Canadiens: For Juraj Slafkovsky, Alexandre Daigle Isn't a Draft Bust, He's a Draft Lesson.

Ottawa Senators v New Jersey Devils
Ottawa Senators v New Jersey Devils / Focus On Sport/GettyImages
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After this, Daigle just kind of drifted from team to team, being given a chance time and time again as a reclamation project but never matching his performances from his first few years with the Sens, let alone his numbers in junior. While he had a solid end to the season in Philadelphia, a terrible start to 98-99 and subsequent stints in Tampa Bay and New York did little to salvage things, and Daigle was out of hockey entirely by 2000-01.

After two years away from the game however, Daigle made a comeback with the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2002-03. Going on to lead the Minnesota Wild in scoring in 2003-04 with 20-31-51 totals, Daigle was nominated for the Bill Masterton Trophy for perseverance, making a return against genuinely all odds after signing with the Wild out of free agency, going on afterwards to play in Switzerland until the 2009-10 season.

Now this is where our story should end, but ultimately, in spite of never posting more than 51 points in a single-season, and never possessing anything close to a work ethic that matched his skill, I can’t say that, should any other team besides Ottawa have drafted Daigle, he would’ve been the same draft bust and the same underachieving player he became for the Senators. Referring back to those initial stages after he was first drafted, Ottawa’s decision to hand Daigle that massive contract didn’t just potentially play a role in his lack of effort, it did play a role.

In fact, it played quite a prominent role, and this, is yet another example of why not only realistic expectations are needed in the development of a prospect, but composure as well, as, in the case of the Senators, most of their mistakes made with Daigle were ones out of desperation, a desperation that almost cost them the team entirely.

If you give a kid all the money he’s ever wanted before he even steps foot on professional ice, its shouldn’t be surprising if he doesn’t put in the effort to earn said money considering he well, already got it. It’s the same mistake the Oakland Raiders made with JaMarcus Russell in the 2007 NFL Draft, and it’s a mistake that prompted league intervention in both the NFL and NHL to prevent such disasters from happening again.