Below is the middle third of Hockey's Future NHL Organizational rankings as voted by the Hockey's Future staff. To determine the ranking, each team's entire prospect pool was taken into consideration. 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 each season, in the fall and spring.
Team Depth Chart of NHL Prospects
- Elite group of defensive prospects
- Several NHL ready prospects
- Deep group of speedy, gritty forwards
- Many prospects are long-term projects
- Many prospects are high risk/reward
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
Brace Hemmelgarn/Icon SMI)
The inaugural edition of the Pittsburgh Penguins prospect awards reflects the values the organization espouses with their drafting and player development. They look for players of high character who are smart, well conditioned, willing to sacrifice themselves physically, and able to play well within a heavily structured team game. The organization also values defenseman over all other positions, believing that defensive prospects are the hardest to identify and develop.
The Penguins have drafted heavily from the NCAA over the past several years, particularly in the mid-to-late rounds. The strategy makes sense, as it gives players who likely have glaring holes in their game more time to develop before the organization has to make a decision as to whether to sign them or not. The lighter NCAA schedule is also conducive to players who may take longer to physically mature.
The Wheeling Nailers, ECHL affiliate of the Pens, hired Alain Lemieux as
Lemieux is, of course, the older brother of Pens owner Mario Lemieux.
The Pens also announced that they will be making more of an effort to
They will also be doing some cross-promotions with Wheeling on their