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2017 NHL mock draft: Pantorno version 1.0

A clear-cut No. 1 prospect has not emerged as of yet.
Halifax center Nico Hischier is lighting up the QMJHL this season. (Photo: Getty Images)
Halifax center Nico Hischier is lighting up the QMJHL this season. (Photo: Getty Images)

"Wait a second, this isn't a NBA mock draft," says many as they frantically mash the back button to get back to their previous screen. 

It's OK. I won't tell anyone that you're here. 

Believe it or not, there is another major North American sports league that has a draft at the end of June and it's the NHL, who is in the midst of yet another entertaining postseason. 

The league is currently grappling with the issue of who to deem as its No. 1 overall prospect as Nolan Patrick and Nico Hischier are two of the best the next generation of hockey stars has to offer. So without further ado, may I present to you the first of my 2017 NHL mock drafts where you can scoff and tell me that you pretend to know all about the best crop of defensemen coming out of Finland:

Joe Pantorno's 2017 NHL mock draft version 1.0

1. New Jersey Devils- Nico Hischier, C/RW, Halifax (QMJHL)

2. Philadelphia Flyers- Nolan Patrick, C, Brandon (WHL)

3. Dallas Stars- Miro Heiskanen, D, HIFK U20 (Finland Jr.)

4. Colorado Avalanche- Timothy Liljegren, D, Rogle BK (SHL)

5. Vancouver Canucks- Casey Mittelstadt, C/LW, Green Bay (USHL)

6. Vegas Golden Knights- Michael Rasmussen, C, Tri-City (WHL)

7. Arizona Coyotes- Gabriel Vilardi, C, Windsor (OHL)

8. Buffalo Sabres- Cale Makar, D, Brooks (AJHL)

9. Detroit Red Wings- Owen Tippett, RW, Mississauga (OHL)

10. Florida Panthers- Elias Pettersson, C/LW, Timra IK (Allsvenskan)

11. Los Angeles Kings- Martin Necas, C, HC Kometa Brno (Czech Republic)

12. Carolina Hurricanes- Callan Foote, D, Kelowna (WHL)

13. Winnipeg Jets- Nicolas Hague, D, Mississauga (OHL)

14. Tampa Bay Lightning- Eeli Tolvanen, LW, Mississauga (OHL)

15. New York Islanders- Klim Kostin, RW, Dynamo Moscow (KHL)

16. Calgary Flames- Juuso Valimaki, D, Tri-City (WHL)

17. Toronto Maple Leafs- Urho Vaakanainen, D, JYP (Finland)

18. Boston Bruins- Kristian Vesalainen, RW, Frolunda (Allsvenskan)

19. San Jose Sharks- Henri Jokiharju, D, Portland (WHL)

20. St. Luis Blues- Jason Robertson, LW, Kingston (OHL)

21. New York Rangers- Conor Timmins, D, Sault Ste. Marie (OHL)

22. Edmonton Oilers- Cody Glass, C/RW, Portland (WHL)

23. Arizona Coyotes- Isaac Ratcliffe, LW, Guelph (OHL)

24. Columbus Blue Jackets- Nick Suzuki, C, Owen Sound (OHL)

25. Montreal Canadiens- Kailer Yamamoto, RW, Spokane (WHL)

26. Chicago Blackhawks- Maxime Comtois, LW, Victoriaville (QMJHL)

27. St. Louis Blues- Pierre-Olivier Joseph, D, Charlottetown (QMJHL)

28. Anaheim Ducks- Erik Brannstrom, D, HV 71 (Allsvenskan)

29. Pittsburgh Penguins- Kole Lind, RW, Kelowna (WHL)

30. Ottawa Senators- Ryan Poehling, C, St. Cloud St. (NCAA)

31. Nashville Predators- Josh Norris, C, USA U-18

 

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