27th: New York Islanders – 2010 Rank: 27th – Movement: (0)
Top 5 Prospects: Chris DiDomenico (F), Justin Shrugg (F), Adam Henrique (F), Joel Chouinard (D), Alex Stalock (G)
Team Analysis: A lack of a top-end talented prospect and depth is evident. The free agent signings of four of the top 5 prospects (minus Shrugg) shows some impressive skills in terms of ditching the draft, trading picks for current talent and opting for players who impress after the draft. Hopefully the Isles will make some farm improvement this season and move from their two-time 27th rank. But hey, when you got Drew Doughty and Sidney Crosby.. who cares?
26th: Boston Bruins – 2010 Rank: 25th – Movement (-1)
Top 5 prospects: Sven Bartschi (F), Carl Hagelin (F), Roman Cervanka (F), Steven Kampfer (D)
Team Analysis: Bartschi and Hagelin are two foreigners who could very well round out many organizations in the near future. Bartschi has a chance to make an immediate impact on a very poor team in the NHL and this could just add to the plethora of talent the second place Boston Bruins have. Cervenka will most likely never cross the pond but, again, being in second place allows you to wait it out and see if the highly talented forward moves. Diaz is a prospect who could end up being another Mark Streit, hailing from the same grounds as well. A lot of boom or busts in this farm, but very intriguing.
25th: Tampa Bay Lightning – 2010 Rank: 21st – Movement (-4)
Top 5 Prospects: Taylor Doherty (D), Dustin Tokarski (G), Matt Puempel (F), Patrick Weircioch (D), Alec Martinez (D)
Team Analysis: Mostering Doherty, Weircoich, Barrie, Cuma and Rutkowski all have a nice blend offensive talent, which is essential to a league such as our own. WJC Favorite Tokarski could see some minutes this year if his elders slip up or get hurt. A lack of offensive forwards outside of the name Puempel lacks as well as some more goaltending depth that can over-take back-ups Biron and Emery. Tampa has a relatively young team and with Toews, Lundqvist and Parise t build around, strong farms are almost unnecessary.
24th: New York Rangers – 2010 Rank: 26th – Movement (++2)
Top 5 Prospects: Marcus Kruger (F), Teemu Pulkkinen (F), Dustin Jeffery (F), David Savard (D), Mattias Ekholm (D)
Team Analysis: Most underrated players in any system right now could be Pulkkinen and Ekholm. Pulkkinen is a scoring wiz who has actually picked up his overall game. The whining about his skating is asinine while his playmaking ability is actually improving dramatically. Ekholm is probably just another proto-typical Nashville defenseman who will turn heads and develop into a 12-15 year NHLer who throws up beneficial numbers. Dice rollers like Granlund makes it very interesting. Add in Tanev, Spurgeon who have seen NHL time this past season as well as a blossoming Gustafsson might not actually be bad players in the long-run.
23th Ottawa Senators – 2010 Rank: 23 – Movement (0)
Top 5 Prospects: PK Subaan (D), Michal Grabner (F), David Musil (D), Adam McQuad (D), Eric Gelinas (D)
Team Analysis: PK Subban is a franchise stud defenseman, pure and simple. Grabner is a potentially a sniping 30-35 goal, 25-30 point forward. Not too shabby with either if you ask me. Musil has the potential to be a very nice top 4 defenseman, McQuaid is a physical defenseman who could fill in the enforcer spot very well and give you points from a very tough position to find quality in. The farm has a lot of depth in terms of Lowry, Lowe, and Team Biega, but not much high end after the top 2/4 in terms of impact. Esposito unfortunately is running out of time but anything is possible.
22rd Vancouver Canucks – 2010 Rank: 18th – Movement (-4)
Top 5 Prospects: Brandon Gormley (D), Chris Kreider (F), Mark Pysyk (D), Max Gratchev (F), Sergei Shirokov (F)
Team Analysis: Not much improved throughout the season in terms of drafting. The top 5 remains essentially the same as it was a year prior, which isn’t always a bad thing. Top end wise, Kreider and Gormley have top 2 lines potential without a doubt. Blacker is a hot prospect right now moving up the depth charts and Mark Pysyk, former first rounder who’s no slouch either. Who knows if he can crack the deep top 4 of Buffalo but as long as you make it, that’s all that matters. The lack of any kind of offensive prospect after Krieder and Gratchev will hopefully be addressed in the future. Depth on the blueline looks incredible.