Fine, lets subtract the three top 15 Senators draft pick over the last 5 drafts and Gillis is Top 15 (Hodgson) and now we have Senators 4 vs Gillis 1 (Corrado).
The bottom line is, we should be seeing some players from Gillis first two drafts playing full time with the club. We have Kassian for Hodgson, Schroeder is up and down and that is it. Rodin and Sauve are bums. Connauton is gone. I can't even remember who the other post 1st round picks we have from Gillis first two drafts other than they ain't playing here.
You know, I think that apart from the John Muckler years, the Senators have consistently been one of the better drafting teams in the league. Admitting that the Senators have simply been better at drafting and developing players than the Vancouver Canucks is really not a slight against Gillis.
I think that when trying to evaluate Gillis' drafting, I think it's fairer to start with the 2009 draft and see if there is a trend of improvement as I don't think Gillis had time to implement the changes he wanted. It's also important to note that Gillis has repositioned some of his scouts a bit since last summer and have given Eric Crawford greater involvement (I'm just hoping Crawford is better at scouting amateur players than the Panthers).
Anyhow... yes the Canucks have not gotten much in the way of contribution from Gillis' draft picks, but philosophically, Gillis is a follower of Ken Holland's school of overcooking prospects in the minors. Speaking of Holland, Detroit doesn't have a full-time player from those draft years either. And while you seem to evaluate drafts based on a team's ability to find talent in later rounds, I'm perfectly fine if Gillis gets a good player out of his first round picks and nothing else. Too many terrible first round picks over the years.
I am hopeful that the 2009 draft is coming along. Schroeder might not have been the best pick, and I'm sure that given Gillis' current approach, he would have bypassed Schroeder for a bigger player, but I think Schroeder is going to be an NHL player. I don't think he's a bust or going to be one. As for Rodin, I am leaning towards calling him a bust... a real headscratcher given his skating and offensive skills. Beyond those two, we knew the other picks would take time. Connauton was the huge surprise but he hasn't been able to take the next step. I have no idea how good Price is, but the Canucks seem pretty high on Andersson and Cannatta.
Gillis was all about taking long-term projects in hopes of landing a home run given the Canucks were without picks until the 4th round. I can be a real homer when it comes to prospects, but I still like the McNally, Andersson, and Friesen picks. The 2011 draft looks alright. I like the Jensen pick and at worst he's a bottom 6 player. I think Honzik and Grenier are busts. I don't think Labate will amount to anything. I'm very surprised by Blomstrand coming here. I thought he would be another Swede we never see (why couldn't Burke/Nonis get Nicklas Danielsson here?). Corrado is going to be a player and Gillis likes Tommernes apparently. The 2012 draft is very similar. Guance looks like a sure-fire NHL player. I didn't exactly love the Mallet pick but I got on board as Mallet seems ready-made for the NHL 4th line. He's like a more talented version of Volpatti. Hard not to like a prospect like him. Between Mallet and Grenier, I like Mallet a whole lot more. After those two, I think the only pick I liked at the time was Beattie. Of note, Gillis did sign Evan McEneny, who looking like a nice pickup right now.
One thing about Gillis is that he doesn't rush his prospects. That's why we didn't see Guance playing 3rd line on the Canucks this season and flipping pucks over the glass when killing penalties the way Kesler did. That's why we didn't see Schroeder play in the NHL where he would play 10-12 minutes a game with 2 of those minutes being on the PP. But yes, the Canucks need to start getting contributions from their draft picks and I think the team took a small step forward this season when Schroeder and Corrado showed us they were on the right track. Heck, under Nonis, had Luc Bourdon (RIP) lived, he would have been a full-time player 4 years after he was drafted. Forward wise, Raymond made the Canucks 3 years after he was drafted but he was a older. Hansen took 4. Schroeder is actually on track.