Photo: Edmonton Oil Kings forward and Ottawa Senators prospect Curtis Lazar is scoring at a better than point-per-game pace so far in 2013-14 (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)
It’s not necessarily a description heard frequently in WHL circles, but the terminology leaves little room for debate when assessing the importance of Curtis Lazar in an Edmonton Oil Kings uniform.
Photo: Forward Matt Puempel is playing in his first season of professional hockey. Puempel is a sniper who was selected in the first round of the 2011 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images)
After several years of strong drafting by the Ottawa Senators, a healthy competition for a limited amount of NHL jobs has developed among their young players. A wealth of Swedish prospects, led by goalie Robin Lehner, has served Ottawa well in recent years. They also have several first round picks, including Cody Ceci and Curtis Lazar, who are on track to become impactful NHL players.
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.
Photo: Valeri Nichushkin, Dallas’ 10th overall selection in 2013, is one of seven top-10 picks to break camp with their NHL team in 2013-14 (courtesy of Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
The Fall edition of the Hockey's Future ranking of the Top 50 NHL prospects continues with the prospects ranked 11-20. NHL success is at a premium as we break into the top 20 with a group made up mostly of players primed for an NHL breakout.
Photo: Marcus Hogberg is among several strong goaltending prospects in the Ottawa Senators system. Hogberg was selected 78th overall in the 2013 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
The Ottawa Senators organization is no longer a wasteland for goaltending prospects. Robin Lehner, Chris Driedger, and Marcus Hogberg highlight a deep goalie prospect list with high expectations attached. Sweden remains the European melting pot for Senators prospects, and as usual a crop of under-the-radar NCAA prospects are making a splash.