Three Players The Capitals Should Target At Pick 17

Mock draft madness with the big event less than 48 hours away
NHL Draft
NHL Draft / John Russell/GettyImages
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Nikita Artamonov / SOPA Images/GettyImages

Nikita Artamonov - LW

Now this is a wild card I'm throwing in here. I'm not sure I would pick this player at 17. If you follow me on social media you will know I have said a few times now they Caps might want to trade back, get more picks and more assets, and they still might be able to get a player with some higher upside.

I loved reading about Artamonov. The Capitals have players with skill coming. Whether they pan out or not, that's a different story for a different time, but the skill guys are there. While there is definitely some skill there with Artamonov what I liked most was how most of the things I read talked about his compete level.

Like Chernyshov, imagine adding a player like Artamonov who will just be a nightmare to play against. Let Strome and Dubois now and Lapierre and McMichael and Miroshnichenko and maybe another guy or two coming, let them take care of the hard lifting of the offense. Guys like Artamonov and Leonard, while they could easily turn into producers themselves, will just bug the absolute hell out of opponents. Think of a team like, oh I don't know, the Florida Panthers. A team with plenty of skill, but some of those skill guys are a nightmare to deal with too.

Artamonov has been called one of those most complete players available in this draft. He played in the KHL this season. He scored 23 points in 54 games. Pretty impressive for a young guy in that league. It was also said in the article linked that it was him that was driving his lines.

If you want the negative from this player it is what will be his point production? He will likely not be the highest scorer but how high could he get?

I have read plenty of mock drafts. While I can't say for certain, I believe of all the mock drafts I read I saw Artamonov getting picked in the first round once.

I'm not sure I would take Artamonov at 17. But if you could trade down just a bit, get more assets, more picks, more trade assets for the future I would take him in a heartbeat. He's a guy who works hard. He's already playing pro hockey and has had success. He feels like a very high reward/low risk kind of pick. And if you can get that in the late first round I'll take that every time.

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