After Stamkos, it's anyone's guess

BRUCE GARRIOCH -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:10 AM ET

All talk, no action ... yet.

NHL GMs were working the phones feverishly yesterday to see if they can move up or down and improve their teams before tonight's draft at Scotiabank Place.

While the Kings (No. 2), Thrashers (No. 3), Blues (No. 4), Islanders (No. 5) and Blue Jackets (No. 6) are getting plenty of offers, teams in the middle of the pack are also discussing the possibility of moving down.

After Sarnia Sting centre Steven Stamkos goes No. 1 to the Lightning, things get interesting.

Kings GM Dean Lombardi isn't sure whether he's going to trade the No. 2 pick or draft Guelph defenceman Drew Doughty or Peterborough blueliner Zach Bogosian.

BURKE WILLING TO DEAL

Teams with the top picks are asking for the moon to move them. The rumoured cost is lower first-round pick, a prospect and a player who can help immediately.

"We're prepared to go either way right now," said Anaheim GM Brian Burke, who has the No. 12 selection. "We're either going to try to move up in the draft or we're going to be prepared on the floor to go backwards. If the guy we want is not there, then we're going to move down.

"The prices are way too high now. If nothing changes, we're going to pick at No. 12.

"I've been given two proposals on moving up and I've rejected both of them. They're not even close to anything being reasonable. We think we're going to get a hell of a player at No. 12. We like our pick.

"I think the reason you won't see a lot of movement is because the draft is so deep and teams are content to keep their pick."

DEEP DRAFT

The consensus is with Stamkos, Bogosian, Doughty along with blueliners Tyler Myers (Kelowna), Luke Schenn (Kelowna) and Alex Pietrangelo (Niagara), the Class of 2008 is strong. That's why teams aren't afraid to move around if they can get the guy they want.

"In five years, we can always evaluate what kind of draft it is, but the prevailing mentality around here is that it's a great draft," said E.J. McGuire, the chief scout for the Central Scouting Bureau in North America.


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