A long awaited injection of youth has finally come to the Vancouver Canucks franchise after years of competing with a mostly veteran lineup. Bo Horvat was able to stick with the big club for the 2014-15 season and Jake Virtanen, Jared McCann and Ben Hutton have earned their way onto the roster for the 2015-16 season. With solid options at all positions the Canucks prospect pool is as strong as it has been in a decade or longer and the future looks extremely bright for the organization.
Chuck Fletcher’s name comes up in the discussion for best general manager in the NHL. While his record is not without blemish, and he cannot really claim the title without a championship, the consensus is that he has done a good job of building a contending squad from one that seemed to be running in place. However, some of that success came at the cost of organizational depth. The AHL results have been poor, and misguided drafting takes some blame for the lack of skill in the developmental league.
Jack Eichel and Sam Bennett score do-it-all goals for their respective teams, and Thomas Chabot didn’t see much of a need to pass the puck, either. Likewise, Nick Ritchie is on fire in the AHL with eight goals in his first nine games, though his game-winner this week was a little awkward. Finally, an unlikely league with a phenomenal talent is featured in this week’s Prospect Impressions. Read more»
The Nashville Predators organization has undergone a rapid transition from one that focused on a hard, physical style to a club that employs a high tempo style that relies on speed and a five-man attack to put constant pressure on opponents. The prospect pool of the Predators reflects that philosophy — with several undersized but highly-skilled and fast-skating players coming up through the system.