Narrowing the Florida Panthers vast prospect pool into a top 20 is no easy task, and several of the players in the second half of the list could easily crack the top 10 prospects in other organizations. The Panthers continue to move youth into their NHL lineup and many of the players currently ranked will graduate in 2013-14, but there are several newcomers and other top prospects ready to fill the empty spots.
One year after a surprising trip to the playoffs, the Florida Panthers fell to the bottom of the league standings. For a team in transition such a drop is disheartening. There is a however a silver lining to the Panthers poor season, as the second-overall draft pick in 2013 can yield a potential superstar.
The Florida Panthers went into the 2008 NHL draft without a first-round pick, having traded away the rights to that pick in a package that brought Tomas Vokoun to Sunrise, Florida. The Panthers (under then general manager Jacques Martin) made a sequence of trades that gave them the 31st, 46th, and 80th overall picks, as well as their own fourth (100th overall) and seventh round picks (190th).
The Florida Panthers prospect pool has seen significant turnover at the minor league level over the last six months. Some players have graduated to the NHL while others have been traded. Several new faces have joined the professional ranks for the first time. After all of the movement is accounted for, what remains is perhaps the strongest minor league group of prospects the Panthers have had in a long time, if ever.