Flyers Redrafts: 2002

We head up to Toronto for the 2002 NHL Entry Draft. This would be the first of two consecutive years where the Florida Panthers would be awarded the 1st overall pick and then trade it to the team with the 3rd overall pick, leading to the 1st overall pick being a franchise player.

First Pick: Round 1 Pick 4 (4)

Original Pick: Joni Pitkanen (D)
New Pick: Duncan Keith (D) (54)

Joni Pitkanen was a fine NHL defenseman. Totaling 282 points, 57 goals and 225 assists, in 535 games with the Flyers, Oilers, and Hurricanes. He was selected to the 2003-04 NHL All-Rookie team along with playing in the YoungStars Game that year. In 2005-06, he got the Pelle Lindbergh Memorial Trophy for most improved player and won the Barry Ashbee Trophy as the Flyers’ best defenseman. But man, did we miss out on a future Hall of Famer. Duncan Keith was picked up in the 2nd round. I’m sure we all remember that report about the Flyers almost getting the young stud. In 1,138 NHL games, he has 610 points, 101 goals and 509 assists. He has gone to 4 All Star Games (2008, 2011, 2015, 2017), won 3 Cups (2010, 2013, 2015 winning the Conn Smythe that year), won the Norris twice (2010, 2014), NHL First Team All Star (2010, 2014), NHL Second Team All Star (2017), and was named as one of the six, at the time, active players to be named to the NHL’s 100 Greatest Players in 2017, and is sure to be a Hall of Famer.

Others in contention: Joffrey Lupul (7), Alexander Semin (13) Cam Ward (25), Trevor Daley (43), Matt Greene (44), Frans Nielsen (87)

Second Pick: Round 4 Pick 9 (105)

Original Pick: Rosario Ruggeri (D)
New Pick: Todd Gilbert (D) (129)

Ruggeri never made it higher than the AHL. He played in a 131 games in the AHL racking up 24 points, 6 goals and 18 assists. Todd Gilbert would go on to play 655 NHL games for the Oilers, Wild, Panthers, Canadiens, and Kings racking up 223 points, 45 goals and 178 assists. Pretty much minor pick, but more useful career AHL/ECHL player.

Others in contention: Nate Geunin (127)

Third Pick: Round 4 Pick 30 (126)

Original Pick: Konstantin Baranov (RW)
New Pick: James Wisniewski (D) (156)

Baranov never played in North America, staying in Russia his whole career, which is still going on. He currently plays for HC Sarov of the VHL (pretty much the Russian version of the AHL). James Wisniewski, on the hand, played in 552 NHL games for the Blackhawks, Ducks (2 stints), Islanders, Canadiens, Blue Jackets, and Hurricanes racking up 274 points, 53 goals and 221 assists.

Others in contention: none

Fourth Pick: Round 5 Pick 30 (161)

Original Pick: Dav Grumet-Morris (G)
New Pick: Mike McKenna (G) (172)

Grumet-Morris was a career AHLer, spending 10 years in the AHL. He is one of the few Jewish players ever drafted. Mike McKenna would eventually find his way to the Flyers, helping us break the record for most goalies used in a single season (8 in 2018-19). Though McKenna played for NHL games for 7 NHL teams (Lightning, Devils, Blue Jackets, Coyotes, Stars, Senators, and Flyers) he would only have 35 starts going 7-17-3 with an .890 sv% and 3.60 GAA and 1 shutout.

Others in contention: none

Fifth Pick: Round 6 Pick 26 (192)

Original Pick: Nikita Korovin (D)
New Pick: Maxime Talbot (C) (234)

Nikita Korovin would never played higher than the AHL in North America. but that was just two games with zero points. He would spend most of his professional career in the ECHL and RSL/KHL. Maxime Talbot, on the other hand, would have a decent NHL career. Talbot played in 704 NHL games with the Penguins, Flyers, Avalanche, and Bruins. In those 704 games he would put up 204 points, 91 goals and 113 assist. But Talbot played more of an enforcer role. One of those last true power forwards.

Others in contention: none

Sixth Pick: Round 6 Pick 27 (193)

Original Pick: Joey Mormina (D)
New Pick: Jonathan Ericsson (D) (291)

Unlike Korovin, who was taken just one pick before, Mormina would reach the NHL, playing one game for the Carolina Hurricanes in the 2007-08 season. Although the Flyers never gave him an ELC, he would find his way to the Adirondack Phantoms for their 2009-10 season. Jonathan Ericsson would go on to have a lengthy NHL career. He is still playing and even payed in 18 games last season for the Red Wings, who he has been with his whole career. In Detroit, he’s played 680 games totaling 125 points, 27 goals and 98 assists. Though he’s never been a star caliber player, he has provided Detroit some solid depth helping them win a Stanley Cup.

Others in contention: none

Seventh Pick: Round 7 Pick 4 (201)

Original Pick: Mathieu Brunelle (LW)
New Pick: Dennis Wideman (D) (241)

Mathieu Brunelle would never go higher than the AHL, with two stints for the Philadelphia Phantoms in the mid 2000s. Dennis Wideman would have a long career playing 815 games for the Blues, Bruins, Panthers, Capitals, and Flames. In those 815 games, he would put up 387 points, 99 goals and 288 assists. Wideman would also be named to the 2012 NHL All-Star Game. Wideman is probably most known for his cross-check on linesman Don Henderson which would result in a 20 game suspension.

Others in contention: noon

Flyers Real 2002 Draft

Joni Pitkanen
Rosario Ruggerio
Konstantin Baranov
Dov Grumet-Morris
Nikita Korovin
Joey Mormina
Mathieu Brunelle

Flyers New 2002 Draft

Duncan Keith
Nate Geunin
Todd Gilbert
Mike McKenna
Maxime Talbot
Jonathan Ericsson
Dennis Wideman

By: Noah Caplan (@Phlyers24)
Photo credit: Wikipedia

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