Having waited anxiously for these past two days for what seems like an eternity, I couldn't be happier with Ottawa's performance in Minnesota. Coming away with 4 great forward prospects (Zibanejad, Noesen, Puempel & Prince) and a couple project players selected in the following rounds, I think it's safe to say that Ottawa's forward prospect cupboard has been restocked. Not to mention the trading of our 3rd rounder to Columbus for Filatov, Murray et al must be quite satisfied.
Despite everyone's apparent surprise when Murray's contract was extended an additional 3 years, I have always trusted in his capabilities as our GM. Although he has shown to make judgment errors in both the free agent market (signing over-the-hill players such as Gonchar and Kovalev to massive deals!) and trades (see Dany Heatley), he has always impressed at the draft. In the salary cap era where elite/great players rarely hit unrestricted free agency before or during their prime, the draft has become more important than ever before.
That being said. These past two days have really gone a long way in furthering my faith in Bryan Murray. I realize that it is very premature to evaluate this year's draft and attempt to rate the drafted players. However, it is Murray's decisiveness that shined through these past two days. He could have overpaid to land Landeskog, but he didn't. Again, he could have over paid to yank Oshie from St. Louis, but he didn't. Sticking to his guns, he used his two picks in the first round, and then boldly traded for a 3rd first rounder to select Puempel. Furthermore, trading our 3rd rounder for the talented Filatov, despite the enigma surrounding russian born players, seems like a low risk/high reward move that I bet the majority of other NHL teams wish they could have executed.
Without going into too much depth regarding our first round selections, I love Ottawa's three choices. Murray's dedication to building arguably one of the best scouting staff's in the NHL will eventually show once our prospects develop and hopefully reach their potential. Look how well it's worked for Detroit for the past couple decades, seemingly continually turning out project players achieving NHL potential. With these past few drafts, Murray et al have done an enviable job. Having read that upon taking over for Muckler, Murray has doubled the size of the scouting department, it is no surprise that to date he has been successful.
In closing, I want to put my two cents in regarding the selection Matt Puempel. Although I do LOVE the pick of Zibanejad and fully trust Murray's selection of Noesen, the prospect I am most high on is Puempel. As a 16-17 year old he was named the CHL rookie of the year, only to follow that up with an injury shortened, but still improved season. What is most exciting for me is that from what I have heard, Puempel has achieved this success on a relatively weak Peterborough team. I can only imagine where he may have been selected not only if he had been injury free this season, but if he was playing with talent comparable to his own! Just a thought!
Enjoy the rest of your weekend Sens fans!
Which Sens weekend selection/acquisition are you most excited by?!
Zibanejad (31 votes)
Noesen (3 votes)
Puempel (7 votes)
Filatov (38 votes)
Prince (4 votes)
Other (1 vote)
84 total votes