Ramblings: Comparing First Round Options – Pastrnak vs Marchand, Ovechkin vs Tkachuk & More (Oct 6)

Alexander MacLean

2021-10-06

Often I find that we're focusing on trying to find the later round gems, dealing with the middle-round decisions, and creating the best overall draft strategies that we completely overlook another key important decision. This decision sets the tone for the entire draft, and becomes a key component of your team all season long. That's right, this week I'm focusing on the first-round pick options (or top two rounds) and evaluating a few of the decisions that most of us are going to be facing with those picks.

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First overall we can all agree on Connor McDavid, right?

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The next tier is the two-to-four picks, with Leon Draisaitl, Nikita Kucherov, and Nathan MacKinnon. MacKinnon tends to be the consensus pick at #2, but he also doesn't have winger eligibility like the other two, who have very similar scoring upside. Let's look at them side-by-side:

Draisaitl vs MacKinnon (*Kucherov didn’t play last year)

As you can see, Draisaitl actually has a sizeable edge over MacKinnon, and it may be due to riding shotgun with McDavid some of the time, but that doesn't matter because the duo will be playing on the same team for the foreseeable future, and the results are all that matter for us. Personally, I would have MacKinnon at #4,