DobberProspects Prospect Pool Rankings: 10-7

Curtis Rines

2023-05-08

10. Winnipeg Jets – 79.3

Harling – 83

High – 81

Quinn – 79

Rines – 80

Gehrels – 77

Nuno – 89

Itovitch – 66

It is seemingly time for the Winnipeg Jets to retool their team after years of running back the same core.

With Mark Scheifele, Blake Wheeler, and Connor Hellebuyck all entering the final years of their contracts, General Manager Kevin Cheveldayoff may look to move them while he still can to recoup some assets.

The Jets have an intriguing crop of prospects in their system, especially up front. With Cole Perfetti already a full-time NHLer, plus Chaz Lucius, Rutger McGroarty and Brad Lambert all expected to arrive within the next two to three seasons, Winnipeg has a chance to get an influx of youth quickly.

The current disadvantage for Winnipeg is they only hold two picks in the first four rounds of this year’s upcoming draft (one first-rounder and one third-rounder). This is further proof that moving some of their expiring contracts sooner rather than later would be wise, especially with a strong draft class.

If the Jets can continue to add to their top-ten prospect pool in the next two to three years and build around names like Kyle Connor, Nikolaj Ehlers, and Joshua Morrissey, there is no reason they cannot return to contender status in the near future.

Consensus Top 15 Prospects:

(Dobbers prospect rankings by position in brackets, as of April 2023)

1. Cole Perfetti, LW
2. Chaz Lucius, C (83)
3. Rutger McGroarty, C (190)
4. Ville Heinola, D (13)
5. Brad Lambert, C (143)
6. Declan Chisholm, D
7. Nikita Chibrikov (131)
8. Elias Salomonsson, D
9. Dmitri Kuzmin, D
10. Dylan Samberg, D
11. David Gustafsson, C
12. Dmitry Rashevsky, RW (103)
13. Danny Zhilkin, C
14. Arvid Holm, G
15. Fabian Wagner, RW

****

9. New Jersey Devils – 81.3

Harling – 80

High – 71

Quinn – 91

Rines – 88

Gehrels – 78

Nuno – 80

Itovitch – 81

Is there a team in the NHL that has had a quicker turnaround than the New Jersey Devils?

After four straight seasons of below .500 hockey, including a 27-46-9 record in 2021-22, Jack Hughes and the Devils had an outstanding year finishing second in the Metro Division with 112 points.

The core of Hughes, Nico Hischier, Jesper Bratt, and Dougie Hamilton has proven to be a formidable nucleus to build around. Add in the fact that Hughes and Hischier have a combined cap hit of 15.25 million until 2026-27, and the Devils are set up to be a perennial contender for at least the next half-decade.

New Jersey’s prospect pool is led by two elite blueliners in Luke Hughes and Simon Nemec, plus a solid second tier with Swedish winger Alexander Holtz and the right-handed American defenseman Seamus Casey. Considering the strength the Devils have shown upfront, injecting two top talents on the back end will be a huge boost for the already strong blueline.

Consensus Top 15 Prospects:

(Dobbers prospect rankings by position in brackets, as of April 2023)

1. Luke Hughes, D (2)
2. Simon Nemec, D (3)
3. Alexander Holtz, RW (3)
4. Seamus Casey, D
5. Akira Schmid, G
6. Arseni Gritsyuk, RW (170)
7. Kevin Bahl, D
8. Nico Daws, G (25)
9. Graeme Clarke, RW (146)
10. Nolan Foote, LW (46)
11. Reilly Walsh, D (47)
12. Tyce Thompson, RW (95)
13. Chase Stillman, RW
14. Daniil Orlov, D
15. Josh Filmon, LW

****

8. Los Angeles Kings – 81.4

Harling – 81

High – 70

Quinn – 87.5

Rines – 85

Gehrels – 80

Nuno – 85

Itovitch – 81

Although the Kings have now suffered back-to-back first-round exits at the hands of the Edmonton Oilers, there is no reason not to be excited moving forward.

General Manager Rob Blake has done a fantastic job of building the prospect pool while also fielding a contender at the NHL level. The likes of Anze Kopitar and Drew Doughty have already seen support from a plethora of young players like Quinton Byfield, Arthur Kaliyev, and Rasmus Kupari.

If you look past the NHL roster, the Kings possess one of the top blueline prospects in Barrie Colts captain Brandt Clarke. Clarke already saw a handful of games with the Kings at the start of the 2022-23 season, but he should become a regular member of the lineup come next year.

Los Angeles does lack the same quality of prospect talent in net in comparison to upfront and on the back-end, but the recent acquisition of 22-year-old Erik Portillo from the Buffalo Sabres gives them a clear number one to watch between the pipes.

Consensus Top 15 Prospects:

(Dobbers prospect rankings by position in brackets, as of April 2023)

1. Quinton Byfield, C (2)
2. Brandt Clarke, D (4)
3. Jordan Spence, D (9)
4. Alex Turcotte, C (38)
5. Francesco Pinelli, C (167)
6. Alex Laferriere, RW
7. Samuel Fagemo, LW (43)
8. Helge Grans, D (21)
9. Martin Chromiak, RW (138)
10. Jack Hughes, C
11. Akil Thomas, C
12. Samuel Helenius, C
13. Erik Portillo, G (26)
14. Kasper Simontival, RW
15. Tyler Madden, C (157)

****

7. Carolina Hurricanes – 82.9

Harling – 82

High – 79

Quinn – 87.5

Rines – 88

Gehrels – 81

Nuno – 89

Itovitch – 74

Carolina has become one of the most renowned organizations in the league. From top to bottom, they have built a machine for producing talent that fits their specific playstyle, and that doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon.

The next wave of young talent has already started to hit the Hurricanes lineup. Over the last two seasons, Jack Drury, Seth Jarvis, and Pyotr Kochetkov have become solid contributors in one way or another. Jarvis, especially has already amassed 79 points in 150 NHL games before turning 22.

If there is one name I can recommend to keep an eye on in the Hurricanes system, it’s University of Massachusetts defenseman Scott Morrow. He has been an elite player during his time in NCAA, with 22 goals and 64 points in just 72 games from the back end. Morrow looks like he will return for at least one more year at UMass, but it would not be a shock to see him get some NHL action by the end of the 2023-24 season.

Consensus Top 15 Prospects:

(Dobbers prospect rankings by position in brackets, as of April 2023)

1. Pyotr Kochetkov, G (19)
2. Alexander Nikishin, D (14)
3. Scott Morrow, D (17)
4. Gleb Trikozov, LW
5. Jack Drury, C (36)
6. Ryan Suzuki, C (75)
7. Jamieson Rees, C (59)
8. Ville Koivunen, LW (71)
9. Domenick Fensore, D (48)
10. Aleksi Heimoslami, D
11. Jackson Blake, RW
12. Cruz Lucius, RW
13. Noel Gunler, RW (100)
14. Vasiliy Ponomarev, C (107)
15. Vladimir Grudinin, D

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Thanks for reading! Follow me on Twitter @curtis_rines for more prospect content!

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