Some interesting tidbits from an article posted on NHL.com today:
Gordie Clark obviously wasn't going to let the world know who the New York Rangers wanted to take with the 10th pick in the 2010 Entry Draft during a conference call Wednesday, but he certainly perked up when Russian right wing Vladimir Tarasenko became the topic of conversation.
"We think quite a bit of Tarasenko," said Clark, who credited Rangers scout Vladimir Lutchenko as one of the biggest reasons for the franchise's success in Russia.
"As of today, Lutchenko has been (right) on Anisimov, on Grachev, and unfortunately we never got to see Cherepanov, but everything he had heard and everything Cherepanov had said, he was on his way over. He's been on, so whatever information he'll have will be the information that we'll go with."
Mock drafts vary wildly, but Tarasenko likely will be available when it's time for the Rangers to make their pick. Tarasenko will continue to meet with Lutchenko in Russia before Lutchenko flies to New York to meet with Clark and Jeff Gorton, the Rangers' assistant director of player personnel. All three will fly to Los Angeles for the Draft, which will be held at Staples Center on June 25-26.
According to Clark, the Rangers aren't simply entering the draft with the idea of taking the best available player. They will have a list of "A-rated players" from which they'd like to draft. Should those players not be there when it's time to pick, only then will they instead consider filling a positional need.
"Clearly the two names you hear are Hall and Seguin, for sure are A-players," said Gorton. "Then there's a bit of a fall-off. It depends on your definition of 'A.' For us, sometimes there are four, five or seven guys, then it falls off. I would say there's two guys clearly better than everybody else, then depending on who you're talking to, which I guess is us, there's another 10 guys you can throw a blanket over."