The NHL draft starts, as you know, tomorrow.
One of the great things about the draft is that, as you also know, it overlaps with teenage years.
As such, it is almost always fun exercise to look back at old draft photos. While some are photogenic at the age of 17/18, many still haven’t quite matured into the look of “NHL player” yet.
Without further ado, here’s a sampling of the best awkward draft photos of Toronto’s current players.
Dion Phaneuf might have terrified Mike Sands (left) and Darryl Sutter with his frosted tips.
Also of the fairer-hair-than-today variety, Kessel has a look in his eye like he’s staring down the photographer for asking him to toss a puck up in the air like a baseball. “You know I play hackey, right?”
Well dressed, good hair, and not that much different than today, the two most awkard people in this photo happen not to be Kadri, but rather Brian Burke and Dave Nonis, with Nonis giving a look like, “was this guy on my board? I had him in the third round.”
Wearing a mop on his head instead of the traditional draft cap, (again, with a hint of blonde in there), Bernier at 11 overall looked prepared for his role as LA’s goalie of the future. Well, he was LA’s goalie in the future, just not, you know, THE goalie.
“I don’t know what to do with my hands.”
(In case you’re curious, that’s Lupul’s junior teammate in Jay Bouwmeester on the right.)
Rielly looks nearly identical today as he did to draft day just three years ago, but Brian Burke looks like he’s worn out from, like, the first five draft picks of the day.
James van Riemsdyk
You’re a wizard, James.
Honourable mention goes to James chucking up the deuce:
But really, why was everyone’s hair so bright for draft day?
Getty won’t allow for an embed on this photo, but it definitely deserves a spot on the list.
Biggs himself looks fine, it’s more just awkard that the Leafs drafted Tyler Biggs in the first round.