Columnist image
Craig Button

TSN Director of Scouting

|Archive

Who is the best hockey player currently not skating in the NHL?

Clayton Keller, the creative centre with Boston University, tops our list of the Top 50 NHL-affiliated prospects. Keller’s sleight of hand is matched by a creative mind that allows him to be dangerous every time he’s on the ice. The Arizona Coyotes prospect is an electrifying player who is highly productive.

Second on our list is Buffalo prospect winger Alex Nylander (Rochester, AHL), who reminds me so much of San Jose captain Joe Pavelski because of his ability to excel in any situation.

Ottawa defenceman Thomas Chabot (Saint John, QMJHL) is coming off a great performance at the World Junior Championship. No. 3 on our list, his progression this season has been impressive.

Our top five is rounded out by Arizona centre Dylan Strome (Erie, OHL) and Minnesota winger Kirill Kaprizov (Salavat Yulaev Ufa, KHL).

No. 6 Jesse Puljujarvi (Bakersfield, AHL) of Edmonton and No. 7 Kyle Connor (Manitoba, AHL) of the Jets have both gone through growing pains this season, but their skill and potential is undeniable. All they need is more time to physically mature.

Vancouver forward Brock Boeser (North Dakota, NCAA), who has 26 points in 25 games this season, is eighth on the list. Another college player, Boston defenceman Charlie McAvoy (Boston University, NCAA), is ninth.  

Philippe Myers (Rouyn-Noranda, QMJHL) of Philadelphia was a junior free agent signee. The defenceman’s blend of size, skill, smarts and competitiveness finds him rounding out the top 10.

Canadian teams are well represented with 14 players in the top 50, including four in the top 10 and seven in the top 20. Ottawa and Vancouver lead the way with four players each, while Winnipeg has three.

Six of those seven players in the top 20 could very well be in the NHL next season, with the exception being No. 12 Tyler Parsons of Calgary. The London (OHL) goaltender could probably benefit from some AHL development time.

 

Top 50 NHL-Affiliated Prospects

 
RK Name Age NHL Team 2016-17 Team GP G P
1 Clayton Keller, C 18 Ari Boston U (NCAA) 24 17 35
2 Alex Nylander, LW/RW 18 Buf Rochester (AHL) 46 6 21
3 Thomas Chabot, D 20 Ott Saint John (QMJHL) 26 7 34
4 Dylan Strome, C 19 Ari Erie (OHL) 23 17 53
5 Kirill Kaprizov, LW 19 Min Ufa (KHL) 49 20 42
6 Jesse Puljujarvi, RW 18 Edm Bakersfield (AHL) 17 6 13
7 Kyle Connor, LW/RW 20 Wpg Manitoba (AHL) 30 8 18
8 Brock Boeser, RW 19 Van North Dakota (NCAA) 25 11 26
9 Charlie McAvoy, D 19 Bos Boston U (NCAA) 31 4 20
10 Philippe Myers, D 20 Phi R-Noranda (QMJHL) 22 8 20
11 Ilya Samsonov, G 19 Was Magnitogorsk (KHL) 27 2.00 .930
12 Tyler Parsons, G 19 Cgy London (OHL) 26 2.25 .926
13 Joel Eriksson Ek, C 20 Min Farjestad (SHL) 18 6 12
14 Mikhail Sergachev, D 18 Mtl Windsor (OHL) 38 9 37
15 Tyson Jost, C 18 Col North Dakota (NCAA) 24 11 25
16 Pierre-Luc Dubois, LW 18 Clb B-Boisbriand (QMJHL) 38 20 47
17 Sam Steel, C 19 Ana Regina (WHL) 52 39 105
18 Olli Juolevi, D 18 Van London (OHL) 46 8 37
19 Mathew Barzal, C 19 NYI Seattle (WHL) 34 8 63
20 Christian Fischer, RW 19 Ari Tucson (AHL) 40 18 36
21 Igor Shestyorkin, G 21 NYR St. Petersburg (KHL) 39 1.64 .937
22 Colin White, C/RW 20 Ott B. College (NCAA) 29 14 27
23 Alex DeBrincat, RW 19 Chi Erie (OHL) 51 51 107
24 Ilya Sorokin, G 21 NYI Moskva (KHL) 39 1.61 .929
25 Luke Kunin, C/RW 19 Min Wisconsin (NCAA) 27 19 33
26 Jacob Larsson, D 19 Ana Frolunda (SHL) 21 0 3
27 Vladislav Kamenev, C 20 Nsh Milwaukee (AHL) 49 13 38
28 Danny O'Regan, C 23 SJ San Jose (AHL) 43 16 45
29 Travis Sanheim, D 20 Phi Lehigh Valley (AHL) 52 8 26
30 Tristan Jarry, G 21 Pit W-B Scranton (AHL) 33 2.27 .921
31 Julius Honka, D 21 Dal Texas (AHL) 33 6 23
32 Shea Theodore, D 21 Ana San Diego (AHL) 15 2 11
33 Thatcher Demko, G 21 Van Utica (AHL) 26 3.04 .893
34 Rasmus Asplund, C 19 Buf Farjestad (SHL) 31 3 16
35 Ville Saarijarvi, D 19 Det Mississauga (OHL) 30 10 28
36 Gabriel Carlsson, D 20 Clb Linköping (SHL) 32 2 4
37 Logan Stanley, D 18 Wpg Windsor (OHL) 35 4 17
38 German Rubtsov, C 18 Phi Chicoutimi (QMJHL) 11 7 18
39 Logan Brown, C 18 Ott Windsor (OHL) 28 13 35
40 Adam Gaudette, C 20 Van Northeastern (NCAA) 31 23 49
41 Jonas Siegenthaler, D 19 Wsh Zurich (SUI) 23 0 6
42 Tage Thompson, C 19 StL Connecticut (NCAA) 30 17 29
43 Vitaly Abramov, LW 18 Clb Gatineau (QMJHL) 56 43 87
44 Jake Walman, D 21 StL Providence (NCAA) 32 5 19
45 Filip Chlapik, C 19 Ott Charlottetown (QMJHL) 45 30 81
46 Jack Roslovic, C/RW 20 Wpg Manitoba (AHL) 42 9 27
47 Jordan Greenway, LW 20 Min Boston U (NCAA) 30 8 27
48 Jakub Vrana, RW/LW 20 Wsh Hershey (AHL) 36 16 34
49 Daniel Sprong, RW 19 Pit Charlottetown (QMJHL) 19 18 31
50 Zachary Senyshyn, RW 19 Bos S.S. Marie (OHL) 48 36 51
 

 

Top 5 Prospects From Each Canadian NHL Team

 
RK Name Age NHL Team 2016-17 Team GP G P
1 Tyler Parsons, G 19 Cgy London (OHL) 26 2.25 .926
2 Mark Jankowski, C 22 Cgy Stockton (AHL) 42 16 33
3 Jon Gillies, G 23 Cgy Stockton (AHL) 29 3.08 .906
4 Oliver Kylington, D 19 Cgy Stockton (AHL) 39 4 15
5 Adam Fox, D 19 Cgy Harvard (NCAA) 26 4 30
               
1 Jesse Puljujarvi, RW 18 Edm Bakersfield (AHL) 17 6 13
2 Caleb Jones, D 19 Edm Portland (WHL) 51 7 46
3 Ethan Bear, D 19 Edm Seattle (WHL) 58 25 62
4 Tyler Benson, LW 18 Edm Vancouver (WHL) 33 11 42
5 Griffin Reinhart, D 23 Edm Bakersfield (AHL) 33 5 12
               
1 Mikhail Sergachev, D 18 Mtl Windsor (OHL) 38 9 37
2 Noah Juulsen, D 19 Mtl Everett (WHL) 36 11 28
3 Nikita Scherbak, RW 21 Mtl St. John's (AHL) 45 11 29
4 Michael McNiven, G 21 Mtl Owen Sound (OHL) 43 2.17 .920
5 Will Bitten, RW 18 Mtl Hamilton (OHL) 53 19 47
               
1 Thomas Chabot, D 20 Ott Saint John (QMJHL) 26 7 34
2 Colin White, C/RW 20 Ott B. College (NCAA) 29 14 27
3 Logan Brown, C 18 Ott Windsor (OHL) 28 13 35
4 Filip Chlapik, C 19 Ott Charlottetown (QMJHL) 45 30 81
5 Jonathan Dahlen, LW 19 Ott Timra (SWE) 41 23 39
               
1 Andrew Nielsen, D 20 Tor Toronto (AHL) 51 10 30
2 Kasperi Kapanen, RW 20 Tor Toronto (AHL) 33 16 33
3 Adam Brooks, C 19 Tor Regina (WHL) 52 32 98
4 Carl Grundstrom, LW 19 Tor Frolunda (SHL) 37 12 16
5 Jeremy Bracco, RW 19 Tor Windsor (OHL) 45 22 68
               
1 Brock Boeser, RW 19 Van North Dakota (NCAA) 25 11 26
2 Olli Juolevi, D 18 Van London (OHL) 46 8 37
3 Thatcher Demko, G 21 Van Utica (AHL) 26 3.04 .893
4 Adam Gaudette, C 20 Van Northeastern (NCAA) 31 23 49
5 Jordan Subban, D 21 Van Utica (AHL) 44 12 27
               
1 Kyle Connor, LW/RW 20 Wpg Manitoba (AHL) 30 8 18
2 Logan Stanley, D 18 Wpg Windsor (OHL) 35 4 17
3 Jack Roslovic, C/RW 20 Wpg Manitoba (AHL) 42 9 27
4 Eric Comrie, G 21 Wpg Manitoba (AHL) 33 2.80 .910
5 Erik Foley, LW 19 Wpg Providence (NCAA) 29 14 28