Philadelphia Flyers general manager Ron Hextall traded Brayden Schenn to the St. Louis Blues at last year’s NHL Draft for veteran Jori Lehtera and the Blues’ first round pick in 2017 and 2018.
While Lehtera was essentially a salary dump and could get cut this summer, the Flyers used the No. 27 pick from the Blues last year on forward Morgan Frost, who absolutely obliterated the Ontario Hockey League this season with 42 goals and a whopping 70 assists in just 67 games.
When Hextall made the trade, many expected the Blues to compete for the Stanley Cup this season and, as a result, the Flyers to receive another late-round pick in next month’s draft. Instead, they failed to make the playoffs and got the 14th pick, which belongs to the Flyers.
Coupled with their own pick at No. 19, the Flyers now have two selections in the top 20. They have the chance to land some talented pieces to their system.
To prove how valuable the picks are, we have listed the top five players taken at those spots over the last 20 years.
Top 5 picks at No. 14
1. Charles McAvoy, Boston (2016)
After playing just one year in juniors, McAvoy played an integral role on the Bruins’ defense this season. He finished with 32 points in 63 games and a plus/minus rating of plus-20.
2. Alexander Wennberg, Columbus (2013)
Wennberg, who had a breakout year in 2016-17 with 59 points, has developed into a dependable and crafty, second-line center for the Blue Jackets.
3. Kevin Shattenkirk, Colorado (2007)
Considered one of the best offensive defensemen in the NHL, Shattenkirk is almost a lock to rack up at least 45 points each year and captain the power play.
4. Devan Dubnyk, Edmonton (2004)
Since becoming a No. 1 goalie in 2014, Dubnyk has won no less than 32 games each season and enjoyed his best season in 2016-17 with the Minnesota Wild after going 40-19-5 with a 2.25 goals against average.
5. Brent Seabrook, Chicago (2003)
A three-time Stanley Cup champion, Seabrook has helped anchor the Blackhawks blue line for more than a decade and is considered one of the steadiest players in the league.
Top 5 picks at No. 19
1. Chris Kreider, New York Rangers (2009)
The center scored at least 20 goals in three straight seasons until last year, when injuries limited him to 16 goals in 58 games.
2. Luca Sbisa, Philadelphia, (2008)
After making the Flyers out of training camp his first year, he was part of the trade package to acquire Chris Pronger the following summer. Sbisa has since carved out a respectable career and will play in the Stanley Cup final for Las Vegas.
3. Ryan Getzlaf, Anaheim (2003)
The potential future Hall-of-Famer and eight-time All-star has piled up 875 points in 917 games with the Ducks. Despite battling injuries, Getzlaf still managed 61 points in 56 games this year.
4. Andrey Vasilevskiy, Tampa Bay (2012)
Although the netminder and his team were just eliminated by the Capitals in the Eastern Conference Finals, Vasilevskiy led the league with 44 wins and is a Vezina Trophy finalist.
5. Oscar Klefbom, Edmonton (2011)
Like most of his teammates, Klefbom did not have a good 2017-18 season but the 24-year-old defenseman showed his potential in 2016-17 with 12 goals, 26 points and a plus-7 rating.