Photo: Forward Curtis Lazar had a strong 2013-14 season, managing 41 goals in 58 WHL games. Lazar was picked 17th overall in the 2013 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
The lack of a first round selection in the 2014 NHL Draft hurt the Ottawa Senators, but the arrival of two forward prospects via trade helped generate some excitement. Acquired from the Dallas Stars as part of a package deal for Jason Spezza, OHL forward Nicholas Paul is a player on the rise, poised for a breakout year in 2014-15. Fellow new arrival Alex Guptill, on the other hand, is looking to rebound back to elite form after a forgettable final season with the Michigan Wolverines.
Photo: Anthony Mantha scored 120 points in 2013-14, his final QMJHL season. He was selected in the first round of the 2013 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Claus Andersen/Getty Images)
The Fall 2014 edition of the Detroit Red Wings Top 20 contains a few new names, but offensive dynamo Anthony Mantha and unorthodox but effective goaltender Petr Mrazek retain their spots atop the list. Additionally, four players make their first ever appearance in the Top 20.
Photo: Swedish forward Oskar Sundqvist brings a rare blend of size, skill, and grit to the Pittsburgh Penguins organization. Sundqvist was picked in the third round of the 2012 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Gregory Shamus/NHLI via Getty Images)
The Pittsburgh Penguins rarely drafted out of Europe under former general manager Ray Shero. Nor did they draft many forwards with size. So when Shero and company selected a big-bodied, little known Swedish center named Oskar Sundqvist in the third round of the 2012 NHL Draft, there was naturally some intrigue.
Photo: Oscar Dansk is one of several strong goaltending prospects in the Columbus Blue Jackets prospect pool. Dansk was selected in the second round of the 2012 NHL Draft. (courtesy of Terry Wilson/OHL Images)
The Columbus Blue Jackets have had a nice flow of prospects over the past few seasons. With players like Boone Jenner and Dalton Prout among others emerging in the NHL, the second wave of Blue Jackets’ prospects are chomping at the bit to get their shot.
Matt Dumba was nearly a point-per-game player for the Portland Winterhawks in 2013-14. (courtesy of Bruce Kluckhohn/NHLI via Getty Images)
Listing the Minnesota Wild‘s Top 20 Prospect Group is a more difficult exercise this fall, with a fairly clear-cut top four (including Erik Haula, who should graduate soon) followed by another 20 or so players with only a little separation. The Wild also added a lot of new blood to bolster the farm system, pushing some familiar names out of the Top 20.