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Tomorrow’s Blues with Brian Weidler

2020 NHL Draft - Round One
After a VERY long absence, Your “Game Time” Prospect Department is back...
Photo by Scott Rovak/NHLI via Getty Images

Never let it be said that an old dog cannot learn new tricks.

This old dog, Your “Game Time” Prospect Department, has finally managed to slay the dragon of two-factor authentication, and we will once again be posting “Tomorrow’s Blues” articles and assorted other news about the Blues’ developmental system.

We even have admin privileges on the GT Facebook page, so we are thinking about an occasional webcast. Ain’t technology grand?

For now, I’m just going to go ahead and reprint the response I gave when asked on Facebook to give my impressions of the Blues’ 2020 Entry Draft selections:

I think Jake Neighbours is a guy that Blues fans will absolutely love. He’s a hard-nosed working-class kind of hockey player.

I think Dylan Peterson was an absolute steal for the Blues at 86th overall, and I hear a lot of good things about Leo Lööf.

Tanner Dickinson is a skilled guy, but at 5’ 11, 150 pounds, he’s gonna have to seriously bulk up or he’ll get killed as a pro. He needs to put on 25-30 pounds of muscle without losing any speed or quickness, and if he can do that, they might have another mid-round steal.

The late picks, Matthew Kessel, Will Cranley, and Noah Beck, are solid organizational depth. although I’m a little confused as to why they drafted a goalie when there are already two prospects in the system to play in the minors (Fitzpatrick and Hofer, along with the 26-YO free agent Jon Gillies), and two more playing junior (Colten Ellis) and in the VHL, or Russian AHL equivalent (19-YO Vadim Zherenko).

Kessel (no relation to Phil) and Beck will likely end up as AHL depth on defense, which is good because the organization does not have a lot of depth on defense. Prior to this draft, there was not a single active defense prospect that was not contracted to play minor pro next season.

There will be much more to come about Neighbours, Peterson, et. al. And oh, by the way, Neighbours just inked a three-year ELC with the Blues.

https://www.nhl.com/blues/news/neighbours-agrees-to-3-year-entry-level-deal/c-319472494

By the by, how about the Frozen Four returning to St. Louis for 2025? None of the three current collegiate prospects are likely to still be in school by the time that event rolls around, but now there’s something to look forward to in future drafts, eh?