Photo: Defenseman Ryan Pulock has made an immediate impact on the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, managing 11 goals and five assists in his first 25 games. (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
The New York Islanders have an abundance of prospects playing at the professional level. The influx of junior prospects from last season has led to an improved Sound Tiger team.
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Photo: MODO forward and Toronto Maple Leafs prospect William Nylander will lead the offense for Sweden at the 2015 World Junior Championship (courtesy of Gerry Angus/Icon Sportswire)
The drama last winter in Sweden at the 2014 World Junior Championship could hardly be topped. Playing at home in front of crowds sized larger than 12,500 per game, Team Sweden defeated one opponent after another with a literal dream team of U20 athletes. Then they faced the tourney’s upstart team, and their archrival, Finland and it seemed the stars were aligned for a victory parade that few Swedish junior teams had ever topped. Winning the WJC in their home country would have been a story ripe for Hollywood. Read more »
Photo: Nashville Predators prospect Austin Watson has been an inconsistent scorer for the Milwaukee Admirals of the AHL (courtesy of Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire)
The Milwaukee Admirals have one of the youngest lineups in the American Hockey League — with nine first-year pros and 15 players 23 years of age or younger, including both goaltenders. Three of those rookies are among the scoring leaders for the Admirals while both goalies have been impressive at times.
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Photo: Texas Stars defenseman and Dallas Stars prospect Julius Honka will be a key piece of Finland’s defensive unit at the 2015 U20 World Junior Championship (courtesy of Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire)
When the 2014 World Junior Championship tournament started there were few “experts” who would have picked Finland to emerge with the gold medal. With Canada a heavy favorite as the home team and many of the stars from last year’s Finland squad having moved on, that is once again the case at the 2015 U20 World Junior Championship. Read more »
Photo: Defenseman Brandon Manning is the top scorer for the Lehigh Valley Phantoms this season, with 20 points through 26 games. (courtesy of Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire)
After moving from their home of Adirondack, the Phantoms are now underway in their first season in Allentown, Pennsylvania, at the PPL Center. But the Philadelphia Flyers‘ AHL affiliate has struggled, and many of the team’s top players have spent time at the NHL level.
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Photo: Anaheim Ducks forward Rickard Rakell (#67) celebrates his first NHL goal with teammate Matt Beleskey (#39) during the Ducks 3-2 overtime win over the San Jose Sharks (courtesy of John Cordes/Icon Sportswire)
Monday night was a memorable one for Swedish players scoring their first NHL goals, with a trio of Swedes scoring their milestone goals in NHL action. The Columbus Blue Jackets‘ Alexander Wennberg scored his goal in a loss to the Nashville Predators, while the Anaheim Ducks‘ Rickard Rakell and the San Jose Sharks‘ Melker Karlsson took turns in a game won by the Ducks in overtime, 3-2. Read more »
Photo: Colorado Avalanche prospect Joey Hishon started slowly but is finding his game again (courtesy of Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire)
The narratives down in Lake Erie and Fort Wayne are a lot different than in Denver. In the NHL, the Colorado Avalanche is struggling to stay out of the basement and currently sits in last place in the Central Division after claiming the title last year. In Cleveland, the Monsters are ninth in the AHL’s Western Conference but only four points away from fifth place with games in hand. In Fort Wayne, the Komets are at the top of the ECHL.
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Photo: Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Rob Zepp had not played in North America since the 2004-05 season, spending the last seven seasons playing in Germany (courtesy of Terrence Lee/Icon Sportswire)
It isn’t often that a player north of the age of 30 gets his first call-up to the NHL, let alone gets the chance to actually play in an NHL game. But that is exactly what happened to Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Rob Zepp, and Zepp made the most of the opportunity after the Flyers took a 4-3, come-from-behind win over the Winnipeg Jets to give their “rookie” goaltender his first NHL win. Read more »
Photo: Buffalo Sabres forward prospect Johan Larsson has split time between the Sabres and the AHL’s Rochester Americans this season (courtesy of Bill Wippert/NHLI via Getty Images)
Despite the return of their top scorers, an influx of new talent, and the continuing development of their top players, the Rochester Americans are having a disappointing season. After making the AHL playoffs in three consecutive years, the Amerks sit last in the North Division and 14th in the Western Conference. The team has just two wins in their past 10 games.
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Photo: Buffalo Sabres rookie forward Tim Schaller slides the puck under Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask to score his first NHL goal (courtesy of Steve Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images)
Despite what would be considered an unsuccessful weekend in which they lost two games, the rebuilding Buffalo Sabres still received glimpses of a potentially better future with the first NHL goals from prospects Johan Larsson and Tim Schaller. Read more »