It’s June 27th, 2014. The NHL Entry Draft is being held in Philadelphia. The Boston Bruins are on the clock with the 25th overall pick. The Bruins front office has made their decision and they make their way to the stage. With the 25th overall pick the Boston Bruins select a kid out of the Czech Republic named David Pastrnak.
Flash forward to today, October 14th, 2018. Pastrnak now has 101 goals and 212 points, the most of any player drafted in 2014. His 111 assists puts him behind only Leon Draisaitl, who went 3rd overall to the Edmonton Oilers. Now make no mistake, there were some really talented players that got drafted ahead of Pastrnak in 2014, especially four or five guys in the top-10. However, the teams that drafted after the top-10 really have to admit they took a big swing and a miss.
Bad draft picks happen. Draft steals happen. And luck happens. Fortunately for the Bruins, they got a little bit of luck when they stole Pastrnak with the 25th pick. The Czech forward has seen action in the NHL each of the five seasons since he’s been drafted and with each passing season he gets better and better.
His first two seasons were slow campaigns that saw him battle injury and a lack of playing time. But once he earned his playing time he proved to the Bruins that he was a bonafide star. The 22-year-old scored 69 goals over the last two seasons and has already added seven more early on in the 2018–19 campaign. Barring injury, he’s well on his way to the first 40-goal campaign of his career.
It’s easy to look back on 2014 and know that the Bruins got a gem with the 25th pick in the draft. Pastrnak is one of the offensive leaders of the club and should be for a long time to come. He also has an extremely team friendly deal that’ll pay him under $7 million for the next five seasons.
Drafting and developing is important in the NHL, especially with the way the league is now. Drafting Pastrnak was a huge win for the Bruins and it’s paying off big time for them now. I don’t want to say it just yet, but we’re not too far off from saying that David Pastrnak is elite.
Kevin Maggiore (@kevin_maggiore)