Photo: Forward Teemu Hartikainen was acquired by the Maple Leafs in a trade on January 31st, 2014. Hartikainen spent the 2013-14 season in the KHL with Salavat Yulaev Ufa. (courtesy of ANTTI AIMO-KOIVISTO/AFP/Getty Images)
For the greater part of the last decade, the Toronto Maple Leafs have been reluctant to draft outside of the CHL in the first round. Sure, they selected NCAA-bound Tyler Biggs in 2011, but just a season later he was playing for the Oshawa Generals of the OHL.
Photo: David Musil is part of a deep and talented pool of defensive prospects for the Edmonton Oilers (courtesy of Steven Alkok/Icon SMI)
The Edmonton Oilers have a diverse group of talent in their pipeline, most notably in their pool of 13 defensive prospects. Edmonton’s 2013 first round pick Darnell Nurse has been particularly impressive in his few outings as an Oiler.
Photo: Taylor Hall was the first of three consecutive first overall picks made by the Edmonton Oilers from 2010 to 2012 (courtesy of Vincent Muzik/Icon SMI)
For the first time in four years, the Edmonton Oilers will not be taking the first overall pick in the NHL Draft. Although they failed to make the playoffs for the seventh straight year, the Oilers managed to climb a bit farther up the ladder and landed at 24th in the league after the regular season. Soon after came the dismissal of General Manager Steve Tambellini, only to be replaced by former head coach Craig MacTavish, who is anticipated to make some big changes for the club.
Photo: The first overall pick in 2012, Nail Yakupov finished his first NHL season with the most goals (17) and tied for the most points (31) among rookies (courtesy of Dustin Bradford/Icon SMI)
This is the second edition of the Edmonton Oilers yearly prospect awards. After missing the playoffs for the seventh year in a row, the Oilers are looking to make some big changes in their roster and have a strong reliance on a deep prospect pool. The 2012-13 season saw great improvements for some, while others fell short of expectations. The Oilers have some strong defensive prospects in the pipeline with a mix of skilled but not yet fully-developed talent on their front end.
Photo: Nail Yakupov, shown here celebrating a late game-tying goal against Los Angeles in January, takes over the top spot in the Oilers mid-season Top 20 ranking (courtesy of Chris Austin/Icon SMI)
The Edmonton Oilers Spring Top 20 saw very little movement in the top 10 ranks while the bottom 10 prospects were shuffled more drastically. The top 10 features a number of highly skilled prospects who are either currently filling regular spots on the Oilers' roster such as Nail Yakupov and Justin Schultz or are looking slated to do so in the future.