Photo: Defenseman Nate Schmidt is one of several mobile defensemen in the Washington Capitals system. Schmidt was signed as a free agent in 2013. (courtesy of Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire)
With opening night having come to pass, the Washington Captials can count two major prospects in the professional level now. Heavily-touted prospects Andre Burakovsky and Evgeny Kuznetsov played for the Capitals on opening night of the 2014-15 season against the Montreal Canadiens, with Burakovsky picking up the Capitals first goal of the season.
Photo: Defenseman Josh Morrissey, Winnipeg’s 13th overall pick in 2013 shown here representing the WHL in the Subway Super Series, led WHL defensemen with 28 goals in 2013-14 (courtesy of Derek Leung/Getty Images)
The Winnipeg Jets concluded their third season since relocation in the same place as the first two; out of the playoffs and seeking to answer organizational questions regarding what it will take to get them out of the middle of the pack and bring playoff hockey to Winnipeg for the first time since 1995.
Photo: Portland Winterhawks’ center Nicolas Petan is the top forward prospect in the Jets spring Top 20 list, trailing only defenseman Josh Morrissey for the top spot (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)
The two names that have dominated this list for the past few seasons, Mark Scheifele and Jacob Trouba, have moved on to become key figures in the present setup for the Winnipeg Jets, causing somewhat of a shakeup to the rest of the list.
Photo: Winger Evander Kane has spent all five seasons since the 2009 draft in the NHL, amassing 191 points in 310 games thus far in his career (courtesy Terrence Lee/Icon SMI)
So much has changed for the Winnipeg Jets since the 2009 NHL Draft: general managers, names, cities (countries, for that matter), organizational philosophies, and expectations.
Photo: Winnipeg 2013 pick Brenden Kichton ranks third in the AHL in scoring amongst defensemen with 28 points through 36 games for the Jets affiliate in St. John’s (courtesy of Terrence Lee/Icon SMI)
With several scattered injuries at the NHL level, including blue chip defenseman Jacob Trouba at one point, no less than seven AHL regulars have seen spot duty with the Winnipeg Jets this season. When not plugging holes at the NHL level, the St. John's IceCaps have provided stingy opposition to the rest of the AHL this season.