It's that dangerous time of the year, when people like me - who have not even seen Steven Stamkos take a single shift, live or on TV - think they know which prospect their team should take with their early first round pick.
I really thought I had it nailed, folks. I did my homework (actually, I read The Hockey News and caught some vid of Bob McKenzie). I started to add it all up - who LA would take, then Atlanta. To me, there was no doubt it was coming down to any one of three kids and the Islanders would be in great shape no matter how it turned out.
I became an expert on Luke Schenn. Not for any particular reason, mind you. I wouldn't know Luke Schenn if he ran me over in Roosevelt Field. I stay away from Ryan Jankowski and the scouts on the subject of the draft because I simply do not want to know. When it comes to the draft and PR people, knowledge is not power - it's death.
But Schenn intrigued me. Maybe it was because all we ever heard about was the big 2 Dmen - Pietrangelo and Doughty. Then it became the Big 3 when Zack Bogosian was added to the mix. Funny thing: TSN's McKenzie started talking up the kid they call "Bogo" and - BAM - now he's No. 2 on the Central Scouting list.
Schenn kinda slipped in. Doesn't have any offensive numbers, no highlight-reel clips on You Tube. All I knew about Schenn was that he had the same first name as one of my sons, was a shutdown defenseman, was physically and emotionally mature beyond his years and perhaps as ready as any draftee to play in the NHL immediately.
I started thinking Luke Schenn was the Kenny Jonsson of Kelowna, with some Brendan Witt-nasty to boot.
This morning, we learned that - yup - the Central Scouting Service doesn't even think Luke Schenn is the best draft-eligible defenseman on his own team!!!
This morning, draft experts like myself were introduced to Luke's teammate on the Rockets, the 6-foot-7 raw beast of a boy named Tyler Myers. The CSS has Stamkos 1, Bogo 2, Doughty 3, Myers 4, Schenn 5 and poor Pietrangelo - as if the mono wasn't enough! - slipped to 6.
Seems us draftniks have got some more work to do.