1993 NHL Entry Draft Do Over

1993-nhl-draft-do-over

It takes hours and hours of hard work from scouts and hockey personnel in preparation of the yearly NHL Entry Draft. Scouts and hockey operation members would travel across the world to view certain 18 year olds that have peaked their interest. What fans sometime forget however, is that as much knowledge and skill to project a players’ career trajectory is involved in the success of a NHL Draft, there is also a certain aspect of luck involved. The drafts are not easy. One can look at the history of the Canadiens’ Trevor Timmins, who is regarded as one of the top amateur scout in the league. For every Carey Price and Max Pacioretty drafted in the first round, Timmins has also struck out on others, including David Fischer, Jarred Tinordi and Kyle Chipchura. It is the unforeseen future that makes it hard to project how a 18 year old could look like when he’s in his prime at 25. It is not some typical EA Sports game, where you can look at the Overall and Potential Ratings and select the player that is higher ranked. Who could’ve predicted back in 2004, that Chipchura would suffer a serious Achilles injury, which affected his speed and skating for the newer NHL game coming out of the lockout. As much pain as it might be to see who your favourite team could’ve selected, it sure is fun to redo a draft, 10 or 20 years later, and see who could’ve went where and how that could have changed the path of hockey history.

Pick Redo Draft Actual Drafted Player
1. Ottawa Senators Chris Pronger Alexandre Daigle
  Ottawa gets a future Hall of Fame defenseman to go along with the franchise centre they pick the year before, Alexei Yashin. It’s Chris Pronger, ’nuff said.
2. Hartford Whalers Paul Kariya Chris Pronger
  Hartford gets the dynamic playmaker Paul Kariya. Unfortunately with attendance and financial issues, even Kariya won’t save the Whalers from leaving Hartford.
3. Tampa Bay Lightning Todd Bertuzzi Chris Gratton
  Tampa Bay also goes with size, but in the redo draft would end up getting the future Canadian Olympian and Canucks’ power forward instead.
4. Mighty Ducks of Anaheim Saku Koivu Paul Kariya
  Picked later on in the actual draft, at 23, the Mighty Ducks goes with Saku Koivu, who if not for his injuries could’ve been one of the elite centermen of his era.
5. Florida Panthers Pavol Demitra Rob Niedermayer
  RIP Pavol Demitra. Sadly Demitra, along with 43 passengers, died in 2011 when the Lokomotiv Yaroslavl plane crashed. During his NHL career, Demitra was a force to be reckoned with, with 9 consecutive seasons of 20+ goals.
6. San Jose Sharks Jason Arnott Viktor Kozlov
  Mostly remembered for his Stanley Cup winning goal in 2000, Jason Arnott had a stellar NHL career with multiple 50+ point seasons.
7. Edmonton Oilers Jason Allison Jason Arnott
  If not for injuries and the changing to a newer faster pace game, Jason Allison could’ve had more dominate years ahead of him. Allison still managed to put up seasons of 83 and 95 points respectively.
8. New York Rangers Miroslav Satan Niklas Sundstrom
  Even though he was actually selected 111th overall, the Slovakian sniper managed to put up multiple 30+ goal seasons with the Oilers, Sabres, Islanders, Penguins and Bruins
9. Dallas Stars Jamie Langenbrunner Todd Harvey
  The first of the redo drafted players to not become an NHL All-Star. However, Langenbrunner was influential in helping the Dallas Stars and New Jersey Devils win the Stanley Cup. Langenbrunner was also named the Captain of the US Olympic team in 2010.
10. Quebec Nordiques Bryan McCabe Jocelyn Thibault
  The future Leafs’ defenseman had a stellar NHL career, including breakout years from 2000 to 2006. McCabe notched 68 points in 73 games in 2005-06 with the Leafs.
11. Washington Capitals Kimmo Timonen Brandan Witt
  The future Nashville Predators’ Captain had a solid career with time spent in Nashville, Philadelphia and Chicago. Timonen would win the Stanley Cup in 2011 with the Blackhawks, to go along with an Olympic Silver Medal and 2 Bronze Medal.
12. Toronto Maple Leafs Vaclav Prospal Kenny Jonsson
  After a slow start to his NHL career, Vinny Prospal developed into an 80 point centerman with the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2005-06. He was solid throughout his career with multiple 55+ point seasons.
13. New Jersey Devils Andrew Brunette Denis Pederson
  Draft 174th overall in 1993, Brunette was one of the first influential leaders of the expansion Minnesota Wild team. Brunette top of his career with an 83 point season in 2006-07 with the Colorado Avalanche.
14. Quebec Nordiques Darcy Tucker Adam Deadmarsh
  Originally drafted 151st overall by the Montreal Canadiens in 93, Darcy Tucker had successful seasons with arch rivals, the Toronto Maple Leafs. He had a career year in 2005-06, putting up 61 points.
15. Winnipeg Jets Adam Deadmarsh Mats Lindgren
  The Canadian born but American player, Adam Deadmarsh had solid seasons with the Colorado Avalanche before concussions ended his career. He would win the Stanley Cup with Colorado in 1996.
16. Edmonton Oilers Rob Niedermayer Nick Stajduhar
  Hyped as the player the Florida Panthers would build their franchise around, Rob Niedermayer never fully lived up to his sky high potential. Niedermayer however, still had a solid career including winning the Stanley Cup with his brother in 2006 with the Ducks.
17. Washington Capitals Viktor Kozlov Jason Allison
  With his size, NHL scouts were comparing Viktor Kozlov to the next Mario Lemieux. Obviously Kozlov never lived up to pre-draft scouting reports, but still managed to put up a couple of 50+ point seasons.
18. Calgary Flames Brendan Morrison Jesper Mattsson
  Although undersized in an era where size mattered, Morrison still managed to put up a couple 60+ seasons with the Vancouver Canucks. It is noted that most of his successful seasons; he centred the dynamic duo of Markus Naslund and Todd Bertuzzi.
19. Toronto Maple Leafs Kenny Jonsson Landon Wilson
  The Leafs drafted Jonsson in the actual draft, and I have them taking Jonsson as well in the redo. Even though he had a short NHL career, it must be remembered that Jonsson was still a solid defenseman. He was named the Captain of the Islanders, as well as being named the 2006 Olympics’ Best Defenceman, while winning the Gold Medal.
20. Vancouver Canucks Jocelyn Thibault Mike Wilson
  It could be said that Thibault’s career would have been different had he not have had the luxury of following in Patrick Roy’s footsteps. Thibault struggled early on his career but seemed to have found his potential with the Chicago Blackhawks, even becoming an All-Star in 2003. A hip injury would cut his once highly touted career short.
21. Montreal Canadiens Chris Gratton Saku Koivu
  If not for Alexandre Daigle, Chris Gratton might have been the most anticipated player coming out of the 93 draft. Gratton had it all, the scoring, passing and size to be a future dominant NHL player, the likes of an Eric Lindros. Gratton broke out in 96-97 and 97-98, with back to back 62 point seasons. However, that would be as dominant as he ever would, as Gratton never broke the 50 point mark since.
22. Detroit Red Wings Scott Walker Anders Eriksson
  A lunch box type of player, Scott Walker was a solid grinder in his NHL career. Although he will be remembered for his hard work and hustle, Walker still managed to put up 67 points in 2003-04 with the Predators. He also had multiple 50+ point seasons.
23. New York Islanders Janne Niinimaa Todd Bertuzzi
  Even though Habs fan will never forgive Niinimaa as the player that was traded for Mike Ribeiro, Niinimaa was still a solid defenseman during the dead puck era. He had back to back 40+ point seasons with the Oilers. Who knows how Niinimaa’s career could’ve been if the lockout never occurred.
24. Chicago Blackhawks Eric Daze Eric Lecompte
  An All-Star MVP in 2002, Daze was a constant 30+ goal scorer for the Chicago Blackhawks. However back problems ended his once promising career.
25. Boston Bruins Mike Grier Kevyn Adams
  A prototypical third liner that could pot in around 15 goals a season, Mike Grier had a solid NHL career with the Oilers, Capitals, Sabres and Sharks. He even reached the 20 goal plateau twice.
26. Pittsburgh Penguins Tommy Salo Stefan Bergkvist
  Given the starting job to the New York Islanders goal early in his career, Salo had some mediocre years to start. However, he seemed to have turned it around during his time with the Oilers, including back to back 30+ wins.

Honourable Mentions: Sebastian Bordeleau, Alexandre Daigle, Hal Gill, Patrick Lalime, Manny Legace, Todd Marchant, Jay Pandolfo, Ville Peltonen, Nicklas Sundstrom, Brendan Witt,

How the mighty have fallen… being touted as the next can’t miss franchise player of the NHL, Alexandre Daigle was one of the most hyped up player ever in the NHL Entry Draft. In the do over draft, I don’t even have Daigle selected in the first round, as Daigle never materialized into the player everyone expected him to. Even though Daigle did managed to put up 3 seasons of 51 points (with the Senators and Wild), he would never become the next Gretzky/Lemieux as he was projected to be. It was a totally let down. However, in a redo draft, Daigle would still end up somewhere in the 2nd round, as he did still put up a few “decent” seasons, far from of what was expected of a number 1 overall.

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