The rankings for some potential New York Rangers draft picks.
The New York Rangers are still in the hunt for the top overall pick in the 2020 Entry Draft, but if they don’t win Phase Two of the lottery, they still have two first-round picks. Last Monday, TSN draft guru Bob McKenzie released his final 2020 NHL Draft rankings. For those who are unfamiliar with the “Bobfather’s” rankings process, his rankings are formed by compiling the aggregate draft rankings of 10 NHL scouts. This is a tremendous resource for draft trends because it paints an accurate picture of where the professional industry stands on certain players. It is also a relatively strong predictor of where players will end up being selected on draft-day.
However, there are a couple of downsides to the rankings that must be considered. One potential issue with the rankings is a potential blindspot when it comes to European players if McKenzie is using mostly regional scouts based in North America. Also, COVID-19 led to the cancellation of both professional and junior league playoffs, and the U18 World Junior Championships, which are all major scouting events.
Pros and cons aside, I thought it would be helpful (and fun) to examine some of the biggest risers and fallers in the rankings, as well as some of the general trends. We’ll start by exploring the overall rankings, then we’ll look at some players the Blueshirts may look at as potential first-round picks, despite McKenzie’s rankings.
The Top 10
- Alexis Lafrenière, LW, Rimouski Oceanic (QMJHL)
- Tim Stützle, LW/C, Adler Mannheim (DEL)
- Quinton Byfield, C, Sudbury Wolves (OHL)
- Jamie Drysdale, RHD, Erie Otters (OHL)
- Cole Perfetti, C/LW, Saginaw Spirit (OHL)
- Marco Rossi, C, Ottawa 67s (OHL)
- Lucas Raymond, RW, Frölunda (SHL)
- Jake Sanderson, LHD, USNTDP (USHL)
- Alexander Holtz, RW, Djurgårdens IF (SHL)
- Jack Quinn, RW, Ottawa 67s (OHL)
While Quinton Byfield posed a brief threat to Lafrenière’s throne, the electrifying winger keeps his spot at the top. An interesting development is German forward Tim Stützle’s ascent to the second spot in the rankings. This is a very interesting development when you consider that Stützle’s production actually slowed down after his strong performance at the World Junior tournament.
USNTDP defenseman Jake Sanderson has solidified his spot in the Top 10, jumping up one spot from the January rankings to the 8th spot. Before the season, a second defender having a legitimate case as a Top 10 player seemed far-fetched. But Sanderson’s strong second-half performance has left no doubt in the minds of NHL Scouts.
Finally, making his first appearance in the Top 10 is Jack Quinn, the prolific goal-scorer for the OHL’s Ottawa 67’s. It has been a precipitous rise for Quinn, who was days away from being 2019 draft-eligible and likely would not have been selected at all. Russian goaltender Yaroslav Askarov was the player to make way for Quinn, dropping one spot to 11.