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A complete and final Vancouver Canucks 2024 NHL Draft primer

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Photo credit:Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
Dave Hall
13 days ago
This article is brought to you by bet365!
The 2024 NHL Draft is almost here, and believe it or not, it’ll all be over and done with before the Florida Panthers can host their Stanley Cup parade.
This year’s event will take place Friday through Saturday at The Sphere in Las Vegas, Nevada, and will be the first live televised event held there since its September opening.
Day one covers picks 1-32 and will be held on Friday, June 28th. Coverage kicks off at 4:30 p.m. PT. Rounds 2-7 will run on Saturday, June 29th, with coverage starting at 8:00 a.m. PT.
Of course, if you are tuning in solely to follow the Vancouver Canucks, you don’t only have to wait until Saturday, but you can sleep in as well.
Pending any deals, the team does not carry a first or second-round pick and will not be asked to the podium until the late stages of Round Three with pick #93.
Here is a full breakdown of their picks for the weekend:
  • Round Three: 93 Overall
  • Round Four: 125 Overall
  • Round Six: 162 Overall
  • Round Six: 189 Overall
  • Round Seven: 221 Overall
If you’ve been following the team for an extended period, their lack of picks isn’t new. They have now foregone their first round three out of five years, and over the team’s last 10 drafts, they have only carried a pick in the second round on four occasions (4!).
However, let’s keep a little faith. This new Canucks’ regime has been quite busy in recent weeks, so adding or subtracting picks is certainly not off the table this weekend.
Looking toward the Draft crop, it feels wide open. Sure, that statement may be a cliché, but it doesn’t take long to glance at various credible rankings to realize the incredible disparity between each.
One thing is set in stone, however, and that is Vancouver-born Macklin Celebrini will be selected first overall. In fact, he’ll be a name that Canucks’ fans will get to know well over the next decade-plus as San Jose is expected to run, not walk, to snag him to be their future top-line centre.
From there, all bets are off and predicting any of the next 224 picks is as easy as guessing lottery jackpot numbers. To put it simply, we will be throwing darts all weekend.
So who will the Canucks target with their third-round pick? Who knows. But we have hand-picked a few worthy names here at CanucksArmy for each round. If you missed them, you can check them out here: Third, Fourth, Sixth, and beyond.
Those may be our top wishes, but there are plenty more names worthy of taking a look at with that 93rd pick. Here are some more names to keep an eye out for come Saturday.
AJ Spellacy
Position: Centre | Shoots: Right | Height: 6’3″ | Weight: 201 lbs | Rank: 90
Spellacy is a dynamic forward for the Windsor Spitfires in the OHL, known for his impressive speed and physicality. Honestly, he’s well within the top five fastest players in this year’s class.
Despite a slow start, with zero points over his first 11 games, he managed to wrap up the season with 21 goals and 38 points in 67 games during the 2023-24 season.

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His relentless work ethic and energy define Spellacy’s game. He is a high-intensity player who excels at driving to the net and creating chaos in the offensive zone through heavy hits and the occasional tussle. His offensive game has yet to pop, making him an obvious gamble. However, his size, speed, and tenacity make him an intriguing prospect with a potential middle-six upside in the NHL.
Noel Fransén
Position: Defence | Shoots: Left | Height: 6’1″ | Weight: 187 lbs | Rank: 71
Fransén ticks off quite a few boxes for the Canucks. He’s a highly skilled and quick-paced defender who has dominated the J20 Swedish circuit. In fact, he not only led the entire defensive group with 44 points in 45 games, but his 20 goals finished with the ninth-highest goal totals leaguewide.
He also played in four SHL games and scored in his debut.
He’s got incredible feet, great size and doesn’t slack on his defensive duties. His only downfall to take a swing in the third round may be that he’s a left-shot.
Tarin Smith
Position: Defence | Shoots: Left | Height: 6’1″ | Weight: 187 lbs | Rank: 66
Honestly, we are shocked that there isn’t more of a buzz surrounding Tarin Smith. While his upside is nowhere near that of a first-round talent, his highlight reel may be one of the more impressive among this entire defensive crop.
Smith is a dynamic two-way defenceman known for his smooth skating and strong puck-handling skills. He’s no slouch on the defensive end but could stand to be a little more aggressive in the corners and in front of the net.

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You’re swinging for high upside, with top-four potential being a very real possibility.
Carson Wetsch
Position: Right Wing | Shoots: Right | Height: 6’2″ | Weight: 201 lbs | Rank: 73
Wetsch brings a combination of scoring prowess and power forward size. He’s physical and strives to get paid in the tough areas of the ice, whether that’s driving to the front of the net or in the corners. He caps that off with strong skating and a lethal shot, which has helped him score 35 goals across 113 WHL games.

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His profile has middle-six upside written all over it.
Ben Danford
Position: Defence | Shoots: Right | Height: 6’1″ | Weight: 190 lbs | Rank: 54
Don’t let his one goal in the OHL deter you. Danford has much more to give and is considered a well-rounded and highly versatile right-shot defender.

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He shows strong positional awareness and reliability and has a track record of playing both sides of the blue line. As a heavier and more reliable right-shot defender, Danford should be considered a top target for the Canucks’ depth chart — if available.
Luca Marrelli
Position: Defence | Shoots: Right | Height: 6’2″ | Weight: 185 lbs | Rank: 68
Playing next to Danford was Luca Marrelli, another reliable right-shot defender.

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Marrelli is considered a strong skater and an excellent puck mover. He’s incredibly active and is always moving his feet. He’s good in all three zones and brings a nice offensive element, which had him finish top-10 among OHL defenders with 57 points in 67 games.
Colin Ralph
Position: Defence | Shoots: Left | Height: 6’4″ | Weight: 227 lbs | Rank: 83
While the focus may be on right-shot defenders, exceptions can certainly be made for a player like Ralph.
At 6’4, he’s not only huge but skates well and has absolutely torn up the U18 US Prep school circuit. He finished second among defenders with 66 points (eight goals, 58 assists) across 57 games.
He’s big, mobile, and carries tons of projectable qualities worth a shot at this stage of the draft.
Eriks Mateiko
Position: Left Wing | Shoots: Left | Height: 6’5″ | Weight: 216 lbs | Rank: 93
Why not have three Latvians in the organization? Mateiko is a massive winger who skates surprisingly well and can pitch on the scoreboard. Across 111 QMJHL games, he’s firing at a .71 point per game clip, with 39 goals and 79 points. His offensive upside may not hit top-six levels, but given his incredible frame, reach and visible instincts, it may be worth the gamble.
As we’ve mentioned, anything goes on day two. Who knows who, if any, will be available to the team at this stage of the draft? Yet, given the vast range of names we’ve covered over the last few weeks, there is a good chance that one of the names from our coverage will fall.
You can catch a special Draft episode of Canucks Conversation on Saturday, following day two of the NHL draft.
Enjoy!
 

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