2022 NHL Draft primer: Details, order, top prospects

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When is the 2022 NHL Draft?

Round 1 of the NHL Draft will take place Thursday, July 7 at 7 p.m. ET (ESPN, ESPN+, SN, TVAS). Rounds 2-7 will be held Friday, July 8 beginning at 11 a.m. ET (NHLN, ESPN+, SN, TVAS).

The 2022 NHL Draft will take place at Bell Centre in Montreal, the first in-person draft since the 2019 event at Rogers Arena in Vancouver.

Who’s picking first?

The Montreal Canadiens won the 2022 NHL Draft Lottery and will make the No. 1 overall selection. Kingston Frontenacs center Shane Wright, Olympic breakout star Juraj Slafkovský (TPS, Liiga), and Logan Cooley (USNTDP) could be in the mix for the top pick.

Here is how Round 1 looks:

1. Montreal Canadiens
2. New Jersey Devils
3. Arizona Coyotes
4. Seattle Kraken
5. Philadelphia Flyers
6. Columbus Blue Jackets (from CHI)
7. Ottawa Senators
8. Detroit Red Wings
9. Buffalo Sabres
10. Anaheim Ducks
11. San Jose Sharks
12. Columbus Blue Jackets
13. New York Islanders
14. Winnipeg Jets
15. Vancouver Canucks
16. Buffalo Sabres (from VGK)
17. Nashville Predators
18. Dallas Stars
19. Minnesota (from LAK)
20. Washington Capitals
21. Pittsburgh Penguins
22. Anaheim Ducks (from BOS)
23. St. Louis Blues
24. Minnesota Wild
25. Toronto Maple Leafs
26. Montreal Canadiens (from CGY)
27. Arizona Coyotes (from CAR via MTL)
28. Buffalo Sabres (from FLA)
29. Edmonton Oilers
30. Winnipeg Jets (from NYR)
31. Tampa Bay Lightning
32. Arizona Coyotes (from COL)

“The 12 teams that lost in the first two rounds of the Stanley Cup Playoffs have picks 17-28. Teams that did not win their division were placed in inverse order of regular-season standings points, followed by the three division winners who lost in inverse order of regular-season points.”

You can find the rest of the 2020 NHL Draft order here.

[NHL Mock Draft: Wright, Slafkovský, Cooley top 2022 class]

Who else is expected to go in the first round?

Šimon Nemec, D, HK Nitra (Slovakia); David Jiříček, D, HC Plzen (Czech Republic); Cutter Gauthier, LW, US U-18 (NTDP); Conor Geekie, C, Winnipeg (WHL); Matthew Savoie, C, Winnipeg (WHL); Jimmy Snuggerud, RW, US U-18 (NTDP); Pavel Mintyukov, D, Saginaw (OHL); Kevin Korchinski, D, Seattle (WHL); Marco Kasper, C, Rögle BK (SHL); Joakim Kemell, RW, JYP (Liiga); Rutger McGroarty, RW, US U-18 (NTDP); Jack Hughes, C, Northeastern (H-EAST); Seamus Casey, D, US U-18 (NTDP); Brad Lambert, C, JYP-Pelicans (Liiga); Liam Öhgren, LW, Djurgårdens (SWE J20); Isaac Howard, LW, USN U18 (USDP); Rutger McGroarty, LW, USN U18 (USNTDP); Ryan Chesley, D, USN U18 (USNTDP); Jagger Firkus, RW, Moose Jaw (WHL)

What are the scouts saying?

Will Scouch on Shane Wright: “Wright’s ability to anticipate pressure from opponents, adapt to it, move pucks and maintain possession is high end, and should be more than enough to cover for his lack of gamebreaking speed and offensive flair. He’s a wonderful shooter with a great sense of space in the offensive zone as well, but I’m unsure that Wright is a guy who saves a last place organization on his own.” [McKeen’s Hockey]

Chris Peters on Logan Cooley: “As I’ve watched the playoffs this year, my thinking shifted even more. The best teams have fast, dynamic forwards that are constantly keeping defenders on their heels. They don’t cede possession without trying all of their other options. Cooley processes the game as fast as anyone in this draft and his ability to spot plays in transition is a major separator from the field. He has vision, threads passes well and can get behind defenders to give himself better looks at the net. Cooley is headed to the University of Minnesota next year, which has been a solid training ground the last few years for players on the NHL track. I think he’s probably a one-and-done in college player and would be ready to make an NHL impact by 2023-24.” [Daily Faceoff]

Scott Wheeler on Juraj Slafkovský: “Slafkovsky is built like a power forward, with a 218-pound frame that makes him one of the draft’s heaviest players, but he plays the game with uncharacteristic finesse, regularly flashing hands you’d expect out of a smaller player one-on-one to pull pucks in tight to his feet. He’s also got a rangy, fluid stride, which makes him a surprisingly dangerous rush player — and impressive confidence with the puck on his stick, which enables him to hang onto it (sometimes to a fault) and attack off the wall into the slot (he loves taking the puck from the half wall to the home plate area to shoot from his forehand. The team that drafts him will be betting on his upside, which grades at or near the very top of this class.” [The Athletic]

Sam Cosentino on Šimon Nemec: “A coveted ‘Right Shot’ ‘D’ prospect who is a transitional defender that quarterbacks the power play. Sneaky strong. He has the strength and movement to angle opponents and finish his check along the boards. High end hockey ‘IQ’. Head on a swivel. He identifies very well in all three zone. Pinches down to keep pucks alive in the offensive zone. Jumps to pucks in the defensive zone. His most attractive element is his vision and playmaking. More of a distributor than a shooter. Elite playmaker who slides into the rush as an extra layer.” [Sportsnet]

Will Scouch on David Jiříček: “He’s quite skilled, able to juke off defenders and make space in the offensive zone, as well as find space offensively to make passes easier for himself. His crossovers allow him to generate speed down the wing and drive into the offensive zone, and his package of tools is highly unique. The issue is that there’s a bit of “2021 Ben Chiarot Syndrome” with Jiříček. A player who is portrayed as effective defensively when he actually has significant issues and relies on borderline penalty plays to gain possession of the puck. I’ve seen it all out of him, and he’s had his fair share of penalties, while also getting left behind on more defensive rushes than you’d like. In a couple years, Jiříček could be a monster at both ends, but there’s work to be done, just like many of the names in this range.” [McKeen’s Hockey]


Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.

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    Hurricanes top Stars in OT to win matchup of 1st-place teams

    Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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    DALLAS – Martin Necas scored 1:34 into overtime to give the Carolina Hurricanes a 3-2 win over the Dallas Stars in a matchup of division leaders Wednesday night.

    Sebastian Aho had a short-handed goal and Brent Burns also scored for the Hurricanes, who lead the Metropolitan Division in the Eastern Conference. The game-winner was Necas’ 19th goal this season.

    Dallas is still atop the Western Conference, and the Central Division, after its second consecutive 3-2 overtime loss at home. Jason Robertson scored his 33rd goal for the Stars, and 19-year-old rookie Wyatt Johnston got his 13th.

    Carolina goalie Frederik Andersen didn’t return after the first intermission because of an upper-body injury, soon after a strange sequence that ended with Robertson scoring on a shot from what seemed to be an impossible angle.

    The puck was bouncing on the ice behind Andersen and settled against the post after Tyler Seguin‘s shot before the goalie was able to swipe it away to his right. Robertson then shot from behind Andersen, and the puck apparently ricocheted off him and into the net for a 2-1 Dallas lead. Robertson’s 33rd goal matched his assists total.

    Antti Raanta replaced Andersen and stopped all 15 shots he faced – none in overtime – after the starter had four saves. Raanta had to shake off getting struck in the head by Mason Marchment‘s stick when the Stars forward was behind the net fighting for the puck midway through the third period.

    Stars goalie Jake Oettinger stopped 22 shots, including a glove save of Andrei Svechnikov‘s wrister with just more than five minutes left in regulation.

    Aho’s 200th career goal put Carolina up 1-0 midway through the first period. The Stars got even just more than two minutes later when Johnston scored unassisted after a faceoff.

    Johnston also had a shot ricochet off the post with just under six minutes left.

    In between the first two goals, Oettinger went into a fully extended split, with his right skate against the post, to deny Paul Stastny‘s attempt to knock in a loose puck.

    Burns tied the game at 2 in the second period, getting the puck after a faceoff, then skating over the top of the circle and scoring top shelf over Oettinger’s left shoulder.

    NOTES: Marchment was coming out of the penalty box at the same time Carolina made an errant pass in the second period. He had a breakaway attempt, but couldn’t get enough control of the puck to get off a quality shot. … Hurricanes defenseman Brett Pesce and Stars center Luke Glendening both got five-minute penalties for fighting in the second period.


    Hurricanes: Will play San Jose on Friday night in the first of three consecutive home games.

    Stars: Host the New Jersey Devils on Friday night in their last game before the All-Star break.

    Penguins goaltender Tristan Jarry out until after the All-Star break

    Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

    PITTSBURGH — Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Tristan Jarry‘s on-again, off-again season is now off again.

    Coach Mike Sullivan said that the two-time All-Star will miss at least two games with an upper-body injury.

    Jarry was scheduled to start against Florida but reported an upper-body issue when he arrived at PPG Paints Arena. Casey DeSmith got the last-second start as the Penguins pulled out a wild 7-6 victory over the Panthers.

    Jarry is out through at least the All-Star break. Pittsburgh plays at Washington and then hosts San Jose before getting a full week off.

    The 27-year-old Jarry has played well when he’s been in the lineup, posting a 16-5-5 record with a 2.65 goals-against average in 27 games. His availability, however, has been an issue of late. He missed more than two weeks earlier this month after being injured against Boston in the Winter Classic on Jan. 2.

    The Penguins are not as sharp when Jarry is out. Pittsburgh is 8-10-3 with DeSmith or Dustin Tokarski in goal this season. The Penguins recalled Tokarski from their American Hockey League affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton to back up DeSmith during Jarry’s absence.

    Letang scores twice in return, Penguins beat Panthers 7-6 in OT

    Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

    PITTSBURGH – Amid a nightmarish season off the ice, Kris Letang has been searching for joy. A sense of normalcy.

    He found a little of both.

    The veteran Pittsburgh defenseman scored twice in his return from a lower-body injury, the second with 54 seconds left in overtime to give the Penguins a 7-6 victory over Florida.

    “I was just happy to be out there,” Letang said. “Be in the atmosphere of the team.”

    Letang’s 17th season with Pittsburgh has been pockmarked by health issues and a profound sense of loss. He missed two weeks after suffering the second stroke of his career shortly after Thanksgiving. He then tweaked something in a loss to Detroit on Dec. 28.

    His father died unexpectedly a few days later, and Letang spent an extended amount of time with his family in his native Montreal, with his teammates making an unexpected stop to join Letang for his father’s wake at the end of a West Coast swing earlier this month.

    The Penguins activated him off injured reserve on Tuesday afternoon. Letang responded with four points in a rollicking game that featured 13 goals, the last Letang’s one-timer from just above the left circle on the power play that gave Pittsburgh just its fourth win in 12 overtime games this season.

    “It was kind of surreal, you know?” Letang said. “I didn’t know what to think or how it was going to go. These guys supported me for the last month… it’s just great to be back.”

    The Penguins, currently in the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, opened up a small bit of breathing room over the ninth-place Panthers by beating Florida for the 18th time in its last 21 trips to Pittsburgh.

    Evgeni Malkin, Sidney Crosby and Danton Heinen each had a goal and two assists for The Penguins. Rickard Rakell and Drew O'Connor also scored for the Penguins.

    Casey DeSmith struggled in place of Tristan Jarry, a late scratch with an upper-body injury. DeSmith stopped 33 shots, including both he faced in overtime, to win for the third time in his last 10 starts.

    “That was a huge two points for us,” DeSmith said. “Obviously we’re battling with them in the standings. Character win at home.”

    Carter Verhaeghe scored twice for Florida, including a tying goal with 2:32 left in regulation. Aaron Ekblad had a goal and two assists. Matthew Tkachuk and Sam Reinhart each had a goal and an assist. Colin White‘s sixth goal of the season 4:10 into the third gave the Panthers the lead but Florida couldn’t hold it.

    Alex Lyon made 42 saves after getting the start when Spencer Knight was unavailable for reasons head coach Paul Maurice would not disclose. The Panthers are 7-3-2 since January 1 to surge back into the fringe of contention.

    “We’re so much more of a different hockey team than we were a month ago at this time,” Maurice said. “Rallied around each other, battled as hard as they could to get a point on the road in the circumstances that we’re in. I couldn’t be more proud.”

    Neither Lyon or DeSmith – who got the heads up he was playing less than an hour before the opening faceoff – appeared quite ready to play on short notice. They gave up a six goals – three by each team – during a frantic first period that included Letang’s first goal since Dec. 15 and Tkachuk’s 25th of the season.

    Things settled down in the second. Ekblad’s short-handed goal put the Panthers in front but Crosby knotted the game at 4-4 with a pretty backhand through Lyon’s legs with 40 seconds to go in the period to set up a hectic third in which both teams squandered one-goal leads.

    “It wasn’t pretty but you need to find ways to win sometimes,” Crosby said. “We did a good job of that here today.”


    Panthers: Host Angeles on Friday night.

    Penguins: At Washington on Thursday night.

    Avalanche spoil Kuemper’s return, top Capitals 3-2 as Bednar sets mark

    Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
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    DENVER – Artturi Lehkonen, Andrew Cogliano and Alex Newhook scored against former teammate Darcy Kuemper and the surging Colorado Avalanche held off the Washington Capitals 3-2 to give coach Jared Bednar his franchise-record 266th victory.

    Logan O'Connor added two assists, Nathan MacKinnon had an assist for his 700th point and Alexandar Georgiev made 37 saves in the Avs’ season-best sixth straight victory. They moved into third place in the Central Division, one point ahead of Minnesota.

    Bednar, coaching his 500th game for Colorado, improved to 266-185-49 and passed former Quebec Nordiques boss Michel Bergeron for the most coaching victories in franchise history.

    Alex Ovechkin returned from an injury to score his 31st goal for Washington. Conor Sheary also scored and Kuemper stopped 23 shots in his first game in Denver since helping the Avalanche win the Stanley Cup in June.

    The crowd stood and applauded after a first-period video tribute for Kuemper, who won 37 games in the regular season and 10 more in the playoffs.

    The Avs chose not to re-sign Kuemper, who then inked a five-year deal with the Capitals in July.

    He had his moments against his former team, including nifty glove saves against Jacob MacDonald and Lehkonen in the second period to keep it a one-goal game. But Newhook’s goal with 4:21 left in the second made it 3-1.

    The depleted Capitals dominated the third period but still lost for the fifth time in seven games.

    Ovechkin’s one-timer at 9:44 of the third was his 811th goal after he missed his first game of the season Saturday with a lower-body injury. But Washington was without T.J. Oshie, who left to be with his wife for the birth of their fourth child. And Nicklas Backstrom was a late scratch with a non-COVID illness.

    Then Tom Wilson exited in the second period after blocking a shot and underwent an X-ray between periods.

    The Avalanche, who haven’t trailed during their win streak, solved Kuemper at 8:57 of the first when MacKinnon absorbed a big hit from Dmitry Orlov and fed Lehkonen for his 15th goal and sixth in six games.

    Cogliano redirected Kurtis MacDermid‘s shot 2:04 into the second to make it 2-0. Sheary cut the. lead in half when he tipped in Martin Fehervary‘s shot for his 12th goal just over two minutes later.


    It also marked the return of Washington’s Nicolas Aube-Kubel, who had 22 points in 67 games for the Avs in 2021-22, He’s remembered for dropping and denting the Cup during the on-ice celebration.

    “It’s part of my journey here,” a smiling Aube-Kubel said of his fumble, adding the season was “the best time of my life.”

    NOTES: Avs D Cale Makar (upper body) practiced Monday and took part in the morning skate, but missed his fourth straight game. … Avs W Anton Blidh cleared waivers and skated on the fourth line. … Aliaksei Protas centered Washington’s third line in his first NHL action since Jan. 5 and was robbed by Georgiev in the first period. … The Capitals have only four games left outside the Eastern time zone.


    Capitals: Host Pittsburgh.

    Avalanche: Host Anaheim.