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2021 NHL Draft Day Two: Carolina Hurricanes Draft Updates and Live Discussion

The Hurricanes currently hold 11 day-two picks, starting with four in the second round.

2018 NHL Draft - Round One Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

In case you missed it, the Carolina Hurricanes selected... more draft picks in last night’s round. The Hurricanes traded back from the 27th overall pick with the Nashville Predators, picking up a pair of second-rounders in the 40th and 51st overall picks.

Barring more trades, the Hurricanes now hold four second-round picks and 11 picks overall for day two. Here’s the full list of their picks

  • 2nd round, No. 40 (acquired from Nashville for 27th pick)
  • 2nd round, No. 44 (acquired from Columbus for Jake Bean)
  • 2nd round, No. 51 (from Nashville)
  • 2nd round, No. 59
  • 3rd round, No. 91
  • 3rd round, No. 94 (from Detroit for Alex Nedeljkovic)
  • 4th round, No. 123
  • 6th round, No. 187
  • 7th round, No. 200 (from Los Angeles
  • 7th round, No. 209 (from St. Louis)
  • 7th round, No. 219

Today, instead of posting each draft selection in a separate article, we’ll run the first pick as a separate article, and then we’ll share updates inside this article with each selection, so check and refresh often for all the details. If “we have a trade to announce” for an NHL player, it will be published in a separate article, and we’ll have a separate wrap-up with all available interviews once the draft wraps up.

Round 2, No. 40 (from Nashville)
Hurricanes select defenseman Scott Morrow

Round 2, No. 44 (from Columbus via Chicago)
Hurricanes select defenseman Aleksi Heimosalmi, Assat U20, Finland

The Hurricanes went back to the Finnish pipeline with their second pick in round two, selecting a skillful defenseman in Heimosalmi.

Matthew’s take: Heimosalmi is such a Canes pick. He needs to fill out a bit, but there are few defensemen in this draft that are more dynamic offensively. He’s one of the highest upside defensemen in this draft if he pans out, and the Hurricanes can afford to let him develop for a long time if needed. Heimosalmi was named the best defenseman at the U18s and it’s clear that when he’s on his game, he’s damn near unstoppable in the offensive zone.

Round 2, No. 51 (from Nashville)
Hurricanes select forward Ville Koivunen, Karpat, Finland U20

The Hurricanes are staying in Finland for their middle-two of four picks in the second round, selecting the 2020-21 U20 SM-sarja Rookie of the Year winner. Previous winners of that award include Canes prospect Tuukka Tieksola, Canes star Sebastian Aho, and big names like Miro Heiskanen and Kaapo Kakko.

Matthew’s take: Koivunen was one of my favorites. High-end skill and upside and he’s one of the more dynamic forwards that was available to the Hurricanes. The Canes are very familiar with Karpat’s program and can have a hand in his development while keeping close tabs on him. Koivunen’s skating is below average but that can be worked on as he develops into an NHL player. The Canes have done a fantastic job of drafting thus far.

Round 2, No. 59
Hurricanes trade pick 59 to Los Angeles for picks 72 and 109

The Canes traded down for the second time in this draft, picking up an extra third and extra fourth-round pick for their fourth and final second-rounder (and their original pick). Carolina now has nine picks remaining: three third-rounders, two fourths, one sixth and three seventh.

Round 3, No. 72 (from Los Angeles)
Hurricanes trade pick 72 to Nashville for picks 83 and 147

For the second time in as many nights, Carolina traded down with Nashville. This time, they moved down from an early third-rounder in exchange for a later third-rounder and a fifth-rounder.

The Hurricanes now have 10 picks left: three thirds, two fourths, one fifth, one sixth, three sevenths.

Round 3, No. 83 (from Nashville)
Hurricanes select goalie Patrik Hamrla, HC Karlovy Vary, Czech

The Hurricanes added another netminder to their pipeline, going with Czech goalie Patrik Hamrla. Hamrla played a few games for a number of teams on loan last year, with his best stretch coming in four games with the HC Karlovy Vary U20 team, in which he went 2-2-0 with a .916 save percentage and 2.27 goals-against average.

Matthew’s take: I don’t know a ton about Hamrla, but he has size and likes to play the puck. This is in line with what the Hurricanes look for in a goalie, so it makes sense for me. This pick will take time, though, so don’t expect to see Hamrla for a while.

Round 3, No. 91
Hurricanes trade pick 91 to Chicago for a 2022 third-round pick

Carolina decided to spice things up with their final third-round pick in 2021. Instead of trading down in this year’s draft, they picked up a 2022 third-rounder.

Round 3, No. 94 (from Detroit via Vegas)
Hurricanes select defenseman Aidan Hreschuk, USNTDP U18, Boston College commit

The Hurricanes took their third defenseman on day two of the draft in Hreschuk, a USNTDP product who is committed to playing his college hockey at Boston College in the fall.

Matthew’s take: Hreschuk had a slow start to the year but rounded a corner and became a top puck mover for the NTDP. He’s much more than your typical puck mover, though. He has a bit of an edge to his game and plays physically with a ton of pace. The Hurricanes are picking another player with top-four upside and I see him being an absolute pain to play against. Hreschuk was ranked highly by a lot of scouts and fell to the Hurricanes at 94th overall.

Round 4, No. 109 (from Los Angeles via Calgary)
Hurricanes select forward Jackson Blake, Chicago Steel, USHL

Carolina took its second forward of the draft at pick 109 in Jackson Blake. The 17-year-old scored the Minnesota high school state championship-winning double-overtime goal for Eden Prairie last season before joining the Chicago Steel of the USHL. He is a University of North Dakota commit. He’s the son of Jason Blake, who played 13 NHL seasons with the Kings, Ducks, Islanders and Maple Leafs.

Matthew’s take: Blake has some skill but is very, very light. There’s a lot of raw skill here and he absolutely dominated the ranks at the high school level this year. Blake will be attending the University of North Dakota in the fall of 2022 and will play for the USHL’s Chicago Steel next season. Chicago is a fantastic developmental program and I believe they’ll get the best out of Blake.

Round 4, No. 123
Hurricanes trade pick No. 123 to Ottawa for picks 136 and 170

Stop us if you’ve heard this one before, but the Hurricanes have once again traded back for more picks. The Canes flipped the 123rd pick to Ottawa for the 136th and 170th picks, picking up an extra fifth and sixth-rounder in the process. The Canes now have seven picks remaining: Two fifths, two sixths and three sevenths.

Round 5, No. 136 (from Los Angeles via Ottawa)
Hurricanes select right wing Robert Orr, Halifax Mooseheads, QMJHL

With one of the extra picks they picked up from their trades down, the Hurricanes selected right wing Robert Orr (no, not that one, no relation, and no word on if he goes by Bobby). As a rookie with the QMJHL’s Halifax Mooseheads last season, Orr posted 15 goals and 32 points in 41 games.

Matthew’s take: Orr is one of the youngest players in the draft class and a very quick skater. He plays with a ton of pace and fits the system fairly well given his motor and forechecking skills. Orr is the first CHL skater that the Hurricanes have taken in this draft, which is odd. I’m not sure if Orr will be an NHL player, but his next two seasons should be telling as far as his NHL upside is concerned.

Round 5, No. 147 (form Nashville)
Hurricanes select center Justin Robidas, Val-d’Or Foreurs, QMJHL

The Hurricanes went back to the QMJHL with their second fifth-round pick, taking Val-d’Or Foreurs center Justin Robidas. Robidas posted 19 goals and 36 points in 35 games for the Foreurs last season. He’s also the Canes’ second pick who is the son of a longtime NHL vet, as his father is Stephane Robidas, a former NHL defenseman who played 15 seasons for the Canadiens, Blackhawks, Stars, Ducks and Maple Leafs.

Matthew’s take: If Robidas was taller than five-foot-seven, he’s going in the top 75, no questions asked. The Hurricanes grab a player that plays with a ton of offensive skill and pace. He can put the puck in the back of the net and could be another steal for the Hurricanes. I’m not sure why NHL general managers keep letting the Hurricanes take all of these high upside players but I’m not going to complain about it.

Round 6, No. 170 (from Ottawa)
Hurricanes select defenseman Bryce Montgomery, London Knights, OHL

Carolina picked up a big, mobile defenseman in Montgomery in the sixth round. The 6’5”, 220-pound blueliner will return to London in the OHL next season after losing last season due to COVID shutdowns.

Matthew’s take: Montgomery is a good bet because he’s a six-foot-five right-handed defenseman that skates well. He lost a year of development due to the OHL not having a season but is worth a sixth-round pick. I don’t think this is an upside pick, but Montgomery has the size and skating that could lead to NHL success.

Round 6, No. 187
Hurricanes select goalie Nikita Quapp, Krefeld Pinguine, DEL (Germany)

Another goalie was added to the fold in this draft at pick 187. Quapp, an 18-year-old Ravensburg, Germany native, appeared in 11 games for Krefeld in Germany’s top professional league in 2020-21.

Matthew’s take: I know absolutely nothing about Quapp, but this seems like a long-term project. Quapp has size and played in a top league for a bit, meaning that he could be one of the better German goalies. The Canes likely saw him at the U18s and are going to help him develop for as long as he needs.

Round 7, No. 200
Hurricanes select goalie Yegor Naumov, MHK Kyrlia Sovetov Moskva, MHL

Goalies! The Hurricanes took their third backstop with the selection of Naumov to open up their three-pick seventh round.

Matthew’s take: Sure, why not? Naumov is another big goalie and you’re hoping that he becomes something in five or six years.

Round 7, No. 209
Hurricanes select forward Nikita Guslistov, Severstal Cherepovets, KHL

With their second-to-last pick in the 2021 draft, the Hurricanes went with a diminutive Russian over-ager in Guslistov. He scored five goals in 28 KHL regular-season games last season and added another goal in the KHL playoffs.

Matthew’s take: Guslistov showed some promise in the KHL this season, scoring a natural hat trick at one point. He’s a smaller center but showed some promise in the KHL, so the Hurricanes are banking on upside. This pick feels like it could be interesting if Guslistov ever decides to come to North America.

Round 7, No. 219
Hurricanes select defenseman Joel Nystrom, Färjestad Bollklubb, SHL

With their final selection in the 2021 NHL Draft, the Hurricanes picked up right-handed defenseman Joel Nystrom from the Swedish league.

Matthew’s take: The Hurricanes take another overage skater in the seventh round, this time banking on Nystrom’s tremendous skating ability and defensive ability. I like this pick for the Hurricanes. Nystrom seems to play the way the other smaller defensemen do, according to Eliteprospects. I’m going to go take a nap, now.