Everyone, myself included, believes you generally go with Best Player Available in a draft. You don’t draft for need, you draft whoever is the best player left on the board. So with all that said I am going to sound very hypocritical when I say I don’t particularly care for the pick of Michael Del Zotto from Oshawa. Why? Because we already have a better version of Michael Del Zotto from Oshawa, his name is Bobby Sanguinetti, from Brampton, soon to be Hartford, and shortly thereafter in New York playing along side Marc Staal.
While I havent seen Michael play, I have done some reading and looked at a few videos on youtube and looked at some stats, and heres what I have come up with…WE ALREADY HAVE A BETTER VERSION OF THIS KID IN OUR SYSTEM!! Bobby plays a better defensive game from all accounts (though certainly no Lidstrom, hes at least adequate in his own zone which Michael is not…yet), Bobby is a bigger goal scoring threat, and really, Bobby played on teams where he was the primary offensive attacking option on many nights. He was close to the top in terms of point production, ranking 3rd on his team where no player broke 100 points, Del Zotto was 5th on the Oshawa Generals team that featured 2 100+ point players, one of whom being 1 John Tavares, breaker of Wayne Gretzkys records. Looking at Del Zottos stats, you see that a lot of his numbers are from assists, not goals. Thats ok, most defenseman, and NHL players in general work out that way, but when you have a 1 man offensive blitzkrieg like John Tavares on your team, and you see 47 assists, you wonder how many of those are simply Michael passing the puck to Tavares, and Tavares going in and scoring all by his lonesome, and Michael picking up a point. All I am saying is, when I look at Del Zottos stats, and I look at Sanguinettis stats, Sanguinettis stands out more because he was looked at to be “the man”, Del Zotto didn’t have the same pressures if you ask me.
Secondly, the Rangers have a clear area of concern throughout the organization, THEY DO NOT HAVE A BRUISER! Del Zotto appears to be willing and able to make hits, but he isnt a Teubert, or Petrecki, or Orpik kind of a player who will murder players, THAT is what we needed. Maybe Del Zotto might have been the best player available, and maybe I have no right whatsoever bitching about the pick, but I see John Carlson on the board, and I read what I have read about the kid, and I have to ask myself, why the Rangers passed on a kid with so many tools, and who is capable of being that bruiser with some offensive upside?
This pick just does not make any sense to me. Who knows, maybe Del Zotto will combine with Sanguinetti to form a lethal power play pairing the likes we havent seen since Zubov and Leetch lit up broadway 14 years ago. Maybe Staal, Sanguinetti, Del Zotto, and Michael Sauer will be one of the most feared bluelines in the NHL in 4 or 5 years because of how versatile, and complete they are as a tandem. All I know is, if it were me, Del Zotto would not be the player I would have taken. I just think we could have done better organizationally. Maybe not better in terms of talent, but better for the organization.
For a guy who has been looking forward to this day for months now, I find myself quite disappointed.