2016 World Cup of Hockey: Stars’ Lindell looking to improve upon short NHL stint

by Sean Shapiro
Esa Lindell - Texas Stars

Photo: Texas Stars defenseman and Dallas Stars prospect Esa Lindell is a veteran of international play, and will represent Finland at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey (courtesy of Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire)



It shouldn’t be a surprise that Esa Lindell will represent Finland at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey in Toronto.

The Dallas Stars prospect and 21-year-old defenseman was confident his play at the 2015 IIHF World Championship combined with his first season with the American Hockey League’s Texas Stars was enough to impress the Finnish brass. Read more»

Prospect Faceoff: Familiar Hockey East foes meet, 2016 hopefuls Laberge and Dineen in CHL action, Drouin returns to Syracuse

by David Hahn
C.J. Smith - UMass Lowell; Danny O'Regan - Boston University - Prospect Faceoff for 3/10/16

Photo: UMass Lowell forward C.J. Smith, and Boston University forward and San Jose Sharks prospect Danny O’Regan renew the rivalry between their two schools this weekend in the Hockey East Tournament (courtesy of Richard T. Gagnon/Getty Images)



The Hockey East quarterfinals are underway this weekend, and two familiar faces re-ignite a rivalry as Boston University and UMass Lowell meet in the Hockey East playoffs again just one year removed from meeting in the finals. The CHL’s regular season is winding down, and all three leagues are in action again as two top 2016 draft-eligibles get another last chance to impress before the draft. Finally, Jonathan Drouin’s infamous story will have a new chapter written in Syracuse as the Tampa Bay Lightning prospect is back in the AHL after an attempted trade request, finishing off a stacked edition of Prospect Faceoff. Read more»

Prospect Faceoff: OHL West Division clash, Aho climbs scoring ranks, more college and junior matchups

by David Hahn
Christian Fischer - Windsor Spitfires; Travis Konecny - Sarnia Sting - Prospect Faceoff for 3/3/16

Photo: Windsor Spitfires forward and Arizona Coyotes prospect Christian Fischer (L), and Sarnia Sting forward and Philadelphia Flyers prospect Travis Konecny (R) do battle this weekend in an OHL Western Conference showdown with potential playoff implications (courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images)



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»

2016 NHL Draft: Change at top of March ISS rankings as Nylander arrives among the top prospects

by ISS
Alexander Nylander - Mississauga Steelheads - ISS Rankings, March, 2016

Photo: Mississauga Steelheads forward and 2016 prospect Alexander Nylander has a good chance of joining brother William as a top 10 pick in the NHL Draft (courtesy of Aaron Bell/OHL Images)



While the two players ranked at the top of ISS Hockey’s March rankings for the 2016 NHL Draft remain unchanged from last month’s list, there has been somewhat noteworthy movement elsewhere in the top 10 . Read more»

Trio of U20 players among top NHL-drafted defensemen out of Finland

by Tony Piscotta
Sami Niku and Antti Kalapudas - Team Finland - 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship

Photo: JyP Jyvaskyla defenseman and Winnipeg Jets prospect Sami Niku (R) is one of a trio of defensive NHL prospects that competed for Finland in their gold medal run at the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship (courtesy of MARKKU ULANDER/AFP/Getty Images)



The 2015 NHL Draft saw six defensemen from Finland selected for only the second time since the draft was reduced to seven rounds in 2004. Though none of those players were selected in the top two rounds — as current Pittsburgh Penguin Olli Maatta was in the 2012 draft class that was previously the largest — the 2015 draft class has increased the number of NHL-drafted defensemen playing in Liiga. This has helped to expand this list to a top 10 after listing just five players last year. Read more»

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