Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
Wednesday morning, Washington Capitals assistant general manager Ross Mahoney spoke to the media on a Zoom call regarding the upcoming 2020 NHL Draft, which will be held virtually beginning Tuesday, October 6.
As a reminder, here are the Capitals’ selections in this year’s draft:
- 1st round – 24th overall
- 3rd round – 80th overall
- 4th round – 117th overall
- 5th round – 148th overall
- 6th round – 179th overall
“We will take the best players available to us, regardless of position,” Mahoney said about next week’s draft. He said the organization is not targeting anything specific. The draft was originally scheduled for June 26-27 in Montréal but was postponed due to the ongoing COVID-19 health crisis. Mahoney said the extra time to prepare has been “beneficial” and lead to more discussions and meetings.
Because of health and safety protocols and not being able to meet players in person like in years past (pre-pandemic), Mahoney believes they are “very comfortable” getting a “good read on their [prospects] personalities”. He said he has become a “Zoomer” after interviewing multiple prospects virtually.
Training camp will determine which prospects will be competing for a spot on the Capitals roster in the new season. Mahoney is curious to see how defenseman Alex Alexeyev and center Connor McMichael look when camp begins. He is also interested in seeing defenseman Martin Fehervary and goaltender Vitek Vanecek back in action and praised their performance progressions. “Martin has played very well…and so has Vitek.”
Going with two young goaltenders (Vanecek and Ilya Samsonov) for the new season, Mahoney said, “Those are decisions that will be made in the near future.” He mentioned Samsonov did “very well” last season and he is “confident” in both players.
On forward Daniel Sprong, Mahoney said they would “like” to see the 23-year-old Dutch have a “really good [training] camp” and eventually become a full-time player in the NHL. “Probably right now [he] would be more in the bottom-six role.” The team signed Sprong to a two-year, one-way contract for $725,000 AAV on September 18.
By Della Young