The Worst Classes
Worst of the Wost: 2012
Best Pick: Adam Pelech 65th Overall
A top-five pick technically wasted here. Garth selected Griffin Reinhart fourth overall in 2012. Thankfully, Reinhart would eventually turn into Mathew Barzal and Anthony Beauvillier. But Reinhart has the second-fewest NHL games played in the first round. He was a bad, bad pick.
Fortunately, the Islanders were able to take Adam Pelech in the third round.
Could have been disastrous: 2014
Best Pick: Devon Toews 108th Overall
Garth Snow would leave the 2014 draft with two first-round picks: Michael Dal Colle (5th overall) and Josh Ho-Sang (28th overall). In the later rounds, he’d get Ilya Sorokin (78th overall), Linus Soderstrom (95th) and Devon Toews (108th).
While Michael Dal Colle is now in the NHL, he’s not having the impact a fifth overall pick would be expected to make.
Josh Ho-Sang was a risky pick. Blame who you will for how things turned out, but the risk didn’t pay off.
Devon Toews has been the best pick made in the 2014 draft. Although that could change when Ilya Sorokin makes his debut in 2020-21.
Could have been better: 2010
Best Pick: Brock Nelson 30th Overall
Nino Niederreiter is technically still a good NHL player, but he was never that player for the Islanders. And that’s on the Islanders. They failed to do their due diligence to evaluate the character of the player and completely alienated him within two years.
At least, they’d get a good player out of the first round by taking Brock Nelson 30th overall. To be fair, they were only able to get the best version of Brock Nelson seven years later when Barry Trotz would eventually become the head coach.