Photo: Defenseman Alex Petrovic is playing in his third full season of professional hockey. Petrovic was a second round pick from the 2010 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
The Florida Panthers minor league system is teeming with NHL-prospects who are waiting for opportunities on the Florida roster. Florida General Manager Dale Tallon hinted in the past few weeks that he may be looking to trade some of the more veteran forwards on the squad in order to facilitate some of that upward movement. Until then, the AHL affiliate San Antonio Rampage are reaping the rewards of having top-notch talent playing throughout their lineup.
Photo: Forward Rocco Grimaldi is amidst his rookie season of professional hockey. Grimaldi was a second round pick from the 2011 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Gavin Baker/Icon Sportswire)
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.
Photo: Texas Stars forward and Dallas Stars prospect Radek Faksa completed his OHL career in 2013-14, in time to join Texas in their run to the 2014 Calder Cup championship (courtesy of John Rivera/Icon Sportswire)
Changes in the AHL‘s West Division this season include the removal of the Abbotsford Heat, who relocated to Adirondack, and the addition of the Iowa Wild. The division is still full of highly touted prospects, and of course, the defending Calder Cup champion Texas Stars. Read more»
Photo: Winnipeg Jets prospect Nic Petan (#19) and Nashville Predators prospect Brendan Leipsic (#28) of the Portland Winterhawks have much to smile about as they will be competing in their fourth straight WHL Championship series (courtesy of Ben Nelms/Getty Images)
The defensemen, goaltenders and wingers have all been covered, so it is time to take a look at the top centers prospects that competed in the WHL during the 2013-14 season.
Photo: Forward Christopher Clappterton has been very good this season for the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada, managing 12 goals and 21 assists through 22 games. Clapperton was selected in the fifth round of the 2013 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images)
The Florida Panthers system has just six prospects playing in junior leagues, though four did recently represent the team at the 2013 Subway Super Series. The group runs the gamut from big stay-at-home defensemen to feisty two-way scrappers, to small goal scorers. The eclectic bunch may not have any budding superstars among them, but they do have the Dale Tallon trademark traits of solid work ethic and hockey smarts.