One could quibble with the statement that you have very few chances to get that kind of player. If you're the Thrashers, you have quite a few chances actually. They've only gotten out of the first row of tables, what, twice? Three times?
“You have very few chances to get that kind of player,” said Thrashers executive vice-president and GM Don Waddell. “We still have four months left in the season to evaluate, but if it was the Atlanta Thrashers, we’d take John Tavares.”...
Hedman not NHL ready?
“Hedman will be a top defenceman in this league - no doubt. But it may take him a little longer,” Waddell added. “Tavares is ready to play and that may be a factor.” (By the way, the undrafted Swede who really impressed him was forward Magnus Svensson Paajarvi.)
Waddell also related an interesting story about Hedman and last year’s draft. After Steven Stamkos, the next four picks were defencemen: Drew Doughty (Los Angeles), Zach Bogosian (Atlanta), Alex Pietrangelo (St. Louis) and Luke Schenn (Toronto).
“I asked our guys where they would take Hedman if he was available,” he said. “They told me not ahead of Doughty and not ahead of Bogosian. I then went outside our organization to another scout I trust and respect. He said the same thing.”
Svensson Paajarvi was really good for sure in the tourney. He looked just as dynamic as Tavares.
I recently talked to a goalie who played with Tavares, who talked about his shot. That was interesting. Now I just need to remember I have that material for when the right time comes.