Mock Draft 2020 and the Toronto Maple Leafs Big Decision

DALLAS, TX - JUNE 23: (l-r) Kyle Dubas and Brendan Shanahan of the Toronto Maple Leafs handle the draft table during the 2018 NHL Draft at American Airlines Center on June 23, 2018 in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
DALLAS, TX - JUNE 23: (l-r) Kyle Dubas and Brendan Shanahan of the Toronto Maple Leafs handle the draft table during the 2018 NHL Draft at American Airlines Center on June 23, 2018 in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /
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Toronto Maple Leafs
Noel Gunler of Lulea HF (Photo by RvS.Media/Basile Barbey/Getty Images) /

21. Columbus Blue Jackets – Noel Gunler (RW)

Noel Gunler is a risky pick for the Columbus Blue Jackets. He features a quick release and has the potential to be an elite goal scorer in the NHL. His downside is that when he’s not performing well, he’s more of a liability to his team. In fact, Gunler may be the most inconsistent player in this first round.

22. New York Rangers – Kaiden Guhle (D)

Kaiden Guhle is sure to become an NHL regular. His shutdown skills are undeniable and he shows maturity simply in his angles and routes to puck handlers. With excellent speed and a 6’3″ frame, the Rangers should be ecstatic to draft Guhle this deep into the first round.

23. Philadelphia Flyers – Brendan Brisson (C)

Brendan  Brisson is a 6’0″ center from Manhattan Beach California. He uses his speed to make quick cuts, win races to the puck, and blow by defenders. Brisson’s hockey journey took him to the same elite prep school that Sidney Crosby attended in Faribault, Minnesota. From there he played in the USHL. Brisson has committed to beginning his college career at the University of Michigan. This means he won’t be joining the Philadelphia Flyers anytime soon.

24. Colorado Avalanche – John-Jason Peterka (LW/RW)

John-Jason Peterka is a 5’11” winger from Germany. He already has professional experience playing for EHC München on the big ice of the Deutsche Eishockey Liga. He has experience on either wing but as a left shot, he looks more comfortable on the left side. Peterka is a high octane player who doesn’t need the puck to be impactful.

25. Washington Capitals – Helge Grans (D)

Helge Grans, the 6’3″ defenseman from the Malmö Redhawks in the SHL comes from a hockey family. His father and two brothers all played professionally in Sweden. That might be why it appears as though he understands the sport better than most while he’s on the ice. With a couple of years of seasoning in the Swedish Elite League, he could join the Washington Capitals and quarterback their powerplay.

26. St. Louis Blues – William Wallinder (D)

William Wallinder takes advantage of his 6’4″ frame by protecting the puck and taking big strides down the ice. He has the ability to go end-to-end. Wallinder’s game is still under construction and is overly susceptible to egregious errors.

27. Anaheim Ducks – Jeremie Poirier (D)

Toronto Maple Leafs fans could see comparisons in Jeremie Poirier’s game to Jake Gardiner. He is a multi-talented defenseman that can carry the puck for breakouts. Poirier’s problem is that his mistakes are glaring. Scouts have been split on exactly what to expect from Poirier. He is likely in very different positions on different teams’ draft boards.

28. Ottawa Senators – Tyson Foerster (C) 

Tyson Foerster is off the to the Senators thanks mostly to his cannon of a shot. His development has been undeniable. The 6’1″ center went from recording 23 points in 64 games in his rookie year with the Barrie Colts to posting 80 points this season. That production came from 36 goals and 44 assists in 62 games.

29. Dallas Stars – Jake Neighbours (LW)

Being a playmaker has always been a part of Jake Neighbours’ game. The 5’11” winger has a knack for setting up his teammates. Playing for the Edmonton Oil Kings in the WHL, Neighbours dressed for 64 games. He potted 23 goals and had 47 assists for a total of 70 points. He also accumulated 39 penalty minutes.

30.  Vegas Golden Knights – Jan Mysak (RW)

Jan Mysak split his time between HC Litvinov in the Czech league and the Hamilton Bulldogs in the
OHL. The transition was smooth, which should give the Vegas Golden Knights hope that his next move should go equally well. Mysak, who has some slick moves with the puck, will either go back to the Czech Republic next year or continue to play with the Bulldogs.

31. San Jose Sharks – Jacob Perreault (RW)

Jacob Perreault is the son of former Maple Leafs center Yanic Perreault and their games have some similarities including that they’re both 5’11”. Jacob seems to have a knack for sneaking through small holes in opposing defenses. He is a goal-scorer with a killer shot. Perreault could be the steal of the first round as he’d certainly have a higher draft slot if not for being stuck on a lousy team in Sarnia. Even with that group, Perreault still managed to collect 70 points in 57 games. He had 39 goals and 31 assists.