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Re-Drafting The First Round Of The Legendary 2003 NHL Draft

The 2003 NHL Entry Draft took place roughly 13 years ago. The list of quality players in that draft had such significant impact on current NHL teams. Eric Staal won the Stanley Cup in only his second

The 2003 NHL Entry Draft took place roughly 13 years ago. The list of quality players in that draft had such significant impact on current NHL teams. Eric Staal won the Stanley Cup in only his second year. But, what if you could go back in time and re-draft history? It’s been ample time since the 2003 draft and many of those players had a feasible amount of time to accumulate points. It’s a very tough challenge to move the likes of Marc-Andre Fleury or Corey Perry and place them on other teams. Part of the equation is what do those teams need now or what would have made a better fit overall.

Some players in that draft did not pan out at all or had shorter careers. Originally, Nikolai Zherdev was drafted 4th overall by the Columbus Blue Jackets. Knowing the type of player, he turned out to be, perhaps the Columbus Blue Jackets may have been wise to choose a different player. What would Corey Perry's career have been like if he had the opportunity to play alongside Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin? Having said that, let us turn back the clocks and re-draft the entire first round of the legendary 2003 NHL Draft.

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30 Pittsburgh Penguins - Corey Perry

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The Pittsburgh Penguins selected Marc-Andre Fleury with the first selection in the 2003 Entry draft. Corey Perry has the size and pedigree to play alongside the likes of Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby. This is a perfect fit for a team that struggled to find players to play the wing for Sid the Kid. With Perry, Crosby would have come into the league with an elite winger to grow with him.

Perry won the Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy by scoring an amazing 50 goals in the 2010-11 season. He has also accumulated 664 points in 804 career games. The Penguins are fresh off their Stanley Cup victory, but they had to trade for Kessel in order to get there. How many cups would they have won if Perry was drafted no.1 overall and not Fleury? As good as Perry has been with Getzlaf in Anaheim, you have to wonder if he could have done even better with Crosby.

29 Carolina Hurricanes - Eric Staal

John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

It seemed like the right fit at the time and probably still is the best logical choice for the Canes in hindsight. While many have soured on Staal in recent years due to his declining play, it's important to remember just how integral he was in the Canes' Stanley Cup run back in 2006 and how great of a player he was in his prime.

Eric Staal led his team to a Stanley Cup in only his second year at the helm. Pretty impressive. Oh, by the way, he also had 28 points in that outstanding playoff run. If not for Cam Ward, he was likely the runner up to the Conn Smythe trophy.

Even though he was traded to the New York Rangers during the 2015-16 season, and signed with the Minnesota Wild in the offseason, this still stands as the best choice for the Canes at the number two spot.

28 Florida Panthers - Shea Weber

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The Panthers had a horrible roster in 2003. Arguably their best players were Roberto Luongo and Jay Bouwmeester. Typically, when rebuilding your franchise, you start from the back end outwards. They had a goaltender and they had a defenseman, but Shea Weber would have solidified the power play and punished people in his zone. He was severely underrated by scouts in the draft as he wasn’t taken until the 49th overall selection by the Nashville Predators. The Panthers were missing a true stud for years, which wasn't solved until they drafted Aaron Ekblad 11 years later. Weber could have probably helped the Panthers to a few playoff berths throughout the 2000s, playing in a much easier Eastern Conference.

Spending his entire career with the Predators, he has been considered one of the top elite defenseman in the league. His career path has now changed since the trade to the Montreal Canadiens.

27 Columbus Blue Jackets - Ryan Getzlaf

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The Columbus Blue Jackets originally drafted Nikolai Zherdev at the number 4 spot. Nikolai Zherdev did not last too long in the NHL, but he still managed to play 421 career games with 115 goals, 146 assists for a total of 261 points. Respectable numbers. Anaheim's fate has already changed with Corey Perry being drafted by the Penguins. Having said that, Ryan Getzalf would be the game changing piece that the Blue Jackets needed. Quite frankly, Rick Nash's career numbers would likely be drastically higher playing alongside Getzalf. He is a solid 221 pounds standing in at 6'4.

In his career thus far, he has produced a near point per game, putting up 741 points in 787 games played. His stats get even more interesting. He also has a plus-138 rating, 273 power play points and 45 game winning goals. Let's not forget his 681 penalty minutes as well. Long term, this is a much smarter choice than drafting Nikolai Zherdev. In hindsight, the Columbus Blue Jackets may have already won a Stanley Cup--far fetched? Perhaps not.

26 Buffalo Sabres – Zach Parise

Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

The Buffalo Sabres originally drafted Thomas Vanek with the number 5 pick in 2003. Zach Parise was not selected until the 17th spot by the New Jersey Devils. He is currently a member of the Minnesota Wild, and is still producing at a successful pace. Parise has accumulated 619 points in 761 career games. He has competed in 82 complete games three times in his career, and scored over 94 points once in the 2008-09 season. In 2003, the Buffalo Sabres roster was struggling. Ryan Miller was still playing behind Martin Biron and Brian Campbell was playing in the backend. They needed scoring and Danny Briere alone wasn’t cutting it. Zach Parise would have helped this franchise out tremendously adding that American born pedigree and that touch of scoring they required.

However, it is important to note that Zach Parise nor Thomas Vanek have ever won a Stanley Cup. But, Parise did lead the New Jersey Devils to the Stanley Cup finals in 2012.

25 San Jose Sharks – Patrice Bergeron

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An excellent face off man and a dynamic two-way player. He is an excellent leader and proved his worth as a member of the Boston Bruins. This San Jose Sharks drafted Milan Michalek with the number 6 pick. The Boston Bruins did not select Bergeron until the second round. He was the 45th pick. Imagine that! Bergeron has been a true leader in Boston. He has scored a total of 618 career points in 820 career games. Not to mention the fact that he also lead the Bruins to a Stanley Cup in the process. He has a couple of Selke trophies and been the leagues best defensive forward on many occasions. Great hardware for a trophy case.

Everything is hypothetical when doing a re-draft, but just picture him in a Sharks uniform. In 2005,  the Sharks traded for Joe Thornton from the Bruins in exchange for Marco Sturm, Wayne Primeau and Brad Stuart. If the Sharks drafted Bergeron then there is a good chance this trade never happens.

24 Nashville Predators – Dion Phaneuf

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The Nashville Predators drafted Ryan Suter with the number 7 pick in 2003. Instead, I am drafting Dion Phaneuf in this spot. He had the pedigree of an elite defense man. His hits and bruising style were almost that of a Chris Pronger. Nashville could use that style of play to keep forwards from getting to the front of the net. Phaneuf has an interesting history in Toronto and like being in any Canadian market, was open to criticism and scrutiny. He spent five years in playing for the Calgary Flames putting up some impressive numbers and then spent seven years with the Toronto Maple Leafs until being traded to the Ottawa Senators. However, his stats are very surprising. In 821 games played Dion has tallied 432 points. Not too bad for am NHL defenseman.

Playing in a city with a lot less pressure on him in Nashville, Phaneuf would have thrived.

23 Atlanta Thrashers/Winnipeg Jets – Ryan Suter

Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Originally drafting Braydon Coburn, I’ve opted to place Ryan Suter at the number 8 pick. Braydon Coburn tallied 5 points in 38 games during two seasons of play for the Atlanta Thrashers. They gave up waiting for some signs of life and traded him to the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for Alexei Zhitnik. Drafting Ryan Suter in this spot eliminates this trade from ever taking place. Clearly, Suter is nowhere the size of Coburn at 6'5, but his style of play is simple yet effective. He has the ability to the move the puck well and keeps forwards guessing. He has been consistently productive throughout his career. In 832 games played he has tallied 402 points.

Drafting Suter would have given the Thrashers a much needed stabilizer at the back end and clearly, the Thrashers were lacking talent all around their roster, so they really couldn't go wrong by taking Suter.

22 Calgary Flames – Thomas Vanek

Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

The Calgary Flames originally drafted Dion Phaneuf in this spot but I had him selected by the Predators at number 7. Seeing how the Calgary traded Phaneuf five years later, it made sense to instead place a suitable scoring forward at number 9. Thomas Vanek recently signed with the Detroit Red Wings and recently spent time in Minnesota after being traded from Buffalo to the Islanders to Montreal—that experiment did not work out. However, snipers are a very rare breed in the NHL today and especially during the 2000s. He accumulated 48 points in his first season with the Buffalo Sabres. In 2006-07, Vanek had an outstanding 84 points in 82 games with a plus-47.

Drafting Vanek could have made for an interesting line-up. He may very well have lined up with Jarome Iginla and Craig Conroy. In fact, I would be so bold to predict—in hindsight—that the Calgary Flames may have actually won a Stanley Cup with this draft pick.

21 Montreal Canadiens – Marc-Andre Fleury

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Montreal took Andrei Kostitsyn in the 10th overall spot. They also drafted his brother Sergei a few years later. With the opportunity to draft a Quebec born goalie, and Bergeron now off the board - the Montreal Canadiens select Marc-Andre Fleury. Le Bleu, Blanc et Rouge could not pass up this chance to fill up a long-time void since Patrick Roy. In 653 career games played his record is 357 wins, 206 loses, 2 ties and 59 overtime loses. His career saving percentage is .912 but he has putting up slightly better numbers from 2007-08 on. Fleury is a proven winner with two Stanley Cups to his name. He was able to bring his team to two Stanley Cup Finals, something the Habs have not seen since 1993--where they were the last Canadian team to win the Stanley Cup. J

ust picture thousands upon thousands of fans pushing one another in line, rushing to get into the Bell Centre, wearing Marc-Andre Fleury jerseys.

20 Philadelphia Flyers – Jimmy Howard

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia Flyers originally drafted Jeff Carter at number 11. He was then traded from the Flyers to the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2011, for Jakub Voracek and the Blue Jackets first and third round picks in 2011. Let's shift gears and make this trade disappear from history. The Flyers missed out on the chance to draft Marc-Andre Fleury. They have always needed quality goaltending—an issue they still have even today—the Flyers select Jimmy Howard. He is an American born goalie with a history of winning and certainly looks like an upgrade on all their future goalies to come.

If only the Flyers had a time machine. In 275 games played, Howard has fair career numbers recording 189 wins, 113 loses and 53 OT loses. His career save percentage is .915. His best winning season came between 2009 and 2012. He reached 37 wins twice during that time. While there are better names on the board here, the Flyers need to solve goaltending issues.

19 New York Rangers – Jeff Carter

John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers originally rafted Hugh Jessiman in this spot. Who? Exactly. Jessiman played two games in the NHL and both not for the New York Rangers. He suited up for the Florida Panthers. His career stats are two games played, a and plus minus rating of -1 and 5 penalty minutes. He was traded to the Nashville Predators in 2008. Needless to say he never met expectations bouncing around, mostly playing the AHL.

Jeff Carter is a monster steal at the 12th pick, standing at 6'4 and 215 pounds. The Flyers and Blue Jackets gave up on Jeff Carter too fast. Once he was traded to the Los Angeles Kings, he helped them win their first Stanley Cup in franchise history. His career stats are quite impressive as well. He has played 795 games and tallied 584 points. Most of those are goals (307). His best career year offensively was in 2008-09 with the Philadelphia Flyers, when he produced 84 points in 82 games--scoring 46 goals. Simply amazing.

18 Los Angeles Kings – David Backes

Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

The former St. Louis Blues captain and current member of the Boston Bruins is not to be toiled with. He stands at 6'3''and 221 pounds. He eats, breathes and sleeps hockey. His physical style of play is very difficult to contend with. Backes can line up at any forward position with his right handed shoot being an asset at the center spot. His overall work ethic and hockey IQ would make a much better fit for the Kings than that of Dustin Brown--whom the Kings took originally at the number 13 spot. But, what is more impressive? His point totals or his penalty minute numbers? In 727 games played he has tallied 460 points. Amazing. Most players never reach this type of production. However, in those games played he amassed 969 penalty minutes. The man also tallied 26 game winning goals. Once again, he is not someone you want to mess with.

17 Chicago Blackhawks – Brent Seabrook

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The Chicago Blackhawks drafted Brent Seabrook in 2003 and they are drafting him again in this re-draft. Why change a good thing? His impressive plus minus over his career and chemistry with Duncan Keith make him an excellent fit. Seabrook is a highly skilled passing defenseman who has helped the Blackhawks win three Stanley Cups. These Stanley Cup wins prove his durability. Chicago has had a habit of shortening their defensive pairings… forcing Seabrook to log more minutes, especially in the playoffs. Hence their recent signing of Brian Campbell. In 844 career games played, Seabrook has tallied 367 points (126 points coming on the power play) and has a plus rating of 114. He has also scored a few big playoff goals throughout his career. Don’t believe me? Look up the Game 7 overtime winner against Detroit in 2013. Arguably, without Seabrook and Keith, there would be no Corey Crawford in Chicago.

16 New York Islanders – Joe Pavelski

John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

The Islanders originally drafted Robert Nilsson in the number 16 spot. Nilsson did not hab a long NHL career. He suited up for the Islanders for just one season, mostly spending his early years in the minors. After that, he found himself on a one-way ticket to Europe where he has continued his hockey career. This player doesn't even stand close to the caliber of Joe Pavelski. That is why the Islanders are drafting him now, rather than at his original 205th draft spot. He is a proven leader with a great right handed shot. He is a reliable two-way player and plays big minutes.

He drove the Sharks bus all the way to their very first Stanley Cup final this past season. He could have been doing that on Long Island, forming a one-two punch with John Tavares. Standing at 5'11 and 190 pounds, Joe continues to develop. In 757 games played he has tallied 563 points and an outstanding 212 points came on the power play. His career high in goals came in the 2013-14 season, scoring 41 goals. The only NHL player to have found more consistency in scoring in recent seasons has been Alex Ovechkin.

15 San Jose Sharks – Nathan Horton

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Nathan Horton spent a great of time on the injury reserve. Despite this, Horton would have made an excellent addition to the San Jose Sharks (with Pavelski now off the board) and played on the top line with Joe Thornton, had his career lasted longer. This draft pick would not have made an immediate impact. It is important to note that Nathan Horton has not played a game in the NHL since April 2014 due to a back injury. Still, Horton had some very good years, including a very clutch playoff run with the Boston Bruins back in 2011, when he helped them hoist the Stanley Cup by producing 17 points in 21 playoff games. On top of that, he put up an impressive 3 game winning goals.

He is not officially retired but it looks as if he will not return.

14 New Jersey Devils – Dustin Byfuglien

John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

Martin Brodeur was still going strong in 2003, so there is no need to draft a goalie here. When I think of the Devils I think of Scott Stevens. His open ice hits were deadly and he punished players in and around the net. Originally Dustin Byfuglien was drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks 245th overall and traded to the Atlanta Thrashers in 2010. He would have been an excellent choice at the number 17 spot. This mammoth of a human being in combination with the New Jersey Devils defensive system and their legendary goal-tending, would have been a dream come true. He stands at 6'5 and 260 pounds. He has tallied 397 points in 678 career games. The one stat that stands out the most is his plus minus rating of -37 life time. Maybe playing in New Jersey would have changed all that.

13 Washington Capitals – Ryan Kesler

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

In 2003, the Washington Capitals drafted Eric Fehr with the number 18 pick. He played in 509 career games and tallied 191 points. Fehr is a big man standing in at 6'4'' and 212 pounds. He has always been a great role player at the center position. However, Alexander Ovechkin has always needed a great center-man. But, how about a center-man that takes defensive face-offs and has sand paper for skin? Ovie never needed anyone to set him up really… he can do that stuff on his own. What he needs is a work horse to make space and provide appropriate depth. I apologize Eric Fehr. In comparison, Ryan Kesler played 815 games tallying 493 points and is overall the better player. He is an excellent penalty killer and often takes defensive zone draws. His shooting percentage may not have changed (11.6% career) but playing with Alexander Ovechkin may have added to his assists total of 270.

12 Anaheim Ducks – Loui Eriksson

Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Once upon a time the Anaheim Ducks drafted Ryan Getzlaf at the number 19 spot. The 6'4'' center man was already slotted in at the number 4 spot earlier, going to the Columbus Blue Jackets. In case you have already forgotten, Getzlaf has put up 741 points in his career. Loui Eriksson is not Ryan Getzlaf but he has always been a skilled player with the size and surprising speed any team would hope for. He has accumulated 504 points in 725 games with a plus 59 rating. He has always been a steady producer but never broke his career record of 73 points in one season. Regardless, the Ducks are not passing up on this 6’2 right winger. Perhaps that is the reason why the Vancouver Canucks signed him to a six-year contract. He will ultimately play with the Sedins. However, it would be interesting to see how he have looked like in a Ducks uniform.

11 Minnesota Wild – Milan Michalek

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Initially drafted by the San Jose Sharks in the #6 spot, Milan Michalek is an excellent addition for the Minnesota Wild. The 31-year-old forward showed some scoring prowess in his career, but suffering a concussion prior to 2011, slowed his career down quite a bit. In 742 career games played he has put up 444 points. He scored 66 points in the 2006-2007 season—a career high. However, he has only ever reached the 30 goal mark once in his career and that was in 2011-12 with Ottawa, scoring 35 goals. Who did Minnesota draft originally at the number 20 spot? None other than Chewbacca himself, Brent Burns. He played 797 career games and tallied 423 points, with an impressive 155 points coming from the power play. He is a right handed defenseman, sometimes turned forward and has the ability to single handedly take control of a game.

10 Boston Bruins – Brent Burns

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Burns is a perfect fit for the Boston Bruins because he best embodies what it means to be a hard nose bruiser. He has the Chewbacca bread, his play is unpredictable and he can punish you all over the ice. This beast of a player can suit up as a forward or a defense-man. The Bruins end up with the Ajax, Ontario native because they want to be dominant from the back end out. His smooth skating skills and offensive minded mind would quarter back the power play. Imagine Burns playing with Chara. Brent Burns stands in at 6'5'' and 230 pounds while Zdeno Chara is 6'9'' and 250 pounds! Now that is a gigantic blue line. The original pick at the number 21st spot was Mark Stuart. He played 631 career games and tallied only 89 points. The Bruins may have won more Cups with Burns.

9 Edmonton Oilers – Toby Enstrom

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The Edmonton Oilers drafted Marc-Antoine Pouliot in 2003. We can all agree that this change of course and grabbing Enstrom is a smart move. Pouliot played 192 games and only tallied 57 points. His last season was in 2011-12 with the Arizona Coyotes. Enstrom is a dependable blue-liner and capable of providing some offense, which he has done twice in Atlanta. Ironically, the Oilers need help on the blue line this year and like previous years. They had to trade Taylor Hall just to bring in some help in Adam Larsson. Enstrom has played a total of 616 games tallying 288 points. His career high in points came with the Atlanta Thrashers in the 2010-11 season scoring 51 points in 72 games.

This isn't the flashiest of picks for the Oilers, but it's a very savvy one, as it clearly would have filled a need that has haunted the Oilers for over a decade now.

8 Vancouver Canucks – Dustin Brown

Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

The Vancouver Canucks drafted Ryan Kesler with the number 23 spot in 2003. However, Dustin Brown is a much better fit for the Canucks in my opinion. Brown has never been a high scoring forward, but he has been very productive, and a big part of the Kings winning two Stanley Cups recently. Brown has 470 career points with the Kings in 884 games played. We all know his current contract is not ideal for the Kings given his decline in production. He produced an underwhelming 28 points in 82 games last season, and was a -5. However, it is important to note his career playoffs number speaks volumes for his work. He has 46 career playoff points in 81 games with a plus 13 rating. Dustin Brown is the type of leader the Vancouver Canucks needed in their dressing room all these years. Imagine him suited up along side Daniel and Henrik Sedin?

7 Philadelphia Flyers – Jaroslav Halak

Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

With the 24th pick in 2003, the Philadelphia Flyers originally drafted Mike Richards. Mike had some great years with the Flyers before being traded to the Los Angeles Kings. Regardless, the Flyers always needed goaltending. Everyone remembers the amazing run Jaroslav Halak had with the Montreal Canadiens in the playoffs. He stopped the pucks and Mike Cammalleri scored the goals, eliminating the Washington Capitals and the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 2010 playoffs. Two teams which were absolute power houses that year. Ironically, Halak's best career save percentage--with 10 games or more played--came when he was traded to the Capitals in 2013-14 and posted a .930 SV% in 13 games.

Considering the amount of issues the Philadelphia Flyers have had in regards to goal-tending, this pick would have solved that problem over the course of the last 13 years. Jaroslav Halak played 367 games with a record of 200 wins, 115 loses and 37 overtime loses. He deserved more starts but some injuries sneaked up on him.

6 Florida Panthers – Mike Richards

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The Florida Panthers originally drafted Anthony Stewart with the 25th pick. Needless to say that Mike Richards would have been an excellent for the Panthers. Originally drafted at the number 24 spot, Richards has helped the Los Angeles Kings to two Stanley Cups and was a force to be reckoned with. If everyone can forget his little run in with drugs, being released by the Kings and his stint with the Washington Capitals, then this is definitely a solid pick. He was never a big player at 5'11 and 196 pounds, but has always been a solid producer over his career.

In 749 games played he has tallied 487 points, with 28 shorthanded goals and 30 game winning goals. His best career year offensively came in the 2008-09 season, scoring 80 points in 79 games with the Philadelphia Flyers. It is important to note that Mike Richards is no longer on an NHL roster.

5 Los Angeles Kings – Matt Carle

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Currently a member of the Tampa Bay Lightning, Brian Boyle was originally drafted by the Los Angeles Kings at the number 26 spot. He spent the majority of his career with the New York Rangers. Standing in at 6'7'' and 243 pounds, Boyle has played 549 career games and put up 144 points. He has always been a third and fourth line center man. In addition, he only played 36 games in two seasons with the Kings.

Matt Carle recently signed with the Nashville Predators and is a good signing at that! He only hit the 40-point mark twice in the NHL, once with the San Jose Sharks in 2006-07 with 42 points and in the 2010-11 season with the Philadelphia Flyers. However, those are still pretty impressive numbers for a defenseman. He would have fit in quite well with the Kings, a puck moving defenseman that is usually on the plus side of things.

4 Los Angeles Kings – Matt Moulson

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Jeff Tambellini was the number 27th pick for the Kings in 2003. He played 242 career games and tallied 63 points. His last season was in 2010-11 when he suited up for the Vancouver Canucks scoring 17 points in 63 games. Take out Tambellini and slot in Matt Moulson. He was formally drafted by the Pittsburgh Penguins as the 263rd pick in the ninth round. He is a capable goal scorer who had ups and downs in his career. His best season statistically was in 2011-12. He had 36 goals and 33 assists for a total of 69 points. His total career numbers are 337 points in 555 games played. Not too shabby for a player originally picked in the ninth round.

Imagine the damage he could have done playing along side Anze Kopitar. Matt Mouslon is certainly better than Jeff Tambellini offensively, but they are both on the minus side overall. Maybe that would have been some what different for Moulson, as he would likely have scored more goals playing with Kopitar.

3 Anaheim Ducks – Corey Crawford

Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

Formerly drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks in the second round of the 2003 draft at number 52, the Anaheim Ducks could not go wrong drafting a goalie at this position. The Ducks had originally picked Corey Perry here. However, since I have the Penguins snatching him Perry up at number 1 overall, Corey Crawford--the Montreal, Quebec, native--would solidify the crease for the Ducks. Through 326 career games, Crawford has a record of 182 wins, 97 loses and 39 overtime loses. His career save percentage is .918 but boasted a stellar .924 save percentage in 2015-16. He also has some hardware on his resume. He won the William M. Jennings Trophy in 2012-13 and in 2014-15. Plus, there's the two Stanley Cups he won in 2013 and 2015 with Chicago. His save percentage from both playoff years were .932 and .924 respectively. He has played his entire career with the Blackhawks. What if he played his entire career with the Ducks instead?

2 Ottawa Senators – Lee Stempniak

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Ottawa Senators originally drafted Patrick Eaves at the number 29 spot. Instead, I am placing Lee Stempniak at this pick, although, it is important to note that he is a bit of a late bloomer. Stempniak stands at 5'11'' and 195 pounds. As you can see he was never big but he did have some speed earlier in his career. He had 52 points in 82 games with the St. Louis Blues in 2006-07. After that season he trailed off quite a bit, but is having a slight resurgence in points late in his career. Last season, he had 52 points splitting his duties between the New Jersey Devils and the Boston Bruins.

In 790 career games played he has tallied 420 points and his career plus minus is -24. This player would have been ideal for the Senators. He is dedicated and provides leadership within the dressing room. His career speaks for itself, finding success in several franchises.

1 St. Louis Blues – Patrick Eaves

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Shawn Belle was the 30th pick in 2003 for the Blues. However, his career was nothing spectacular. He played a total of 20 career games with four teams - the Minnesota Wild, the Montreal Canadiens, the Edmonton Oilers and the Colorado Avalanche. His career points total... 1 assist. Needless to say that this was an easy choice. Having the Ottawa Senators pass up on Patrick Eaves gives the St. Louis Blues a chance to grab him. His style of play would have fit in nicely with the Blues over the years. Perhaps his point production would have been a tad higher if he never played in Ottawa, Detroit or Carolina. Should we mention his five games played in Nashville? In 545 career games played, Eaves tallied 190 points. He has yet to score 100 goals… currently, he is sitting at 99. After settling in Dallas the last two years, he started to put up a few points scoring a total of 25 goals in 101 games played.

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Re-Drafting The First Round Of The Legendary 2003 NHL Draft