FanPost

A look at the Devil's Prospect Depth by Position




Now that the trade deadline has come and gone, I wanted to take a look at the prospect depth in the system by position. For this exercise, I am going to rank players in order of the Athletic (with some additions/newcomers) and then my own gut after their pool of 20 dries up. So, their first ranked center will line up above their second ranked center and so on.

Eligibility: Players must be under 23 years of age and they cannot be a full time NHLer. I'm going to keep Anderson in the pool for now and the recent callups as it's unclear if they will stick (although I think Anderson is close to playing himself onto the permanent roster). If a player plays two positions, I picked one, but listed both.

N. Foote

J. Boqvist (C/LW)

J. Kuokkanen (C/LW)

A. Talvitie

N. Pasic (C/LW)

A. Gritsyuk

E. Pakkila

C

T. Thompson

M. McLeod (C/RW)

N. Schnarr

M. Hoelscher

M. Maltsev (C/LW)

Y. Sharagovich

B. Gignac

RW

J. Anderson

N. Merkely

P. Moynihan

G. Clarke

N. Bastian

F. Zetterlund

N. Popugaev

M. Studenic

LHD

T. Smith

K. Bahl

N. Okhotyuk

D. Misyul

Y. Zaitsev

C. White

M. Hellickson

M. Vukojevic

X. Bernard

J. Groleau

C. Sissons

RHD

R. Walsh

D. Quenneville

C. McCarthy

G.

A. Schmid

C. Brady

E. Cormier

Too old for rankings: B. Seney, G. Senn, J. Jacobs

Analysis: The strength of the Devils prospect pool is clearly on the wings, where they have deep pools of prospect with NHL potential on both sides. All of the LWs on this list are legit prospects and on the right side all the way to maybe Zetterlund have a legit shot.The LW has more players with TOP 6 upside (Foote, Boqvist and some of the lower ranked prospects like Pasic, Pakkilla and Gritsyuk are of the "boom or bust" type who could project anywhere). On the right side, G. Clarke has top 6 potential, but his future is less certain with his injury, so he took a hit in the rankings. Anderson may grow into a mid 6 role, though he projects safer onto the 3rd line. Other than that, the RW pool are mostly bottom 6 projections. I personally believe Anderson and Moynihan in particular could excel in those roles in the NHL level. Anderson may already be there. While the center pool seems weaker there are a few good prospects such as Boqvist and Kuokkanen who also play center and with Hischier/Hughes with the Devils for likely the long haul there are really only two bottom six spots potentially available on the main club. If T. Thompson's college year is no fluke, he could find his way nicely onto the 3rd C spot in a few seasons by the time T. Zajac is gone. Boqvist would be the top ranked center if I listed him as one. Kuokkanen would have been ranked after Thompson and before McLeod, so depth at the position doesn't seem that big of an issue.

On D, the pool is top heavy with half of the team's top six ranked prospects (Smith, Walsh and Bahl).There are also three legit prospects on LHD (Okhotyuk, Misyul and Zaitsev) and a bunch of much bigger longshots after that. RHD after Walsh is almost completely barren. Both Quenneville and McCarthy are longshots. Walsh was the 2nd ranked prospect in the Athletic. (3rd now after acquisition of Foote).

Goaltending is tough to evaluate. Although Senn might be decent in a few years, he's no longer of the age where he's considered a prospect. Schmid and Brady are too rough right now to get a feel for where they end up. Goalies are hard to predict.

What's missing:

Top 6 potential on RW

RHD depth

RHD Top 4 potential

A top Goalie Prospect

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