Thursday, April 27, 2017

2017 NHL Draft: Casey Mittelstadt stays at 5th overall in Bob McKenzie's Top 15

Incoming Minnesota freshman center Casey Mittelstadt remains fifth overall in TSN and NHL Insider Bob McKenzie's 2017 NHL Draft rankings released Thursday.

Mittelstadt, the 2017 Minnesota Mr. Hockey Award recipient, split his draft-eligible season between Eden Prairie and Green Bay (USHL). His year ended earlier this month with the Gamblers not making the USHL postseason and too old for the U-18 WJC.

He is the highest player with ties to college hockey and one of just two in the top 15, which is cut short for the Draft Lottery contested Saturday. Future Massachusetts defender Cale Makar is the other, moving up from 12th in January's rankings to 7th.

Brandon (WHL) forward Nolan Patrick and Swiss center Nico Hischier, who plays with QMJHL Halifax, are a consensus #1 and #2 although potentially not in that order.

McKenzie's ranking system ends up being one of the most accurate because he does not do a mock draft, of which hundreds will be coming out in the time between now and the June 23-24 draft date.

Instead he bases the spots off of discussions with NHL scouts on ten different teams. Doing so helps paint a picture of where players are on various teams' draft boards.

Fellow Minnesota commit Scott Reedy was 50th in McKenzie's January rankings.

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