The WHL’s Eastern Conference was the – slightly – more competitive conference last season, and that should ring true again in 2015-16.
Last season in the East it took 73 points to make the playoffs, while in the West three teams qualified with less than 73 points. The East also featured the league-leading Brandon Wheat Kings, who finished the season with 114 points, two more than the Kelowna Rockets. The Wheat Kings may have lost a couple of pivotal 20-year-olds from last year’s team, as well as Ryan Pilon (NYI), who has taken an indefinite leave from hockey, but the team still boasts depth better than any organization, with a wealth of young, up-and-coming stars. The Wheat Kings, in fact, have landed atop the CHL 2015-16 preseason rankings. Read more»
After replenishing their prospect pool with ten selections in the 2014 NHL Draft, the St. Louis Blues used the 2015 NHL Draft to beef up their prospect depth at key positions. The Blues only have three goaltenders and three centers in the pipeline, and they used three of their six picks on those positions. Even with goaltenders Jordan Binnington and Ville Husso looking like legitimate prospects, at least, and Ivan Barbashev and Robby Fabbri being two centers who might be ready to make an impact soon, the Blues had plenty of room and reason to add some much needed depth to complement their best prospects.
Here’s a look at our top 10 prospects for the 2015 NHL Draft from the Western Hockey League, with the consensus top four rather apparent.
Our list contains six forwards and four defensemen. A total of six players toiled in the Western Conference. Only the Brandon Wheat Kings managed two players in our ranking. There is a definite Canadian presence in our ranking, with seven canucks on the list. Two Americans and one Russian round out the ranking. All 10 were invited to the NHL Combine. Read more»
The NHL Draft Primer series continues with a look at players ranked between 74 and 50 for the 2015 NHL Draft.
Moving past the projections that place players in the middle rounds of the draft, we start to come upon players who might very well sneak into the first round of the draft. Most of these players have a certain pedigree, be it a family connection, coaching assistance, or draft position. Read more»
The 2015 NHL Draft is still a few months away, but that event is very much the focus of the players and scouts that have descended upon St. Catharines, ON for the 2015 BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game. And the player that will receive the lion’s share of the attention at this event is Erie Otters forward Connor McDavid, the player expected to have his name called first when Draft Day finally arrives. Read more»