2024 NHL Mock Draft roundup: San Jose Sharks get Macklin Celebrini at No. 1, then what?

The Stanley Cup Playoffs are on to the conference finals in both conferences. Dallas and Edmonton square off in the West and New York and Florida face off in the East. For the other 26 teams in the league, it's all about the offseason, including the 2024 NHL Draft.

The NHL Draft Lottery played out as expected with the San Jose Sharks landing the top pick in the draft. From there, the top five selections go to the Chicago Blackhawks, Anaheim Ducks, Columbus Blue Jackets, and Montreal Canadiens.

The lottery order (Nos. 1-16) are set as the conference finals go on. That means a new round of NHL mock drafts from The Athletic's Corey Pronman, ESPN's Rachel Doerrie, and SportsGrid's Zack Cook. Here's what their predictions look like for the lottery positions:

2024 NHL mock draft roundup

1. San Jose Sharks

The Athletic: Macklin Celebrini, F, Boston University

ESPN: Macklin Celebrini, F, Boston University

SportsGrid: Macklin Celebrini, F, Boston University

This one's a lock. The youngest player in college hockey from this past season is by far the best prospect in the class and can contribute immediately. He won the Hobey Baker Memorial Award given to the top men's college hockey player. He has connections to the San Francisco Bay Area, too; his father Rick is the director of sports medicine and performance for the nearby Golden State Warriors.

The Athletic: "Celebrini is the consensus No. 1 pick. The Sharks GM has basically said that’s who they’re taking. We can move on."

ESPN: "Celebrini and his family are keeping their cards close to the vest, but make no mistake, the Celebrini family and Sharks are over the moon that the top prospect in this year's draft will be playing in California to start his career. Rick Celebrini spoke about the possibility of Macklin playing for the Sharks, and while there is no guarantee the Hobey Baker winner leaves school for the NHL, it feels more likely than not."

2. Chicago Blackhawks

The Athletic: Artyom Levshunov, D, Michigan State University

ESPN: Artyom Levshunov, D, Michigan State University

SportsGrid: Artyom Levshunov, D, Michigan State University

Another consensus at No. 2 here. Levshunov is considered the best defenseman in this class with standout athleticism and physicality. His passing is a plus as well and he could develop into an impact player sooner than later with scoring potential.

ESPN: "The Blackhawks could use a high-end talent on the back end and right-handed defensemen who are excellent in transition are a rare commodity. Pairing him with Alex Vlasic or Kevin Korchinski for years to come must be a tantalizing proposition for GM Kyle Davidson."

SportsGrid: "The Chicago Blackhawks will have a difficult choice to make with the second overall pick. Whether they opt for a potential linemate for Connor Bedard in Ivan Demidov, or a future number one defenseman in Artyom Levshunov. The Blackhawks land on the potential 25-minute-per-night defenseman here."

3. Anaheim Ducks

The Athletic: Anton Silayev, D, Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod (KHL)

ESPN: Ivan Demidov, F, SKA-1946 (MHL)

SportsGrid: Anton Silayev, D, Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod (KHL)

Finally a difference in opinion at No. 3. Silayev's size (6-foot-7) helped him rack up minutes as a 17-year-old for Torpedo, including the KHL playoffs. He's a good skater at his size and has the puck skills that could make him a top defenseman on an NHL roster in time. Fellow Russian player Demidov is one of the top players in the MHL this year. His skill with the puck is among the best in the class and he's a threat to score often. His size (5 feet, 11 inches) and his less-than-ideal skating could hold him back at the NHL level.

The Athletic: "Anaheim is sitting in a great position because of how talented their group of young forwards are and the collection of high-end defense prospects at the top of this draft. Whether it’s Levshunov, Silayev or Sam Dickinson, the Ducks are in a great spot to leave with a big, mobile defenseman."

ESPN: "The MHL MVP would be a brilliant boost to the Ducks' prospect pool, and he is likely no more than two years from being an impactful top-six forward in the NHL lineup. With his ability to drive play and versatile offensive package, Demidov could look very nice on a line with Leo Carlsson and Trevor Zegras, two players who read the game well and could match Demidov's creativity."

4. Columbus Blue Jackets

The Athletic: Sam Dickinson, D, London Knights (OHL)

ESPN: Cayden Lindstrom, F, Medicine Hat Tigers (WHL)

SportsGrid: Ivan Demidov, F, SKA-1946 (MHL)

Three different prospects at No. 4. Demidov falls to Columbus in one draft while Lindstrom provides another option at forward for the Blue Jackets. His combination of size (6 feet, 4 inches tall), speed, and shooting could make him a contributor at center in time if he stays healthy. Dickinson's a top-notch skater in this class and his combination of good puck skills and an effective slap shot bode well for scoring at the NHL level.

The Athletic: "The Blue Jackets could go in a few different directions. They’ve added forwards and defensemen high in the draft in recent years although if I had to pick a need for them it would be more defensive depth. Silayev or Dickinson feel like ideal adds for them for that reason based on need and best player available."

ESPN: "Lindstrom protects pucks, wins battles and drives the middle of ice to the dirty areas to create scoring chances for himself and his teammates. The Blue Jackets have been starved for high-end talent at the center position for years, something they can fix in the span of two drafts with Adam Fantilli and Lindstrom."

5. Montreal Canadiens

The Athletic: Ivan Demidov, F, SKA-1946 (MHL)

ESPN: Tij Iginla, F, Kelowna Rockets (WHL)

SportsGrid: Cayden Lindstrom, F, Medicine Hat Tigers (WHL)

Montreal scoops up Demidov and Lindstrom in two of these mock drafts. The other keeps with the theme of forwards with Iginla. The son of Hockey Hall of Famer Jarome Iginla, his puck skills and skate speed make him a scoring threat. He needs to improve on the other end of the ice but could develop with time.

ESPN: "In every draft year, there is a riser. Tij Iginla is that guy in 2024... Even if all his offensive talents don't translate to the NHL level, Iginla's ability to impact the game as a 200-foot player give him a higher floor than those of other offensive talents. If he hits his ceiling, he's a serious candidate to be a 70-point scoring winger who can play in tough matchups. Those are quite rare in today's NHL."

SportsGrid: "It's no secret that the Montreal Canadiens are looking to add a forward here. GM Kent Hughes has confirmed as much, which leads the Habs brass being thrilled that big center Cayden Lindstrom remains on the board."

6. Utah (TBD)

The Athletic: Cayden Lindstrom, F, Medicine Hat Tigers (WHL)

ESPN: Zayne Parekh, D, Saginaw Spirit (OHL)

SportsGrid: Zeev Buium, D, University of Denver

Lindstrom falls no further than No. 6 in this roundup. That leaves two new prospects at this pick. Parekh is the best offensive defenseman in this class as he's arguably been in the OHL this season as well. His awareness is impressive and complements his skating and shot to give him promising potential. Buium's an excellent skater with puck skill to create at a high level. He could be ready to move to the NHL by the end of the season.

ESPN: "With proper development, Parekh is two years away from NHL minutes, and he could take a season or two before he finds his stride at the NHL level. If he hits his ceiling, there is a real chance he's in the Norris Trophy discussion for a good portion of his career."

SportsGrid: "With his consistently high-end play through the WJC and Frozen Four, Buium has been a big riser in the 2024 NHL Draft. Buium brings high-end offense, and minute-eating potential in the NHL, which Utah will covet here."

7. Ottawa Senators

The Athletic: Zayne Parekh, D, Saginaw Spirit (OHL)

ESPN: Sam Dickinson, D, London Knights (OHL)

SportsGrid: Zayne Parekh, D, Saginaw Spirit (OHL)

Parekh falls no further than No. 7 across these mock drafts. Dickinson goes to Ottawa in ESPN's mock draft to help the new regime with coach Travis Green and director of player personnel and scouting Rob DiMaio.

The Athletic: "The Senators have a massive need to add a premium puck-mover and if the draft goes like this they would have their pick between Parekh and Zeev Buium. Parekh could have a lot of success next to someone like Jake Sanderson for the next decade."

ESPN: "During the regular season, Dickinson's offensive play developed to the point where many believed he could be a power-play quarterback at the NHL level, but wondered whether he would stick defensively. In the OHL playoffs, his production dipped significantly, but his defense has taken a step forward where scouts see a more well-rounded game that resembles a quality second-pairing player at the NHL level."

8. Seattle Kraken

The Athletic: Zeev Buium, D, University of Denver

ESPN: Zeev Buium, D, University of Denver

SportsGrid: Carter Yakemchuk, D, Calgary Hitmen (WHL)

All defensemen for the Kraken at No. 9 here. Seattle scoops up Buium in two of these mock drafts with a new prospect in the other. The 6-foot-3 Yakemchuk was one of the top defensemen in the WHL this season with his mix of skill and scoring. He will need to improve his defense and skating to stick in the NHL long-term, though.

The Athletic: "The Kraken are in a similar position to Ottawa where in an ideal world, they would add a defenseman and they could be in a prime position to do so. Buium or Parekh would make a lot of sense for their organization and add a lot of skill to their team."

SportsGrid: "Yakemchuk is a strong, offensive minded defenseman that found the back of the net 30 times this season in the WHL. Yakemchuk does a lot of things right in both zones, which help him project as a top-pairing threat for the Seattle Kraken down the line."

9. Calgary Flames

The Athletic: Konsta Helenius, C/RW, Jukurit (Finland)

ESPN: Anton Silayev, D, Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod (KHL)

SportsGrid: Tij Iginla, F, Kelowna Rockets (WHL)

Silayev drops to Calgary for ESPN's mock draft and Iginla's rise is less stark for SportsGrid's expert. A new name enters the mock with Helenius, a solid playmaker and strong skater. He could likely play either center or wing at the NHL level and is one of the smarter players in the class.

The Athletic: "The Flames have drafted a lot of wingers high in recent years so any center or defenseman would be ideal for their pick. It’s tempting to slot in Tij Iginla here for obvious reasons, but they really need someone like Helenius, Carter Yakemchuk or Buium/Parekh in their organization."

ESPN: "While he lacks flashy offense, Silayev is the mold of an impactful transition defenseman, with good skating and lateral mobility. He's very raw, and just scratching the surface of what he could be on both sides of the puck. With his size and skating, he's a high-floor, high-ceiling player. At worst, he's a third-pairing, penalty-killing machine in the style of Nikita Zadorov. If he hits, he is a top-pairing minute-muncher who produces 35 points every season."

10. New Jersey Devils

The Athletic: Beckett Sennecke, F, Oshawa Generals (OHL)

ESPN: Cole Eiserman, LW, USNTDP Juniors

SportsGrid: Konsta Helenius, C/RW, Jukurit (Finland)

Two new prospects come up for the Devils at No. 10. Sennecke's seen his draft stock rise as Oshawa struggled without him in the OHL postseason. He's one of the top puckhandlers in the class with an effective (though not prolific) shot. Eiserman, by contrast, is arguably the best scorer in the draft. He's young and can sometimes hold on to the puck for too long but the potential is certainly there for NHL production.

The Athletic: "[Sennecke] is 6-2, can skate and is one of the most skilled players in the class. Some in the league think he has a chance to go higher than where I have him currently slotted. New Jersey has a ton of young talent at center and defense so they can afford to take a super talented winger, especially one who has some size."

ESPN: "The Devils are in a unique situation where they had a down year but are widely expected to be a playoff team in 2024-25. They can afford to take their time with Eiserman and give him all the tools he needs to develop into a scoring winger at the NHL level. Should they get him, he may be the guy who produces on his entry-level contract as New Jersey enters their contention window."

11. Buffalo Sabres

The Athletic: Berkly Catton, F, Spokane Chiefs (WHL)

ESPN: Berkly Catton, F, Spokane Chiefs (WHL)

SportsGrid: Berkly Catton, F, Spokane Chiefs (WHL)

The first consensus since No. 2, all experts agree Catton's the man at No. 11. He's a great skater and does everything well enough to give defenders headaches. He can create for others while maintaining a threat to score quickly thanks to his skate speed.

ESPN: "His 5-10 frame gives some scouts pause, but the ability to impact the game on both sides of the puck gives Catton a better chance of being a middle-six player if he doesn't hit his offensive ceiling. There is a lot to like about Catton, and frankly, if he were taller, he'd be long gone by this spot."

SportsGrid: "In recent drafts, the Buffalo Sabres have taken the chance on smaller, highly-skilled players. With Berkly Catton dropping out of the top ten, the Sabres take another shot on a potential top-six forward for their future."

12. Philadelphia Flyers

The Athletic: Carter Yakemchuk, D, Calgary Hitmen (WHL)

ESPN: Carter Yakemchuk, D, Calgary Hitmen (WHL)

SportsGrid: Sam Dickinson, D, London Knights (OHL)

Yakemchuk makes it to Philadelphia at No. 12 in two drafts to provide the Flyers a prolific scorer in their defenseman corps. Dickinson's name pops up for the first time here but he's no consolation prize. His skate speed builds quickly and his slap shot projects well at the NHL level.

The Athletic: "Yakemchuk has a wide range of opinions within teams, some have him as their No. 1 defenseman, some as their 6th or 7th ranked blueliner. That said the big-time skill and upside fit the profile Philadelphia would be likely to target."

SportsGrid: "It's not hard to argue that Sam Dickinson has the tools to be a top-ten pick in the 2024 NHL Draft. Dickinson skates well and projects as a minute-eating defenseman in the NHL, with potential top-pairing upside. "

13. Minnesota Wild

The Athletic: Tij Iginla, F, Kelowna Rockets (WHL)

ESPN: Konsta Helenius, C/RW, Jukurit (Finland)

SportsGrid: Adam Jiricek, D, HC Plzen (Czech Extraliga)

Iginla's drop is slightly surprising to No. 13; Helenius less so. Jiricek's a new name but not an unfamiliar one because his brother David was the No. 6 pick in the 2022 NHL Draft to the Columbus Blue Jackets. Jiricek skates well and competes hard. He'll need to improve on offense and it's tough to know where he's at development-wise due to a knee injury that ended his league season early.

ESPN: "The Wild could use some depth up the middle behind Joel Eriksson Ek and Marco Rossi, and adding Helenius to a young group of forwards that includes Marat Khusnutdinov, Matt Boldy, Liam Ohgren and Danila Yurov is enticing."

SportsGrid: "Although an injury cut his season short, there's a lot to like about how Adam Jiricek projects as an NHL defenseman. He's not going to wow you, but he has the skillset to be a projectable top four defenseman on an NHL roster."

14. San Jose Sharks (via Pittsburgh Penguins)

The Athletic: Adam Jiricek, D, HC Plzen (Czech Extraliga)

ESPN: Adam Jiricek, D, HC Plzen (Czech Extraliga)

SportsGrid: Cole Eiserman, LW, USNTDP Juniors

Jiricek goes no later than No. 14 to San Jose. If not for his knee injury, he'd likely not be available at this pick. The Sharks are a long way from contention and could give him the time he needs to develop. Eiserman would offer a prolific scorer to a team that totaled 181 goals this season, second-worst in the league.

The Athletic: "This would be an ideal scenario for the Sharks to walk away with a potential top-four defenseman in Jiricek to go with Celebrini given how badly their system needs top blue-line prospects."

SportsGrid: "No one questions Cole Eiserman's ability to score goals. Even though he's arguably the best pure goal scorer in this draft class, Eiserman has plenty of question marks away from the puck, which should see him fall out of the top ten. The San Jose Sharks are happy to take the chance and hope he pans out as they embark on their rebuild."

15. Detroit Red Wings

The Athletic: Michael Brandsegg-Nygård, RW, Mora IK (Sweden)

ESPN: Beckett Sennecke, F, Oshawa Generals (OHL)

SportsGrid: Michael Brandsegg-Nygård, RW, Mora IK (Sweden)

Detroit takes the rising Sennecke at No. 15 here. Brandsegg-Nygård is a new name for this roundup and likely Norway's best-ever NHL prospect. He's not as dynamic as many of the other forwards ahead of him in this draft but he's well-rounded in puck skills, skating, and has a very good shot.

ESPN: "The Red Wings have a penchant for taking well-rounded forwards who have a high floor and low ceiling. They need an injection of skill and potential top-line scoring. Sennecke fits the bill there, and while he is more likely to be a second-line scoring winger, his production since the turn of the calendar has vaulted him into a near 40% chance of becoming a top-line player."

SportsGrid: "If you've been watching how the Detroit Red Wings have drafted of late in the Steve Yzerman era, Michael Brandsegg-Nygardfits their mold to a tee. Some question his overall skill level, but he's a hard to play against forward that can do plenty of damage in the offensive zone with his strong forechecking ability."

16. St. Louis Blues

The Athletic: Stian Solberg, LHD, Valerenga (EHL)

ESPN: Michael Hage, F, Chicago (USHL)

SportsGrid: Beckett Sennecke, F, Oshawa Generals (OHL)

A trio of prospects for the Blues at the final lottery spot. Sennecke stays in the lottery with his final appearance at No. 16. Solberg is a bit of a surprise at No. 16 but brings a throwback, heavy-hitting defensive game to the draft. His offensive game isn't on par with other defensemen of the class in the lottery but his skating and wrist shot provide a solid foundation. Hage is knocked for inconsistency but when he's on, his skating and puck skills are NHL-caliber.

The Athletic: "Solberg had a great playoff and opening to his World Championships for Norway. He ticks a lot of boxes NHL teams seek in his size, mobility and physicality and his offensive game has developed. He’s the kind of defenseman the Blues would like to target and need in their pipeline."

ESPN: "He's a quality skater who attacks the middle and is a consistently impactful player at the USHL level. In Hage, the Blues are getting a coveted combination of a natural center with good size, excellent work rate and a right-handed shot. There aren't many top-six, right-handed centers in the NHL, but the recent star turn of Wyatt Johnston comes to mind."

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 2024 NHL Mock Draft roundup: Predictions find consensus for top picks