Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Thrasher Draft History Ugly; Jets Draft History Yet To Be Written

Former Director of Amateur Scouting and Player Development for the Atlanta Thrashers Don Marr is no longer with the team he scouted for for the past 10 or so seasons.

And good riddance.

Though the current roster is stocked with previous high profile and early first round picks, such as Bryan Little (2006, 12th overall), Zach Bogosian (2008, third overall), Evander Kane (2009, fourth overall), and Alexander Burmistrov (2010, 8th overall), the franchise's track record beyond the first round of the draft is dismal at best in Atlanta.

The Thrashers managed to select 24 players who have played at least one game in the NHL past the first round out of 87 picks. Out of those 24 players, only six have played more than 100 career games in the NHL.

Let's not forget their first pick ever was Patrik Stefan, a player who has been touted as the biggest first overall pick bust in NHL draft history next to maybe even Alexander Daigle.

In their unsuccessful stay in Atlanta, the team has picked first overall twice and second overall twice. In their 12 years of drafts, they have picked in the top ten nine times and have picked in the top five six times.

No wonder GM Kevin Cheveldayoff relieved head scout Dan Marr from his duties when the team relocated to Winnipeg.

With the seventh overall pick this past draft, the Jets went out on a limb and picked Mark Scheifele, a risk at the seventh spot since he was only playing Junior B hockey in Southern Ontario last year but his production with the Barrie Colts of the OHL convinced the Jets he was worth the risk.

In addition to Scheifele, the Jets grabbed son of former NHL Dave Lowry, Adam Lowry 67th overall and then picked a local product in goal with Winnipegger Jason Kasdorf.

The Jets draft history has yet to be written, but if more picks than just Scheifele come out of the draft as full-time NHLers, we can safely say the Jets have the more successful draft history now that they are out of Atlanta and in Winnipeg.

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