Skip to content
26th pick in the draft: the Canadian clearly has a player profile in mind
Credit: Photo by Mike Stobe/NHLI via Getty Images

Since the beginning of May, there’s been a lot of talk about the draft and the Montreal Canadiens’ fifth overall pick. That’s to be expected.

However, the importance of the Jets’ pick, 26th overall, should not be overlooked. After all, because the Habs don’t have their second-round pick (they only have the Avalanche, who will be a long shot), having the chance to draft in the first round is even more important.

The club may choose to trade the pick… but if it does, it will be because a positive opportunity is on the table.

All this to say, it will be interesting to see what Kent Hughes does with the pick, should he decide to use it to draft a prospect instead of letting another team choose a youngster with the 26th right.

And on that subject, the guys at The Athletic have a little idea of what might happen.

Ina mock draft (the same one that brought Ivan Demidov to Montreal) conducted by Scott Wheeler and Corey Pronman, Wheeler was in charge of drafting for the Habs at the 26th pick.

He set his sights on Lucas Pettersson.

This Swede is a 5’11 center who scored 57 points in 44 games in junior. It’s his profile that’s interesting, since he’s unlikely to be a random choice.

Why not? Because Wheeler added the following after selecting “the highly regarded Swedish player”:

Centers like Beaudoin, Hage and Boisvert would make sense here if one of them is available. – Scott Wheeler

In the platform’s mock draft , Cole Beaudoin, Michael Hage and Quebecer Sacha Boisvert (who was once linked to the Habs) all came out between 22nd and 24th. Nashville, Toronto and Denver drafted all three guys.

And if we look at the four center players, we see a trend.

  • Beaudoin: 62 points in 67 OHL games, 6’2 center
  • Hage: 75 points in 54 USHL games, 6’1 center
  • Boisvert: 68 points in 61 USHL games, 6’2 center
  • Pettersson: 57 points in 44 games in Swedish junior, 5’11 center
Even if Pettersson is a little smaller, we agree that an 18-year-old can still grow a few inches. But otherwise, these are all centers who flirted with/exceeded the point-per-game threshold in junior hockey in their 17-year-old season.

In 2022, at the end of the first round and beginning of the second, the Canadiens drafted Filip Mesar and Owen Beck.

I get the feeling that the club wants to draft – if it really does draft at No. 26 – a player somewhat in the same mold, but a little better offensively and a little bigger, ideally.

Remember that the Habs aren’t necessarily looking for a center right now, but that finding a third-line center for the future is an interesting avenue nonetheless.

In gusto

– Behind the scenes of the conquest.

– Here’s why Mike Matheson isn’t with Team Canada right now.

– Indeed.

– Two years without a sweep?

– A big summer awaits the Bruins.

More Content