It's a busy week for draft in the world of Junior A hockey. Last night, the USHL conducted their Futures Draft for 1996-born players. Tomorrow, the WHL holds their bantam draft for 1997-born players. And earlier this week, the QMJHL released their final scouting list of players for their draft, which will be held in early June.
In the USHL, this year was the first year the league allowed teams the option to tender one to two players in exchange for giving up a second/third round pick at the Futures draft. The list of 12 players that were tendered prior to the draft can be found here.
At the actual draft, Holy Family Catholic(MN) forward Shane Gersich was the first overall pick by the Omaha Lancers. Gersich turned down the opportunity to play for the NTDP earlier this spring in order to return for his sophomore season at Holy Family. It sounds as though the current plan is for Gersich to play one more year of high school hockey, and then join the Lancers.
Diminutive Maine recruit Liam Pecararo went 2nd overall, Ohio State recruit Nick Magyar went 4th overall, and Penn State recruit Kevin Kerr went 7th overall. Chicago Mission had three players taken in the first round, and had two players taken in the tender process.
In the WHL draft, forward Matthew Barzal seems to be the consensus top pick. Buzzing the Net's Kelly Friesen has a great look at some of the stories leading up to the draft, including a couple Americans to watch out for. Coming Down the Pipe has a look at their top 22 prospects, none of whom are American.
Here's the QMJHL draft list. This is the first year of the QMJHL's new rule that every team has to draft at least two Americans. Vermont recruit Anthony Duclair is listed as a top round pick. The other interesting name likely to go in the early rounds is Notre Dame Prep defenseman Duncan MacIntyre. MacIntyre tried out for the NTDP team, and his father played at Maine, though he also has pretty strong connections to some Q teams. I've seen him listed as a top five talent by some people, though the final list has him in the second round. Seeing him drop a little in the draft would be a positive indicator.