2009 NHL Draft Review/Free Agency Link Collossus

John Tavares has arrived in New York, made his pick of Mets over Yankees (he's a Blue Jays fan, so his NY baseball choice was self-evident). Garth Snow has received kudos with caveats about the long road still ahead, plus some questioning whether he should have taken the power forward Zach Kassian at #12, since this team needs enforcement. (Though I think it's a stretch to draft a kid at 12 in June and expect him to step into the NHL lineup in October to protect your new star from Chris Pronger's elbows.)

First, YEEEEAAAAAAHHHH, TAAAVAAAAARES! Let me say again how glad I am we didn't need this Tavares-less survival guide, even if it was scandalously fun to write. But the Islanders-Penguins comparisons are already annoying.

Anyway, while reviewing the Islanders picks is find and dandy (and by all means, continue the debate in comments), believe it or not the NHL Draft included 29 other teams. [Update: Logan's post now has quotes from Jankowski on each of the Islanders' final five picks.] What follows is a quick run-down with links to where those other teams stand, either in the draft aftermath, with free agency looming -- bye bye Sedins! -- or both. (Note: A lot of the following links are SBN sites, which is a bit "in house"-ish, but they all have good blogrolls and news links for more.)

After this, we'll be moving into full-blown free agency mode.

Anaheim - If Bob Murray is already an oustanding GM, is it thanks to Brian Burke, or his own brilliance? I don't know, but this year Murray 1) Off-loaded UFAs at the deadline for younger players who kept the team compettive, and 2) Dumped Pronger for shoot-the-moon compensation only the Flyers would give. Bravo.

Atlanta - The ever-analytical Falconer thinks the Thrashers did quite well at the draft table. Add to that, GM Don Waddell sounded optimistic about extending captain Ilya Kovalchuk. As an Isles fan, I feel an obligation to hope teams like this turn it around.

Boston - Stanley Cup of Chowder has profiles of several of their picks. As for the Phil Kessel and salary cap situation ... 8-Ball says: "Signs point to crap."

Buffalo - Die by the Blade says the Sabres were true to form in this year's draft. Please don't tell me the Isles should bid on their going, going, gone free agent, Maxim Afinogenov.

Calgary - The Flames' list of picks includes Tim Erixon, the Swedish D I picked at 26 in our mock draft. Since the Isles traded that 26th pick (indeed, that pick touched more hockey hands than Carol Alt), I plead hung jury on that one. But the Flame's most pressing issue is Jay Boewmeester. Hannibal says: "Tick tock, tick tock, Clarice."

Carolina - The Hurriwhalers took what might have been a reach in Round 1, but their scouting directoer is -- naturally -- pleased with their haul.

Chicago - The Hawks have re-signed Dave Bolland for 5 years, at $3.7 million per. Not sure how I feel about that as the market. But here's the Trib's look at the Hawks' draft.

Colorado - You know how the NHL is all about the parity and the socialized cap care now? It strikes me that two of the three worst teams last season were felled by serious injury scourges. (The third was felled by ownership hubris.) All three were bad, sure, but they might not have been quite so bad. If Colorado isn't healthier next year, will we be lottery mates again? A rundown of the Avs' future. But first: the concern is the future of Super Joe Sakic.

Columbus - To finally make the playoffs only to lose every game, I imagine, sucks. Yet Columbus is probably glad they didn't make a deal for Doug Weight, as rumored before the trade deadline. Here's their blueline-focused draft.

Dallas - Defending Big D was one of several SBN blogs to lead the New Media invasion of the draft in Montreal, and they hit it with a ton of coverage. Their biggest free agent concern is chasing Jonas Gustavsson. Which is interesting, since ... you know, Marty Turco.

Detroit - The Red Wings traded their 1st-round pick because, you know, that's not really how they roll. At the moment, though, Marian Hossa sounds like a one-year finals flop wonder.

Edmonton - It's not that the Oilers can't draw free agents any more than they can interest Mrs. Pronger; it's that they are actually a bit cap-chalenged. Lowetide has a fun look at free agent snipers. Copper & Blue looks at the Oilers draft.

Florida - The Cats need a #1 center and ... a goalie to replace Craig Anderson. If Andy draws lots of offers, don't see Garth Snow getting involved in a bidding war, though.

Los Angeles - The Kings kept the 5th pick, took Brayden Schenn, and didn't give up a ransom for team-deserter Dany Heatley. Win-win.

Minnesota - In Chuck Fletcher's first draft, the Wild didn't take the local boy (Zach Budish) that many fans were expecting, but after a trade with the Isles, they came out pretty good, according to pundits.

Montreal - The Habs are about to lose a full line or two of free agents. Did they address that in the draft? Robert thinks so.

Nashville - This team did take Budish, and they did just fine.

New Jesey - I know it was wrong, wrong what they did, but I still love the Sutters. (Video of Sutters talking, here at the introduction in Calgary [3 minutes in] is always entertaining. They always sound like they just woke up.) Anyway, the show must go on. An epic review of how the Devils drafted down in the Meadowlands, I mean Newark, from In Lou We (still) Trust.

New York Short Island Smurfs - I'm sure they have concerns or something. Go Hugh Jessiman ...
No, seriously, Jim got thoughts on the draft from Adam Graves. Meanwhile, Nik Antropov is asking for "ridiculous" compensation, and their misguided fans saw that one coming.

Ottawa - Bryan Murray still wants a premium for Dany Heatley, even though there's a $4 million bonus hanging over him. Good luck not paying that. At least there's promise in the Senators' draft haul, which includes Jared Cowen.

Philadelphia - Flyers fans are excitedd to see Pronger lay out elbow Atlantic Division stars. I'm excited to see the length of his suspensions double, now that he's in a Flyers uniform.

Phoenix - The NHL's forgotten franchise picked Blackberries in the draft. I jest. Their picks are at Five for Howling.

Pittsburgh -The draft is a bit anticlimactic for Stanley Cup Champions. That said, here's what Pittsburgh is looking at.

San Jose - The only team without a 1st-round pick, and it was passed around like a dubie. But San Jose has major decisions around the bend -- could they include Robyn Regehr?

St. Louis - The prospect guy at St. Louis Game Time is frighteningly devoted (to the Blues, and to Deutschland). Here's his take on the Blues' draft.

Tampa Bay - I just hope Hedman doesn't find his inner Pronger and start stomping Tavares in the 2013 East Conference final. Anyway, Vinny is an even bigger story. Supposedly he is staying.

Toronto - Burke wanted Tavares. Or Brayden Schenn. He got Evander Kane. But expectations notwithstanding, that's no small consolation. Might as well hear it from the horse's mouth.

Vancouver - We linked in the intro that the creepy Sedins appear headed to the market. Canucks fans are on alert.

Washington - Forget about their draft. Japers' Rink takes GM George McPhee's comments on the enforcer role under discussion.

There's your SBN-tinted wrap to the draft weekend. I'll do that from time to time. I'm not saying these sites are your be-all, end-all for info on other teams. But they all are good, work their tails off, and are great jumping off points for the other information out there about their teams.

Now, off to the market for a 1A goalie...

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