Veleno the latest exceptional junior as Sea Dogs make him top pick in QMJHL draft

by Chris Roberts
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2015 QMJHL Entry Draft Logo

Joseph Veleno will now be associated with an elite group of young players, some of whom are already established stars in the NHL.

The 15 year old Veleno, who isn’t NHL Draft-eligible until 2018, was selected first overall by the Saint John Sea Dogs in the 2015 QMJHL Entry Draft on Saturday. He was a year younger than anyone else eligible, and becomes just the fifth player in CHL history to have been granted “exceptional player” status, the first outside of the OHL. Read more»

NHL Draft Primer: Garland, Mangiapane, Tkachev among re-entry options at the forward positions

by David Hahn
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Andrew Mangiapane - Barrie Colts

Photo: Barrie Colts forward and 2015 prospect Andrew Mangiapane is ranked 85th among North American skaters for the 2015 NHL Draft by NHL Central Scouting (courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images)

Approximately twenty percent of players chosen at the NHL Draft over the course of the last few years were selected in their second or third time through the process. It’s a growing trend every season, and one that offers hope for players who did not hear their name called the year before. Read more»

NHL Draft Primer: A look at intriguing North American goaltenders available in 2015

by David Hahn
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Mackenzie Blackwood - Barrie Colts

Photo: Barrie Colts goaltender and 2015 prospect Mackenzie Blackwood was fourth in wins in the OHL with 33 during the 2014-15 regular season, and he added five more in the 2015 OHL playoffs (courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images)

There are a number of quality goaltenders available in the 2015 NHL Draft, with a wide range of prospects available with size, maneuverability, and determination. It’s a particularly strong group from North American junior leagues, with the USHL and NAHL well represented. At the top of the list, a pair of QMJHL goaltenders vie for the top spot, while another from the OHL could be the first goaltender to hear his name called in late June. Read more»

NHL Draft Primer: Second round littered with potential selections from the U.S.

by David Hahn
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Paul Bittner - Team Orr - 2015 CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game

Photo: Portland Winterhawks forward and 2015 prospect Paul Bittner netted a goal in Team Orr’s 6-1 win over Team Cherry at the 2015 CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game in January (courtesy of Aaron Bell/CHL Images)

Most draft pundits point to the 2016 draft, front-loaded with players from the United States like Auston Matthews, Logan Brown, and Matt Tkachuk, as one that the Americans could dominate early on. But teams won’t have to look too far outside of the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft to find the next wave of U.S. talent pushing for playing time in the NHL. Read more»

Prospect Impressions: The 16-20 group in the countdown of the top 20 NHL prospect highlights of 2014-15

by David Hahn
on
Radel Fazleev - Calgary Hitmen

Photo: Calgary Hitmen forward and Philadelphia Flyers prospect Radel Fazleev posted 18 goals and 51 points along with a +23 rating in 71 WHL games in 2014-15 (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)

For the past few months, Prospect Impressions has taken a look at the top plays of the week, with numerous players contributing to the series. Now that most teams have completed their seasons, over the next four weeks I’ll count down the top 20 plays of the year from NHL prospects. From big hits to timely saves and the best goals, Prospect Impressions will come to a conclusion with a fine list of tremendous talent. Read more»

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