By the time you are reading this, it will likely be less than 24 hours from the Devils taking their first round pick in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.
Now, I'm not going to be posting or even tweeting during the first round. I will be at the Rock as part of the Devils' NHL Draft Party. Doors open at 6:30 PM, the Draft starts at 7 PM. There's many things you can do at the party and admission is free. I'll likely be sitting where I normally do at Section 1, Row 16, in case you want to come, say hi, and talk about things. We can have many
awkward interesting discussions about hockey or .
If you can't make it to the Rock or to any other draft party, then turn on Versus in the US or TSN in Canada - they will be broadcasting the first round. I will leave an open thread for all first round discussion here, if you feel so inclined. Leave all comments about all the NHL Draft day action, not just for the Devils - if the Panthers make an ill-advised trade, then, hey, say so in that thread I'll open tomorrow. As far as Rounds 2 through 7 go, I plan on posting during Saturday where the rest of the draft will be conducted. I'll likely leave an open FanPost for comments and leave the front page for any information I can find on the picks the Devils make.
According to the NHL's Draft Tracker, the Devils will have eight picks in the 2009 NHL Draft. One in each round, except for two in the third round. They'll be picking 23rd in each round except in the second (24th, 54th overall) and the first third rounder (12th, 73rd overall).
SBN Hockey is proud to have 8 bloggers at the NHL Draft, go check that out at Mirtle's draft primer.
As far as draft profiles go, all of the ones I've done and the ones done across the SBN Hockey network are all comprised in a list at Western College Hockey Blog. He did a lot of extra leg work on some lesser-known prospects, also worth your time. Go check that out and get informed.
Mock drafts? Well, Western College Hockey Blog also has a mock up; SBN's collective mock draft is complete; Bob MacKenzie finished his draft rankings for top 60 prospects (and way more) at TSN; and the DC Sports Report has a giant list of mocks for your enjoyment.
Here's some very well-thought out draft analyses if you're into that sort of thing: I covered the past drafts of David Conte's tenure as Devils Director of Scouting earlier this month. daoust did an awesome job coming up with a spreadsheet and some surprising analysis about the draft since 1994 at Pension Plan Puppets. SkinnyFish, later, took it to the next level and analyzed how well the draft yields valuable players. I recommend two more FanPosts: the first about GMs at the Draft and this second one about value of picks, both by Big Picture Guy at From the Rink. The Falconer goes for glory with an attempt at a new way to determine who drafted the best (hint: the winner isn't Detroit, NJ, or even Pittsburgh). And with a hat-tip to the Falconer, Scott at Gospel of Hockey figures out the draft tendencies of all 30 teams from the last 5 Drafts. A bit of a surprise to see the BCHL as a place where the Devils drafted more than the odd player (aside: will Vernon's Kyle Bigos make it 5?) Scott is all over the trends, looking at ages of players selected late in the Draft. Heck, just go to Gospel of Hockey and keep on scrolling.
I'm sure Tibbs will have news links up tomorrow (check 'em out), check back tomorrow afternoon for the Open Thread, and enjoy the first round NHL Draft. Be it at your home, through the NHL Draft Tracker, along with a message board like HFBoards, or with me and many, many Devils fans at the NHL Draft Party at the Rock.