One week ago, the National Hockey League conducted their Entry Draft. It was a civil family affair, as a cordial cadre of well-dressed gentleman graced the stage for their franchise’s selection, and then welcomed a bright-eyed youngster into their fold with handshakes and oversized jerseys. The draftees’ parents and friends looked on in awe and excitement, and everybody was happy. If someone were to roll a Weber on stage to grill up some burgers, or perhaps an impromptu game of whiffle ball broke out, no one would bat an eye.
The NBA Draft, on the other hand, is an exercise in wearing hats that you’ll only don once.
Just imagine if last week’s NHL Entry Draft was run by NBA GM’s.
- Tampa Bay selects Stephen Stamkos, C. No question here, he was the best player in the draft. Well-played, Koules.
- Los Angeles selects Drew Doughty, D. Yes, the Kings play the wisdom card and pick the best defenseman in the draft, despite ESPN Versus’ analysts talking non-stop about how much Zach Bogosian has become buds with Anze Kopitar, how excited Bogosian is to play in warm weather, how Doughty has a troubled pass of 38 junior teams in 4 months, and Bogosian is more fun to say.
- Atlanta selects Zach Bogosian, D. Bogosian mopes on stage, says how “excited” he is to be with a class organization, and then in an interview with Michael A. Milbury in oversized chairs tries to give us forced rhetoric whilst dreaming of roller blading on Venice Beach with Jack Johnson.
- St. Louis selects Alex Pietrangelo, D. Great pick for the Blues – it’s just a shame that we practically missed it because we’re too busy watching Bogosian offering up his life to God instead of moving to Georgia.
- Toronto selects Luke Schenn, D and then trades his rights, along with Matt Stajan, Ian White, and Boyd Devereaux’s expiring contract to Atlanta for the rights to Bogosian, Todd White, Ken Klee, Alexei Zhitnik, and a 2nd rounder in the 2010 draft. Both teams will miss the playoffs.
- Columbus selects Nikita Filatov, LW. A trendy pick for the Jackets, but ultimately, he lacks upside, wingspan, and experience. (Note: he’s 9 years old.)
- Nashville selects Denmark’s Mikkel Boedker Colin Wilson, C. Sure, they would have liked Boedker, but the Great Dane insisted on playing for the Coyotes, Sharks, or Kings, because he wants to be able to day trip to Tijuana. Apparently, in Soviet Denmark, players draft you!
- Phoenix select Mikkel Boedker, LW. Boedker, known in his home country as “Dane Cock,” immediately orders Gretzky and Maloney to fight to the death, and for Shane Doan to fetch him a Wall Street Journal.
- The Islanders select Anton Gustafsson and trade his rights and Mike Sillinger to the Capitals for the rights for Josh Bailey, who the Caps will pick 12 spots later. When GM Garth Snow is asked why didn’t he just pick Bailey in the first place, he tapped Milbury on his other shoulder and ducked away from the interview.
- Vancouver selects Erik Karlsson, D and trades him to Boston for Cam Neely’s dog, and a third-rounder in 2012. The Sedins breathes a sigh of relief. With a cute puppy in the locker room, it will lighten the load of crushing expectations.
- Chicago selects Cody Hodgson, C. There’s a rumor though that he won’t ever make it to the Windy City, because…
- Buffalo has selected Kyle Beach, LW, and has proposed a trade to Ottawa where the Sens will get Beach, Maxim Afinogenov, Ryan Miller, and Andrew Peters (if they really want him) in exchange for Dany Heatley. Ottawa will then send Afinogenov to Boston, along with the 15th pick, for Erik Karlsson, Glen Metropolit, and Ray Emery, who Boston has signed pending a physical. Boston then takes a DeLorean to the future, makes the 15th and 16th pick before the Kings or Hurricanes can do a damn thing, draft Joe Colbourne and Tyler Myers, and promptly trade Myers to Buffalo for future considerations. The Sabres, whose draft board was knocked over when Lindy Ruff came into the war room with a tray full of subs, decide they’d like to build around Myers and trade Kyle Beach to Chicago. Vancouver receives Cody Hodgson from Chicago via the Sabres. Cam Neely’s dog is placed on waivers. Buffalo, Ottawa, Boston, Vancouver, and Chicago miss the playoffs.