Photo: Forward Brock Nelson is one of two players the New York Islanders drafted in the first round of the 2010 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Rich Graessle/Icon SMI)
The New York Islanders took a huge step forward this season making the Stanley Cup playoffs for the first time since 2006-07. After clinching the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference, the Islanders took the high-powered Pittsburgh Penguins to a hard fought sixth game before being eliminated in the first round.
Photo: Defenseman Robbie Russo had a successful sophomore season with Notre Dame, where he posted five goals and 18 assists through 41 games. (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
The New York Islanders do not have a large quantity of prospects playing at the NCAA level and overseas, but some of these youngsters have a good chance of making a considerable impact with the organization in the 2013-14 season.
Photo: Forward Yevgeni Kuznetsov is widely considered to be the top young hockey player not playing in North America. Kuznetsov is currently playing for Traktor Chelyabinsk of the KHL. (courtesy of Yury Kuzmin/KHL Photo Agency via Getty Images)
With every regular season in hockey finished, it is once again time to select the Hockey's Future Prospect of the Year. Though there were many fantastic performances outside of the NHL, none were quite as good as Yevgeni Kuznetsov (WAS), who this season further cemented himself as the best hockey player not currently in North America.
Photo: Florida Panthers forward Jonathan Huberdeau finished the 2012-13 season tied for the lead among NHL rookies with 31 points (courtesy of Rich Kane/Icon SMI)
Hockey's Future presents the top grouping of the Spring NHL Team Rankings, the staff's ranking of each NHL team's system based on the strength of the entire prospect pool. For reference, just the top five prospects are listed. To be eligible, a prospect must meet HF's prospect criteria. The ranking is done twice a year, with this edition being an update to the Fall ranking.
Photo: Forward Nino Niederreiter has had a solid bounceback season in the AHL, managing 26 goals and 45 points through 64 games. (courtey of Fred Kfoury/Icon SMI)
The New York Islanders have done a tremendous job of stockpiling a very deep and talented prospect pool. General Manager Garth Snow has learned to not rush his youngsters and to make sure they are one hundred percent ready before he calls upon them for full-time NHL duty. The next few years will be critical in the development of these young guns and will prove if they can play at the NHL level.