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Prospect Impressions: Saves of the season featuring Condon, Nedeljkovic, Vasilevskiy, and more

by David Hahn
on
Prospect Impressions: Saves of the season featuring Condon, Nedeljkovic, Vasilevskiy, and more

Photo: Niagara IceDogs goaltender and Carolina Hurricanes prospect Alex Nedeljkovic turned in a strong season in the OHL once he was moved from the troubled Flint Firebirds club to Niagara (courtesy of CHL Images)

In this special edition of Prospect Impressions, we kick off the first of our “Best of the Year” series with some of the best saves of the season. Goaltenders were featured heavily throughout the season, with a number of fine saves making their way into our highlight articles in 2015-16. There were a number of special efforts, including one goalie who made a save on his stomach, another who stymied a 2-on-0 breakaway, and a few glove saves that should be investigated for robbery. Read more »

2016 IIHF World Championship: Michigan’s ‘CCM’ trio learns from the pros

by Derek O'Brien
on
2016 IIHF World Championship: Michigan’s ‘CCM’ trio learns from the pros

Photo: Former University of Michigan forwards Tyler Motte (L) and Kyle Connor (R) are competing for Team USA at the 2016 IIHF World Championship along with their former linemate, JT Compher (courtesy of Pavel Bednyakov/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

Team USA’s 25-man roster at this year’s IIHF World Championship includes six players who played college hockey this season. Three of those were linemates with the No. 7-ranked team in the nation and the Big Ten tournament champion – the University of Michigan Wolverines. Read more »

2016 IIHF World Championship: The next generation of Canadian defensemen

by Derek O'Brien
on
2016 IIHF World Championship: The next generation of Canadian defensemen

Photo: Ottawa Senators defenseman Cody Ceci is tied for fourth in scoring by a defenseman at the 2016 IIHF World Championship, posting one goal and four assists in six games for the unbeaten Canadian squad (courtesy of Pavel Bednyakov/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

 

The next generation of Canadian defensemen.

That’s what they’re saying about the crop of defenders that have come out of the 2012 NHL Draft, and six of those are currently playing for Team Canada at the IIHF World Championship in Russia. Read more »

Top prospects prevalent among New York Islanders awards

by Christian Litscher
on
Top prospects prevalent among New York Islanders awards

Photo: In leading the Seattle Thunderbirds to the WHL finals, Mathew Barzal was the New York Islanders prospect of the year. (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)

The 2015-16 season has been a season of optimism for the Islanders faithful. The organization has now made the playoffs in consecutive seasons for the first time since the 2004-05 lockout and advanced to the second round for the first time since 1993.

The team’s best days are ahead of them as they have a surplus of bluechip prospects waiting in the wings: Mathew Barzal, Ryan Pulock, and Michael Dal Colle. Read more »

2016 IIHF World Championship: Reway a leader on Slovakia squad that features younger talent

by Derek O'Brien
on
2016 IIHF World Championship: Reway a leader on Slovakia squad that features younger talent

Photo: Team Slovakia forward and Montreal Canadiens prospect Martin Reway began the 2015-16 season with HC Sparta Prague, then switched to Switzerland’s NLA where he competed for Fribourg-Gotteron (courtesy of Sparta Prague/Champions Hockey League via Getty Images)

Martin Reway was a standout for the Slovak national U18 and U20 teams, scoring at well over a point per game at World Championships in both of those age groups. Now he is playing in his second IIHF World Championship at the senior level and, at just 21 years of age, is already wearing an “A” on his sweater. Read more »

Washington Capitals continue tradition with strong group of Europe-based prospects

by Sean Shapiro
on
Washington Capitals continue tradition with strong group of Europe-based prospects

Photo: Notre Dame forward and Washington Capitals prospect Thomas Di Pauli was a greatly improved player in his final two seasons of collegiate hockey with the Fighting Irish (courtesy of Richard T. Gagnon/Getty Images)

Looking at both sides of the pond, the Washington Capitals had long-term projects playing in the NCAA ranks and Europe this past season.

In college Washington a group of forwards that all matured more this season and one prospect who won a national title. In Europe, Washington watched as a group of teenagers started to step up against adult competition, including top-ranked prospect and 19 year old goalie Ilya Samsonov in the KHL.

Read more »

2016 IIHF World Championship: Barkov a veteran at the ripe old age of 20

by Derek O'Brien
on
2016 IIHF World Championship: Barkov a veteran at the ripe old age of 20

Photo: Florida Panthers forward Aleksander Barkov and his Team Finland teammates are having good success at the 2016 IIHF World Championship, going 4-0 so far at that tournament (courtesy of JUSSI NUKARI/AFP/Getty Images)

More so than any IIHF World Championship in recent years, this year’s tournament has been all about the young players. With so many high-profile teenagers on the rosters of various teams, 20-year-old Aleksander Barkov – who has three NHL seasons under his belt and has already played in the Winter Olympics and last year’s World Championship – may seem like a veteran. Read more »

Defensive depth highlights New York Rangers minor league prospect contingent

by Tony Piscotta
on
Defensive depth highlights New York Rangers minor league prospect contingent

Photo: Hartford Wolf Pack defenseman and New York Rangers prospect Ryan Graves appeared in 74 games for the Wolf Pack in 2015-16, posting nine goals and 21 points in his AHL rookie season (courtesy of Graig Abel/Getty Images)

The real excitement for the New York Rangers organization in terms of prospects is in Europe and at the junior level, where several goalie and forward prospects are having outstanding seasons. Read more »

Nikita Gusev could bolster an impressive Tampa Bay Lightning prospect group

by Chris Roberts
on
Nikita Gusev could bolster an impressive Tampa Bay Lightning prospect group

Photo: Tampa Bay Lightning prospect Anthony Cirelli is like many in the system: a highly-skilled player who needs more physical maturity before he is ready for the NHL level (courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images)

The Tampa Bay Lightning have had standout performances from a number of prospects this season both at the pro and junior levels. In the CHL, recent draftees Dennis Yan, Anthony Cirelli, Mathieu Joseph and Mitchell Stephens all had impressive campaigns. The organization also got contributions in Tampa Bay from players like Nikita Nesterov – who graduated from prospect status – as well as arriving talents Slater Koekkoek and Joel Vermin.

Read more »

Hockey’s Future 2016 NHL Prospect of the Year: Connor’s strong NCAA season a springboard to NHL career

by Chris Roberts
on
Hockey’s Future 2016 NHL Prospect of the Year: Connor’s strong NCAA season a springboard to NHL career

Photo: University of Michigan forward and Winnipeg Jets prospect Kyle Connor was a runner-up for the 2016 Hobey Baker Award after a strong freshman campaign with the Wolverines (courtesy of Dave Reginek/Getty Images)

A few different considerations go into deciding the Hockey’s Future NHL Prospect of the Year – performance, expectation, and of course showing up on the monthly list throughout the season. There were standout players at every level of hockey this season, but nobody fit the criteria more than University of Michigan’s Kyle Connor (WPG). Read more »

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