I have this tier a little bit bigger than most pundits, who generally say the draft drops off around 20. I must say, I'm more comfortable with that assessment having read Dave Shoalts's article, in which Brian Burke suggests he sees it much the same way.
23 Rattie: Which Rattie is the real one, the guy who seemingly struggled after the arrival of Johansen and Niederreiter, or the guy scoring at a torrid pace before they returned? If Rattie's stats took a dip because the returning players started to receive the PP ice-time that Rattie had been using, he might be undervalued even at this spot.
21 Beaulieu: I have him a bit lower than most, but within this tier I'm not sure it means all this much. His hockey sense has been questioned, and for me that's a big factor.
20 Siemens*: The perfect argument for a 19 year old draft. How much of his success is due to playing on a powerhouse team with one of the best D in the WHL? I'm not sure, and that's why he's a little lower down the list.
18 Brodin*: Love hockey sense in players, if I rated D as highly as many seem to he'd be higher in my rankings.
16 Grimaldi: Talk about a tough guy to rank. By the time you get to this point in the draft, you start to have to decide between high risk/high reward vs. lower risk/smaller reward. Grimaldi sounds like he'd be on the higher risk side of the ledger.
14 McNeill: Not too much separates McNeill from Scheifele in my rankings. I rate Scheifele just below because I think teams tend to overvalue the U-18's.
13 Oleksiak: This represents a bit of a gamble, but his offensive production in the NCAA is better than one would normally imagine for a 6'7" D.
12 Khokhlachev*: My guess is Khokhlachev won't go this high, and there are sensible reasons to have him lower than this. I'm not sure how relevant the "Russian" factor is, so I'll give it less weight than I'm sure the teams do. He did come over to play in the CHL, so that would seem to suggest he's willing to give the NHL a better chance than some, but one does wonder what his options might look like in two years if he hasn't yet cracked the NHL.