Despite picking late in the draft, the Washington Capitals made quality selections with each of their six picks. Their first pick didn’t come until 55th overall or in the middle of the second round, by then the pickings were slim. Despite the limited options I thought they did well.
The Caps used their 55th pick to select Vincent Iorio and their 80th pick to select Brent Johnson (no not the goalie), both defensemen. They both have legitimate chances to be NHL caliber players. The rest I’m not so sure but they could be making an impact on the Hershey Bears soon. The reality is, there’s not much room in the Caps roster. Even guys like Connor McMichael are battling for NHL time.
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Iorio played in the WHL and checks a lot of boxes between skating, size, defending, and puck moving. He isn’t the flashiest offensive player but he does have a hard shot and isn’t afraid to make the slick pass. He’s a good two way player that can break up plays on one end while creating chances on the other end.
Johnson was a top player for Sioux Falls and a dangerous defensemen in the USHL. He’s a good skater, can make plays on both ends, and has a shot that can beat opposing goalies. He can create offense both at even strength and on the power play. One weakness is that he’s undersized and has issues in his own end but once those mistakes are corrected he will be NHL ready.
The Caps used their third selection to take another defensemen, Joaquim Lemay at 119th overall. He had 10 points n 15 BCHL games last season and is committed to Nebraska-Omaha this upcoming season. The Caps fourth selection would finally be a forward when they took center Haakon Hanelt at 151st overall. He’s a skilled forward.
Dru Krebs was Washington’s fifth selection at 176th overall. He’s the brother of Vegas Golden Knights first rounder Peyton Krebs. He’s a mobile two way defensemen who can make a good pass on one end and shut down his opponents on the other.
The Caps final selection came at 183rd and was goaltender Chase Clark. He’s a towering goaltender not afraid to read plays and show poise in the crease. One of our readers, Dan K who hosts the Dan K Show said this about him: “Chase Clark is Braden Holtby in Ben Bishop’s body. Nowhere near his ceiling yet skill wise! The NJ Hitmen star and USPHL Dineen Cup MVP is an incredible late round add for the Caps.”