Below is the final part of Hockey's Future's 2012 Spring Organizational Rankings. The rankings were determined by taking each NHL team's entire prospect pool into consideration as well as the likelihood those prospects are to meet their maximum potential. For reference, each team's top five prospects are included, as well as the players they have graduated, traded, or added to their pool over the 2011-12 season. To be eligible, a player must meet HF's prospect criteria. The rankings are done twice each season, in the fall and spring.
Team Depth Chart of NHL Prospects
- Goaltending depth
- Balanced defensive depth
- Physical, skilled forwards
- Center depth at pro level
- Top-end scoring forwards
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 Predators may not have any blue chip prospects in Europe or the NCAA. However, there are a few project prospects with intriguing upside. In the SEL, Magnus Hellberg has the size and raw talent but is still very young and inconsistent. Making a name for himself as a physical force in the SM-liiga, Miikka Salomaki also has a finesse side to his game that is just starting to percolate to the surface. Zach Budish of the WCHA has a very diverse skill set and if he stays healthy, his ceiling is higher than his statistics may show. Chase Balisy of the CCHA is turning into a true leader who makes his teammates better. The Hockey East defense duo of Garrett Noonan and Anthony Bitetto are two lesser known names to keep an eye on.
The Nashville Predators prospect pool has experienced a number of major changes in a short period of time. On February 17th, Blake Geoffrion (MON) and Robert Slaney (MON) were traded to the Montreal Canadiens in a deal that brought back Hal Gill. Craig Smith, who was previously ranked fifth on this list, graduated. Forwards Josh Shalla and Juuso Puustonen enter the top 20 as two dark horse weapons that could boost the Predators attack in the future. Finally, it is Ryan Ellis who takes the number one spot away from Jonathon Blum.
The 2007 NHL Draft is shaping up to be a top heavy draft for the Nashville Predators. Their first three selections, Jonathon Blum, Jeremy Smith, and Nick Spaling, all have a strong chance of making the NHL full-time. However, the future of the other six Predators selections from that year is less clear.
The Milwaukee Admirals are currently in ninth place of a very crowded Western Conference and are in danger of missing the playoffs this season. One of the biggest contributors to their struggles have been the numerous call-ups to key players, including Ryan Ellis, Jeremy Smith, and Gabriel Bourque.
Victor Bartley, D, 23
The Predators signed the 23-year-old Victor Bartley in May. A former standout in the WHL, Bartley played last season in Sweden's Allsvenskan league where he ranked second among defensemen in points and assists.
- Significant quakes (5.0+)
- Post Game Talk: "mennhhhhhhhhhhh" LEAFS WIN! Californian Dream? 2nd in the Atlantic
- Rumor: In-season Proposals, Rumors, Free Agents & Roster Moves (related topics) LV
- Canucks go from 3-0 lead to 4-3 deficit within 5:09 (and give up 7 goals in 3rd)
- TV: True Detective (Part II)
- Confirmed with Link: Ales Hemsky(@50%) to Ottawa for 3rd(2015) and 5th(2014)