Ultimate Fantasy Draft: Marvel – The Good Round 1
The movie Guardians of the Galaxy just came out last Friday which inspired the first of my Ultimate Fantasy Draft series. In the Ultimate Fantasy Draft series I will draft for NHL teams characters from books, movies, TV shows etc, or even people from historic events. I will draft according to team needs, or for sarcasm’s sake, with the odd joke or reference from the show/movie/book/whatever. So for my 1st edition, I have chosen Marvel. Now the Marvel Universe is a big one. So I’ve decided to separate the good from the evil. Here is the 1st round of the “good” characters of Marvel if drafted into the NHL.
1. FLORIDA PANTHERS – The Mighty Thor
The God of Thunder should not be a surprise 1st overall pick by the Florida Panthers. The Panthers are in desperate need of help now and Thor is an NHL ready player. Thor has a powerful hit thanks to his god-like size. He is capable of moving his hammer Mjölnir without holding it allowing him to make contact with the puck when most cannot. It is not easy to hurt this player and his hammer can be used by no other (sorry Bobby Ryan, you’re not worthy enough to use it to score).
2. BUFFALO SABRES – Captain America
This player is solid all around with strength, agility, patience and intelligence. His potential is amazing, and many believe he could be the best American-born player since Mike Modano. His leadership is among the best, providing the Sabres with a player who can lead their many young guns as they develop. Captain America reads his opponents well and works against their weaknesses while using his teammates’ strengths to his advantage. His vibranium shield helps protect him from injury as well as his super soldier serum. His strength is far above those of the average player.
3. EDMONTON OILERS – Groot
He may not be the best for locker room pep talks, but he gets the job done. His strength and body size rival even that of the great Zdeno Chara. He is always quick to do what is asked of him. He is a forward thinker who provides a lot of room on the ice for his teammates. He is able to stop opponents from reaching his teammates with ease. If he has an injury, even as bad as losing an arm, or if he gets down to a single splinter, Groot has no problems. He is able to grow back anything he loses, so he will never have to retire due to injury.
4. CALGARY FLAMES – Johnny Storm AKA The Human Torch
Not only would the Human Torch work perfectly in terms of his powers aligning with the team name, but he would be able to heat up the ice. Literally. I’d like to see you try to skate when the ice you are skating on is being melted by the guy chasing after you on your breakaway. You’d think this would be an issue for the Human Torch as well while he skates, but he doesn’t have to. He’ll fly the whole time. His personality may attract fans, but his attitude will need some work as he doesn’t always play well with others.
5. NEW YORK ISLANDERS – Tony Stark AKA Iron Man
The Islanders already have a fan favourite in John Tavares, but that hasn’t seemed to be enough to get fans out to games. Who better to get fans going than Mr. Personality himself? Tony Stark has a very analytical mind which would provide intelligence for the Islanders players as he plots out the movements of the opposing players. His attitude could use some work however as he doesn’t take orders from a coach well. The Islanders have already seen a player turn into a GM, well with Stark’s money could we see a player turn into an owner as well?
6. VANCOUVER CANUCKS – Spiderman
The Canucks are in retooling mode, that is for sure, and as they get younger their team becomes more agile. Spiderman more or less is the definition of agile. With his spider abilities, no one can knock him off his feet. No distance is safe from his reach as he will web you from a distance. Spiderman uses taunts to get into the heads of his opponents and knock them off their game. His spidersense is very key as he will never be hit from behind. His personality brings a whole new generation to the game for the Canucks.
7. CAROLINA HURRICANES – Hawkeye
The Hurricanes have not been the strongest for scoring as of late, so who better to help them out than a man with unmatchable accuracy. Hawkeye can hit targets easily from great distances. He is a great man to quarterback a powerplay from the point. He likes to keep a decent distance from the play itself to get a good read as to what is happening on the ice to instruct his teammates what their best course of action should be.
8. TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS – Starlord
The Leafs have had questionable leadership since the Sundin days and has been looking for someone to take the role as the 1st line center. Starlord fixes both of those issues all in one. Starlord is a fantastic leader with solid pep talking in and out of action. He’s also the type to go head first in the action and take on everything as the center. He will sometimes have plans that will make you have questions, but they will always work. He is also a killer DJ to have on road trips and in the locker room.
9. WINNIPEG JETS – The Thing
The Winnipeg Jets have been searching for a goaltender for a bit now as their trust in Pavelec isn’t as high as it once was. The Thing is a stone wall in net and lets nothing by him. He is a bit of a Ron Hextall type though as he can lose his temper and try to clobber forwards. However he is a softy for his teammates and is a great guy to have in the locker room. Though he doesn’t look like it, he has a high IQ like Ben Scrivens.
10. OTTAWA SENATORS – Luke Cage AKA Powerman
Ottawa has been a team that constantly has had players injured throughout the season. Jason Spezza and Milan Michalek, to name a couple, had injury issues that caused the Senators seasons to always be question marks. With that being said, who better to have on your team than a guy with unbreakable skin? Thanks to a serum, Powerman is gifted with unbreakable skin and superhuman strength causing him to be a scare on the ice. He never backs away from a fight. Though he acts tough he does care for his fellow teammates.
11. NASHVILLE PREDATORS – Rocket Raccoon
There is no question that the Predators are looking to go more offensive, and this pick proves it. Rocket Raccon is a very offensive player and will invent new tricks to beat his opponents long before hand. Many question if he can survive in the league with his size, but he is a lot tougher than he looks and has the brains to boot. He is not easy to corner and can escape any situation. Rocket Raccoon can surprise many and might be the next Martin St. Louis of the league.
12. ARIZONA COYOTES – Black Panther
The Coyotes have been blessed with having a leader like Shane Doan for so long. However, those days are slowing down as Doan gets older. The Yotes need a new Shane Doan, and that is Black Panther. This leader is very intelligent and is willing to make every sacrifice and work on anything to help his people. He brings a very calm nature to the locker room, allowing his teammates to not lose control when problems arise.
13. WASHINGTON CAPITALS – Ant-Man
The Capitals have been lacking another solid two-way defenseman for a long time. Someone who is great offensively and defensively and who they can put a lot of faith in for their blueline. Antman’s abilities and strengths makes him the perfect candidate. Antman is a very intelligent man who created a device that allows him to grow or shrink and communicate with ants. His “large self” is perfect for defense allowing him to stop anyone in his path. While on the other hand his “shrunk self” can go through the opponents with ease.
14. DALLAS STARS – Nightcrawler
The Dallas Stars did a fantastic job of adding talent to their roster to the point where it is hard to figure out what they need. So at this point what they need is everything…or more specifically someone who can be wherever they are needed. So who better than someone who can teleport to those spots? If someone gets injured, Nightcrawler can play that position no problem. Nightcrawler could be the best German in the game in no time. His tail also gives him an extra advantage in the game.
15. DETROIT RED WINGS – Wolverine
The Red Wings last season had a very large injury issue as many members of the Wings went down including star players Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg. What they need is someone who is tough enough to play 82 game seasons every season. Wolverine is the perfect player for their situation. His healing powers allows him to heal any injury instantly. Besides, I’d like to see someone try to slash him. So long as he still has those claws he’ll be the one slashing. It’s no secret that the Wings like their old players, and players who will stick for a long time. Wolverine doesn’t age and so will play for countless years. His attitude can be a problem however and boy does he hold a grudge.
16. COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS – Gambit
The Columbus Blue Jackets are really turning into a solid team with a good fan base. However that being said, it’s still a bit of a rough road ahead as they form together and develop. They need a trickster who can be a fan favourite. Gambit is the solution. Easily loved for his personality and skills, Gambit will have the fans falling head over heels for him. His skills with a staff can easily be transferred to a hockey stick. His attitude needs a bit of work, but he will always come through for you.
17. PHILADELPHIA FLYERS – Iron Fist
The Flyers are well known aggressors and can make choices during games that are not deemed well in the long run. They need someone who can make them stronger both on the ice and in mind. Iron Fist is their man. A man of spirit and chi, Iron Fist will teach them how to calm their minds in action while still providing them with a solid player. Don’t ever fight this man because his punch is legendary.
18. MINNESOTA WILD – Blade
The Minnesota Wild have built themselves a very solid hockey club, however, some still question their blueline. So the Wild are grabbing Blade. Who better to have defending your net than a man/vampire who has been defending the entire Earth from vampires for years? This man is a killer with blades, so it isn’t hard to imagine he can get good at ice blades as well. He doesn’t play well with others however and can cause some issues in the locker room at times.
19. TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING – Mr. Fantastic
The Tampa Bay Lightning are gifted with a lot of young, up-and-coming talent, but through their rebuild they have lost a lot of their intelligent veterans. Mr. Fantastic is a very intelligent man who is very useful on the ice. His ability to stretch his body makes “Space Jam moments” in hockey a possibility. I’d like to see you try to avoid him on the ice as he stretches himself from board to board.
20. SAN JOSE SHARKS – Cyclopes
The San Jose Sharks are very skilled at making the underrated a force on the ice. Cyclopes may not have an ability that will help like most others on the ice, but he is a very talented man none the less and is a hard worker. He is a born leader and a great guy to have in the locker room. He never gives up and will always help his teammates.
21. ST. LOUIS BLUES – Deadpool
Ok, a questionable hero, and so dropped in the draft because of his villan-factor, as some think he may not come over. However, St. Louis has a history of bringing players over to play like Tarasenko. Deadpool has a lot of skill to him and thanks to his healing ability, he is not an injury risk. He doesn’t listen to instructions well however and is unpredictable. The Blues will need a good leash on this one.
22. PITTSBURGH PENGUINS – Iceman
Iceman could very well be the steal of the draft. He may not be the most special player available in this draft, but who better to have playing ice hockey than a man who has the ability to manipulate ice? He has a lot of experience moving on ice which makes skating a breeze for him. Keep an eye on him in the future and how he will work out for the Penguins.
23. COLORADO AVALANCHE – Colossus
Colorado is another team in need for help on the Blueline. Colossus is a mighty man with a body like steel who can block pucks like it’s nothing. He is not afraid of getting physical. Colossus may be Russian, but he’s been over in North America for a while now, so that is not a factor. He is a great teammate to have. He very likely could be the next Scott Stevens of the NHL if he develops right.
24. ANAHEIM DUCKS – Dr. Strange
When you have a roster and prospect pool like the Ducks, you can take a risk pick with a high reward. Dr. Strange is a risk pick as you don’t know what to expect from him, but his abilities can cause great reward. He is a very talented man, almost like it’s magic. He’s not overly well known for working with others, but won’t shy away from it either.
25. BOSTON BRUINS – Drax the Destroyer
Everyone knows that the Boston Bruins are a physical team who play a system. Drax the Destroyer is right up their alley. With brute strength, Drax is not afraid to get physical. However, he works well with a team and does whatever is needed of him. His temper can be a bit of an issue, but the Bruins are no strangers to this situation. With players like Marchand, Lucic, and now Drax, teams will fear the days they play the Bruins.
26. MONTREAL CANADIENS – The Hulk
The Canadiens are known for being a smaller team and have been trying to change this over the past couple seasons. The Hulk will change this instantly. His brute strength and power is limitless and is unlike any other. His tactics are easily readable however and unintelligent. He dropped very far in the draft due to his huge attitude problem. He can get angry at anyone and everyone and can be a big issue for getting penalties. However, if you can get on his good side, he is the perfect form of security to have on the ice.
27. CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS – The Punisher
Another question mark for hero status like Deadpool, the Punisher is an enforcer that will make his opponents pay. With a team like the Blackhawks who are full of skill, the Punisher will provide the security their skill players need to make the plays to score. But don’t think he’s just muscle. The Punisher is a skilled and intelligent man who has great reflexes.
28. NEW YORK RANGERS – Jean Grey
Her potential is higher than most, if not all in the draft. Jean Grey has the power to both read minds and to move objects with her mind. This allows her to both know her opponent’s plans and to be able to make plays with the puck without even touching it with her stick. That being said her rage can bring a side of her that you never want to see, so you need to be careful how much you make her do. That’s the reason why she is near the bottom of the 1st round rather than the top.
29. LOS ANGELES KINGS – Beast
Beast is a fantastic mixture of intelligence and strength. He is a perfect assistant captain to have, but chooses not to be a captain. He is one of the best players to have as a teammate both for his skills on the ice and attitude off it. He creates an environment that will help teams get into a winning mood and is great for helping to plan out how to beat your opponents.
30. NEW JERSEY DEVILS – Storm
Storm may not seem like she can do much in hockey, but don’t underestimate her. Using her ability to control the weather she can either make it rain by which making the ice harder to skate on, or can create a dense fog that can allow her to make the play she wants without being seen. She is very strong-willed and will not give up.