Well, the draft lottery came and went as expected. There was a 12.5% chance of happiness, and in true Leafs fashion, Toronto managed to come close enough to bring only pain…
leafs lottery ball rimming out set to my heart will go on (recorder version) pic.twitter.com/ncmimBGtZc
— dirtbag daddy (@dirtbag_daddi) August 11, 2020
Ah, nevertheless. Instead the Leafs traded the 13th overall pick, so they could unload Patrick Marleau and sign Marner to a contract to a contract that I will comfortably call “a little much.”
The good news in all of this is that the Leafs seem to draft well across the draft now that the keen eyes of Mark Hunter have departed. And with 10 picks in a deep draft, the Leafs have the potential to make the best of things…
|Round||Overall Pick||Original Owner of Pick|
|2nd Round||45th Overall|
|4th Round||106th Overall|
|4th Round||118th Overall*||Golden Knights Pick|
|5th Round||149th Overall*||Golden Knights Pick|
|6th Round||168th Overall|
|6th Round||178th Overall*||Hurricanes Pick|
|6th Round||184th Overall*||Avalanche Pick|
|7th Round||189th Overall||Sharks Pick|
|7th Round||195th Overall||Jets Pick|
|7th Round||216th Overall*||Blues Pick|
|*overall spot yet to be determined|
In addition to not having a 1st round pick, the absence of 3rd round pick hurts as well. One pick in the top 100 isn’t ideal, and generally when your team is in a situation like this you would be consoling yourself by looking at how far your team went in the playoffs. Instead, it’s the Leafs, and we’re treated to yet another reminder that Toronto has no business trading first round picks until the team actually accomplishes something.
Again, this is supposed to be optimistic, and the Leafs having nine late round picks with their bountiful scouting resources is a definite plus.
Last year’s late round haul of Abruzzese, Abramov, Koster, and Loponen should give Leafs fans a ton of reasons to be enthused about what Dubas & Co. can do. And the Leafs having the budget for international scouting resources means an opportunity to find gems that will have begun playing their 2020-21 seasons in Europe.
With the draft still two months away, it’s entirely possible and somewhat likely we see some changes to the Leafs scheduled picks, but in the meantime, we’ll be brushing up on our 2020 Sleeper Pick list.