transitions to the NHL.
Would you package multiple, or all of the 2nd rounders to get another 1st rounder?
Kent: It depends on where in the first round we’re talking and who might be available at the time.
Ryan: No. This draft should be about amassing depth.
Ari: Unless the three second rounders could yield another top 20 pick, probably, but that seems unlikely so nah.
Byron: Yes if they could dip into the really elite guys that aren’t Eichel or McDavid … like a Strome or Marner.
Taylor: If that first rounder can net you a quality defender, I’d say do it. It would probably need to be top-ten and that seems extremely unlikely to me.
Beloch: In a normal draft, the drop between the late first round and second round isn’t that big. In a deep draft it’s even smaller. Those three second round picks could produce good players.
Christian: No. The depth of this draft is far too quality to give up multiple shots at acquiring NHL talent to move into the mid-to-late 20s, which is where the 2nd rounders will take you.
Would love to hear your answers to these four questions in the comments!