Building a Colony, the 2022 Draft Recap

With 17 picks in the 2022 entry draft, the Colonials drafted 9 defensemen, 7 forwards and 1 goalie (sorry Don)!
by Gary Graves | August 22, 2022, 10:55 PM ET

To repeat what has already been said, a huge shout out to Mike, Mark and all of those who chipped in to make the 2022 Summit Draft happen. A great time was had by all, and the in-person draft day experience was amazing!

While most of the summit draft deals happened prior to arriving in Toronto, the team did mange to pull off a few trades during the summit weekend.

On Friday night the team shipped goalie Antti Raanta to the Vancouver Vipers in exchange for a useful depth winger in Frank Vatrano, a 2022 3rd round pick which was used to select defenseman Isaiah George from the London Knights and a 4th round pick in 2026.

Another deal happened on the walk over to the draft event when the Colonials sent future year picks to acquire the Toronto Rex 2nd round pick in 2022 which would be used to select Czech centre Matyas Sapovaliv.

Two other deals occurred during the draft to allow Boston to move up on a few picks.

When all the smoke cleared, the Colonials ended up with 17 draft picks and a lot more players in the system. The hope now is we start to see some of the guys drafted over the past 3-4 years find their footing in the GHA and SICHL. A guy like Timmy Stuetzle is already tracking as a star player, so we hope more guys follow.

The hope is guys like Ridly Greig, William Eklund, Luke Evangelista and John-Jason Peterka make the jump next year.

So let’s take a look at the draft haul that was 2022!

Round 1

Pick #5 – Simon Nemec

Black Book ranked #6, TSN ranked #4

Was very shocked to see Nemec at pick 5, but made it a no brainer to select him. Thinking the top four on the board would have been gone, the plan was to draft Joakim Kemell, but GM Graves was very happy to grab a defenseman of Nemec’s calibre early in the first. Nemec is a guy that has very few flaws in his game and also has so much offensive upside. Simon is probably the most SICHL ready d-man available, given that he has been playing against men the past few years in the Slovak men’s league and has played well. Nemec had a very solid postseason with his HK Nitra team scoring 5 times and adding 12 assists in 19GP to help his team reach the finals. He also impressed at the 2022 IIHF World Championships where he had 6 points in 8 games.

Pick #26 – Noah Ostlund

Black Book ranked #41, TSN ranked #22

Noah is a very intriguing pick for us given the package of skills that comes with him. Ostlund has outstanding hockey sense and work ethic. He is more of s playmaker than a scorer. He has very good puckhandling and stick skills to set his teammates up for goals. The biggest knock is really his lack of size and strength. However, the fact is, today’s game has evolved to allow more smaller skilled guys to succeed so we are hoping that he will do just that. “We have time on our side for Noah to develop and get stronger and look forward to seeing what he can do in person at development camp next week” said GM Graves.

Round 2

Pick #39 – Noah Warren

Black Book ranked #48, TSN ranked #41

Big 6’ 5” RHD who can skate, defend and play physical (although we want to see more). Warren has made big strides in his game and we like what we have seen. Loved that booming hit on Shane Wright at the CHL Top Prospects game as well! We feel this is a solid second round pick and can’t wait to see him back in Gatineau this fall.

Pick #48 – Matyas Sapovaliv

Black Book ranked #35, TSN ranked #46

Sapovaliv can best be summed up as a two-way centre who is more of a playmaker that a scorer. The kid also has high hockey sense and very good at protecting pucks. May not have high offensive upside but he is the kind of guy you need to help win a cup. Our first glimpse of him came at the CHL Top Prospects game and scouts did some banging at the scouting meeting table to ensure we would try and draft Sapovaliv in the second round.

Round 3

Pick #62 – Dennis Hildeby

Black Book ranked #1 goalie, TSN ranked N/A

While probably not a household name when it came to this draft class, Hildeby was an interesting read by our scouting team. Universal Scouting had Hildeby rated 122, but we decided to make a jump at him early given the unpredictability from some of the SICHL’s finest GMs. Hildeby is one of the oldest draft eligibles turning 21 years old on August 19th. He is also one of the biggest goalies available as well standing in at 6’6”. Last year was a nice breakout year for Hildeby at both the SWE J20 and SHL levels. With Farjestad BK, he went 3-2-0 in 7GP with a 1.93 GAA and .931 SV%. Not only does he cover a lot of net with his size, he’s a calm and cool customer in net. We expect him to continue to develop and one day join an already solid crop of goalies in our system.

Pick #76 – Isaiah George

Black Book ranked #47, TSN ranked #69

Here is another guy we took earlier than the USS ranking (98) based on gut feeling. Our scouts like dipping into the London Knights well. High end skating and competes hard, however, there are some worries of questionable decision making. Player development will be key here and that’s why we swing on these guys.

Pick #78 – Viktor Neuchev

Black Book ranked #38, TSN ranked #HM

We were happy to nab Neuchev here in the 3rd round. Neuchev is described as a high-octane, ball of fire sniper with decent IQ and great compete. While listed as 6’02” that maybe a bit of an exaggeration based on the eye test. Neuchev’s season and draft stock improved as the season went along. He had 40G and 27 A in 61GP in the MHL last year, and also 4th in Points per game behind only Yurov, Trikozov and Perevalov amongst draft eligibles in the MHL!

Pick #84 – Lucas Edmonds

Black Book NR, TSN ranked #HM

This is really a big swing pick here. Edmonds finished first in scoring with the Kingston Frontenacs with 113 points. Amazingly enough not playing on the same line as Shane Wright. Kingston coach Luca Caputi had nothing but praise for Edmonds in regard to his work ethic, character and hockey sense. He believes Edmonds is just scratching the surface.

Rounds 4 through 7

Pick #95 – Jack Beck

Highly intelligent two-way player who can make plays in tight and has a good shot. Beck has a chance to play through the middle of the lineup if the tools develop. He should be primed have a nice year with the 67s this upcoming season.

Pick #108 – Alexander Pelevin

Pelevin has the skating, physical play and smarts in the defensive zone in order to play at the NHL level, but the biggest question is his upside. He is a guy with untapped potential. The Black book had him ranked 54th overall. Our scouts felt the same way and took him at #108 despite the USS ranking of #205.

Pick #133 – David Spacek

David is the son of former NHLer Jaroslav Spacek. He was a draft re-entry after being passed up last year. In 57 games in the QMJHL, Spacek tallied 50 points in 57GP in his first season and was named the Defensive Rookie of the Year. Spacek just came off the 2022 WJC where he finished the tournament with 1 assist in 7GP playing for team Czechia.

Pick #138 – Daniil Orlov

Smooth-skating LHD with above-average defensive instincts who uses his size well to shut down opposing players. Could develop into a bottom-four NHL defenseman. Black book had him ranked #70.

Pick #143 – Patrick Guay

Guay had a solid season in 21/22 in the QMJHL where he scored 55 goals and 104 points! Despite his offensive prowess, Guay lacks elite speed and is on the smaller side as a 5-foot-9, 179-pound center. However, his vision and ability to find the back of the net make him an intriguing choice at #143.

Pick #162 – Miguel Tourigny

Tourigny is an undersized but dynamic and electrifying defenseman who loves to carry the puck end-to-end and create off the rush. Tourigny had 80 points in 65 GP in the QMJHL this past season. He’s a long shot to make the SICHL but it never hurts to draft skill!

Pick #168 – Jackson Edward

Another London Knight draft pick! “He’s a big six-foot, two-inch defenceman who skates very well…He can transport the puck out of his own end…and has a good combination of offence and defence to his game.” – Rob Simpson, London Knights associate general manager.

Pick #198 – Jack Sparkes

From Corey Pronman - “Sparkes’ athletic tool kit is very appealing. He’s a 6-foot-8 defenseman who is quite mobile for his frame”.  Sparkes is committed to play with Michigan State University for 23/24 so he could end up playing with either the Barrie Colts or the USHL’s Lincoln Stars next season. He is definitely a guy worth taking a swing on.  

Pick #203 – Ben Boyd

Boyd is a big-bodied centerman who plays a hard, heavy game in all areas on the ice. To be honest, we picked Ben because we have a Charlottetown Islanders signed Ben Boyd hockey puck! We still hope he can one day crack the GHA and/or a bottom six role in the SICHL. Hard work sometimes pays off.

Well until next year, this is our 2022 recap and we hope you enjoyed the read!

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