Round 1 of the NHL's entry draft is set to take place Friday night.
Trade rumors are flying and questions abound as to what exactly each team is looking to harvest for their future.
So, to make things more interesting, we at The Hockey News combined the best of both worlds, by suggesting what we think might go down Friday night in Ottawa, bold trade predictions and all...
Steven Stamkos, C (Sarnia)
Stamkos has been heralded as the next Steve Yzerman and will be the foundation of a program that needs to be rebuilt just four years after winning the Stanley Cup.
Zach Bogosian, D (Peterborough)
L.A. trades the pick to the New York Islanders for the fifth overall pick and their second- and fifth-rounders. The Kings apparently covet Nikita Filatov and think they can get him at No. 5. Bogosian gives the Islanders a terrific all-round defenseman with a nasty disposition.
Drew Doughty, D (Guelph)
Doughty is the most NHL-ready defenseman available in the draft and if the Thrashers need anything, it’s more NHL-caliber players.
Alex Pietrangelo, D (Niagara)
In the end, the Blues will not be able to pass on Pietrangelo and teams choosing over the next few picks will be cursing them for it.
Nikita Filatov, LW (CSKA Moscow)
The Kings get the player they wanted all along, plus extra picks in the second and fifth rounds. Filatov would have gone higher if not for the uncertainty surrounding Russian prospects.
Luke Schenn, D (Kelowna)
The Blue Jackets get a clone of their former captain Adam Foote, a tough and durable stay-at-home type who won’t put up huge numbers, but has the potential to be an impact player.
Mikkel Boedker, LW (Kitchener)
The Leafs are taking a bit of a risk here, but the potential reward is huge. Boedker won’t help them immediately, but he has the potential for future stardom.
Colin Wilson, C (Boston University)
Wilson has three years of eligibility remaining at Boston University, so there will be no rush to get him into the NHL. He’s not a great skater, but he has top-shelf hockey sense.
Cody Hodgson, C (Brampton)
Hodgson is seen as more of a setup man than a finisher, although his goals-to-assists ratio has been almost 1:1 the past three seasons. His ability to create offensive chances is his greatest strength.
Kyle Beach, C (Everett)
Vancouver trades the pick and Ryan Kesler to Florida for Olli Jokinen. Vancouver gets the offensive player it so desperately needs and Florida gets another young and promising player in Kyle “South” Beach. Beach has drawn comparisons to Owen Nolan, both in a positive and negative way.
Michael Del Zotto, D (Oshawa)
Del Zotto seems to be this draft’s whipping boy and has watched his stock fall all season. However, he brings to the Hawks’ young blueline corps something it lacks: an offensive defenseman.
Colten Teubert, D (Regina)
Scouts are all over the map when it comes to Teubert, but there is little doubt he’s Brian Burke’s kind of guy. (Which means the Leafs will seriously consider him, too.)
Jordan Eberle, C (Regina)
The Sabres had much of their success using small, skilled players and Eberle is indeed one of those. He’s also courageous and durable enough to make his size a non-issue.
Tyler Myers, D (Kelowna)
It’s a bit of a tumble for Myers, who stands 6-foot-7 and enters the draft as something of a high-risk, potentially high-reward player. He skates well for a man that big.
Luca Sbisa, D (Lethbridge)
Nashville already has a large stable of good young defensemen and Sbisa bolsters that even more. Scouts were impressed with his decision to leave a cushier spot in Switzerland to endure the rigors of the Western League.
Mattias Tedenby, LW (HV 71)
Ultra-skilled Swede can fly and would look dangerous playing alongside Marc Savard or Patrice Bergeron in the near future.
Zach Boychuk, C (Lethbridge)
The Alberta native may be small (5-foot-9, 175 pounds), but he has consistently produced in the rough-and-tumble WHL. Seems like a Mike Keenan kind of guy.
Josh Bailey, C (Windsor)
Projected as future captain material, Bailey gives the Sens stability and skill at the same time. Kills penalties, as well.
Joe Colborne, C (Camrose)
The 6-foot-5 teen is still filling out his frame thanks to a huge growth spurt, but after a couple seasons with Denver in the NCAA, he’ll be ready to make noise in Ohio.
Jared Staal, RW (Sudbury)
Brother Marc worked out pretty well for the Blueshirts, so why not go back to the well for the youngest Staal, tabbed as the bruiser of the family.
Jacob Markstrom, G (Brynas)
The Devils need a goaltender of the future and Markstrom has been the name most associated with New Jersey. Look for him to stay in Europe for a couple years until Brodeur stops playing 75 games a season.
Daultan Leveille, C (St. Catharines)
This pick has Oilers written all over it. Leveille has speed and skill to burn and will hone his game at Michigan State. Sam Gagner and Andrew Cogliano may be getting a little brother.
Anton Gustafsson, C (Frolunda)
Washington will get sentimental, drafting the son of former Caps center Bengt Gustafsson. Anton dominated the Swedish junior circuit with his offensive and physical game (when he wasn’t injured).
Aaron Ness, D (Roseau HS)
The local kid with the wizard-like offensive skills has proven his size (5-foot-10, 160 pounds) isn’t a liability thanks to his strong showings internationally with Team USA.
Mikhail Stefanovich, C (Quebec)
The Habs have had pretty good luck with the Belarusian Kostitsyn brothers (Mikhail Grabovski is in the mix, too), so why not go with another highly skilled forward from that nation? He’s already played in Quebec, too.
John Carlson, D (Indiana)
The recently inked London Knight is already NHL-sized, plus he boasts power play quarterback skills. The Sabres won’t be the only team gunning for him on draft day.
Colby Robak, D (Brandon)
Outside of Ryan Parent and Braydon Coburn, the Flyers need blue-chip blueliners in their system and Robak provides a big body with solid puck skills and good skating.
Erik Karlsson, D (Frolunda)
Not the biggest blueliner in the world, but Karlsson has a strong offensive upside to his game and ruled the Under-18s for Sweden.
Zac Dalpe, RW (Penticton)
Committed to Ohio State, Dalpe had a fantastic year in the BCHL, putting up big points despite missing time with a shoulder injury. His stock has been rising all season.
Corey Trivino, C (Stouffville)
Given the stunning insight Detroit exhibits in drafting, it’s only fitting they would select Trivino, an underrated Boston U. commit who had his coming-out party for Canada at the Under-18s. His playmaking will punch his ticket to the next level.
The Hockey News will cover the NHL Entry Draft from all angles with live coverage and up-to-the-minute pick-by-pick updates on both June 20 and 21 in our Draft Central and a live blog from THN's Ryan Kennedy during the first round.