Red Wings in '89: Best draft ever?

James -

So Sillinger retired. That means the draftees in the 1989 Red Wings draft class have played, by my count, 5,721 NHL games (and counting with Lidstrom; we'll not discuss the what-might-have-beens of Vladimir Konstantinov's career).

In terms of NHL games played by the draftees of a single team in a single draft, is this the most successful draft in NHL history?  If not where does it rank?

Thanks for considering the question,
Scott (redwingshardware.blogspot.com)

Great question. Here's how the Red Wings draft breaks down:

Round  Num.  Player  Pos  GP  G  A  Pts  PIM
1 11 Mike Sillinger  C  1,049 240 308 548 644
2 32 Bob Boughner  D  630 15 57 72 1,382
3 53 Nicklas Lidstrom  D  1,330 228 769 997 442
4 74 Sergei Fedorov  C  1,248 483 696 1,179 839
5 95 Shawn McCosh  C  9 1 0 1 6
6 116 Dallas Drake  R  1,009 177 300 477 885
7 137 Scott Zygulski  D  0 0 0 0 0
8 158 Andy Suhy  D  0 0 0 0 0
9 179 Bob Jones  D  0 0 0 0 0
10 200 Greg Bignell  D  0 0 0 0 0
10 204 Rick Judson  L  0 0 0 0 0
11 221 Vladimir Konstantinov  D  446 47 128 175 838
12 242 Joe Frederick  R  0 0 0 0 0
12 246 Jason Glickman  G  0 0 0 0 0
5,721 1,191 2,258 3,449 5,036

Scott's done some research on this and said he can't find another draft class with more than 5,000 games, so by that definition anyway, this is pretty darn impressive. The '79 Oilers class was just more than 4,100 and had Messier leading an impressive group in its own right. The '77 Canadiens was at about 4,600, albeit with 27 draft picks that year, including my pal Rod Langway.

Check out his look through the annals here.

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