The day started with a great move by the New York Rangers, trading Derek Stepan and Anti Raanata to Arizona for the seventh pick in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft and defenseman Anthony DeAngelo. The Rangers needed to shake up the core lineup and sadly Derek Stepan paid the price by being traded.
The question that is fair to ask is whether or not Lias Andersson was the right choice with the seventh pick. Honestly, I am really unsure if he is or isn’t as I felt the Rangers needed a bigger center to be able to play against the John Tavares and Sidney Crosby’s of the Metro Divisions.
At 5’11, that is a fair concern to ask about. With the exception of NHL Central Scouting, all of the leading prospect group rank him anywhere from 12th to 25th. Elite Prospects who I consider the bible for European prospects does give him a decent grade
Andersson is an excellent team player. Never takes a shift off. Also blessed with good hockey sense and plays a strong two-way game. Offensively, Andersson stands out with impressive puck skills, a good shot, and fine speed. Has the tools to become a scoring line player, but could also become an excellent role player who always gives 100%
So yes when the Rangers left Michael Rasmussen and Gabriel on the board rather than address the huge need for a first line center then I am a bit frustrated.Young Andersson we will find out this year how good he really is as he will play for Frulunda in the SHL.
In addition, Andersson will play against the World’s best while playing in the Champions Hockey League as well as Andersson should earn a spot on Sweden’s World Under-20 team so we will get to watch him when the 2018 World Under-20 Championships come to Buffalo this winter.
With the 21st pick, the Rangers used it on Filip Chytil of HC Zlin in the Czech Republic and he too can be viewed as a risk of a pick. Chytil has size (6’2, 192) and is just 17 but his rankings were all over the place too. (From Elite Prospects)
Ranked #28 by Hockeyprospect.com
Ranked #64 by ISS Hockey
Ranked #70 by Future Considerations
Ranked #42 by McKeen’s Hockey
Ranked #11 by NHL Central Scouting (EU Skaters)
Ranked #31 by TSN/McKenzie
Other than a shifty skater and that he is playing among adults there really is not much to go on with Chytil. Our best wish then is for the Rangers to take advantage of the Glen Sather Fan Club and get one of those junior coaches to select Chytil in the upcoming CHL Import Draft.
The Czechs are not strong in developing their own young talent so getting Chytil to North America will do more to help his development.