Welcome to my Panthers Top 10 Prospects Article. I know I did a series of articles on the top 20 prospects but you can throw that out the window. I’m doing an updated version in this article. This is the one now. The only one that matters. I will go down the list starting at number 10 and ending at number 1. Now players to make this list must have played less than 41 games in the NHL. So Logan Shaw and Jared McCann are excluded from this list. I tweeted out the list a few minutes before I started typing this but this is a more in depth look.
10. Adam Mascherin (C/LW)
Acquired: 38th Overall Pick in 2016
Stats for 2015-16: Kitchener (OHL) 65 GP, 35 G, 46 A, 81 PTS
Mascherin has a huge wicked wrist shot. His shots are so powerful he gave me a headache at development camp. He plays a fast, heavy game and isn’t afraid to take on tougher opponents. I think he was a steal in the draft and overlooked due to his size. He should be an elite NHL Sniper in the future.
Road to the NHL: He will likely spend the next two seasons back in Kitchener working on his game. I’m not sure how his defensive game is because the scouting report I looked at only said stuff about his offense. After Kitchener, he will likely spend a year in the AHL. In 2019-20 I think he will make cameo appearances in the NHL but I don’t think he will get a full time NHL job until 2020-21
NHL Future: I believe Mascherin can develop into a legit Top 6 player. He will probably start his career in the bottom 6 but he has the potential for a top 6 role
Probability of Success: A
9. Connor Brickley (C/W)
Acquired: 2010 Draft 50th Overall
2015-16 Stats: Portland (AHL)- 45 GP, 12 G, 15 A, 27 PTS and Florida (NHL)- 23 GP, 1 G, 4 A, 5 PTS
Brickley well he has had good preseason campaigns but hasn’t been able to transfer that fully into the NHL yet. He is a tough power forward. A good 4th line role player who has the ability to get to the dirty areas. I feel like he is a hit or miss in his potential right now.
Road to the NHL: Brickley will probably have another up and down season next year. I think he should get around at least 10 games in the NHL next year. However he needs to continue developing in Portland. I don’t think he will get to the point where he is playing over 45 games in the NHL until 2018-19 and not a full time job until 2019-20
NHL Future: Brickley is similar to McKegg here. I don’t think Brickley will ever turn out to be anything more than a bottom six guy unless he has a really good season.
Probability of Success: Between a D+ and D
8. Juho Lammikko (RW/LW)
Acquired: 65th Overall Pick in 2014
2015-16 Stats: Kingston (OHL)- 59 GP, 22-33-55; Assat (Liiga) 5 GP 2-0-2; Portland (AHL) 1 GP, 0-0-0
Lammikko is a great two way player. He is often compared to Chicago’s 2011 1st Rounder Joel Armia however he hasn’t produced at the offensive level Armia produced at in juniors
Road to the NHL: Lammikko will spend the entire of 2016-17 in Springfield and will likely make cameo appearances in 2017-18. I don’t expect him to get a full time job until 2018-19
NHL Future: Lammikko should be in the middle of the lineup once his full potential is realized. He should bea future 2nd or 3rd liner.
Probability of Success: B
7. Samuel Montembeault (G)
Acquired: 2015 Draft 77th Overall
2015-16 Stats: Blanisville-Bosibriand (QMJHL)- 47 GP, 2.63 GAA, .901 SVPCT
The Panthers Goalie of the Future ranks 7th on this list. Montembeault was the face of the Armanda and the only reason they made it far in the playoffs. He was an all star in his junior league. He is really good at moving between the pipes however he has a tendency to be caught napping occasionally on shots toward his glove.
Road to the NHL: Montembeault will go to the AHL next year and there he should split time with Reto Berra and Colin Stevens in net. I doubt the Cats will resign Berra so Montembeault will be Springfield’s starter in 2017-18. I believe Luongo will call it quits after 2017-18 so Montembeault should begin playing in the NHL in 2018-19, as James Reimer’s backup then take over the starting job in 2020-21.
NHL Future: I think Montembeault has the potential to be a legit starter in the NHL however I’m not sure yet if he has the full potential to be a Franchise Netminder, the guy who carries his team through the playoffs and can steal a game or two. However all in all he should be a legit NHL starter.
Probability of Success: A
6. Dryden Hunt (LW)
Acquired: Signed as a Free Agent on March 2, 2016
2015-16 Stats: Moose Jaw (WHL) 72 GP, 58 G, 58 A, 116 PTS
Boy did we get a steal in signing Dryden Hunt as a free agent. He wasn’t drafted due to health concerns. He won the WHL MVP. However I do have one concern. He might have done really well only because he was an adult playing with kids. Sure he has good stats before but these stats are far better and he was older. I believe Hunt can be a legit NHL player but those two concerns are pretty big.
Road to the NHL: Hunt will spend a full season in the AHL in 2016-17 to see if he can dominate. I’d say if he averages around 0.8 Points Per Game then we know my theory was wrong. In 2017-18 he should get a full time job in the NHL. He will probably end up playing alongside Bjugstad on the third line then.
NHL Future: Right now his future is too cloudy to tell. As I said earlier, he could’ve just dominated because he was a man amongst kids. I do think if my theory is right he should be a 2nd or 3rd line player but if I’m wrong he has the potential to be a Top 6 guy. Please ask me in January and I should know more.
Probability of Success: Between an A and a B
5. Henrik Borgstrom (C)
Acquired: 23rd Overall Pick in 2016
2015-16 Stats: HIFK J20 (Jr A SM-Liiga) 40 GP, 29 G, 26 A, 55 PTS
Borgstrom has the best stick handling I have ever seen. Now in the 2015 draft he was eligible but went undrafted. The Panthers made a surprise pick picking him 23rd overall in 2016. Now I didn’t like it at first but then I saw some highlights of his stick handling and him at development camp and that’s when my whole mindset changed. I thought What a steal. He also has a really good personality.
Road to the NHL: He is going to college. He will play at the University of Denver and should remain there for the next three years. I think he will get a season in the AHL and make cameo appearances that year but I don’t see him getting a full time job until 2020-21.
NHL Future: He has the potential to be a top 6 player. I think he will be a shootout master too. However like Hunt his future is too cloudy to see so I should also give him an in depth look in January as well.
Probability of Success: Between an A and a B+
4. Jayce Hawryluk (C/RW)
Acquired: 32nd pick in the 2014 Draft
2015-16 Stats: Brandon (WHL) 47 G, 59 A, 106 PTS
If fellow prospect Dryden Hunt hadn’t been in the WHL. Hawryluk probably would’ve won the WHL MVP. He is a great scoring forward who also will fight if he has too. I think his physicality made the Panthers more comfortable in trading away Lawson Crouse.
Road to the NHL: Hawryluk will start in Springfield in 2016-17. If injuries occur and/or Rau/Shaw sputter then I think Hawryluk will make a cameo appearance but injuries would have to go really deep this year. If he does have a good training camp then maybe he will make it but I don’t see him having a full time role until 2017-18
NHL Future: He has a legit shot at being a Top 6 Forward in the NHL. He is an impact guy not one of those guys who came up last year and didn’t do much.
Probability of Success: A
The Top 3 Prospects will each get their own articles featuring them. Thanks for reading this.