For a Fistful of Dollars, And for a Few Dollars More … these are the titles of the first two works in Sergio Leone’s “Dollars Trilogy”, which culminates in the classic The Good, the Bad and the Ugly , about which I already spoke to you last year, reconfirming my position in favour of a certain Slafkovsky…
In thanking my bosses for their confidence, let’s just say that after my last analysis written earlier this week “for a handful of dollars”, we’d be on to part two ” for a few more dollars”!
In this second article, then, I’m going to focus more on the value of the Tricolore’s5th-round pick, the famous ” pick value “, a concept and measurement tool inspired by the NFL, which has been used in the NHL for about ten years and is based on the GSVA over 7 years.
To make a long story short, in the end, this model determines the number of wins that each of the draft ranks yields on average over player X’s first seven seasons in the NHL.
But in the case of generational players like McDavid (and perhaps Bedard), we can certainly exceed the 30-win mark over a 7-year period, as can be seen here when McDavid had not yet enjoyed his 123- and 153-point seasons at the time of analysis…
That’s a far, far, far cry from the 8.2 wins normally found in5th place!
That’s also why, despite the famous red flags he’s been dragging around with him, the idea of Mishkov no longer being available for the CH pick seems less and less silly to me.
And so, even if we place, say, Will Smith at No. 5, the American is probably worth more than 8.2 wins. Perhaps we’re talking about a second overall pick in a more “normal” draft, with an average value of 12.3 wins.
Without making it an absolute truth, to make an enlightened decision, the Habs will have to take into account this precious tool measuring the average value of each pick, the famous pick value, while not losing sight of the fact that this year’s top-5 is, precisely, stronger than average.
So, if Mishkov is still available and the Habs are reluctant to draft him and would be willing to drop for Reinbacher, Dvorsky, Leonard and so on, the teams at the other end of the line are going to have to put up more or less the value of the 5th-place pick, that famous 20 wins if it’s Mishkov or 12.3 if it’s Smith, for example.
So, theoretically, the Flyers could have to offer their 7th (7.1), 22nd (3.7) and Tyson Foerster, who would easily be a top-10 pick (6.0) if the 2020 draft were to be redone, or Owen Tippett, a former 10th overall who broke through last year at age 24. A fine total of 16.8 wins! But let’s not forget Cutter Gauthier (5th in 2022), who could also become the best player in his draft, ahead of Slafkovsky and the others…
On the Caps’ side, it would seem a little difficult to offer such value to the Canadiens: the 8th pick (6.7), a very theoretical top-10 pick next year (6.0) and, say, Hendrix Lapierre, who still isn’t worth much more than his 22nd-place selection in 2020 (3.7). This brings us to 16.4, not far from the Flyers scenario, but a lot more volatile, let’s say. They’d have to add last year’s first-round pick, Ivan Miroshnichenko (20th, 4.0 wins), to beat a potential Flyers offer…
On the Wings’ side, with picks #9 (6.3) and #17 (4.5), considering that after the top-8, player value seems to drop considerably this year, you’d really have to add center Marco Kasper (8th last year) and/or goaltender Sebastian Cossa (15th in 2021). In short retrospect, Kasper would certainly deserve to be considered a top-5 pick (8.2), while Cossa would still retain his value of 4.9 wins combined with his draft rank. The Wings would therefore have what it takes to give pause to the Canadiens, who like to get their hands on prospects with a certain amount of mileage in them. He did just that with Alex Newhook this afternoon.
By their GM Doug Armstrong’s own admission, the Blues are in a kind of ” retrenchment ” or ” reset on the fly ” mode, as popularized by a former Montreal boss. So they’re not about to put everything up for auction.
So, as much as Armstrong would like to follow the Kings’ model of quickly resetting their game with the acquisition of players like Danault, Fiala, and then the blossoming of Kempe, it may take St. Louis a little longer to become a powerhouse again.
I’m not sure the HuGo duo would be too keen on the idea of moving up from5th to 10th, but if the Blues offer their three first-round picks (a combined value of 12.4 wins) to draft5th, I think we’d still deign to answer the phone.
But to really tempt the Tricolore, the Blues would also have to make a few big prospects available, starting with Jimmy Snuggerud, 23rd overall pick in 2022, 6’2, 187 lbs, dominant in his first season at age 18 with the University of Minnesota and now easily in the top-8 (6.7 wins) of the last draft.
Let’s say, for the 10th pick, the 25th and Snuggerud versus the5th, a value of 16.1 wins, we’d start talking. But we’d probably have to give a bit more to beat the other offers.
On the Preds’ side
If Barry Trotz isn’t bluffing too hard, it would be very surprising if he could convince Hughes to let him have the 5th pick with its cumulative value of 8.4 wins for his 15th and 24th picks. But if he offers his super prospect in goal, the spectacular, Yaroslav Askarov (11th in 2020), Andrei Vasilevskiy’s rightful runner-up, and certainly a Top-8 in retrospect (6.7 wins), the two-headed HuGo entity should start to get a bit restless!
Mathematically speaking, we wouldn’t need much to compete with the other potential offers. But perhaps the Preds’ young star goaltender would be the most valuable piece of equipment the Tricolore could be offered this week.
But, let’s just say, it would put the CH back on a trajectory and style we’ve known well since 2005 with Carey Price.
But then again, maybe the Lightning wouldn’t have won twice without the great Vasilevskiy.
If we take for granted that Mishkov is almost a generational player, we’ll have to put our money where our mouth is. In other words, HuGo has the big end of the proverbial stick.
Keeping Michkov, Smith, or anyone from the Big 5 who would still be available at No. 5, would be a pick with very good, if not excellent, value. And let’s not forget that Reinbacher, perhaps a little because of his position, could also be 5th on the Habs’ list, whether we like it or not…
But we have to admit that this year’s top-5, to which we must add fatceur Michkov, is quite out of the ordinary.
So, with advanced statistics to back it up, we’ve detailed a few realistic trade-down scenarios that could make sense for the HuGo duo if we come to a negative conclusion about the young Russian or a rather conditional love for, say, Will Smith.
For the other teams, however, the key to all these scenarios for obtaining the 5th pick lies in the addition of top-tier prospects with a certain amount of experience, whose value(pick value) is equal to or greater than that of the highest pick of 2023, which we’ll also have to let go.
So, if the CH doesn’t draft at No. 5, will we see Foester, Tippett, Lapierre, Miroshnichenko, Snuggerud, Bolduc, Kasper, Cossa or Askarov pass to the Habs tomorrow night?