Photo: HPK Hameenlinna goaltender and Nashville Predators prospect Juuse Saros turned in a stellar performance at the 2014 World Junior Championship, helping to lead Finland to their first gold medal at the U20 WJC since 1998 (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
No country has had as much success developing goaltenders in recent years as Finland.
But with 14 Finland-trained goalies playing in North America and another nine playing in Europe in either the KHL or in Sweden's SHL, the number of drafted prospects playing in Finland's Liiga has dwindled to just five.
Photo: Defenseman Seth Jones, on pace to graduate from prospect status before the end of the season, has averaged 20:50 in ice time for the Predators as a rookie (courtesy of Jonathan Kozub/NHLI via Getty Images)
The Nashville Predators system contains some top-end offensive talent while the defensive skill is a bit lacking after Seth Jones.
Photo: Guelph winger Jason Dickinson has been a standout at both ends of the ice for the Storm. The Dallas Stars draft pick registered nine assists in his last five games (courtesy of Aaron Bell/OHL Images)
Welcome to the January 2014 edition of On the Rush, a monthly column featuring prospects at various levels of competition who are either exceeding expectations or falling a little behind.
Photo: Team Finland goaltender Juuse Saros has been leading the way for his country at the 2014 World Junior Championship, with his 1.53 goals-against average and .942 save percentage both being tops among goaltenders at this tournament (courtesy of ANDREAS HILLERGREN / TT/AFP/Getty Images)
For the first time since 2001, Finland will be playing for the gold medal at the World Junior Championship. The Finns landed in that game by knocking off Canada, 5-1, in a semi-final game. Now, they must defeat Sweden in that country if they want to take home gold.
Photo: Photo: Jarred Tinordi leads a deep group of defensive prospects for the Montreal Canadiens. Tinordi was selected 22nd overall in the 2010 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Minas Panagiotakis/Icon SMI)
Below is the middle section of the Hockey's Future NHL Team Rankings. The teams are ranked in terms of the quality of their overall prospect pool as voted on by HF staff. 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 a year, with this ranking meant to represent the state of the prospect pools in the early stages of the 2013-14 season.