Welcome to my first preview of the NHL draft for The Athletic.
What follows is my opinion of the prospects eligible for the 2018 NHL draft. Each prospect ranked will have an accompanying scouting report, breaking down what they bring to the table.
The 2018 draft class is an average draft class. At the top of the class, a bulk of the talent is in defensemen, with very few centers. The top prospect is a legit first overall talent, with the next tier being a reasonable bunch of players for the top five but none who stand out as exceptional for that range. The talent level is solid but there’s more risk than usual.
This preview is the result of thousands of hours of research spanning over two years. This is the result of long days and nights on highways and planes, pouring through video, talking with scouts, coaches and others, analyzing players’ numbers and, ultimately, analyzing all that research to come up with the conclusions you’ll see this…