Vancouver Canucks Draft: 4 Proposals to Trade Down

Jun 26, 2015; Sunrise, FL, USA; NHL commissioner Gary Bettman addresses the crowd before the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft at BB&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 26, 2015; Sunrise, FL, USA; NHL commissioner Gary Bettman addresses the crowd before the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft at BB&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports /
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Buffalo Sabres — 8th Overall

After drafting a franchise center second overall in 2015, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Sabres shift their focus to defense. In my mock draft, I have them picking Jakob Chychrun at No. 8. But since scouts seem to question his hockey sense and offensive upside, the Sabres could also target Olli Juolevi. The problem with Juolevi: he will likely be gone by the time Buffalo is on the board.

With 11 picks in the draft, Buffalo has more than enough to trade up and still get a large 2016 draft class. With the draft being held in Buffalo, the Sabres might want to look for a big splash and get their fans a high-end prospect to cheer for. Juolevi could be that guy, and a trade up might be the only way to get him.

This trade could be fairly easy again:

With the eighth and 38th picks, the Canucks could get two talented future NHL players. With pick No. 8, they could get one of Nylander, Brown, Keller, Chychrun, Sergachev, Michael McLeod, Tyson Jost or Jake Bean — you see, there are many options.

At 38, I have the Sabres picking goaltender Carter Hart, who won’t be an option for Vancouver, as they have Thatcher Demko in the system. However, they could go for an offensive prospect like Janne Kuokkanen, Will Bitten or Tyler Benson, or a defenseman like Lukas Johansen, Logan Stanley, Dennis Cholowski.

Alternatively, the Canucks could try to flip the 38th and 64th picks for a late first or early second-round pick. Then again, the Canucks could stick with the extra pick as they have a desperate need to stock up their prospect pool.

Next: Montreal Canadiens