LATEST | writers have their say on who Vancouver should pick in the first round

Published May 14, 2023 at 4:28 PM

It's been nearly one week since the NHL's draft lottery when we found out that the Canucks would pick 11th in next month's Entry Draft in Nashville.

This year's draft has the potential to be one for the ages and in terms of the talent available, it's already drawing comparison to 2003 and 2015. While the Canucks will have the opportunity to select a very, very talented player, the writers over at took the time to do a mock draft recently, and here's who they think Patrick Allvin will select and their thoughts on both players.

Adam Kimelman thinks the Canucks will pick Czech forward Eduard Sale, while Mike G. Morreale says Allvin will use the 11th overall pick to take Brayden Yager of the Western Hockey League's Moose Jaw Warriors.

Sale spent the 2022-23 season in the Czech Extraliga with Brno Kometa and put up 14 points in 43 games during the regular season, but went point-less during the playoffs. He also represented Czechia at the 2023 World Juniors, winning a silver medal. Sale was selected by the OHL's Barrie Colts during the 2022 CHL Import Draft, so there's a good chance that he could be playing in North America next season.

"Finding depth at left wing is an organizational need for the Canucks, whose recent top draft selections have played on the right side: Jonathan Lekkerimaki (2022, No. 15), Danila Klimovich (2021, No. 41) and Vasily Podkolzin (2019, No. 10). Sale, who has high-end puck skills and is a smooth skater, has two seasons of experience playing against older competition in the top Czech league." Kimelman said.

As for Yager, he took a big step in his development this past season in the WHL, where he finished second on Moose Jaw in points with 78, only behind Seattle Kraken prospect Jagger Firkus. Last summer, Yager played for Canada at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup, where he took on a leadership role and finished the tournament tied for second in points with nine in five games.

"The Canucks need to add depth down the middle after the trade of Bo Horvat, and Yager (5-11, 166) is a good start. He improved his playmaking ability to complement his powerful shot this season, is responsible in all three zones and effective on face-offs. Yager had 78 points (28 goals, 50 assists) in 67 regular-season games and had 16 points (six goals, 10 assists) in 10 WHL playoff games." Morreale said.

May 14   |   493 answers
LATEST | writers have their say on who Vancouver should pick in the first round

Of the two mentioned, who should Allvin select at 11th overall?

Eduard Sale448.9 %
Brayden Yager13026.4 %
Neither22946.5 %
See Results9018.3 %
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