Likelihood Luke Hughes Will Be Gone When New Jersey Devils Pick In NHL Draft

Jack Hughes - New Jersey Devils (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Jack Hughes - New Jersey Devils (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /
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Buffalo Sabres
Buffalo Sabres during the first round of the 2019 NHL Draft. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

Buffalo Sabres

Right off the top, the Buffalo Sabres aren’t terribly likely to take Hughes. He’s not many analysts’ top player, and the Sabres have bigger needs than a defenseman that is pretty far away from being NHL ready. He’s not as far away as normal 1st-round picks, but he’s not as close as a normal top-five pick. Hughes has a September birthday, so he’s one of the youngest prospects in the draft.

Buffalo needs a little more hope with so much going wrong. They are likely going to trade away Jack Eichel. There are other players like Sam Reinhart who will likely be traded too. The already weak NHL roster is going to take a hit, and they could be in place for the number-one overall pick again next season. However, they won’t have a Taylor Hall tie to get them closer to that pick.

They need someone who has a little more immediate impact. It looks like Owen Power or Matt Beniers would be the pick here. Power is a left-handed defenseman just like Hughes. They already have Rasmus Dahlin as a number-one overall pick defenseman for the future and the present. It’s possible they want a right-handed defenseman, which it would then be Brandt Clarke, who happens to be the brother of Devils prospect Graeme Clark.

It still seems like Beniers makes the most sense. He’s a much different center than Eichel, but he has a legitimate two-way game that could really help them in the future. Either way, it seems like Hughes will be safe from Buffalo.