Photo: Mark Scheifele has been one of the top players in OHL all season long. Scheifele will be expected to compete for a spot in Winnipeg next season. (Photo courtesy of CHL Images)
The Ontario Hockey League has been one of the premier pipelines for NHL development over the past couple of decades, particularly down the middle of the ice. From Eric Lindros to Joe Thornton, and more recently, Mike Richards, Ryan Getzlaf, and surging second-year center Tyler Seguin, the league has produced countless blue chip NHL centermen.
Photo: Freddie Hamilton is one of several players to have been selected in the mid-to-late rounds of the NHL Draft who now look like they could down the road be solid NHLers. (Photo courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images)
The list of Top 10 OHL wingers features a few players who were taken in the first-round of the NHL Draft, but there are also several players who went in later rounds yet have exceeded expectations and become quality NHL prospects.
The following 10 players are all property of NHL teams and all figure to make an impact for their respective organizations in the near future.
Photo: Windsor Spitfires' forward Kerby Rychel turned in a strong performance for Canada at the 2012 Under-18 WJC (courtesy of Chapin Landvogt/HF)
The 2012 Under-18 World Junior Championship didn't necessarily turn out the way Canada had hoped, although the team did take home the bronze medal. Still, while the team fell short of their gold medal goal, individual players turned in strong performances at the "other" WJC.
One of those players, forward Kerby Rychel, was one of two Canadian forwards to pick up eight points in the tournament. Rychel, who plays for the Windsor Spitfires in the OHL, scored five goals and added three assists in seven games. And while many of the players participating in this tournament were 2012 prospects looking to impress NHL scouts in attendance, Rychel is a potential first round selection for the 2013 NHL Draft.
Rychel spoke with Hockey's Future at the WJC for this HF video.
Photo: Though the OHL has many talented defensemen, few if any bring the unique combination of size, skill, and skating that Dougie Hamilton (BOS) does. (Photo courtesy of Terry Wilson / OHL Images)
Over the past few years, the Ontario Hockey League has been well known for its ability to send talented forwards to the professional ranks. But their blue line-production prowess – possibly aided by playing against that proliferation of elite forwards – has been nothing to shake a stick at.