Anaheim DucksArizona CoyotesBoston BruinsBuffalo SabresCalgary FlamesCarolina HurricanesChicago BlackhawksColorado AvalancheColumbus Blue JacketsDallas StarsDetroit Red WingsEdmonton OilersFlorida PanthersLos Angeles KingsMinnesota WildMontréal CanadiensNashville PredatorsNew Jersey DevilsNew York IslandersNew York RangersOttawa SenatorsPhiladelphia FlyersPittsburgh PenguinsSt Louis BluesSan Jose SharksSeattle KrakenTampa Bay LightningToronto Maple LeafsVancouver CanucksVegas Golden KnightsWashington CapitalsWinnipeg Jets


It’s that time! The McKeen’s scouting staff has finalized our final rankings for the 2023 NHL Draft ahead of the release of our draft guide in a few weeks. As per usual, our list runs 224 players deep to match the number of selections in the draft, but we have included over 300 players when you include our Honorable Mentions.

Much to the surprise of no one, Connor Bedard remains our top ranked player, as he has been all season long. In fact, our top three remains unchanged from our midseason rankings with Adam Fantilli and Leo Carlsson holding down the second and third spots, respectively. There has been one change in our top five with Will Smith leapfrogging Matvei Michkov into the fourth position following his dominant second half and U18’s.

Russian defender Dmitry Simashev remains our top ranked blueliner but has now moved into the top ten. His combination of size, mobility, physicality, and improving offensive skill set is going to be alluring to NHL teams and we feel that his upside is the highest in a weaker crop for defenders.

A trio of Swedish players are among our biggest risers from our midseason list, with Tom Willander, Anton Wahlberg, and David Edstrom all jumping up into the first round. All three were excellent in the second half of the season, which culminated with strong performances at the U18’s. Willander, in particular, has a huge fan in our Director of Scouting, Brock Otten. “If you were to ask me who my favourite defender in the draft class is, I’d probably say Willander. He rarely makes a poor play and I believe that we are underappreciating his potential as an NHL defender because of how efficient and safe his game can be. I would be shocked if he does not become a quality second pairing guy at the NHL level and I don’t think the other defenders ranked in the first have that same assurance,” said Otten.

Another massive jumper in our list is Hamilton Bulldogs winger Nick Lardis. 98th on our midseason list, Lardis now finds himself ranked just inside of our first round. His play with Hamilton, following a trade from Peterborough has vaulted him up draft boards, including ours. His combination of quickness and scoring ability gives him a solid projection at the NHL level.

Despite having two goaltenders inside of our first round at midseason (Carson Bjarnason and Michael Hrabal), we ended the year with none. Trey Augustine is now our top ranked netminder, ranked in the mid second round. However, Augustine, Bjarnason, Hrabal, and USHL Clark Cup MVP Jacob Fowler are all closely ranked in that range.

Look for the release of our 2023 Draft Guide in the next couple weeks. It will include all of our rankings and reports, a mock draft, a preview of the 2024 NHL Draft, and much more. You can learn more about a subscription here.

1 Connor Bedard C 5-10/185 17-Jul-05 Canada Regina (WHL) 57-71-72-143
2 Adam Fantilli C 6-2/195 12-Oct-04 Canada Michigan (B1G) 36-30-35-65
3 Leo Carlsson C 6-3/200 26-Dec-04 Sweden Orebro (SHL) 44-10-15-25
4 Will Smith C 6-0/175 17-Mar-05 USA USN U18 (USDP) 59-51-75-126
5 Matvei Michkov RW 5-10/170 9-Dec-04 Russia SKA St. Petersburg-HK Sochi (KHL) 30-9-11-20
6 Zach Benson LW 5-9/160 12-May-05 Canada Winnipeg (WHL) 60-36-62-98
7 Dalibor Dvorsky C 6-1/200 15-Jun-05 Slovakia AIK (HockeyAllsvenskan) 38-6-8-14
8 Ryan Leonard RW 5-11/190 21-Jan-05 USA USN U18 (USDP) 56-50-43-93
9 Dmitri Simashev D 6-4/200 4-Feb-05 Russia Loko Yaroslavl-Loko-76 Yaroslavl (MHL) 33-1-11-12
10 Matthew Wood RW 6-3/195 6-Feb-05 Canada Connecticut (HE) 35-11-23-34
11 Oliver Moore C 5-11/185 22-Jan-05 USA USN U18 (USDP) 60-31-43-74
12 Colby Barlow LW 6-0/195 14-Feb-05 Canada Owen Sound (OHL) 59-46-33-79
13 Nate Danielson C 6-1/185 27-Sep-04 Canada Brandon (WHL) 68-33-45-78
14 Axel Sandin Pellikka D 5-11/180 11-Mar-05 Sweden Skelleftea (Swe J20) 31-16-20-36
15 Daniil But LW 6-5/200 15-Feb-05 Russia Loko Yaroslavl-Loko-76 Yaroslavl (MHL) 32-18-14-32
16 David Reinbacher D 6-2/185 25-Oct-04 Austria Kloten (Sui-NL) 46-3-19-22
17 Eduard Sale LW 6-1/170 10-Mar-05 Czech HC Kometa Brno (Czechia) 43-7-7-14
18 Samuel Honzek LW 6-3/185 12-Nov-04 Slovakia Vancouver (WHL) 43-23-33-56
19 Mikhail Gulyayev D 5-11/170 26-Apr-05 Russia Omskie Yastreby (MHL) 22-2-23-25
20 Lukas Dragicevic D 6-1/190 25-Apr-05 Canada Tri-City (WHL) 68-15-60-75
21 Gabe Perreault RW 5-11/165 7-May-05 USA USN U18 (USDP) 62-53-79-132
22 Otto Stenberg C 5-11/180 29-May-05 Sweden Frolunda (Swe J20) 29-11-15-26
23 Tom Willander D 6-1/180 9-Feb-05 Sweden Rogle (Swe J20) 39-4-21-25
24 Calum Ritchie C 6-2/185 21-Jan-05 Canada Oshawa (OHL) 59-24-35-59
25 Andrew Cristall LW 5-9/165 4-Feb-05 Canada Kelowna (WHL) 54-39-56-95
26 Gavin Brindley C 5-8/165 5-Oct-04 USA Michigan (B1G) 41-12-26-38
27 Bradly Nadeau LW 5-10/165 5-May-05 Canada Penticton (BCHL) 54-45-68-113
28 Anton Wahlberg C 6-3/195 4-Jul-05 Sweden Malmo (Swe J20) 32-14-13-27
29 Riley Heidt C 5-10/180 25-Mar-05 Canada Prince George (WHL) 68-25-72-97
30 Brayden Yager C 5-11/165 3-Jan-05 Canada Moose Jaw (WHL) 67-28-50-78
31 David Edstrom C 6-3/185 18-Feb-05 Sweden Frolunda (Swe J20) 28-15-13-28
32 Nick Lardis LW 5-10/165 8-Jul-05 Canada Pbo-Ham (OHL) 69-37-28-65