- Editor's Note: Sheng Peng will be a regular contributor to NBC Sports California’s Sharks coverage. You can read more of his coverage on San Jose Hockey Now, listen to him on the San Jose Hockey Now Podcast, and follow him on Twitter at @Sheng_Peng.
For years, San Jose Sharks fans have bemoaned Timo Meier getting selected ninth-overall ahead of 10th pick Mikko Rantanen and 16th pick Mat Barzal in the 2015 Draft.
Safe to say, Meier has closed the gap in the last two seasons.
Meier has 66 goals since last year, good for fifth from the 2015 Draft class, trailing Connor McDavid, Kirill Kaprizov, Kyle Connor, and Rantanen. Rantanen has four more goals than Meier in five less games, but Meier hasn’t had the benefit of playing with perennial Hart candidate Nathan MacKinnon.
Meier has 128 points, sixth of that group, trailing McDavid, Kaprizov, Mitch Marner, Rantanen, and Connor. Meier has 20 more points than Barzal in three more games.
It’s not say that Meier would go ahead of say, Barzal, in a 2015 re-Draft. But it’s at least a debate between the two, which you wouldn’t have said in 2020-21, when Meier was slogging through the worst full NHL season of his career.
“I’d probably stick with the center,” an NHL scout told San Jose Hockey Now. “But Meier was still a great pick. No one should be complaining about that.”