Travis Yost posted an article on TSN's webpage trying to answer a question many of us have... What is the value of a top pick these days?
For those that missed it is here:
The article is by Travis Yost and he is not as bad as many when it comes to these things. I think the real price of the top 2 picks is in the hands of the GMs of the leagues. Like anything, people will pay what they think something is worth and if Toronto or the Jets don't think it is enough it won't get done. Regardless of what anyone else thinks.
No offense to Yost but the whole article is a waste of time. He looked at games played on average but missed so many big points. This might be interesting in the later rounds but not in the first. There are things to consider.
The first overall pick sells. It is big for the fans and big for the franchise. Then you have to take into account that each draft year is different, can you compare top picks McDavid vs Yakiopov and call them equal? Then there is the cap that has to be figured in. Grabbing a guy like Matthews for a cap strapped team is great short term and might help part with salary. Or a team like Vancouver that looks to be building a future around Horvat. In fact "rebuilding" isn't factored in at all. Then there is the skill gap. How far apart is Laine and Matthews? Does Toronto secretly like Tkachuk who is dominating with their current top prospect, Marner (and out playing him). Then many little things that range from the apparent rise in values that draft pick has (to the point where we are left to guess what a pick is even worth since no GM seems to get an offer good enough) all the way to petty differences that GMs have (like Boston trading to Calgary when Edmonton's offer was better).
There is no "formula" to make these decisions and it is seemingly well known that Toronto WILL hear offers for the first pick. That being said so has every team (even the Oilers with McDavid but I can't imagine what would have even made them think for a second).
There is no real way to determine the value of any of these picks. Oilers are shopping number 4 in hopes of getting a top dman and getting calls. Are they thinking essentially straight across? Is it possible that is the value.
Then a big factor is also that a pick this year doesn't use up one of the "protected" spots during the upcoming expansion drafts. A team with a lot of players they would like to protect might find it good to overpay with guys they don't see in their long term plans for this years rookie class (a reason I don't think the Oilers will trade their pick despite taking calls).
Could a three way deal get done? Sure and probably just as likely as teams seem quite focused on the draft and what they want from it.
For example and this is big ifs. Arizona really has a hard on for home town hero Matthews. They pick 7th already and they could very well end up with their choice of dmen with that pick (which would add nicely to their crop of young players). If they parted with someone like OEL to the Oil for their 4 th pick (other mini pieces but basically this) and gave Toronto the 4 the pick + (maybe Duclair, second round pick, maybe even the 7th with something else coming back, I am not going to speculate on what Toronto calls fair but I do know that they like Tkachuk who is almost guaranteed to be the 4th pick).
This fits all teams needs. Arizona has Domi and Matthews on which to build an amazing team. Toronto gets a player they are most certainly going to be watching at the combine that adds grit, skill, speed and can play any position, who already has proven chemistry with the player they seem to want to build their franchise around plus they get another big piece. Most likely a young player that is most likely a top 6 forward and at the same stage as the other two. Edmonton gets their top dman and they proved last year that they are willing to part with picks in bundles for players that are further along.
Sorry Ek, I see no possibility that Phili moves up. Still Boston and Carolina both have two first round picks that they could use in a move. It would most likely involve them moving those into a top 5 pick and then trading from there. Calgary has the pieces to move up but really at 7 they are looking at getting Nylander, Dubois or Tkuchuk. Which really fits their needs. All highly talented wingers to play along side their future top 2 centers, Monohan and Bennet.
The other team I could see with a chance of moving up is Buffalo. Pick 8 might be okay. Most likely the first dman picked (Chychrum or Sergachyov). Still Buffalo has acquired a lot of pieces that could help them either move up or even just add a top 4 spot. Guys like Ristonlinen, Folingo, ROR, Kane, Moulson... all have value to add when moving up. Not saying they would mortgage these to move up but they do have the pieces.