COMMENTARY | The 2013 NHL draft takes place on Sunday, June 30 at the Prudential Center in New Jersey. Franchises build their teams through the draft. This is what general manager Lou Lamoriello has done for the New Jersey Devils since he took over in 1987.
Without any further adieu, here are the best draft picks by the New Jersey Devils in each round of the NHL draft.
Best First Round Pick: Martin Brodeur, Goaltender (taken #20 overall in the 1990 NHL draft)
The Devils have been rather successful at drafting in the first round: Ken Daneyko, John MacLean, Kirk Muller, Scott Niedermayer and Brendan Shanahan were all taken in the first round. Brodeur, arguably the greatest goaltender in NHL history, takes the top spot as he is not only New Jersey's best first round pick but also the best draft pick in team history.
Best Second Round Pick: Patrik Elias, Forward (taken #51 overall in the 1994 NHL draft)
(Honorable mentions: Forwards Sergei Brylin and Jay Pandolfo and Defenseman Colin White)
Elias, who led the Devils in points this season, is the best forward in franchise history. He is undoubtedly the team's best second round draft choice.
Best Third Round Pick: Brian Gionta, Forward (taken #82 overall in the 1998 NHL draft)
(Honorable mentions: Forwards Adam Henrique and Pat Verbeek)
Gionta, a Stanley Cup champion in 2003, just edges out Verbeek as the team's top third round pick. Center Adam Henrique could very well take this spot away once his career is finished.
Best Fourth Round Pick: Alyn McCauley, Forward (taken #79 overall in the 1995 NHL draft)
The Devils have not had a whole lot of success in the fourth round. That could change with 2011 draft pick Reid Boucher who scored 62 goals in the OHL this season. Although Alyn McCauley did not play a game for New Jersey, he takes this spot for the simple fact that he had the most successful NHL career among the group.
Best Fifth Round Pick: Mark Fayne, Defenseman (taken #155 overall in the 2005 NHL draft)
Fayne has become a very solid defenseman and was a diamond in the rough for the Devils at #155 overall.
Best Late Round (sixth round and later) Pick: Viacheslav Fetisov, Defenseman (taken in the Eighth Round at #145 overall in the 1983 NHL draft)
The man nicknamed Slava eventually came over to New Jersey in 1989 at age 31. The Hall of Famer would later be traded to the Detroit Red Wings in 1995 where he won two Stanley Cups in 1997 and 1998.
Michael Pellegrini has followed the New Jersey Devils since the mid to late 1990s when they had players like Doug Gilmour and Dave Andreychuk in the later stages of their career.
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