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2004 Mock Draft
from HockeyAlliance publishers

Pick Team Player
1 Alexander Ovechkin, C Dynamo Moscow (RUS) There wasn't much question who would go first, Ovechkin is unanimously seen as the #1 prospect in this year's draft. The big Russian forward has superstar written all over him, and to top it all off, he's reportedly a nice guy too.
2 Evgeni Malkin, LW Magnitogorsk (RUS) With Ovechkin gone, this is a no-brainer. The Penguins are in search of another franchise player, and the dynamic Malkin looks to be the one.
3 Cam Barker, D Medicine Hat (WHL) The Blackhawks need a true number one defenseman and Chicago assistant General Manager Dale Tallon is high on Barker, because of his character and the style of game that he plays
4 Andrew Ladd, LW Calgary (WHL) This pick seems the most likely to be the traded come draft day, with the Blue Jackets already with a nice core of young players. Ladd, who has risen dramatically this year in rankings, adds to that core.
5 Lauri Tukonen, RW Espoo (FIN) All this talk of taking Al Montoya is just that, with David LeNeveu in the system Phoenix is better served by taking the promising Finn
6 Rostislav Olesz, C Vitkovice (CZE) There has been plenty of speculation over who the Rangers might take here, Olesz is one of them. The Czech pivot's offensive statistics don't tell the full story of a player who could be around for years to come
7 Alexander Radulov, RW Tver (BLR) Jacques Martin has had success working with talented, determined European forwards like Alfredsson and Hossa, even turning Bonk and Chara into stars. Radulov is said to be a good character kid and probably the best potential superstar forward left at this position
8 A.J. Thelen, D Michigan State (CCHA) An aging defensive corps and the need for a future power play QB leads the Canes to Thelen. The talented blueliner impressed as a rookie and is another player with future star potential
9 Ladislav Smid, D Liberec (CZE) Smid is primarily a playmaking blueliner and the Ducks will be hoping that he will be able to provide some offense in the future for an organization that is particularly weak in that area
10 Drew Stafford, RW North Dakota (WCHA) What the Thrashers really need are centermen and blueliners, but with Stafford they get a potential two way forward who can complement the offense of Heatley and Kovalchuk, maybe a future replacement for the likes of McEachern
11 Al Montoya, G Michigan (CCHA) The Kings have big weaknesses everywhere and will take the best player available. Having failed to develop #3 overall pick Jamie Storr to his potential, Montoya may be a risk but will maintain some trade value. Former Clarkson player GM Dave Taylor has seen scouts to Red Berenson's team for years
12 Andrej Meszaros, D Trencin (SVK) The Wild got a chance to scout the Trencin team a little extra when Gaborik was playing there during his holdout and knows exactly what they're getting. A young two-way defenseman who, like Gaborik, played in a league of older men, Meszaros appears highly coachable and should be able to contribute quickly for the Wild
13 Marek Schwarz, G Trinec (CZE) For the Sabres, it's a simple case of taking the best player available, and Schwarz looks to continue something of a tradition in Buffalo. With Miller struggling in the AHL after his all-star appearance and questions over Biron's future with the club, Schwarz looks to be a viable future option.
14 Alexandre Picard, LW Lewiston (QMJHL) GM Kevin Lowe is looking for a higher probability in his drafting this year after making some unexpected moves in recent years. Picard looks to be the kind of player that Lowe will be looking at if he lasts to the 14th pick
15 Robbie Schremp, C London (OHL) With the current shortage of NHL calibre centers, Schremp has the skills and confidence to be a major factor in the future with the Predators. His downside is that he is not a team player at this stage of his career. It's a case of boom or bust with the controversial pivot
16 Boris Valabik, D Kitchener (OHL) What better way to replace former Islander Zdeno Chara than to draft the one player that everyone is comparing to him. While Valabik may never add the offensive side that Chara has, he remains a punishing defender when he's on his game
17 Wojtek Wolski, LW Brampton (OHL) The prospect pool for St Louis has dried up in recent years, with several promising youngster either failing to make an impact or being sent off in trades. Wolski has impressed many who have seen him and has NHL potential particularly as a scorer
18 Kyle Chipchura, C Prince Albert (WHL) There's questions as to whether Chipchura can add the offense to the rest of his game, but with his hard-nosed style of play he is sure to be a crowd favorite and will be the kind of player you want on your team
19 Lauri Korpikoski, LW Turku (FIN) What's another Finn to the Flames? Korpikoski surprised many with his rise up the ranks this past year, but his offensive abilities will be well appreciated by Calgary if he can prove that it wasn't a fluke
20 Mike Green, D Saskatoon (WHL) Dallas' depth on the blueline is pretty thin these days, with Vagner, their 2002 1st round pick , re-entering the draft. Green, who has played the last three seasons with Saskatoon, is an excellent skater, has decent size for his age, is physical and has some offensive potential
21 Travis Zajac, C Salmon Arm (BCHL) Zajac took the road less traveled and is coming to the draft via Junior A. The gifted offensive pivot put up big numbers last year against lesser opposition and questions remain as to how he will do next year at the University of North Dakota
22 Wes O'Neill, D Notre Dame (CCHA) New Jersey has made a habit of solid late first round draft picks and Notre Dame blueliner Wes O'Neill appears to be yet another. The 6'4" 225lb O'Neill is a solid player in his own zone and has some offensive ability that may enable him to develop into a solid two way player
23 Enver Lisin, RW Krystall Saratov (RUS) The Senators too have done well with their drafting and the strong skating and scoring ability that Lisin has shown would be attractive to most teams in the NHL. In Lisin, Ottawa gets a potential top line winger at the 23rd pick
24 Lukas Kaspar, RW Litvinov (CZE) With the better defensive prospects now off the table, it became a matter of Best Player Available. While Kaspar could well remain a one dimensional player, there are some signs he could improve his defensive awareness and his frame suggests he could add additional muscle
25 David Boland, C London (OHL) Continuing on their theme of drafting players who are likely to make it to the NHL, the Oilers overlook his current size and take the high-scoring Bolland. The London centerman shot to prominence this year with 37 goals and 67 points in just 65 games
26 Roman Voloschenko, LW Krylja Sovetov (RUS) There's a distinct possibility that Voloschenko won't be on the table when it comes to the 26th pick, but here the Canucks have the opportunity to take a raw prospect who has some very positive upside
27 Jeff Schultz, D Calgary (WHL) Washington still needs to address their defense, and Schultz, at 6'6" has the possibility of becoming a monster. He's light (215 lbs), but putting on muscle and he improved a lot from his first to second seasons with the Hitmen
28 Bruce Graham, C Moncton (QMJHL) Another sizable prospect at 6'6" and 220 lbs, the Sharks will be hoping they can get the most out of the rangy Graham. Doesn't use his size as much as many would hope, but at 18 he has plenty of time to change that
29 Juraj Gracik, RW Topolkany (SVK) Gracik is a sniper, plain and simple, with under-rated speed, excellent size, and great puck-handling skills. He plays a very good two-way game, but his primary strength is his shot. The Caps are low on pure scorers and had a lot of luck with another Slovakian sniper, Peter Bondra
30 Johannes Salmonsson, LW Djurgardens (SWE) It's probably unlikely that Salmonsson will last to the 30th pick on draft day, but the Stanley Cup champions will gladly avail themselves of the player widely thought to be the best Swede in this year's draft

24th pick to the Rangers from Toronto
25th pick to the Oilers from Philadelphia
27th pick to the Capitals from Boston
29th pick to the Capitals from Detroit

Draft compiled by:
Russell Brooks - publisher
Dan David - publisher of
Dale Downer - publisher
Bill Grunfelder - publisher of
Toby Ivey - publisher of
Mike Lee - publisher of
Thom MacPherson - contributor to
D'Arcy McGrath - publisher of
Bill McNally - contributor to
Bill Pax - publisher of
Ron Peale - publisher of
Mario Perrazzino - publisher of
Mike Stepneski - publisher of
Chris Thompson - publisher of
Frank Thorpe - publisher of
Matt Witting - publisher of
Shaun - publisher of

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