Photo: Forward J.T. Brown is one of several Lightning prospects expected to have a strong 2013-14 season. (courtesy of Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)
Tampa Bay Lightning GM Steve Yzerman has done his due diligence through the NHL Draft over the past few years. Many of his first round picks, players such as Brett Connolly, Andrey Vasilevskiy, and Jonathan Drouin, all figure to be big components to the Lightning's success in the future. But it is his later-round picks and shrewd free agent signings that could make a more immediate impact for Tampa Bay.
Photo: Forward Alex Killorn is one of several young players to make the Lightning’s NHL roster out of training camp. (courtesy of Jeanine Leech/Icon SMI)
With the compliance buyout of long time captain Vincent Lecavalier this off-season, the Tampa Bay Lightning seemed to send a message to everyone that the rebuild was in full swing. The Lightning went into training camp with around five to six spots up for grabs for young players, and many on the Top-20 came away with spots for the opening night roster.
Photo: Canadiens forward Alex Galchenyuk skated less than 14 minutes on opening night against Toronto, but still registered two assists in the defeat (courtesy of Jana Chytilova/Freestyle Photography/Getty Images)
The Fall edition of the Hockey’s Future ranking of the Top 50 NHL prospects concludes with the top 10 prospects, led by Montreal’s Alex Galchenyuk. The top spots were tightly contested with many of the prospects already having made their mark in the NHL.
Photo: Mikhail Grigorenko, Buffalo’s 12th overall pick in 2012, will look to bounce back in 2013-14 from an up-and-down rookie season split between the Sabres and the Quebec Remparts (courtesy of Jeremy McKnight/Icon SMI)
The Fall edition of the Hockey's Future ranking of the Top 50 NHL prospects continues with the prospects ranked 21-30.
New additions from the 2013 NHL Draft augment the depth of skilled forwards in the middle group of the ranking. Elias Lindholm, drafted fifth by Carolina, and Sean Monahan, sixth by Calgary, debut on the list next to prospects who lost some luster after a rocky 2012-13 season in Mikhail Grigorenko and Mikael Granlund.
Photo: Forward Jonathan Drouin was selected by the Tampa Bay Lightning third overall in the 2013 NHL Draft. Drouin finished the 2012-13 season with 41 goals in 49 QMJHL games. (courtesy of Rich Graessle/Icon SMI)
Hardly any mock drafts had Seth Jones (NAS) slipping past the second overall pick. But when the Florida Panthers chose Aleksander Barkov, it left Tampa Bay general manager Steve Yzerman with an interesting choice to make – improve upon the organization's defensive prospects, or add another highly skilled forward to the mix.