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The Noon Number: Pick of the Litter

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A look at the current makeup of the Caps’ roster

Washington Capitals v Boston Bruins Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

14 - Number of former first-round picks on the Caps’ roster this season, most in the League ahead of the Ducks, Jets and Blues (all with 12). That’s well above the League average of nine first-round picks per roster.

The roster is so stacked that when Brett Connolly gets the nod over Zach Sanford, the team’s entire top nine forwards (and three of their top four defensemen) are former first-rounders.

Here’s the full list:

Alex Ovechkin (1st - 2004)
Nicklas Backstrom (4th - 2006)
Evgeny Kuznetsov (26th - 2010)
T.J. Oshie (24th [STL] - 2005)
Marcus Johansson (24th - 2009)
Andre Burakovsky (23rd - 2013)
Lars Eller (13th [STL] - 2007)
Justin Williams (28th [PHI] - 2000)
Tom Wilson (16th - 2012)
Karl Alzner (5th - 2007)
Matt Niskanen (28th [DAL] - 2005)
John Carlson (27th - 2008)
Brooks Orpik (18th [PIT] - 2000)
Brett Connolly (6th [TB] - 2010)

As for the rest of the roster, Dmitry Orlov, Taylor Chorney and Sanford were all second-round picks; Braden Holtby and Phillip Grubauer were both taken in the fourth. Daniel Winnik turned a ninth-round pick into a pretty impressive 650-game (and counting) NHL career, while Jay Beagle and Nate Schmidt were both undrafted.

(H/t Craig Custance)