History of NHL players drafted No. 8 overall, where the Capitals will pick
History of NHL players drafted No. 8 overall, where Caps pick originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington
The Capitals were rewarded the eighth overall pick in June's 2023 NHL Entry Draft during the lottery last week, the exact spot the team projected to be before the ping pong balls were drawn.
Although Washington didn't ultimately move up in the lottery -- the Capitals had a 6% chance at the top pick and a 6.4% chance at No. 2 overall -- general manager Brian MacLellan is confident the team can still land an impact player with the eighth overall selection.
"In the end, we stayed at eight. It's still a good pick," MacLellan told NBC Sports Washington's Alexa Landestoy following the lottery. "Our guys are excited about the depth of this draft. I think we'll get a good player at eight, a player that we can build around and guys are excited about."
It's been a long time since the Capitals had a pick as early in the draft as it does in 2023. Washington's last top-10 selection came in 2007, when the franchise selected Karl Alzner fifth overall.
Here's a breakdown on the history of the No. 8 overall pick...
Most Notable NHLers selected 8th overall
Unquestionably, longtime Bruins star Ray Bourque is the best NHL player to have been selected eighth overall. Drafted in 1979, Bourque played 22 NHL seasons -- 21 with Boston -- and finished his career with the most goals (410), assists (1,169) and points (1,579) of any defenseman in NHL history.
Besides Bourque, two other players in NHL history drafted eighth overall have topped the career 1,000-point mark: centers Jeremy Roenick and Darryl Sittler. Roenick's 513 goals are the most of any player drafted No. 8 overall; Sittler's 484 goals are the second most in that category.
The No. 8 pick also produced a Hall of Fame goaltender: Grant Fuhr, who was selected by the Edmonton Oilers in 1981. Fuhr played 19 seasons in the NHL and won the Stanley Cup five times with the Oilers. He led the NHL in goaltender wins twice in his career and was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2003.
In the past decade, the most notable player selected eighth overall is Toronto Maple Leafs forward William Nylander. The eighth overall pick in 2014, Nylander has been a top contributor for Toronto since 2016 and just finished his best NHL season to date, recording 40 goals and 87 points for the Maple Leafs.
Most recent NHL players drafted No. 8
Remarkably, every single eighth overall draft pick since 1967 has played at least one NHL game, per HockeyDB. Yes, that includes last year's selection Marco Kasper, who made his NHL debut for the Detroit Red Wings this season.
Here's a look at the No. 8 overall selection in each of the past 10 years, along with their career statistics...
2022: Marco Kasper, LW, Detroit Red Wings — 1 NHL game, 0-0—0
2021: Brandt Clark, D, Los Angeles Kings — 9 NHL games, 0-2—2
2020: Jack Quinn, C/W, Buffalo Sabres — 77 NHL games, 15-24—39
2019: Philip Broberg, D, Edmonton Oilers — 67 NHL games, 2-9—11
2018: Adam Boqvist, D, Columbus Blue Jackets — 174 NHL games, 22-53—75
2017: Casey Mittelstadt, C, Buffalo Sabres — 277 NHL games, 48-91—139
2016: Alex Nylander, C/W, Buffalo Sabres — 93 NHL games, 14-20—34
2015: Zach Werenski, D, Columbus Blue Jackers — 416 NHL games, 79-166—245
2014: William Nylander, RW, Toronto Maple Leafs — 521 NHL games, 177-253—430
2013: Rasmus Ristolainen, D, Buffalo Sabres — 682 NHL games, 51-230—281
Capitals history in the top 10
The Capitals have never selected eighth overall in the NHL Draft before, but they have drafted in the top 10 twelve different times. Here's a history of those picks.
No. 1 overall: Alex Oveckin, 2004
No. 2: Never
No. 3: Bobby Carpenter, 1981
No. 4: Mike Gartner, 1979; Alexandre Volchkov, 1994; Nicklas Backstrom, 2005
No. 5: Darren Veitch, 1980; Scott Stevens, 1982; Karl Alzner, 2007
No. 6: Never
No. 7: Kris Beech, 1999
No. 8: Never
No. 9: John Slaney, 1990; Nick Boynton, 1997
No. 10: Nolan Baumgartner, 1994