Photo: Calgary Flames prospect Drew Shore (L) and Los Angeles Kings prospect Nick Shore (R) are two siblings that have had a taste of NHL action this season (courtesy of Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire and Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire)
When a young hockey player is drafted, the first thing he does is thank his family. He turns to them, shakes their hands, and hugs them. It’s a sign of appreciation and respect, because he realizes the sacrifice made by those around him to get him to that point. It wasn’t just one person doing; it was a family effort. Read more»
Photo: Arizona Coyotes top prospect Max Domi will be tasked with helping the franchise rebound next season. (courtesy of Aaron Bell/OHL Images)
Beside the play of top-line defensemen Keith Yandle and Oliver Ekman-Larsson, it has been a relatively forgettable year for the Arizona Coyotes. The team is firmly out of a playoff position and well off-pace to match last season’s total of 89 points, which landed them ninth in the Western Conference. Arizona’s AHL team, the Portland Pirates, is middle-of-the-pack but holding on to a playoff position in the Eastern Conference.
Photo: Calgary Flames prospect Markus Granlund is part of the team’s solid depth at center. (courtesy of Minas Panagiotakis/Icon Sportswire)
After five seasons of not making the playoffs, the Calgary Flames appear to be on the verge of returning to post-season action. The emergences of Johnny Gaudreau and Josh Jooris have assisted in the drive for the playoffs and are among the top ranking prospects in the system. Meanwhile, the AHL’s Adirondack Flames also find themselves in the playoff hunt with key contributions from Emile Poirier and Joni Ortio. Michael Ferland and Ryan Culkin make their first appearances on the Top 20 list, while Sven Baertschi has graduated from prospect status.
Photo: Edmonton Oilers forward Ryan Hamilton had scored 151 goals in 483 career AHL games before scoring his first NHL goal in his 15th NHL game (courtesy of Terrence Lee/Icon Sportswire)
Scoring a first NHL goal is no doubt a memorable event in any young hockey’s player’s career. But netting that milestone goal at the age of 29, after years of competing primarily at the AHL level, must be an extra special feeling. Edmonton Oilers forward Ryan Hamilton was that guy on Monday night as the journeyman winger scored the first goal of the game in a 3-2 loss to the New York Islanders. Read more»
Photo: Dallas Stars rookie John Klingberg has been an unexpected source of scoring this season. (courtesy of Andrew Dieb/Icon Sportswire)
The Dallas Stars have begun to really tap in to their prospect pipeline. Particularly, John Klingberg has quickly become a major contributor to the club after blowing through the AHL in short order. No Dallas skater plays more at even strength than Klingberg this year. Young wingers and defensemen abound both in the NHL and at the World Junior Championships. Read more»