Teams rarely trade top-10 picks leading up to an NHL Draft but 2017 could be different.
The New Jersey Devils, Philadelphia Flyers and Dallas Stars currently hold the top three picks, respectively, and hockey insider Elliotte Friedman believes these teams might be more inclined to consider moving the picks than other teams in previous years.
“I do wonder about New Jersey at No. 1,” Friedman told Sportsnet’s Starting Lineup Friday. “I think they would consider moving down as long as they didn’t move down that far. I do think that there is a possibility that they will consider that.”
The Devils are a team in need of upgrades on defence and though there are several strong options available in this year’s draft class, taking a blueliner with the top pick would be a stretch. Forwards Nico Hischier and Nolan Patrick are the consensus top two picks.
“I can see Dallas moving [the No. 3 pick]…I do think it’s very legitimate that if Dallas got a defenceman that mattered they would consider going out of three,” Friedman said.
Stars general manager Jim Nill is on record saying he is willing to move the pick.
“I have talked to other teams already about possibly moving that pick, getting an established player back,” Nill told NHL Network Radio in May. “It gives us a lot of options. I think this will heat up more as we go.”