Below is the middle third of Hockey's Future NHL Organizational rankings as voted by the Hockey's Future staff. To determine the ranking, each team's entire prospect pool was taken into consideration. For reference, just the top five prospects are listed. To be eligible, a prospect must meet HF's prospect criteria. The rankings are done twice each season, in the fall and spring.
Team Depth Chart of NHL Prospects
- Quality and quantity of goaltending
- Great overall depth at defense
- Well below average in right wing prospects
Legend of Players' Leagues
- Playing in N.A. Pro (NHL, AHL, ECHL, etc.)
- Playing in CHL (OHL, QMJHL, WHL)
- Playing in NCAA
- Playing in Europe
- Playing in Junior 'A' (USHL, BCHL, AJHL, etc.)
- Not Categorized Yet
The Kings' farm system has been thinned rapidly via graduations, trades, and a shift from stockpiling to readily dealing draft picks and assets. Their holdings at the collegiate level are somewhat limited, although they include a pair of the organization's more promising prospects. Overseas, they have just two players, one of whom may be extremely unlikely to return to the organization. Still, the Kings have plucked some outstanding players recently from both talent pools, such as European trained Anze Kopitar and Slava Voynov as well as former collegian Jonathan Quick.
While the Kings are still among the youngest rosters at the NHL level, a shift in their organizational outlook has caused their prospect system to go from top-ranked to also-ran in short order. Still, the Kings have a strong identity throughout their organization and as many talented players as most NHL organizations, headed by some of players who have already spent some quality time at the top level.
The Kings are about to end a nightmarish season. Here’s a look at the highs and lows so far this season:
Alexander Frolov’s development has been encouraging. He has shown that when he is on a scoring line, he can score. This guy is destined for great things.
Joe Corvo has shown that he can be a top offensive defenseman. Corvo will undoubtedly take the reigns as the power play pointman for the Kings next season. It’s hard to believe he was out of hockey a few years ago.
Lubomir Visnovsky has had a solid season for the most part. Lubo played solidly when healthy this season.
Ziggy Palffy has stepped up his play and will only be better for it next season when his linemates return.
Kip Brennan, Brad Norton and Ryan Flinn all benefited from increased ice time and saw their games evolve. Norton was particularly impressive and has a bright future as a fourth line enforcer who can take a regular shift.
Jerrod Smithson and Chris Schmidt both played well during their turns with the Kings. While the fourth line is not the problem, both of these players have potentially worked their way back into the Kings’ future plans.
Prospects Denis Grebeshov, Petr Kanko and Greg Hogeboom have all had solid seasons. Noah Clarke had a huge year for Colorado College and Jens Karlsson has looked like the player the Kings thought they drafted during his league playoffs.
Cristobel Huet has at worst shown that he is an option at goalie for the future. That future is likely as a backup, but he has shown flashe Read more»
Kip Brennan- The Most Promising King?
There has been a steady path beaten from Manchester, New Hampshire to Los Angeles, California. King prospects have been back and forth the entire season due to a multitude of injuries on the NHL level. While King fans have been able to see some of the top prospects in NHL action, perhaps no minor leaguer has taken advantage of his chance more than winger Kip Brennan.
This trip to the NHL was not the first for Kip Brennan, but probably the most important. After toiling in Sudbury, then spells in Lowell and Manchester, Brennan was recalled last season during one of Ken Belanger’s injuries. Brennan played fairly well, but was unable to make headway in fighting two of the league’s perennial huggers- Steve McKenna and Andre Nazarov- and was unable to have any memorable impact. After four games, Brennan was returned to Manchester and Ryan Flinn was called to Los Angeles. Flinn’s feats were the stuff of legend- a knockout against Brad Brown and a broken nose to one of the league’s toughest- Scott Parker. Belanger eventually returned and Flinn went back to Manchester, but King fans had seen their enforcer of the future and his name was Ryan Flinn.
Flinn’s size makes him a more attractive enforcer- he is an inch taller and is heavier than Brennan. While both have fought all comers in the AHL, Brennan knock was his lack of girth and the consequent weight differences he might see in the NHL. Brennan put on weight in the offseason, but headed into the season as the third option at enforcer in training camp. Read more»