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Mock PLL Entry Drafts: 5 potential scenarios on draft day

The PLL entry draft is here and who Coach Copelan and the Waterdogs will draft at #1 is still anyone’s guess. So the writers at Pro Lacrosse Talk decided to come up with their own mock drafts and predict the potential landing spots for each player.

Players Available

  • Jesse Bernhardt, D
  • Craig Chick, D/LSM
  • TJ Comizio, M
  • Zach Currier, M
  • Eli Gobrecht, D
  • Josh Hawkins, M
  • Brendan Kavanagh, A/M
  • Christian Mazzone, M
  • Donny Moss, M
  • Jason Noble, D/LSM
  • Rob Pannell, A
  • Greg Puskuldjian, FO
  • Ryland Rees, LSM
  • Finn Sullivan, D
  • Dillon Ward, G
  • Zed Williams, A/M

Mock Drafts

Adam Moore

  1. Waterdogs – Zach Currier
  2. Chrome – Jesse Bernhardt
  3. Atlas – Rob Pannell
  4. Archers – Finn Sullivan
  5. Whipsnakes – Craig Chick
  6. Redwoods – Christian MazzonE
  7. Chaos – Ryland Rees
  8. Waterdogs – Dillon Ward
  9. Chrome – Eli Gobrecht
  10. Atlas – TJ Comizio
  11. Archers – Brendan Kavanagh
  12. Whipsnakes – Zed Williams
  13. Redwoods – Greg Puskuldjian
  14. Chaos – Josh Hawkins

Coach Andy Copelan adds even more northern influence to his team and drafts Zach Currier at #1 and Dillon Ward falls to him at #8. The newest Waterdogs then get to play with fellow Canadians Wes Berg, Ben McIntosh, and Brodie Merrill. Coach Tim Soudan passes on Dillon Ward in favor of keeping former Rochester Rattlers and Team USA goalie John Galloway as his starter. He opts to draft Jesse Bernhardt to bolster the defense around Galloway, thus allowing Rob Pannell to fall to Ben Rubeor and the Atlas.

With Jackson Place still recovering from a neck injury that ended his season, the Archers decide to draft 2019 MLL Defensive Player of the Year finalist Finn Sullivan and add another close defender to an already solid defense. Andy Towers is able to add another pole and potential Bomb Squad, deep threat in Ryland Rees and fortifies a Chaos defense that struggled down the stretch.

Dan Arestia

  1. Waterdogs – Zach Currier
  2. Chrome – Jesse Bernhardt
  3. Atlas – Rob Pannell
  4. Archers – Ryland Rees
  5. Whipsnakes – Zed Williams
  6. Redwoods – Greg Puskuldjian
  7. Chaos – TJ Comizio
  8. Waterdogs – Dillon Ward
  9. Chrome – Craig Chick
  10. Atlas – Eli Gobrecht
  11. Archers – Christian Mazzone
  12. Whipsnakes – Brendan Kavanagh
  13. Redwoods – Finn Sullivan
  14. Chaos – Jason Noble

If this was any other rule set, it’s Pannell for me. MLL, outdoor world games, proposed Olympics, whatever, it’s Pannell. But in the PLL, we’ve seen that the most important assets on the 18-player roster are middies who can have an impact on both ends and don’t have to sub off. Currier is arguably the best on Earth at being that kind of middie, and he goes to the team and coach that have put a premium on that type of versatility. Jordan Wolf is the reason the Chrome don’t take Rob Pannell and opt to draft Jesse Bernhardt to replace the loss of Sabia and Fletcher. Bernhardt is as solid a pole as you’ll find in the PLL, or anywhere and offers serious stability to the Chrome defense, who also decides to add Craig Chick, the NCAA Division I record holder in caused turnovers.

The Atlas take their Team USA teammate, Rob Pannell, who immediately slots onto an attack with Eric Law and Ryan Brown that figures to be absolutely lethal. The ball movement and quick strike ability that this offense is capable of is scary if they can put it together. It’s crazy to consider that arguably the best goalie alive isn’t a first-round pick, but the goalies in the PLL were that good in year one. The Waterdogs grabbed Charlie Cipriano in expansion and can lock up their goalie spot with Dillon Ward in the entry draft.

Additionally, the Whips, who lost so many pieces to expansion, add Zed Williams who can play in a pair from multiple spots, can be a threat off the dodge, and can score off ball. With this many spots to fill, the Whips can take Zed and decide which hole they want him to fill as well as bolster their offensive depth by adding Brendan Kavanagh in the second round. The Chaos lost their leader on the defensive end in Brodie Merrill, and a seriously underappreciated and underhyped shortie in Kyle McClancy. Comizio absolutely tore the MLL up last summer, and more than fills the loss of McClancy as the Chaos hope to grab one of the remaining poles in round two.

David Wildman

  1. Waterdogs – Zach Currier
  2. Chrome – Dillon Ward
  3. Atlas – Rob Pannell
  4. Archers – Ryland Rees
  5. Whipsnakes – Jesse Bernhardt
  6. Redwoods – Christian Mazzone
  7. Chaos – Craig Chick
  8. Waterdogs – Eli Gobrecht
  9. Chrome – Zed Williams
  10. Atlas – TJ Comizio
  11. Archers – Finn Sullivan
  12. Whipsnakes – Brendan Kavanagh
  13. Redwoods – Greg Puskuldjian
  14. Chaos – Josh Hawkins

So I don’t have any trades occurring in my mock draft. I think the players selected fit in very well with their existing rosters. Obviously, the addition of Zach Currier makes him one of the best players in the league, and too much for the Waterdogs to pass up. This allows Rob Pannell to reunite with old friend and teammate Paul Rabil on the Atlas after the Chrome select Dillon Ward and hope to find an elite goalie that will help them right the ship after last year.

There’s a run on the elite defenders after that, which allows some teams in the back end of the draft to snag some potentially elite two-way midfielders late in the draft. In this scenario, every team becomes substantially better and adds two game day roster regulars.

Hutton Jackson

  1. Waterdogs – Rob Pannell
  2. Chrome – Zach Currier
  3. Atlas – Jesse Bernhardt
  4. Archers – Zed Williams
  5. Whipsnakes – Ryland Rees
  6. Redwoods – Finn Sullivan
  7. Chaos – Eli Gobrecht
  8. Waterdogs – Dillon Ward
  9. Chrome – Jason Noble
  10. Atlas – TJ Comizio
  11. Archers – Craig Chick
  12. Whipsnakes – Christian Mazzone
  13. Redwoods – Greg Puskuldjian
  14. Chaos – Josh Hawkins

For most of my draft—with the exception of specialized positions like goaltender and faceoff—I had each team select the best player available, regardless of need. Now the term “best player available” is certainly up for debate and whether that term should apply to Zach Currier or Rob Pannell could probably be more easily decided with a coin flip. Yet in my mind, the 2013 Tewaaraton winner and 2018 MLL MVP Rob Pannell is too valuable for Coach Andy Copelan to pass on. I have him going first overall and dual-threat midfielder Zach Currier getting snagged by the Chrome, who opt to address their defensive needs in the second round by drafting Joel White’s Georgia Swarm teammate Jason Noble.

The defense was the hardest to pinpoint since all six poles are elite and which defender each team decides to draft will likely come down to whether they value longevity or experience. I have veteran Jesse Bernhardt landing on the Atlas to help bolster a defense that was ranked fifth in goals allowed and last in caused turnovers during the regular season. Other key moves include the Archers adding an offensive threat at the midfield in Zed Williams, selecting him right before the Whipsnakes are able to. The Chaos, who are in the toughest spot in the draft, decide to draft defender Eli Gobrecht (after a hard decision to pass on a potential replacement for Kyle McClancy in TJ Comizio) and land Josh Hawkins to fill their needs at SSDM.

I have Donny Moss and Brendan Kavanagh going undrafted, but that’s because of the wealth of talent in the draft and I could easily see the Chaos taking veteran Donny Moss with their second pick and the Redwoods bringing the younger Kavanagh in to play with his brother Matt.

Jordan Johnson

  1. Waterdogs – Zach Currier
  2. Chrome – Dillon Ward
  3. Atlas – Rob Pannell
  4. Archers – Christian Mazzone
  5. Whipsnakes – Brendan Kavanagh
  6. Redwoods – Ryland Rees
  7. Chaos – Jesse Bernhardt
  8. Waterdogs – Zed Williams
  9. Chrome – Eli Gobrecht
  10. Atlas – Finn Sullivan
  11. Archers – Josh Hawkins
  12. Whipsnakes – TJ Comizio
  13. Redwoods – Greg Puskuldjian
  14. Chaos – Craig Chick

I have the Waterdogs taking Currier over Rob Pannell with the first pick due to the fact that I think Andy Copelan seems to want players that don’t need the ball in their stick to produce. I have the Chrome creating more competition at goalie by taking Dillon Ward with the second pick and then RP3 reuniting with his Team USA mates on the Atlas at #3.

I think the Chaos will be lucky to get Jesse Bernhardt at seven and then able to pick up Craig Chick towards the end of the draft as replacements for the loss of Brodie Merrill. Little Kavanagh plays the Connor Kelly role for the Whips and makes a name for himself after they lost a ton of offensive production in the expansion draft. Finn Sullivan falls into the Atlas laps as a replacement for Noah Richard and the Woods take Greg Puskuldjian to add faceoff depth due to the new unknowns surrounding the college draft.

Let us know your PLL entry draft predictions below in the comments or on Twitter and Instagram by tagging @prolacrossetalk.

Hutton Jackson is a professional video editor, co-founder/host of Pro Lacrosse Talk and editor-in-chief of Lacrosse Playground. He is also an Emmy-winning associate producer with two major sports networks and oversees Lacrosse Playground's video content as the head coordinating producer. Hutton played four years of college lacrosse at DeSales University where his highest lacrosse accolade was being named to Inside Lacrosse's 2014 All-Name Team with current pros Challen Rogers, Deemer Class and Larken Kemp, an honor that didn't require stepping on the field. When he's not writing on lacrosse, he can usually be found diving around the crease in your local men's league and ranting about Baltimore and D.C. professional sports.

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