This is my first full look of the season at the 2016 NHL draft class. At this point, I am not 100 percent up to speed on the entire class, but am comfortable enough with most of the top prospects to start making assessments. There is no generational talent like Connor McDavid in this year’s class, but Auston Matthews does have the look of a standard first overall pick.
Very early on, this draft class looks about average. The Canadian crop is weaker than usual, although the top 30 is still littered with Canadians, and the United States, Finland and Russia have above-average classes. There is a distinguished top three as of now, with Matthews having some separation at the top.
There are also two lightning rods in this year’s draft class.