The import draft gives Everett the chance to add a player or two who could make an immediate impact. The Tips pick 11th overall, which is a good position. Of course, the import draft is more about which player agents an organization has connections with than anything else, so draft position isn't as important. But Everett's history in the import draft is pretty solid, and when new general manager Garry Davidson was Portland's director of player personnel the Winterhawks brought in big-time players like Nino Niederreiter and Sven Bartschi.
With defenseman Dominik Bittner signing to play professionally in his native Germany, the Tips have both of their European roster slots open. Therefore, I would expect Everett to use its second-round selection, too. And given the amount of defense the team graduated -- along with the uncertainty surrounding the future of Ryan Murray -- I suspect the Tips are looking very seriously at defensemen.
The league is also scheduled to release the regular season schedule on Wednesday, so it will be a busy day.
We've also reached the point of the offseason for prospect watching. Alan Caldwell has begun posting each team's prospect list. Everett's up soon, probably coming on Tuesday, so we'll get a look at how much the protected list has changed since Davidson took over. I've already noticed a couple interesting things, but I'll deal with that all at once after Everett's prospects are posted. Also, Team Pacific announced its roster for its U-17 summer camp. Five Everett prospects (that I know about) were among the 68 invited from B.C. and Alberta. They are forwards Ty Mappin, Tyler Sandhu and Mitch Skapski, along with defensemen Michael Zipp and Carter Cochrane. This group will eventually be pared down to the 22 that will comprise the roster for the U-17 World Hockey Challenge.
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