The NESN Bruins Fantasy Draft Show is presented by Cross Insurance: Your Team, Your Choice. Check out more at nesn.com/bruinsfantasy.
The All-Time Bruins Fantasy Draft is in the books.
NESN’s team of Bruins analysts — Barry Pederson, Jack Edwards, Andy Brickley, Dale Arnold, Billy Jaffe, Barry Pederson and Andrew Raycroft — came together this past Sunday with a simple objective: trying to put together the best all-time B’s team possible.
The 11-round fantasy draft featured a pool of Bruins players from both past and present, and each analyst was tasked with building a team of six forwards (two left wings, two centers and two right wings), four defensemen and one goalie. The draft was conducted under the “snake” format and held the following order: Pederson, Jaffe, Edwards, Brickley, Raycroft and Arnold.
Here are some takeaways from the event, including superlatives and analysis.
Biggest Winner: Jaffe
Jaffe really cleaned up in terms of scoring. His top line of Brad Marchand, Adam Oates and David Pastrnak features all sorts of firepower and a second line of Charlie Simmer, Tyler Seguin and Mark Recchi is fairly daunting as well. Oh yeah, his defense is anchored by Hall of Famer Ray Bourque, too. It’s safe to say Jaffe made the most of having the second pick in the draft.
Best Pick: Rick Middleton, 13th overall
After solidifying his blue line with his first two picks — Bobby Orr and Brad Park — Peterson hit another home run with the first pick in the third round. Middleton, who had his number retired by the Bruins in November 2018, ranks third in Boston history in goals (402) and fourth in total points (898). That’s great value for Pederson following the first two rounds.
Most Surprising Pick: Eddie Shore, 4th overall
It’s tough to knock Brickley for selecting Shore, a Hall of Famer whose No. 2 hangs in the TD Garden rafters. That said, the likes of Zdeno Chara, Phil Esposito, Cam Neely and Johnny Bucyk still were on the board when Brickley used his top pick on the legendary defenseman. It obviously doesn’t hurt to have Shore anchoring your blue line, but Brickley probably could have made a bigger splash at No. 4 overall.
Biggest Steal: David Pastrnak, 23rd overall
While there might be a bit of recency bias here, it’s a bit surprising Pastrnak fell all the way to the penultimate pick of the fourth round. The 24-year-old has a remarkable knack for finding the back of the net and is on pace for a Hall of Fame career. Pastrnak was in the midst of a breakout season, potting 48 goals with 47 assists before the 2019-20 campaign was put on pause. A handful of B’s legends were impossible to overlook early in the draft, but Pastrnak probably should have been a third- or even second-round pick.
Best Late-Round Pick: Tiny Thompson, 65th overall
Raycroft saved goalie for his final pick of the night, but he fared pretty well. Thompson held the Bruins record for most wins by a goaltender until he was surpassed by Tuukka Rask two seconds ago. Thompson won four Vezina Trophies over the course of his Boston tenure and helped the Black and Gold win a Stanley Cup as a rookie in the 1928-29 season. Not too shabby for the second-to-last pick of the draft.