Decisions, decisions. Surely, situations are dancing around in Philadelphia Flyers GM Chuck Fletcher’s head as the 2019 NHL Entry Draft creeps closer and closer. What moves are to be made? Who is on the block? Is anyone on the block?
Should the 11th overall pick be on the block?
The question flooding social media across Flyer nation. If the Flyers want to contend as soon as Homer and Fletcher have said, which is next year, surely it makes sense to deal the 11th pick in the hopes of getting better as soon as next year, right?
This is where the word “tricky” doesn’t even do this situation justice.
This year, the draft class is one of the deepest in recent memory. You have the two guys who are realistically a lock for the top two spots in Hughes and Kakko. After that, you have a plethora of talented individuals who bring a lot to the table for whoever takes them off the board.
Should a notable name, like Cole Caufield, fall to the Flyers at 11, it may be worth taking him and keeping the pick. Anyone else, it may behoove Fletcher to explore a trade and see what he can get for the 11th overall pick.
In the last 10 years, the number 11 overall pick has been somewhat of a hit-or-miss pick. Names like Filip Forsberg and Ryan Ellis come to mind, being solid contributors to their teams now. Others, like Duncan Siemens could be a complete flop, or Lawson Crouse, who has been sent between the NHL and AHL a few times already in his early career.
Say, a team is in desperate need for a goaltender, and wants to move up to assure that Spencer Knight becomes a part of their franchise. The number 11 pick may be the ideal pick to snag Knight off the board, and Chuck Fletcher should be waiting by his phone is this scenario happens. As arguably the biggest name “ever” in American goaltending history, Knight will likely go in the first round, and it isn’t too farfetched to believe that a team would take him earlier than projected to make sure they have their goalie for the future.
The Dallas Stars took Jack Campbell at number 11 overall in 2010, and it took him 9 years to break into the league, and it wasn’t even with Dallas. Campbell was the backup for the Los Angeles Kings this past year, and posted some pretty solid numbers with a .928 save percentage and 2.30 goals against average. Number 11 overall seems like a bit of a reach for a backup that took 9 years to break into the NHL, but think of what a team would give up for someone like Knight, who has much more hype surrounding him coming into the draft.
In line with what Paul Holmgren and Chuck Fletcher have said, it would make a lot of sense to trade the 11th overall pick to try and better the roster right now, and in the immediate future. However, there are a few names that, if they fall to the Flyers, it’ll be hard to part with the pick that could land them just that guy.
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