YOUR TEAM'S prospect pool!
How does it look? Who do you have highest hopes for? What the the strengths and weaknesses? Etc etc... discuss!
Probably middle of the pack. Obvious weakness in goaltending. Pretty weak on the right side, but that's not too surprising with Kane and Hossa locked up long-term. Defense is raw, but talented. Outside of Olsen, no defenders will make the jump in the next year or two, but there should be a solid influx in the long-term.
IMO Top 10:
HM: D'amigo, Leivo, Owuya
Weakness - lacking potential #1 C
Strength - W, physical prospects, D
Blacker has been one of my favourite prospects since being drafted. Had a strong training camp last season and plays a similar game as Gardiner while being better defensively, slightly worse offensively. Uses his smooth skating and hockey IQ to his advantage.
Ross has the pesky physical presence that is common in only a select few players throughout the league. Has the heart, the drive, and the willingness to be a Tucker-lite in the future.
Granberg i have limited viewing of however, every time I watch I'm amazed. Gunnarsson type defensive D.
D Ryan Murphy
RW Zac Dalpe
D Brian Dumoulin
C Victor Rask
G Frederik Andersen
D Bobby Sanguinetti
D Mark Alt
C Riley Nash
D Danny Biega
D Austin Levi
hm: RW Evgeny Dadonov
graduates this year: D Justin Faulk, LW Drayson Bowman, LW Zach Boychuk
defensemen. Beyond what they have now on the roster under age 25 (McBain and Faulk), they have a ton of depth at the position. Murphy, Dumoulin, Sanguinetti, Alt, Biega, Levi, and Keegan Lowe all look like future NHLers in some way or another, the question is just how good they can be at the NHL level.
goaltending. Andersen's first shot at a high level league was absolutely dominant this past season. Quite frankly he was screwed out of the SEL's top goaltender award. And beyond Andersen there's Justin Peters, who's looked competent as Cam's backup this season, Mike Murphy who's solid but often injured, and Matt Mahalak, who looks poised to compete for the US U-20 job this coming season.
Scoring depth. Dalpe seems to have stagnated a bit this year due to injuries, but still has a ton of potential as a scoring winger. But he's another in a long line of Canes prospects that haven't taken the next step as they were expected to this year up front including Zach Boychuk and Drayson Bowman. Though Bowman has at least looked decent in a checking line role of late. Dadonov likewise has a lot of potential but has struggled to adapt to the Canes system in Charlotte so far. Oddly enough fellow ex-Panther prospect from that trade, AJ Jenks, has thrived in a checking role for Charlotte since the move.
best prospect: Ryan Murphy, his potential is just flat out off the charts, the only question is how well he'll handle the NHL game at his size.
overall: somewhere around 10th
I'm more optimistic about him than other Islander fans, but I have very high hopes for Kirill Kabanov. I think he's going to be a 30-40-70 guy who occasionally can hit 40, especially if he plays with a playmaker like Tavares.
Big weakness is on defense, we don't have a dominant defense prospect coming in which we need.
I feel I can put Minnesota up against any team, other than Florida and Ottawa, and have a legitimate argument.
Very strong up the middle with Granlund, Coyle, Phillips, Larsson and Haula.
Weak on defense after Brodin and Scandella.
Strong in goal: Hackett Kuemper and Gustaffson.
I have high hopes for Jason Zucker. WCHA Freshman of the year last year and improved on his numbers this year. Very fast, definitely a shooter (which is something we lack) and also has some grit to his game. I think he can be anything from a serviceable shooter on the 1st line, to a very good 2nd liner and should at least fill a Tyler Kennedy type role on a very good 3rd line.
Haula has also impressed this year, progressing greatly. Out producing Bjugstad, on the same team, on the 2nd line. Definitely an under-the-radar prospect.
Wings easily have a top ten prospect pool in my mind. I actually find it kind of interesting how little hype many of their prospects seem to get on HF Boards, but I suppose it has something to do with Detroit never getting to pick any highly touted (top 15) prospects. Anyways, top ten:
(1) Brendan Smith (anyone who has seen him play can attest to his talent level, could be very good)
(2) Gustav Nyquist (same goes for Goose, very slick player, probably the best offensive talent Detroit has seen since Datsyuk/Zetterberg)
(3) Calle Jarnkrok (very impressive for Brynas, has looked very skilled when I've watched him play during the WJCs)
(4) Tomas Jurco (good size, skill and skater, was very good for St. Johns' this year)
(5) Tomas Tatar (middle six type winger, spark plug, skilled and still only 21 in third year in AHL)
(6) Riley Sheahan (very good defensive center, with untapped offensive skill too perhaps)
(7) Marek Tvrdon (74 points in 60 games as (technically) a rookie, very good use of a 4th rounder IMO)
(8) Petr Mrazek (very good in WJCs, often compared to his idol Dominic Hasek)
(9) Xavier Ouellet (standout season in the Q, may be on Canada's WJC next year)
(10) Joakim Andersson (solid two-way center, probably third liner but has higher upside)
HMs: Landon Ferraro, Ryan Sproul, Nicklas Jensen, Mitchell Callahan, Teemu Pulkkinen
Strengths: Foward depth is pretty impressive; and defensive depth is improving (although it could use a solid defensive defenseman...although if Danny Dekeyser signs that may help to allay that weakness)
Weaknesses: Could use more goaltending depth and another stud defender wouldn't hurt
Well. Josefson Larsson Henrique Fayne Taormina with the big club now so that leaves us with, let's see here... Merrill Gelinas Wedgewood Urbom and Reid Boucher...
ie not good, but only because the other ones seem to have panned out.
We're also pretty strong on the left side with Saad, Morin, and to a lesser extent, Beach.
Centers are meh. McNeill is the only real standout. Pirri, Danault, and Hayes are good, not great. Everyone else is unlikely to ever make the NHL.
Also, in regards to Blacker. Blacker is probably NOT better than Gardiner defensively, he simply plays it differently. Gardiner is all positioning, stickwork, and simple puck separation via body angles and speed. Blacker uses his size, strength, balance, and strong puck pursuit to play d.
EDIT: Granberg. Those expect Gunnarsson IMO will be disappointed. He can move the puck and has above average hockey sense, but do not expect him to be teeing up nice passes. He can pinch and keep a cycle going but one should not expect a top 4 dman at this point (which gunnarsson is).
Canucks are definitly in the Top 30.
Minnesota is so overrated on here.
Top 5 in the league but lacking depth on defense with Cowen graduating and Rundblad being traded
Their pool is very impressive. From FW to D to G.
Guys like Granlund, Brodin, Phillips, Hackett, Coyle, Zucker, Bulmer.
Lots to like.
Only real weakness is high end D prospects outside Brodin, but they do have a ton of depth D prospects(although a few of them will be considered graduated after this year)
With that being said, guys like Marco Scandella and Jared Spurgeon are proving to be pretty good players at the NHL level, especially Marco. I could see him really having a huge year next season.
Leafs need high end offensive forwards. Goaltending, depth forward, D is fine, albeit lacking in sure thing star power.
Without RNH because I think he's graduated.. These would be my rankings because I think HF's for the Oilers are a bit off.
1. Oscar Klefbom
2. Martin Marincin
3. Anton Lander
4. David Musil
5. Teemu Hartikainen
6. Tyler Pitlick
7. Curtis Hamilton
8. Tyler Bunz
9. Martin Gernat
10. Tobias Rieder
11. Jeremie Blain
12. Brandon Davidson
13. Colten Teubert
14. Olivier Roy
15. Taylor Fedun
16. Travis Ewanyk
17. Drew Czerwonka
18. Samu Perhonen
19. Frans Tuohimma
20. Phillipe Cornet
I think it's top 15.
Strengths are the defense for sure. Lots of depth and everyone of the D in my top 20 have a chance to be something in the NHL. Teubert has the least potential of all the D. Weaknesses are forwards, but luckily we have 4 decent guys graduated in RNH, Hall, Eberle and Paajarvi. Goaltending is just fine IMO, all of them are developing how Oilers fans thought they would and Tuohimaa has been a nice suprise.
1. LD Oscar Klefbom
2. C Anton Lander
3. LD Martin Marincin
4. LW Teemu Hartikainen
5. LD David Musil
6. LD Martin Gernat
7. G Tyler Bunz
8. C Tyler Pitlick
9. LW Curtis Hamilton
10. LD Brandon Davidson
HM - C Ryan Martindale, RD Jeremie Blain, G Olivier Roy, D Colton Teubert
Recent Graduates: Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Magnus Paajarvi
Strength - Big Puck Moving Defensman
Weakness - Top 6 Forward Depth, RHD
Oscar Klefbom - Top 3 All Around Defensman
Anton Lander - Elite 3rd Line Center, Solid 2 Way Center
Martin Marincin - Top 4 PP Quaterback
Teemu Hartikainen - Top 9 Winger, Gritty, Hardworking, Physical
David Musil - Top 4 Shutdown Defender
Martin Gernat - Top 4 PP Quarterback
Tyler Bunz - #1 Goalie
Tyler Pitlick #2/3 Two Way Center
Curtis Hamilton - Bottom 6 Winger with ability to score, possibly 2nd line duties
Brandon Davidson - Top 4 Offensive Defensman
Top Prospect is easily Oscar Klefbom, played a huge role for Sweden at the WJC and made it to the WJC Allstar Team along with Brandon Gormley. Currently playing 20+ minutes a night for Farjestad in the SEL playoffs and projects very nice to the NHL, already has NHL size and has very high upside.
Overall Ranking - Top 10
Sharks need everything.
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