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Thread: Rangers Draft Strategy: Keep it Simple, Stupid

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    Rangers Draft Strategy: Keep it Simple, Stupid

    Collectively speaking, NHL scouts aren’t clairvoyant in that they can’t predict the future. But the sheer volume of effort they put into studying and ranking each crop of prospects every year more often validates, rather than vilifies, their judgment. Anyone can point to a miss or two, but on the whole, particularly in the first round, they get it right the lion’s share of the time.

    Yet in recent seasons, on at least two occasions, the Rangers’ front office has been guiltier than O.J. in trying to outsmart the scouts with off-the-board and reaching selections—decisions that saw them lose out on measurably more talented players for needlessly bad reasons.
    Drafting players based on an organization’s positional depth is rarely a great idea, and even rarer when based on a particular coaching philosophy or style. The McIlrath debacle illustrates the former perfectly, having been taken by the Rangers specifically to the fit mold of then-head coach John Tortorella’s “Black and Blueshirts”. While attempting to be strategic about which positional depth you mean to improve with targeted drafting can have some benefits, it’s never a wise approach to adopt if it means leaving more talented options on the table as the Rangers have done repeatedly. Character is great, but skill—which can’t be taught—is greater.

    The fact of the matter is, even for a rebuilding Blueshirts squad that could stand to improve just about everywhere but in net, the franchise is better served to embrace BPA this June. If the result of that game plan produces a surplus at any given position, trading from that excess in the future to address immediate positional needs is a much more sound policy than drafting for the needs of today. Given the time it takes for an average prospect to develop, too often the landscape changes before that prospect can vindicate his team’s choice to draft him. Few know this as well as McIlrath.

    While the Andersson pick is mitigated in direct comparison to the McIlrath selection, both share the wrong kind of connective tissue regarding the Rangers’ decision-making that high in the draft order.
    https://thehockeywriters.com/ny-rang...rategy-simple/
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    Couldn’t agree more.

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    Likewise, couldn't agree more regarding BPA. We should even be emphasizing upside, impact players. Even if it means 3 dmen in the first 3-4 picks. However, character matters and would be reflected in the prospects overall score.

    Surprised you left out the issue where the Rangers were prejudiced by their prior selection of an offensive Dman (Del Zotto). Another way mgmt over-complicated the decision, thinking Fowler would be redundant. Passing on Fowler caused future pain in trading top picks for Yandle and signing Dan Boyle for more O, while letting Stralman go. Awful ramifications.
    Last edited by Giacomin; 05-09-2018 at 05:06 PM.

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    What's BPA? Safest? Most skilled? Biggest impact? Best all-around player (2-way)? Closest to NHL-ready?
    Lias Andersson for #AJT2019

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    Most talented. If you've got a choice between a player who projects as a 20-goal, middle-six, two-way player and one who has first-line, 30-goal potential, you go with the latter. Always. No exceptions.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil in Absentia View Post
    Most talented. If you've got a choice between a player who projects as a 20-goal, middle-six, two-way player and one who has first-line, 30-goal potential, you go with the latter. Always. No exceptions.


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    Always? No exceptions? If that's how it worked Duclair wouldn't have been a 3rd round pick... There are far more things to consider than talent alone.

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    Rangers Draft Strategy: Keep it Simple, Stupid

    With first round picks? Yes. Always. Especially top-ten. I'm also not suggesting that talent and ONLY talent be accounted for. I'm suggesting a weighted system in which talent is the most important ingredient.

    If your choosing between two equally talented players, go with the guy you think has the better work ethic or attitude. By all means. But I never want to see the Rangers passing up on a Tarasenko or Fowler or otherwise to draft the next Ryan Callahan.


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    After McIlrath and Jessiman (and going on back to Steven Rice and Troy Mallette), I'm skeptical about drafting for size. Goalies in the first 10 have historically been very risky for everyone.

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    Rangers aren't outsmarting scouts, they employ their own scouts who give them a list and they chose BPA according to that list.

    It's easy for fans to point and say, well, that guy didn't work out so they reached and should never do that again. Nobody even knew who Chytil was when he was picked last year and now he's by far our most "skilled" prospect.

    Sure when Pierre says, "Rangers going off the board for this one" you have to cringe but there will always be someone who goes later in the draft that turns into a star. It happens in every single draft.
    GORTON 2020

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    McIlrath was ranked by every major outlet anywhere from 20th to 31st. Andersson from 13th to 25th. If your own scouts have them each in the top-ten, it's time to fire your scouts.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil in Absentia View Post
    McIlrath was ranked by every major outlet anywhere from 20th to 31st. Andersson from 13th to 25th. If your own scouts have them each in the top-ten, it's time to fire your scouts.


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    But Andersson was captain of his team.... Hated that pick.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil in Absentia View Post
    Most talented. If you've got a choice between a player who projects as a 20-goal, middle-six, two-way player and one who has first-line, 30-goal potential, you go with the latter. Always. No exceptions.


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    You taking Chris Phillips or Nikita Filatov?
    Lias Andersson for #AJT2019

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    Phillips. Pretty sure he was the consensus number one that year.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil in Absentia View Post
    McIlrath was ranked by every major outlet anywhere from 20th to 31st. Andersson from 13th to 25th. If your own scouts have them each in the top-ten, it's time to fire your scouts.


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    There's always the theory of the "old boys club", but you'd have to assume NHL franchises pay their scouts better than every major outlet, and therefore, the teams of scouts employed by NHL franchises are better at scouting than everymajor outlet. The team of scouts factors heavily into creating the list for a franchise, but the GM makes the pick. For all we know Sather went off the Rangers own draft broad to pick McIllrath regardless of what his scouts said.

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    My point is, even internal scouts should be coming to similar conclusions to professional scouting services like the ISS and guys who follow Junior hockey professionally like McKenzie. If your internal group is telling you McIlrath should go tenth and literally everyone else is saying anywhere from 20th to 31st, you need to be taking a long, hard look at your scouts.


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    Clark wanted McIlrath and Sather didn't really want Zuccarello, if that's an indication of anything.

    Clark's magic seems to have worn off, especially in the early rounds.

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    What magic has he really had? What picks were his?
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    Let's Go Rangers!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil in Absentia View Post
    My point is, even internal scouts should be coming to similar conclusions to professional scouting services like the ISS and guys who follow Junior hockey professionally like McKenzie. If your internal group is telling you McIlrath should go tenth and literally everyone else is saying anywhere from 20th to 31st, you need to be taking a long, hard look at your scouts.


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    The professionals seem to be all over the board with this draft rankings
    Lias Andersson for #AJT2019

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    With some players, yes. But generally the average is on target. It's wild cards like McIlrath and others who tend to have such drastic rank differences. Svechnikov and Zadina, for example, have been 2/3 all year.


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    - Christopher Hitchens

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    We can't really nitpick about the top, say 8, guys who shift.

    When you're picking guys in the top 10 who everyone else has in 20-30 that's just too big a jump to justify... Especially when it happens frequently.

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