It will be four or five years before we know how the Carolina Hurricanes did in the draft last weekend, although they deserve credit for breaking new ground, by their standards, in terms of location (their first-round pick was from Quebec and three out of six picks were Europeans) and philosophy (all six were 6 feet or taller).
Whether first-round pick Philippe Paradis will be regarded as a steal or a bust is yet to be determined, but the record is already clear on many of the Hurricanes’ past drafts, at least those from 2005 and earlier.
We all know the misses — Igor Knyazev, Jeff Heerema, Nikos Tselios — but among the hits, here are the Canes’ five best draft picks since the team moved to North Carolina, not necessarily in overall talent, but in terms of how well they did with the pick.
Eric Staal, for example, was a relative no-brainer at No. 2 in 2003, but Cam Ward was not late in the first round a year earlier, which is why they bookend Tuesday’s Top Five: