With the 2016 NLL Draft on Monday, Sept. 26 just days away, Stephen Stamp from IL Indoor has released his newest mock to project which players might hear their names called early and by what teams. Check out the projections below and watch the Draft live on NLL.com next week as the teams welcome the newest crop of rookies to the league.
“The early versions of the National Lacrosse League’s eligibility renunciation list have come out. That, combined with the Jordan Hall trade, means it’s time to hit the second stage of mock draft season. Welcome to my Mock Draft 2.0 for 2016,” Stamp writes.
The biggest name on the renunciation list is Doug Jamieson, but he doesn’t cause much change to my draft since he had already confirmed to IL Indoor that he is entering this year, which led to Mock Draft 1.1.
But the appearance of Seth Oakes is a game changer. Oakes is a surprise entrant because he had a year left to play with the NCAA Albany Great Danes, for whom he scored 98 goals in two seasons. Oakes is an extremely talented righty forward who hasn’t had a lot of visibility the last few years but continues to produce wherever he plays. More about him down the page.
The other interesting renunciation is an 18-year-old, but not the one many people thought would be going in the draft this year. Austin Staats is in classes at Onondaga Community College. The youngster looking to break into the NLL this winter will be Latrell Harris, a defender with the St. Catharines Athletics.
Mock Draft 2.0
1) Saskatchewan Rush (from Vancouver): Ryan Keenan, LF, Brooklin Redmen and Quinnipiac
This pick is pretty much a lock since the Rush would risk losing Keenan if they tried to wait and get him third overall.
2) Toronto Rock: Challen Rogers, RT, Oakville Rock
Keeping Rogers to the Toronto Rock after he got better and better as his summer with the Oakville Rock went on.
3) Saskatchewan Rush (from Rochester): Michael Messenger, RD, New Westminster Salmonbellies
No change here, either. Messenger brings a young (and inexpensive) defender to a team that is both over the salary cap and keen to keep some youthful vigor in its roster.
4) Georgia Swarm: Connor Sellars, RD, Brampton Excelsiors and Belmont Abbey
Trading away the 8th, 14th and 24th picks for Jordan Hall puts a little more pressure on the Swarm to fill an area of need since they won’t have as many selections to address issues later. That’s why I’m moving away from them picking Jamieson and on to Sellars. He’s the bruising but intelligent defender their roster is crying out for to help them shore up their own zone.
5) Calgary Roughnecks: Holden Cattoni, LF, Peterborough Lakers and Johns Hopkins
Cattoni is still the pick for the Riggers.
6) Rochester Knighthawks (from New England): Doug Jamieson, G, Six Nations Arrows
Curt Styres probably has this selection form already filled out, just hoping Jamieson will slip to Rochester. While he wasn’t up to his usual standard in the OLA Jr A finals or in his fill-in duty at the Mann Cup, Jamieson is a potential franchise goalie and a local to Styres’ Six Nations reserve. He can be the heir apparent to Matt Vinc (although he’ll have to beat out the solid Angus Goodleaf just to earn the backup role, meaning some time on the practice roster is a possibility).
7) Rochester Knighthawks (from Colorado): Matt Hossack, RD, Brooklin Redmen
Hossack just slides down a spot with Jamieson becoming available, but I still have the Knighthawks reuniting him with big brother Graeme on the back end in Rochester.
8) New England Black Wolves (from Buffalo via Georgia): Seth Oakes, RF, St. Regis Braves and Albany
Oakes chose to play Jr B at home in Akwesasne rather than Jr A in Six Nations for his final two years of junior. Not surprisingly, he ripped up the league, scoring 305 points in 68 games between regular season and playoffs. But it’s not like he couldn’t compete at the higher level: he’d scored 228 points in 74 games of Jr A up to age 19.
This summer, Oakes scored 21 goals and added 5 assists in just eight regular season games with the St. Regis Braves then added a 6/4/10 scoring line in three playoff games. The Tyendinaga Thunderbirds picked him up for the Presidents Cup and he scored 10 points for them in three games. Back in 2013, as a 19-year-old, Oakes posted 17 goals and 14 assists for 31 points in eight games at the Presidents Cup with Caughnawaga.
Leaving Albany may be a red flag for some teams, but reports suggest that academics have not come easily to Oakes and he may just be ready to move on. Anyone looking to take him will want to talk to Oakes first and make sure they’re comfortable with him, but he’s known as a solid character guy with immense talent. If he does fall to them here, the Black Wolves should be excited.
9) Saskatchewan Rush: Bryan Cole, LT, Oakville Rock and Maryland
I had the Rush picking Josh Currier in my first mock this year and am tempted to go back to that pick. I’ve also given serious consideration to either transition player/forward Vaughn Harris or goalie Warren Hill. In the end, though, I’ll leave Saskatchewan with Cole because quality lefty trannies aren’t that easy to come by and they’ve had their eyes out for one for a few years.
10) Georgia Swarm (compensatory selection): Warren Hill, G, Six Nations Chiefs and Syracuse
This would be a perfect sceario for the Swarm. Get Jordan Hall using some of the wealth of draft picks they’ve accumulated, get the big defender they need in Sellars with their early pick, then get the goalie they should be coveting at the end of the first round. Some observers actually like Hill better than Jamieson. I won’t go quite that far, but I’m a big fan of Hill and believe he has the ability and temperament to help keep Georgia competitive for a long time.