Mock NHL Entry Draft 2022: Toronto Maple Leafs Can Pick a Beauty

Shane Wright #51 of the Kingston Frontenacs (Photo by Chris Tanouye/Getty Images)
Shane Wright #51 of the Kingston Frontenacs (Photo by Chris Tanouye/Getty Images) /
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Toronto Maple Leafs
Tristan Luneau #8 of Canada at the Lausanne 2020 Winter Youth Olympics (Photo by RvS.Media/Robert Hradil/Getty Images) /

21st Pick – Buffalo Sabres
Marco Kasper (C)
6’1″, 183 lbs

Marco Kasper is an excellent player to draft at this position. There is no doubt that the Minnesota Wild could use a center with professional experience.

Kasper plays for Rögle BK in the SHL after getting promoted from their junior club. With the pro team, Kasper has skated in 27 games and collected four goals and two assists. He has also represented his native country, Austria, in multiple international tournaments.

22nd Pick – St. Louis Blues
Isaac Howard (LW)
5’10”, 183 lbs

Isaac Howard is a 5’10”, 183 lbs left-winger for the USNTDP. He has been outstanding for the program, putting up points in bunches.

So far this year, in 33 games Howard has scored 15 goals and added 24 assists for a total of 39 points. The Penguins will be ecstatic to draft Howard who can be a wizard at times with his stick handling. He creates scoring changes for his team and can finish around the net with a tremendous wrist shot and quick release.

23rd Pick – Washington Capitals
Pavel Mintyukov (D)
6’1″, 192 lbs

Pavel Mintyukov has come a long way since playing for MHK Dynamo Moskva in the MHL. He drew the attention of the Saginaw Spirit who drafted him 52nd overall in the 2020 CHL Import Draft.

He has greatly improved his game in Saginaw under Head Coach Chris Lazary in addition to all the international experience he has accumulated. Mintyukov plays the angles well and is still developing his defense.

The Sabres will like the offense he is able to generate from the back end. He will surely be a powerplay driver in the NHL. So far this season with the Spirit, Mintyukov has dropped 8 goals and 21 assists on opponents in 37 games.

24th Pick – Minnesota Wild
Ryan Chesley (D)
6’0″, 194 lbs

Whenever a player graduates from Shattuck St. Mary’s, scouts know they were developed the right way.

This prep school can boast about some future Hall-of-Fame alumni including Sidney Crosby, Nathan MacKinnon, Jonathan Toews, and Zach Parise. Ryan Chesley came out of that program ready to excel with the USNTDP.

The defenseman is continuing to progress, looking like has the potential to be a core member of the Minnesota Wild’s future. Chesley is an above average defender who adds offense to his tool kit. He also has a blast from the point, which will put goaltenders on high alert.

25th Pick – Nashville Predators
Tristan Luneau (D)
6’2″, 174 lbs

Tistan Luneau is a right shooting blue liner plays big minutes for Gatineau Olympiques in the QMJHL.

He’s been on the radar since minor hockey, playing Midget as an underager and was the first-overall pick of the 2020 QMHL Entry Draft. In his first season with Gatineau, he showed his worth by winning the QMJHL Rookie of the Year and Raymond-Légacé defensive rookie of the year award.

Luneau is fully recovered from his surgery over the summer and has been playing without restriction. “I wouldn’t call his game dynamic, but he’s a smooth-skating player who can competently run a power play,” wrote Wheeler in The Athletic about Luneau. “He’s a plus-level passer but not a shooter. He reads the play at a high level with and without the puck at both ends, plays with a great deal of poise, and excels in transition.”