The Washington Capitals made seven total selections in the 2022 NHL Draft. First they took Ivan Miroshnichenko with their 20th pick in the first round. ESPN instantly said this was the best pick of the draft and one broadcaster even said she sees him becoming a superstar in five years.
Miroshnichenko was the ninth Russian to be drafted in the first round and he’s a goal scorer like our favorite Russian is. He was ranked third among European left wings and 11th among all European forwards by NHL Central Scouting. He spent last season with Omsk Krylia in the Supreme Hockey League (Russia 2) recording 16 points in 31 games with 10 goals and six assists.
The Caps then made six more selections on day two of the draft. They selected defenseman Ryan Chesley (37th overall), left wing Alexander Suzdalev (70th overall), left wing Ludwig Persson (85th overall), center Jake Karabela (149th overall), center Ryan Hofer (181st overall) and defenseman David Gucciardi (213th overall).
Chesley, 18, was ranked fifth among North American defenseman and 18th among all North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting. He recorded 29 points with 12 goals and 17 assists in 59 games with the USA Hockey National Team Development Program Under 18 team. Chesley led the teams defensemen in goals and ranked third in points among defensemen.
Suzdalev, also 18, was ranked sixth among European left wings and 26th among all European skaters by NHL Central Scouting. The six foot two, 177 pound left wing led HV71’s junior team (Sweden Jr.) in scoring with 51 points in 45 games with 15 goals and 36 assists. He won a gold medal with Team Sweden at the 2022 IIHF World U18 Championships, appearing in six games.
Persson, 19, was ranked 11th among European left wings and 46th among all European skaters by NHL Central Scouting. The six foot, 178 pound left wing recorded 61 points in 41 games with Frolunda’s junior team (Sweden Jr.) with 25 goals and 36 assists.
Karabela, 18, was ranked 25th among North American centers and ranked 62nd among all North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting. The five foot 10, 172 pound center recorded 45 points in 68 games with he Guelph Storm of the Ontario Hockey League with 12 goals and 33 assists.
Hofer, 20, recorded 58 points with 25 goals and 33 assists in 67 games with the Everett Silvertips of the Western Hockey League. The six foot three, 181 pound center ranked sixth on Everett in points and second in penalty minutes with 84 during the regular season and ranked tied for first on the team in playoff scoring with 10 points (six goals, four assists).
Gucciardi, 19, was ranked 21st among North American defensemen and 57th among all North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting. The six foot one, 185 pound defenseman recorded 11 points with five goals and six assists in 36 games during his freshman season at Michigan State.
Grade A-: While the Caps didn’t stock up on centers like I would’ve liked them to (maybe Nicklas Backstrom can get back after all), they had a very good draft. They stocked up on forwards and added a few defensemen. No goalies were taken which is fine. Why go through a young goalie carousel again?