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The Vancouver Canucks are benefiting from CHL prospects

by Curtis Coulter
on
The Vancouver Canucks are benefiting from CHL prospects

Photo: Vancouver Canucks prospect and Sherbrooke Phoenix captain Carl Neill fits the profile of the steady stay-at-home defender but his offensive ability should not be underestimated (courtesy of Francois Laplante/Freestyle Photo/Getty Images)

The Vancouver Canucks have done a fine job of re-stocking their prospect pool over the last few seasons and the good scouting and smart drafting has finally begun to bear fruit. Former CHL stars Bo Horvat, Jake Virtanen and Jared McCann are all now full time NHL players. The wisdom of having Virtanen and McCann in the NHL this season could be debated but they should play important roles for the Canucks for many years to come. Here is a look at the Canucks prospects currently playing in the junior ranks of North America. 

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Nashville Predators junior prospects continue the talent influx

by Tony Piscotta
on
Nashville Predators junior prospects continue the talent influx

Photo: Nashville Predators prospect Anthony Richard had 91 points in his draft season and now forms part of a formidable offensive attack for the Val d’Or Foreurs (courtesy of Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

 
The bulk of the Nashville Predators prospect pool is now skating at the pro level — either with the Predators, the AHL affiliate Milwaukee Admirals, or in Europe. The club has seven players currently skating at the junior level — including Gatineau Olympiques teammates Yakov Trenin and defenseman Alexandre Carrier.
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Americans’ Bailey a step closer to playing for hometown team

by Tony Androckitis
on
Americans’ Bailey a step closer to playing for hometown team

Photo: Rochester Americans forward and Buffalo Sabres prospect Justin Bailey is in his first season in the AHL after wrapping up his OHL career in 2014-15 (courtesy of Micheline Veluvolu/Rochester Americans)

The Buffalo Sabres have their centers for the future in Jack Eichel, Ryan O’Reilly and Sam Reinhart, but the organization is hoping to develop talent on the wings to support that trio. One of those wingers looking to complement the likes of an Eichel or a Reinhart is right wing Justin Bailey – one of three second round picks for the Sabres at the 2013 NHL Draft. Read more »

Prospect Faceoff: Timashov takes on Bouchard, Leafs prospects clash on Thanksgiving, more from the NCAA, USHL, and WHL

by David Hahn
on
Prospect Faceoff: Timashov takes on Bouchard, Leafs prospects clash on Thanksgiving, more from the NCAA, USHL, and WHL

Photo: Calgary Hitmen defenseman Jake Bean and Regina Pats forward Sam Steel go head-to-head in a Thanksgiving Weekend encounter of top 2016 NHL Draft prospects (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images and Aaron Bell/CHL Images)

In this week’s Prospect Faceoff, the reigning Vaughn CHL Goaltender of the Week will try and slow down one of the QMJHL’s most proficient scorers. Two Toronto Maple Leafs prospects will go head-to-head in a Thanksgiving Day matinee, while two ‘A’ rated 2016 NHL Draft-eligible skaters clash in the WHL. In the USHL, a pair of Clark Cup champions go one-on-one, while two of the NCAA’s finest freshmen collide. Read more »

Prospect Impressions: Soustal pulls out the “Michigan move”, Draisaitl stays hot, North Dakota’s teamwork

by David Hahn
on
Prospect Impressions: Soustal pulls out the “Michigan move”, Draisaitl stays hot, North Dakota’s teamwork

Photo: Edmonton Oilers forwards Leon Draisaitl (L) and Taylor Hall (R) have been working well together since Draisaitl was called up from the Bakersfield Condors in late October (courtesy of Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Every year it seems like one or two players in the hockey world pull off a lacrosse-style goal that catches the attention of national media. Tomas Soustal joined the club this weekend, drawing the attention of hockey fans worldwide. Also in this week’s edition of Prospect Impressions, Leon Draisaitl and Teemu Pulkkinen score, plus more from junior hockey and one college play that has coaches taking notes. Read more »

Los Angeles Kings junior prospects fit the team identity

by Jason Lewis
on
Los Angeles Kings junior prospects fit the team identity

Photo: Kings prospect Chaz Reddekopp brings size and strength to his defensive role but his offense is trending up too (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)

‏The Kings have a fairly large group of CHL representatives this year, many coming out of the 2014 and 2015 NHL Entry drafts. While they have a large numbers of players, they have few upper-round picks representing the team. They also are strictly limited to just two leagues of the CHL: the WHL and the OHL. With eleven players currently playing in the CHL, only two are from the first three rounds of the draft. The Kings are going to need some late rounders to blossom (and they have a few on their way) to really make the best out of a group full of outliers and depth players.

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Sparse group of Pittsburgh Penguins prospects at junior level

by Ian Altenbaugh
on
Sparse group of Pittsburgh Penguins prospects at junior level

Photo: If the 6-foot-7 Nikita Pavlychev ever suits up for the Pittsburgh Penguins, he will instantly become the tallest player in the history of the team. (Courtesy of Brandon Anderson/BA-Photos)

The Pittsburgh Penguins have one prospect playing at the Canadian major junior level, forward Jaden Lindo. A sixth-round pick in 2014, Lindo is playing in his fourth season in the OHL. The organization also has one player at the junior-A level, the 6-foot-7 behemoth Nikita Pavylchev, who is playing in the USHL for the Des Moines Buccaneers. Read more »

Arizona Coyotes high-end junior players excelling early in 2015-16

by David Hahn
on
Arizona Coyotes high-end junior players excelling early in 2015-16

Photo: In his third season with the Sudbury Wolves, Arizona Coyotes prospect Kyle Capobianco continues to improve his decision-making and lead a young squad (courtesy of Terry Wilson/CHL Images)

The Arizona Coyotes had a number of prospects who racked up accolades through the first quarter of the 2015-16 season, including quite a few who are playing in the CHL this year. Three Coyotes prospects are among the top 15 scorers in the OHL, another one is in the top-five in the QMJHL, and the team’s WHL contingent has provided valuable leadership.

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Columbus Blue Jackets junior prospects adding dimensions to their game

by David Hahn
on
Columbus Blue Jackets junior prospects adding dimensions to their game

Photo: Although Blake Siebenaler’s eight points in 19 games is below his normal pace, his plus-8 rating is the best plus/minus statistic he has posted in his OHL career. (Courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images)

There are a number of Columbus Blue Jackets prospects off to fast starts in junior hockey. Among them, Paul Bittner is trying to adjust to life without fellow Blue Jackets prospect Oliver Bjorkstrand in Portland. Kole Sherwood is an underrated addition to the London Knights lineup, and Olivier LeBlanc is an exciting prospect plying his trade in Cape Breton. Read more »

Kapanen easing into new organization after move to Toronto

by Ken McKenna
on
Kapanen easing into new organization after move to Toronto

Photo: Toronto Marlies forward and Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Kasperi Kapanen has produced seven points in 11 games for the Marlies in 2015-16 (courtesy of Graig Abel/Getty Images)

For a hockey fan, the arrival of July 1st means the unofficial start to the coming hockey season. The event sparking this fan interest is the start of the NHL’s annual free agency period, where player movement, or more specifically, rumors of player movement tend to dominate the hockey headlines and the news-hungry Twitterverse. Read more »

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