If the Anaheim Ducks management and scouts have done one thing right in their recent history, it is that they have made the top end picks count. While every team has its missed opportunities, flops, and top picks that do not live up to expectations, the Ducks have had an enviable success rate. The mid-season Top 20 features 13 players from rounds one through three, while the top ten features eight players from the first and second rounds. They are getting wonderful seasons from their best prospects, and that is one of the many reasons why the Ducks pipeline is considered one of the more promising in the NHL. It is a group whose promise goes even deeper than the twenty names here.
While the NHL season has been altogether disappointing for the Anaheim Ducks, fans should take solace in the fact that the AHL team is not having a particularly bad season. They started quite hot, cooled considerably in November but started to come back around in December. With the current way the AHL is structured, with the Pacific playing fewer games, it is hard to get a handle on just how they compare with the rest of the league as of right now. Personnel moves in the organization will also affect the team as the season enters its critical second-half.
Artemi Panarin, the newest Chicago Blackhawk appears ready for the NHL, but before he gets there, an appearance at the 2015 IIHF World Championship is on tap. Likewise, top prospect Jack Eichel is playing in the tournament, and performing well at that. The human highlight reel strikes again for the Erie Otters, as Connor McDavid creates another present for the hockey world. The Washington Capitals are headed to Game Seven soon, but they wouldn’t have made it there if not for McDavid’s former teammate in Erie, Andre Burakovsky. The Los Angeles Kings may not have made the playoffs this year, but their AHL team is in the midst of a nice run towards the Calder Cup thanks in part to two of the Kings’ prospects. Read more»
The 2014 NHL preseason is now in the books with the 30 NHL clubs now focusing on the start of the 2014-15 regular season that begins on Wednesday night. The final weekend of preseason action provided a few notable NHL prospect performances, but the real test for these young players begins in two days. Read more»