Hockey's Future Ranks Blues
Hockey's Future has released it's rankings for spring in regards to which organization has the most talent waiting below the professional level. Your very own St. Louis Blues come in at third on the list which offers a reminder to fans that the Blues have a wealth of talent on the horizon and a lot to be excited about.
The Hockey's Future article, found here, lists the Nashville Predators and Los Angeles Kings before the Blues come in at third.
When you throw the word prospect out, Lars Eller and Alex Pietrangelo immediately jump to mind. Eller saw his first action at the NHL level this season, skating in seven games and recording two goals during his brief stint with the team. It was apparent Eller would have a lot to learn at the NHL level, but also that he could be a dynamic force at the forward position with his speed, size and ability to generate opportunities.
Pietrangelo also saw playing time in 2009-10, skating in nine games with the Blues, chipping in one goal and one assist. Pietrangelo also saw time the year before, skating in eight games in 2008-09.
These two lead the group of St. Louis prospects and likely will see action with the club next season in a more extended role as the Blues look to continue to build from within.
Notable Defensive Prospects:
- Alex Pietrangelo
- Ian Cole (Drafted 18th overall in the 2007 Draft)
- David Rundblad (Drafted 19th overall in the 2009 Draft)
- Brett Ponich (Drafted in the second round of the 2009 Draft - His immense size, 6 foot7, has many wondering if he can bring the same tenacity to the table that Boston's Zdeno Chara does)
Notable Forward Prospects:
- Lars Eller
- Brett Sonne
- Phillip McRae
- Jake Allen (Note: The Fanball system is auto-linking Allen to the NFL player, but we are obviously referring to the netminder)
Above are just a few of the names you should get familiar with. It's doubtful that all of these guys will make a major impact at the professional level, but the future for these skaters does look to be pretty bright. We might not see all of them remain with the Blues as some of these skaters could be used in trades to address more urgent needs. Regardless of what happens, the fact that the Blues have such a strong group of youngsters on the horizon should ensure this team is competitive for many years to come.