Photo: (left to right) Ryan Spooner, Dougie Hamilton, and Jared Knight are three of the Boston Bruins most promising prospects. Hamilton and Spooner have both spent time in the NHL this season. (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
The Boston Bruins have used the NHL draft, trades, and free agency to populate their prospect pool with a diverse group of players who are at various stages of their development. The emphasis recently has been on solidifying their defense and goaltending, with those two positions now deep in talent and among the strengths of the organization.
Photo: St. Louis Blues prospect Vladimir Tarasenko has been brilliant in his NHL rookie season. Tarasenko was drafted 16th overall in the 2010 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Derek Leung/Getty Images)
While picking the top NHL prospect is never an easy task, it was particularly difficult in the Spring Top 50 rankings as there were several candidates worthy of consideration for top prospect. Many prospects performed at a high level this season, particularly in the NHL, where a truncated regular season has seen over 125 rookies lace up for at least one game.
Photo: Soo Greyhounds defenseman and Detroit Red Wings prospect Ryan Sproul has developed into an effective offensive defenseman (courtesy of CHL Images)
With five of the past six first-overall NHL draft picks being forwards from the Ontario Hockey League, OHL defensemen have had a lot of practice playing against elite offensive talent. And that’s reflected in the continued development of these 10 promising young NHL-drafted defensemen.
Photo: Florida Panthers' forward Jonathan Huberdeau formed a potent trio in February with Peter Mueller (R) and Drew Shore (courtesy of Juan Salas/Icon SMI)
With the lockout-shortened season, most teams will reach the midway point of their 48 game season sometime over the next week. In terms of the race for the 2013 Calder Trophy, most of the front-runners from the season's opening month continued to shine.
Photo: St. Louis Blues winger Vladimir Tarasenko got off to an impressive start in his NHL career, making him an easy choice as the NHL's top rookie for January (courtesy of Scott Kane/Icon SMI)
Due to the NHL lockout, January was an abbreviated month, with most teams playing just over half a dozen games. Nonetheless, the Hockey’s Future staff was polled to give their early thoughts on the front-runners for the league's Calder Trophy, which recognizes the NHL's top rookie.