The Boston Bruins made seven selections during the 2021 NHL Entry Draft. Choosing to move their second-round choice, the team acquired former No. 1 pick Taylor Hall and Curtis Lazar at the trade deadline. Sending back forward Anders Bjork in the deal, Hall played a significant impact in the franchise’s playoff run. Recording eight goals and six assists in 16 regular-season games down the stretch, the Edmonton Oilers alumn also racked up five points in 11 playoff games.
In addition to their deadline blockbuster, the Bruins made another small swap of picks before the draft. Exchanging late-round selections with the Toronto Maple Leafs, general manager Donn Sweeney traded a 2021 seventh-round selection in exchange for a 2022 seventh-round pick.
Make sure to check out all of our other NHL Draft Recaps.
Fabian Lysell, RW, Luleå HF-SHL (Round 1, Pick 21)
Brett Harrison, C, Koovee-Mestis (Round 3, Pick 85)
Philip Svedebäck, G, Växjö Lakers HC J20-J20 Nationell (Round 4, Pick 117)
Oskar Jellvik, C, Djurgårdens IF J20-J20 Nationell (Round 5, Pick 149)
Ryan Mast, D, Sarnia Sting-OHL (Round 6, Pick 181)
Andre Gasseau, F, U18 Team-USNTDP (Round 7, Pick 213)
Ty Gallagher, D, Juniors-USNTDP (Round 7, Pick 217)
Looking to reload up front, with the core of their roster beginning to creep up in age, the Bruins decided on Lysell with their first-round selection. Touted by scouts as one of the best skaters in the entire draft, he racked up three points in 26 games with Lulea HF in the Sweedish Hockey League a year ago. Sticking with the forward theme during their next three picks, Sweeney spent two choices on the center spot.
Needing to reload at the position, David Krejci recently announced he would return home to the Czech Republic next season. Along with this, Boston also added depth in between the pipes by choosing Svedebäck. Spending three years in the Vaxjo Lakers system, the 18-year-old amassed a .912 save percentage and 3.47 goals against average in 12 starts during his 2020 campaign.
Best Pick: Fabian Lysell
A member of Vastra Frolunda Jr. while playing semi-professional hockey in Sweeden during the 2019 and 2020 seasons, Lysell was productive for the team. Registering 19 points in 22 games, the 18-year-old played in Sweeden’s highest professional ice hockey league last season. Matched up against grown men, he failed to match his previous point totals, leading to just three points in 26 games.
However, the winger remains one of the strongest skaters in the 2021 draft class. Possessing a dynamic first step, he is able to beat defenders to pucks and create scoring chances for himself. Along with this, Lysell also has exceptional puck handling skills, allowing him to make plays in tight and shield the puck from opposing players. In need of dynamic forwards inside their farm system, look for him to play inside the Bruins’ top six down the road.
Worst Pick: Ryan Mast
Spending two years with the Sarnia Sting in the OHL, Mast recorded 11 points in 58 games during his 2019 campaign. The defenseman sat out the 2020 season after the OHL failed to get going. Offering substantial size with his 6’4″ 190-pound frame, the Bloomfield, Michigan native is known for his reliable game in the defensive end.
Leaning on his intellect and hockey sense to remain successful in games, he can effectively transition the puck in his own zone and move up ice. Never shy to jump up into the rush and help provide offense, Mast is hindered by ongoing turnover problems. Aggressive in joining the play, the sixth-round pick has often been caught, leading to scoring chances against.
Sleeper Pick: Brett Harrison
A first-round pick of the Oshawa Generals in the OHL Draft, Harrison scored 21 goals during his rookie year with the franchise. He spent his 2020 season in Finald with the Koovee Ry. Productive with their under 20 team, the 6’2″ center racked up four goals and five assists in seven regular-season games, earning him a call up to the organization’s top team.
An impactful player who uses his size to his advantage in the middle of the ice, Harrison can battle for position in front of his opponent’s net to put himself in good scoring positions. Furthermore, the London, Ontario native benefits from an exceptional shot that he gets off quickly. A perfect fit for Boston with his high hockey IQ and strong play in his own end, look for Harrison to be an effective bottom-six center at the NHL level.
Falling short of their ultimate goal once again, the Bruins fell to the New York Islanders in the second round of the playoffs after finishing in third place in the East Division during the regular season. Ranked as one of the worst prospect pools across the NHL, the Bruins entered the 2021 NHL Entry Draft with multiple positional needs.
Finding high-end talent in the opening round, Lysell was ranked by many analysts as a top 15 prospect. Furthermore, with Tuukka Rask still unsigned by the organization as he continues to rehab from a torn labrum in his hip, the team was also able to add goaltending depth after selecting Svedebäck. Needing to find and develop replacements at the center spot for Patrice Bergeron and Krejci, Harrison and Jellvik also present the franchise with scoring upside in the bottom half of their lineup.
Follow Chris Gallagher on Twitter @ChrisGally06
Main Image Credit:
From Google Images