The Florida Panthers have heavily utilized the NCAA as a means of slowly developing their prospects and that much was evident this season. The Panthers had eight prospects spread evenly at each position playing college hockey this season. Some, like defensemen Ian McCoshen and Michael Downing are highly-touted within the organization, while others, like young winger Miguel Fidler and goaltender Evan Cowley, fall under the “projects” category. Read more»
The Florida Panthers have been fortunate—or unfortunate, depending on how you look at it—enough to draft high in the recent NHL drafts. Players like Jonathan Huberdeau and Aleksander Barkov have quickly made the leap to the NHL, leaving the organization with few high-profile prospects, outside of recent first-round pick Lawson Crouse, who was returned to junior. Yet, the Panthers have strong organizational depth, particularly at left wing and defense. Most wingers are capable of playing both wings, but the fact that the Panthers have just three primary right wing prospects is a bit concerning. Read more»
The Florida Panthers are loaded with collegiate prospects, with ten that finished this season in a collegiate program. Florida has long been considered a patient organization, one that allows their prospects to develop at their own pace, something the NCAA offers. This season, a few special talents rose above the rest—including a dynamic Hobey Baker Award nominee. Read more»
The Florida Panthers organization looks much different now than it did even two years ago. General Manager Dale Tallon’s rebuilding of the prospect system and the relative patience that his staff has shown in allowing those prospects to mature has started to bear fruit. Several players have moved through the pipeline to become NHL regulars or AHL players on the verge of graduating to the big leagues.
The Florida Panthers prospect system continues to be heavily weighted towards the NCAA and minor professional leagues, with a lot of talent concentrated at those levels. However, the talent pool as a whole is still substantial despite recent graduations, and should continue to provide the Panthers with a steady stream of high-quality prospects for the next few years.