Red Wings: A closer look at the 2020 draft class, part one

(Wings Conference/Detroit Free Press)
(Wings Conference/Detroit Free Press) /

The Detroit Red Wings ended their draft with eleven fresh faces; take a closer at the first grouping of the organization’s draft class below.

The 2020 NHL Entry Draft has come to a close. After seven long, arduous rounds, the Detroit Red Wings have finished the draft with 11 new players. General manager Steve Yzerman, director of scouting Kris Draper, and the entire front office have placed their bets on this promising crop of players in hopes that they’ll become the future the Red Wings need.

The Red Wings would make twelve total selections, while also making four trades to extend the number of picks the organization had. They had plenty of draft capital coming into the draft and Yzerman was able to work with it to make things happen.

From Swedish star Lucas Raymond to towering defenseman William Wallinder we’ll be taking a closer look at the first three rounds of Detroit Red Wings’ draft picks today.

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Lucas Raymond – LW, 4th overall

After future superstars Alexis Lafreniere, Quinton Byfield, and Tim Stutzle were drafted; choosing a player of Lucas Raymond’s caliber is a no-brainer.

Raymond, who spent the previous season between the Swedish Hockey League and the Swedish U-18 league, is a dynamic left winger with a mountain of potential.

Raymond’s high hockey IQ and elite playmaking ability make him one of the 2020 draft’s most coveted assets.

With comparisons to players like Artemi Panarin and Mitch Marner, Lucas Raymond seems poised to make a huge impact when he makes his inevitable NHL debut.

William Wallinder – LD, 32nd overall

A giant of a defenseman, William Wallinder towers above his competition at 6-foot-4. Wallinder, who has been praised for his skating ability, remains remarkably agile despite his large frame. A huge, puck-moving defenseman like Wallinder will be a force for foes to reckon with for years, should he make the cut for the Red Wings.

Currently, Wallinder is signed to a contract with Allsvenskan in the Swedish U20 leagues. A defenseman with Wallinder’s level of upside will look great playing alongside 2019 draftee Moritz Seider or Filip Hronek.

Theodor Niederbach – C/RW, 51st overall

After trading the 45th pick in the draft to the Los Angeles Kings for picks 51 and 97, Steve Yzerman landed another Swedish powerhouse in Theodor Niederbach. Where Raymond provides an intense offensive threat, Niederbach excels on the defensive end, exhausting his opponents with his overwhelming style of play.

While Niederbach spent a year of development nursing a knee injury, his high ceiling, great handwork, and defensively responsible style of play make him a wonderful asset for a rebuilding Red Wings squad.

Cross Hanas – LW, 55th overall

With 49 points in 60 games for the Portland Winterhawks, Cross Hanas is a wickedly creative player with a knack for flashy goals. Hanas, a skilled player with a wide berth of potential, is more of a shoot-first, ask-questions-later kind of guy.

If Hanas can work on fine-tuning his skills while developing on his shortcomings, he has the potential to be one of the biggest steals of the draft. Putting him with a more defensive-minded player like Dylan Larkin could pay dividends in his future.

Donovan Sebrango- D, 63rd overall

Donovan Sebrango, who ended the OHL season with 30 points in 56 games for the Kitchener Rangers, is projected to be a smart two-way defenseman. He’s fast, sharp, and eager to get involved in the play without falling short of his defensive responsibilities.

Like previous picks, Sebrango has a lot of potential but will need to smooth out the rough edges of his game before he’s given a full-time shot. Having said that, Sebrango’s potential ceiling makes him an easy pick for Yzerman and the Red Wings.

Eemil Viro – D, 70th overall

While Eemil Viro’s three points in 29 games in the Finnish Liiga might not leap off the page statistically, the fact that he’s played so well against grown men in one of the top leagues in the world makes him a smart, strong pick for the Red Wings.

Viro is a powerful skater who quickly rose through prospect rankings with a strong 2019-20 season. While he still has a long way to go with his defensive development, Viro is a gamble worth the investment.

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Check back in later this week for a closer look at the rest of the Red Wings’ picks!