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Photo Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

The recent history of 25th overall draft picks

Let’s start with the fact that whether you pick 25th overall or 20th overall, or 30th overall the story is going to be somewhat the same and teams that scout well, draft well, and those who don’t will select Stuart Percy. The 25th overall pick is just the card the Leafs have been dealt and in the grand tradition of finding filler content in June before teams actually start doing things, let’s take a walk down memory lane to see who has been drafted 25th overall in the previous drafts of this century.

Year Player POS Drafting Team Drafted from GP G A P
2021 Corson Ceulemans D Columbus Brooks Bandits [AJHL]
2020 Justin Barron D Colorado Halifax Mooseheads [QMJHL] 7 1 1 2
2019 Connor McMichael C Washington London Knights [OHL] 69 9 9 18
2018 Dominik Bokk L St. Louis Vaxjo HC [SweHL]
2017 Ryan Poehling C Montreal St. Cloud State [NCHC] 85 13 9 22
2016 Riley Tufte L Dallas Fargo Force [USHL] 10 1 0 1
2015 Jack Roslovic C Winnipeg U.S. National Development Team [USHL] 309 60 86 146
2014 David Pastrnak R Boston Sodertalje SK [Swe-1] 510 240 264 504
2013 Michael McCarron R Montreal U.S. National Development Team [USHL] 126 9 13 22
2012 Jordan Schmaltz D St. Louis Green Bay Gamblers [USHL] 42 0 5 5
2011 Stuart Percy D Toronto Mississauga St. Michael’s Majors [OHL] 12 0 3 3
2010 Quinton Howden C Florida Moose Jaw Warriors [WHL] 97 10 7 17
2009 Jordan Caron R Boston Rimouski Oceanic [QMJHL] 157 12 16 28
2008 Greg Nemisz C Calgary Windsor Spitfires [OHL] 15 0 1 1
2007 Patrick White C Vancouver Tri-City Storm [USHL]
2006 Patrik Berglund C St. Louis Vasteras IK [Swe-1] 717 170 156 326
2005 Andrew Cogliano C Edmonton St. Michael’s Buzzers [OPJHL] 1140 174 252 42
2004 Rob Schremp C Edmonton London Knights [OHL] 114 20 34 54
2003 Anthony Stewart R Florida Kingston Frontenacs [OHL] 262 27 44 71
2002 Cam Ward G Carolina Red Deer Rebels [WHL] 701 1 12 13
2001 Alexander Perezhogin R Montreal Omsk Avangard [Russia] 128 15 19 3
2000 Steve Ott C Dallas Windsor Spitfires [OHL] 848 109 179 288

Sigh. Stuart Percy. Do yourself a favour and don’t look at the list of players selected after Biggs and Percy and in the first and second rounds. It seemed like the Leafs went out of their way to mess up this draft.

So as much as there are some interesting names to talk about on there, let’s start with the most recent five year history of the pick. The fact that 2 of the last 3 years have already yielded players that have made their NHL teams is a very good sign, and the idea of finding someone like Connor McMichael at 25th overall is exciting.

The past five years are generally positive, but admittedly I’m shocked by Dominik Bokk being a player that bottomed out. Interestingly enough the Leafs owned the 25th overall pick that year and one of the players many Leafs fans (including myself to some degree) wanted to see picked was Bokk. I think Dubas earned some credibility by not taking the 6’2 winger in this case and both Sandin and Der-Arguchintsev (the player selected with the 3rd round pick acquired in the trade) have more promising pro careers than Bokk.

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Looking at the ten most recent years of the draft the pick has a few iffier picks with Tufte and Schmaltz not really hitting the mark, and McCarron maxing out as serviceable depth. It did also provide the biggest home run on this list with the selection of David Pastrnak and a worthwhile middle six forward in Jack Roslovic. Finding the next Pastrnak is the dream, but given the recent success of the Leafs scouting department, it seems that expecting a Roslovic-type option is reasonable.

Excluding the five most recent years, where it seems unreasonable to expect a player to hit the 200 game mark, 7 of the 16 players selected have reached the 200 game mark. Another 4 hit the 100 game mark, and only one, Patrick White, never played a game in the NHL.  Finding players like Steve Ott, Patrik Berglund, Andrew Cogliano, and Cam Ward along with Roslovic and Pastrnak should generate some excitement, especially in what is being regarded as a deep draft.

Perhaps the point that we should takeaway from this and one that didn’t require trivial references to past 25th overall picks is that if the Leafs use their pick at 25th overall it’s very likely the player selected could immediately be debated as the top organizational prospect. The pick is that worthwhile. It’s also worth noting that Kyle Dubas isn’t overly attached to picking when he’s supposed to, so maybe my time would have been better spent looking at top prospects selected at 28th or 29th overall instead.

Data from HockeyDB.com

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