The InLouWeTrust Updated Top 20 New Jersey Devils Prospect List

It's time for an update on the ILWT top prospects in the New Jersey Devils organization. My rankings are generated by my view of the potential of each player, his position and that position's value to the Devils.  Note that I am still very conscious of the salary cap benefits the Devils receive if each player does reach that potential.   Also, I am adhering to the rookie qualifications of the NHL so you will see some popular names dropped off the list. 

1.  Jon Merrill, D-His vision on the ice in generating passes that cut through the defense make him fun to watch.   I hope he isn't rushed and spends at least another season or even two playing for the Wolverines.

2.  Jacob Josefson, C- His scoring has slowed down of late, but that seems to coincide with Albany's struggles.  Looks great on the PP and the PK.  

3.  Adam Henrique, C-His scoring has slowed down, but Henrique is still impressive on both ends of the ice.  I will be doing a more in-depth look at his goals and shots at Albany in a few days.

4.  Alexander Urbom, D-Leads the Albany defense in scoring and is playing solid, not great, hockey in the AHL.  I am hopeful he gets some practice time in at the NHL level under Jacques Lemaire and his staff, before the end of the season.  Because of his contractual status I am also hopeful not to see him in any NHL games.

5.  Eric Gelinas, D- Playing for a good team has been good for Gelinas as he has posted 9 points with a plus 18 in 13 games for the Sea Dogs.  He is averaging roughly 3.6 shots on goal per game and is one of the team's shutdown defenders. 

6.  Brandon Burlon, D-Solid play at both ends of the ice has continued for Burlon.  Despite being paired with a freshman defensive partner and playing tough minutes on the PK and against other team's top lines, Burlon's offensive output has returned.  Compared to Merrill, Burlon has 4 goals at even strength while Merrill has 3.  He also leads the team's defenders with a +10 rating.  Now the question is:  does he return for senior year or make the move to Albany? 

7.  Jeff Frazee, G-I didn't want to drop him on the list mainly because of his injury.  With Clermont and Wedgewood getting closer to being part of the organization Frazee needs to impress soon. 

8.  Scott Wedgewood, G-Wedger has struggled lately, but that is more of an indication of the talent in front of him than anything else.  After losing Tyler Seguin and others to the NHL, his Plymouth Whaler team is in a transition year and he has been able to keep them competitive despite facing tons of shots each game.

9.  Matt Taormina, D-I miss Matty T.   Do you realize he had 38 shots on goal in only 17 games?  He gets his shot through and I hope we get to see him again this season.  I think a Providence pairing of Fayne and Taormina sounds good next year.

10.  Mike Hoeffel, F-With Minnesota likely not going far in the post-season this year, we will have a chance to be introduced to Hoeffel at Albany in a few months. 

11.  David McIntyre, C-Not as many points as I would like to have seen for Mc.   Still think he has 3rd/4th line potential in the NHL.  I would much rather see him for 8 minutes a game next year than a player like Adam Mair

12.  Curtis Gedig, D-Freshman is still stuck at 12 points but his plus/minus has been solid for the Buckeyes as he plays first pairing minutes with Islanders prospect Shane Sims.

13.  Corbin McPherson, D-Hard to get a great read on his season with Colgate struggling the way they are.  He is certainly putting up more points than he had in his freshman/sophomore years which is a positive development. 

14.  Seth Helgeson, D- He doesn't put up the big numbers, however Helgeson is playing against the best players in a tough WCHA conference and playing a shutdown role for the Gophers.

15.  David Wohlberg, F-Wohlberg is second on Michigan in goals with 11 and close to eclipsing his freshman season high of 15 goals.

16.  Alexander Vasyunov, F-After not impressing in his earlier opportunity at the NHL, Vasyunov has been playing 3rd/4th line minutes in Albany, giving up time to players like Josefson and Henrique.   A RFA at the end of the season, it's possible he isn't offered a new contract.  

17.  J-S Berube, F-Didn't do much in Albany when he was there, but is putting up points and penalty minutes in Trenton, living up to his tough and gritty reputation. 

18.  Maxime Clermont, G-Inconsistency the past few weeks has hurt Clermont, who started off the season well despite a lingering hip injury.   If he keeps struggling, Gatineau may look to have him share time in goal.

19.  Ryan Hayes, F-Despite a small stature, he is putting up a lot of goals for Trenton.  I would expect him to get a chance with to play with Albany next season.

20.  Dan Kelly, D-The undrafted defenseman from Kitchener of the OHL is the only Albany defenseman with a positive plus/minus rating at +5.  I think he is best described as a Olivier Magnan 2.0.  Defensive minded defenseman with limited NHL upside. 

Graduates:  Mattias Tedenby, Mark Fayne, Vladimir Zharkov, Matthew Corrente, Nick Palmieri,

Soon to graduate:  Matt Taormina, Olivier Magnan, Alexander Vasyunov

 

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