Screen cap courtesy NHL.com
Toronto went a little bit off the board with their first pick of the day, taking Erie defenseman Travis Dermott 34th overall with names like Kylington, Sprong, and Harkins still on the board.
To end the second round though, the team took a player that was ranked 24th by TLN in our final draft rankings. With the 61st pick in the draft, Toronto took USNTDP winger Jeremy Bracco.
Bracco is a 5″9′ winger that put up stellar numbers this season, as we can see here:
He’s been a polarizing player, ranked by some late in the first round while others have had him as low as the third round. I think a big part of why he’s so polarizing is that when you watch him play you sort of wonder how he put up the point totals that he did.
Bracco to me is somebody who isn’t a great skater and generally isn’t very dynamic in his approach to the game. He has a good wrist shot and good playmaking ability, so that would be a big part of why his numbers are so good. Still, at 5″9′ I have significant worries about his upside given his lack of speed.
But that said, I’m someone who really believes in using the numbers test and the eye test in harmony. For me, Bracco doesn’t pass the eye test. But in this case, he passes the numbers test to such an unbelievable extent that I have no qualms about the Leafs drafting him here. I’m less excited about him, but I do see the upside. And I know there are a lot of you on Twitter that have been clamoring for this guy, so obviously he should be considered a solid prospect within the organization.
And of course, this continues the Leafs new focus on skill, as well as their de-emphasis on size. The Leafs took the 5″11′, 160 pound Mitch Marner yesterday, and follow it up with an even smaller Bracco today.
It’ll be interesting to see how this pick turns out as Bracco is such a polarizing player. He’s slated to play for Boston College next season, possibly alongside 5th overall pick Noah Hanifin.
TLN has written about Bracco a couple of times. Here we give an in-depth profile on him, and here is another mini-profile on him as someone who deserved consideration for the Leafs at 34.
Hey, this guy was ranked top 30 by TLN and we thought he would be a good pick at 34. To get him at 61 seems like pretty good value to me.
Other Leafs Picks…
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