Photo: Winnipeg Jets prospect Brendan Lemieux has the skill and build to adjust quickly to pro hockey, having posted three points in five AHL games to close out this season (courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images)
The Winnipeg Jets had many of their prospects in the AHL with the Manitoba Moose during the 2015-16 season. As a result, that team struggled, but several players made great strides toward a potential promotion to the NHL. The team also had several players – but especially the electrifying Nikolaj Ehlers – get quality minutes in the NHL. Though growing pains are part of the Jets’ approach to team-building right now, the prospect pool is also full of top performers in their own age groups.
Photo: The Winnipeg Jets’ top prospect, Nikolaj Ehlers, has spent much of this season proving he could create offense with a variety of linemates (courtesy of John Cordes/Icon Sportswire)
After many years of turmoil in Atlanta, the franchise had gotten very few results on the ice, yet their prospect system remained extremely thin. Since their relocation to Winnipeg, the Jets have seen much greater success through the draft.
Photo: 2013 second-round pick Nic Petan remains a top prospect for the Winnipeg Jets – the ugly results of his baptism by fire in the NHL earlier this season notwithstanding – and he now sits third on the Manitoba Moose in scoring (courtesy of Terrence Lee/Icon Sportswire)
The Winnipeg Jets roster is one of the youngest in the NHL this season, and have had six prospects make their NHL debuts already in 2015-16. Few teams are able to rely on the strength of their young guns to the extent of the Jets, with a couple of them earning full-time NHL gigs.
Photo: Winnipeg’s number one defense prospect, Josh Morrissey, has struggled to put up points in his rookie AHL season, but sits second on the team in shots on goal (courtesy of Graig Abel Collection/Getty Images)
Making the playoffs last season for the first time since 2006-07 — when the franchise played in Atlanta and was known as the Thrashers — the Winnipeg Jets appear to have things heading in the right direction: with several young prospects working their way into roles in the NHL lineup.
Photo: Winnipeg Jets prospect and former Ducks draft pick Eric O’Dell is the leading goal-scorer for an offensively challenged St. John’s IceCaps squad. (courtesy of Jonathan Kozub/NHLI via Getty Images)
Led by a veteran lineup and some outstanding goaltending from current Jets rookie Michael Hutchinson the St. John’s IceCaps won the Eastern Conference playoff title before falling to the Texas Stars in the 2013-14 Calder Cup finals. With Hutchinson and several key players from that team playing elsewhere this season, the IceCaps struggled to start the year but are playing better of late.