Pagnotta: Washington Exploring Ways To Move Up From Eighth Overall Pick

Photo: The Hockey Writers

According to The Fourth Period’s David Pagnotta, the Washington Capitals are exploring ways to move up from the eighth overall pick in the 2023 NHL Draft, which will take place at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville on Wednesday.

The three picks made before them are owned by the Montreal Canadiens (No. 5), Arizona Coyotes (No. 6), and Philadelphia Flyers (No. 7).

Washington could be looking to draft highly-touted right-wing Matvei Michkov, who tallied 10 goals and 14 points in 12 VHL games and nine goals and 20 points in 27 KHL games during the 2022-23 season.

Scouts have had Michkov, who has three years left on his KHL contract, going as high as second overall but he declined to speak to team in hopes of controlling where he goes. Though, he reportedly spoke with Philadelphia recently.

Other mock drafts have had Washington taking center Dalibor Dvorsky, right-wing Ryan Leonard, center Oliver Moore, defenseman David Reinbacher, and left-wing Zach Benson.

You can review the rankings made by NHL Central Scouting for the 2023 draft here:

Washington traded the pick that the Toronto Maple Leafs are currently shopping in the deal that lured defenseman Rasmus Sandin to the nation’s capital on February 28.

By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was watching the Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup in Las Vegas. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
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21 Responses to Pagnotta: Washington Exploring Ways To Move Up From Eighth Overall Pick

  1. Sprak says:

    I am perfectly fine with the caps moving up in the draft to get a guy like Will Smith. Giving up capital to pick a Diva like Michkov would be dumb.

    • Jon Sorensen says:

      Agree. Dvorsky would be a good trade up, others.

    • andrew777dc says:

      I don’t follow the KHL, maybe just check in with some players and (especially) potential Caps prospects. May watch a game or two in the Cup Finals. But I did keep an eye on Michkov over the past year. He’s been getting very positive press throughout his time in Sochi. Very positive contributor to an otherwise pathetic club. Unlike his time in SKA, when he was a bit of a spoiled brat. From what I read. No clue what’s been going on with the scouts lately. But on and off the ice over the past year, he’s been a good boy.
      Still, may be a safer bet with other players we’ve all been seeing here. Dunno, really, how it could turn out with Michkov, but it may not be as bad as they say.

      • Anonymous says:

        The one of caps Russian scouts said that the Michkov had the worst attitude of any prospect he’s ever seen

        • Anonymous says:

          That could also very likely be a smokescreen tactic. “Oh, no. You don’t want THAT kid. He’s terrible 😈” Then watch as the second best prospect in the draft falls into the Caps’ laps.

          • GRin430 says:

            There’s a LOT of stuff going on with Michkov that we won’t get to the bottom of until he’s over here for a while. Like his father being found dead in a lake after there was talk of the kid leaving Russia. I read one report where SKA told him not to speak to anybody representing an NHL club. That’s the sort of thing a kid might obey to an extreme if his father had recently turned up dead in a lake, if you know what I mean.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Good players available at 8. I am sure price would be steep to move up. Stay in place. I like Moore.

  3. Lance says:

    The Caps need young stars at every posish. A future #1C is ideal. Gotta outfox the other teams to get a #1C unless you’re picking 1OA.

    I really like the way they’ve been drafting in recent years. Iorio looks like the real deal. I think he’s ready now. Miro was a great pick. High upside. I expect McMichael and Lapierre to develop into 2C’s. I’m high on Alexeev (D usually take a long time). Suds could be very good.

    At 8OA, the Caps are in a position to draft a 1st line C or winger who is a fixture on the power play who also plays well defensively (please!). I don’t mind trading up for that player if that’s what it takes. It’d be cool to get 2 guys like that at #8 and #40 but let’s face it that almost never happens.

  4. Brant says:

    The hate for I am seeing online for Michkov just shows that these tactics work well in drafts. The kid wants the Caps — I want him even more now.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Benson has skill, smarts and discipline. Pretty good pedigree too. I take him at 3 through 8

  6. Prevent Defense says:

    I have to agree with the No-Knucklehead sentiment on these boards. All those Red LIghts on Michkov are more than enough to pass. I remember waiting FOREVER for Kuznetsov to show up in Washington. Count me as disappointed in his whole “body of work.” A couple good seasons, a couple bad seasons, and LOTS of Knucklehead.

    Why ingest the riskiest player in the entire Draft? There’s SO much great talent out there. And we just witnessed a Stanley Cup and Calder Cup Finals where work ethic and discipline and just plain desire totally trumped those fancy skill guys who shrivel up like weeds in high-tension situations.

    No more Kuzys. No more Semins. No more Joe Murphys. No more Mike Greens. Pick solid players. No Head Cases need apply

    • Lance says:

      I love Kuzy. He was the best player on our Stanley Cup run. Kuzy should’ve won the Conn Smythe. He hasn’t been great recently but he earned a top place in the Caps Pantheon in 2018.

      • redLitYogi says:

        Agreed. I don’t understand the hate for Kuzy. Yes, he did suck last year. So did Oshie. They’re both great players and we don’t know what they’re dealing with.

  7. redLitYogi says:

    There are so many good players. Corey Pronman says Mitchkov is by far the best Russian player he’s scouted since Ovechkin and Malkin — and there have been some very good Russians since then — and that according to all the things he measures, the highest overall rated player he’s ever had not ranked as the number one pick. Other scouts had Mitchkov at almost the Connor Bedard level. I’d take a chance with that. But if we don’t move up I’d be thrilled if we could get Benson.

  8. RKD says:

    The threat for Michkov at 8 is less from who is at 1-7 but from someone like Yzerman jumping us esp with the 7 pick…Flyers need everything and DET has its own Russian comfort zone…I still feel it’s best to sit at 8: if he falls, great! Otherwise you will end up with a Dvorsky who may just be a 1C in the Backstrom mold of 200 ft savvy center man. Wild idea: No Michkov or Dvorsky, I would trade it + Mantha to AZ for Keller + Schmaltz.

  9. Jim Lash says:

    IF we can get him out of his KHL contract, then sure, If NOT, then NO. A three year wait is a bit long, and possibly risky. A lot can happen to the kid in 3 years.

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