Photo Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Leafs and Greyhounds, Draft BFFs?

Last year was a quiet draft on the Soo front. No new Greyhounds. A very different story from Kyle Dubas’ first draft as GM where he traded down to select Rasmus Sandin in the first round, and went with overager Mac Hollowell in the fourth round. Both of those picks seem to be solid so far as Sandin is on the verge of making the Leafs roster, and Hollowell has steadily been progressing through his first pro year. There is something to be said for familiarity. The fact that Kyle Dubas can put trust in the organization that is developing the Leafs prospects is significant.

That being said, the Greyhounds need to have players worth drafting, and this year they certainly have a few worth considering.

Ryan O’Rourke-D

O’Rourke is a left shooting defenseman slated for the late first round, but much more likely, the second round. O’Rourke’s size, mean streak, and stay at home play check a lot of boxes for what the Leafs could use down the road, a possible Muzzin replacement in a few years, but alas, trading down for O’Rourke isn’t going to be a popular move in a deep first round and while he’d be a solid pick at 44, in a thinner draft when it comes to defensemen, he’s likely to be gone well before Toronto picks.

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Jaromir Pytlik-F

The idea of selecting a Jaromir has a lot of appeal. NHL history says Jaromir’s do well in this sport.

Putting a future hall of famer label on Pytlik is probably a tad premature, so I won’t go that far. Instead I’ll say the Leafs could probably use a 6’3 center who is a strong skater and plays a strong two way game. The fact that Pytlik is building on his offensive game is a definite plus, but the fact that it’s not fully there is what keeps him out of the first round, but guarantees he won’t be around when the Leafs pick in the fourth round.

Rory Kerins-C & Tanner Dickinson-C

Looking a bit further to the later rounds of the draft, Kerins was actually the top scorer of the Soo draft class. Like Pytlik, he’s a center and that’s encouraging, but at 5’11 and not having the stand out skills that Pytlik does, he’s more of a long term project that will be building off solid junior results.

Dickinson is a bit different than Kerins, in that he has a lot of speed to burn, but doesn’t have the junior results to show for it. He’s still been sheltered, and not defensively sound (yet), but he only has the one year of junior to go off of, and if the belief is he can be developed, this is a risk that Leafs could enjoy late in the draft.

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Cole Mackay- F

As an overager it remains to be seen if Mackay will get much consideration from the Leafs or anyone else this year. His numbers actually declined last season and if they weren’t good enough to get him drafted previously he’s probably not going to have much luck this go around either. Still, I’ll mention him just on the off chance that he’s looking like the best available option in the seventh round.

Moral of the story, I don’t think there is 100% certainty that Dubas looks to the Soo for talent in the draft, but if the Leafs do find themselves with a Greyhound next Wednesday, the players available are worth being excited about.

Rory Kerins DY F 64 0.6563 0.7813 0.9219 22.73 51.91 4.08 17.89 2.6205 18.39 5’11 L
Jaromir Pytlik DY F 56 0.375 0.6964 0.8929 11.64 53.21 4.92 18.73 2.2309 18.97 6’03 R
Cole Mackay DY+1 F 64 0.4375 0.6875 0.7969 14.71 51.06 2.37 16.37 2.5196 19.26 5’11 R
Ryan O’Rourke DY D 54 0.2222 0.3889 0.6852 5.98 54.76 8.48 23.44 0.9957 18.33 6’02 L
Tanner Dickinson DY F 64 0.1875 0.3281 0.625 8.65 44.71 -6.02 14.2 1.3862 18.53 6’00 L
data via pick224.com


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