The American Hockey League’s Western Conference playoff picture is going to solidify itself over the next couple weeks.
Chicago Blackhawks forward Artemi Panarin — the leading scorer amongst all rookies — takes over the top spot from the Detroit Red Wings‘ Dylan Larkin in the Hockey’s Future Calder Trophy poll for February. But the big development is the scoring exploits of pre-season favorite Connor McDavid and Philadelphia Flyers‘ defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere, which have made the race a four-player contest. Read more»
Prospect Impressions is on fire this week, with a pair of first NHL goals from the Toronto Maple Leafs and the first battle in the McDavid vs. Eichel throwdown. College hockey’s undisputed top line produced two highlight-worthy goals this week, and we have plenty more coverage of all three CHL leagues. Read more»
The West Division in the OHL is up for grabs, and two teams in the race are looking towards their top scorers to help secure a division title. In the WHL, Jayce Hawryluk just earned his first professional contract following an unbelievable month, and in the QMJHL, Cody Donaghey is settling into a new home after being traded in two different leagues this season. Also included this week, Hockey East serves up a high-quality matchup, and one rising Finnish superstar rounds out a stellar edition of Prospect Faceoff. Read more»
It was well-advertised the 2015-16 season would be a transitional season for the Chicago Blackhawks. After losing several players through trades and free agency, there was no doubt the defending Stanley Cup champions would need their rookies to contribute big time at the NHL level. Not only have these prospects been contributing, but they have become important pieces in Chicago’s title defense, some in unexpected ways.