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NHL 2022 Draft Prospects: Top 15 Defenseman

With the NHL Draft a little bit over two weeks away, teams are gathering their final prospect rankings. Defenseman may be one of the most important positions in the NHL Draft right now. Who can find their next Cale Makar of the Colorado Avalanche? The 2022 NHL Draft will take place on Thursday, July 7 with the first round and the second thru seventh rounds will take place on Friday, July 8. Who are the Top 15 defenseman prospects in the 2022 NHL Draft?

1. Name: Simon Nemec

Height: 6’1″

Weight: 192 lbs

Last Amateur Club: Nitra

League: Slovika

Age: 18

Stats: 39 games, one goal, 25 assists, plus/minus rating 13. 19 postseason games, five goals, 12 assists, plus/minus rating 2.

Scouting Report: Nemec is projected to be the top defenseman taken in the 2022 NHL Draft. He is a great two-way player and Simon Nemec can pass the puck with ease and is an excellent skater as well.

NHL Comp: Cale Makar

2. Name: David Jiricek

Height: 6’3″

Weight: 176 lbs

Last Amateur Club: Plzen

League: Czrep

Age: 18

Stats: 29 games, five goals, six assists, and a plus/minus rating of even.

Scouting Report: Skating is the name of his game and he can also get shots through traffic.

NHL Comp: Erik Karlsson

3. Name: Kevin Korchinski

Height: 6’2″

Weight: 185 lbs

Last Amateur Club: Seattle

League: WHL

Age: 17

Stats: 67 games, 4 goals, 61 assists, plus/minus rating 36. Playoffs: 25 games, 6 goals, 13 assists, plus/minus rating 6.

Scouting Report: Korchinski has a wicked left-handed shot, but his playmaking is electrifying. He has solid height for a defenseman and Kevin Korchinski is going to make someone happy with his offensive playmaking ability on the power play and on the rush from the back end.

NHL Comp: Victor Hedman

4. Name: Pavel Mintyukov

Height: 6’1″

Weight: 192 lbs

Last Amateur Club: Saginaw

League: OHL

Age: 18

Stats: 67 games, 17 goals, 45 assists, plus/minus rating -14.

Scouting Report: He can over pursue the puck sometimes and be turnover prone. However when Pavel Mintyukov is on his game, it is very dangerous and Mintyukov has very high upside after his breakout season in the OHL.

NHL Comp: Kris Letang (left-handed version).

5. Name: Denton Mateychuk

Height: 5’11”

Weight: 192 lbs

Last Amateur Club: Moose Jaw

League: OHL

Age: 17

Stats: 65 games, 13 goals, 51 assists, plus/minus rating 20. Playoffs, one goal, nine assists, plus/minus rating -2.

Scouting Report: He’s always up in the play and can also get very aggressive. Mateychuk also can be his own worst enemy sometimes with too many turnovers but coaches will like Denton Mateychuk’s risk ability.

NHL Comp: Brent Burns (left-handed version).

6. Name: Lian Bichsel

Height: 6’5″

Weight: 212 lbs

Last Amateur Club: Leskand

League: Sweden

Age: 18

Stats: 11 games, three goals, four assists, plus/minus rating -1.

Scouting Report: He has great puck control according to the advanced analytics and can also block shots and is willing to sacrifice his body. Bischel is projected to go in the later first round because of not getting enough games in last year and Lian Bischel could be a steal.

NHL Comp: Ivan Provorov

7. Name: Elias Salomonsson

Height: 6’1″

Weight: 161 lbs