Opinion: 3 Biggest Winners From the 2019 NHL Draft Weekend

The NHL draft weekend has come and gone. While we all wait for free agency to arrive, let's take a look at the three biggest winners coming out of the 2019 NHL draft weekend.
3. Carolina Hurricanes
I was debating between whether to put the Hurricanes or Maple Leafs at 3 here. The Patrick Marleau trade was front and centre with my decision to choose the Hurricanes. Carolina is in a position where they have a ton of cap space (~21 million dollars) and not a whole lot to spend it on, besides Sebastian Aho. They were in a position where they could take on a dead contract to land an additional asset, and they definitely did here.
The team swapped their 6th round pick with Toronto's 7th rounder, but also acquired a conditional 1st round pick. The pick is top-10 protected next season, and would roll over to the 2021 draft, but either way, the Hurricanes landed a top-30 pick for the future, all for swallowing Patrick Marleau's contract, which will only carry a cap hit for one season.
To top it all off, the Hurricanes managed to draft a very solid player in Ryan Suzuki over the draft weekend, just adding to their excellent group of young players and prospects.

2. Montreal Canadiens
Coming into the draft, the majority of fans and analysts were expecting Montreal to target a left-handed defence-man. Luckily, there were going to be several to choose from. Philip Broberg, Cam York, Thomas Harley, and Ville Heinola were all projected to fall somewhere near Montreal's 15th overall pick. After a surprise choice at 6th overall, and Broberg and York being snatched up at 8th and 14th overall, one player fell all the way down into Montreal's hands. 5-foot-7, a pure scorer, Cole Caufield. The Canadiens were happy to forego drafting a player like Harley or Heinola and pick up Caufield. Many projected Caufield being drafted in the top-10, some even in the top-5, and almost every analyst agrees that he is the best goal scorer in the draft. The Canadiens were gifted the solution to their scoring troubles that have plagued the team for years, with a mid-range 1st round pick.

1. New Jersey Devils
Who would have thought? The team with he 1st overall selection ends up being the biggest winner? The Devils brought in the centrepiece of their team's future. Drafting a player that has been considered "the centre-version of Patrick Kane" is a huge benefit for the team. Now the team could try to focus on fixing up their defence and goalie tandem.
*24 hours later*
The Devils, like the Hurricanes, made a weapon of their cap space and landed P.K. Subban for a pair of 2nd round picks, an NCAA prospect and Steven Santini. While Subban alone does not solve every issue with the Devils' defence, it does certainly help to have an all-star defence-man on the back-end, and only moving a 3rd-pairing defender off their current roster (Santini).
These two acquisitions have also given Taylor Hall a reason to want to re-sign in New Jersey next year. Keeping Hall is vital to the success of the Devils, who were carried to the playoffs in 2018 by Hall's 39 goal, 93 point season.

Do you agree with this list? Comment below.

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