Photo: Goal-scoring winger Kyle Palmieri may not be far away from establishing himself with the Ducks after short NHL stints in his first two pro seasons. (courtesy of Patrick Green/ Icon SMI)
Even though in 2012 the Anaheim Ducks suffered their worst regular season finish in eight years, there is a ton to be excited about moving forward for Ducks hockey. Over the years the organization has compiled a solid group of hard working, blue-collar prospects, several which are on the cusp of NHL careers. The list may be void of a true stand out "superstar" but the Ducks have compiled a plethora of solid puck-moving defenseman and gritty and talented forwards. Names like Emerson Etem, Sami Vatanen, and Nicolas Kerdiles are just a few on a long list that is filled with potential.
Photo: Former USHL scoring star Kevin Roy switched schools prior to the 2012-13 season and is now playing for Northeastern in the Hockey East conference (courtesy of Jim Pierce)
Like any NCAA rookie, Kevin Roy was eager for the start of his first year of college hockey. His excitement shone through in his debut with Northeastern University, where the Quebec native scored the game-winner and added an assist to help his new team earn the win against Merrimack.
Photo: Anahiem Ducks prospect Kyle Palmieri moved closer to becoming a full-time NHL player in the 2011-12 season, a season that included being chosen to participate at the 2012 AHL All-Star Game (courtesy of Bill Streicher/Icon SMI)
The Anaheim Ducks once again bolstered their organizational depth and addressed team needs with eight selections at the 2012 NHL Draft. Five of the picks from that draft will be featured in this ranking, with Hampus Lindholm leading the newest recruits to the Ducks' organization.
Photo: Anaheim Ducks prospect Andy Welinski survived the first cut in his bid to earn a berth on the 2013 USA WJC squad (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images Sport)
Defenseman Andy Welinski returned to the USHL's Green Bay Gamblers for the 2011-12 season. As it turned out, it was a season to remember for the Anaheim Ducks prospect.
Photo: Defenseman Andy Welinski possesses one of the hardest shots of any Anaheim prospect. Welinski will play for the University of Minnesota-Duluth for 2012-13. (Brace Hemmelgarn/Icon SMI)
The Anaheim Ducks have a prospect mix that is high on talent and beginning to find some balance across the board. This past season was defined largely by the addition of three Swedes, William Karlsson, Rikard Rakell, and Max Friberg, who captured a pair of awards here. The campaign was also marked by steady improvements and fluid adjustments by players who moved advanced stages in their development whether by role, level, or both. It was also defined in part by a significant loss, that of defenseman Justin Schultz who spurned the Ducks for free agency.