Hockey's Future has started releasing their Top 20 Prospect lists for each NHL team. Out of the teams that have been released, the lists of the Panthers, Blues, and Devils include Wolverines. Matt Rust is listed as the #10 prospect in the Panthers organization (up from #13 last year).
An intelligent, heady player, winner of the University’s Athletic-Academic Achievement award, Rust has managed to play well in just about any type of situation he was thrown into. In particular, Rust excelled this past year on the Wolverines energy line withand (STL). He did an exceptional job on the penalty kill, too, but beyond energy and defensive play, Rust has a still-developing scoring touch, which will show through more in the coming season. Rust was sixth on the team in total points in 2007-08, and with the senior tandem of and Hobey Baker winner (PHO) no longer in the picture, Rust’s offensive role should be expanded in his sophomore season.
He's gotta cut out the stupid late-game penalties before I'd go as far as they did in the first sentence, but I imagine that's something that won't continue this year. I agree with the rest.
Brandon Burlon is listed as the #8 prospect in the New Jersey organization. HF likes him. A lot.
The Devils second-round selection at the 2008 NHL draft makes a splashy debut all the way up in eighth spot. A lot of weight in Burlon's ranking is based on the fact that his overall upside is through the roof, and when you combine that with the tools that he already has, it's scary to think about how good he might get once he gets more experience and fills out his frame. Burlon is a multi-purpose defenseman, but his skating and offensive skills are what really sets him apart from other defense prospects in the organization. Set to play at the University of Michigan this fall, he's probably at least three collegiate seasons away from turning pro, but he is only going to get better and better and his skill set is tailor made for the up-tempo style of play in the NHL. This will quite possibly be the lowest that Burlon will ever be ranked in the top 20.I really can't wait to see that kid play. And I'd love to keep him three years.
Aaron Palushaj has moved from #14 to #10 in the Blues organization. And here we have one of the problems with Hockey's Future, because, quite honestly, there's not a whole lot of information in his profile that was correct. He didn't play on the top line (at least not when everyone was in the lineup) and his linemates weren't upperclassmen, as he usually played with Rust and Hagelin. They are correct that he needs to shoot the puck more.
They also list Kevin Porter as one of the preseason Top 15 candidates for the Calder. The Calder is prrrobably not gonna happen, but he should make Phoenix's roster.
Lastly, here's something that I think is kind of interesting. Here are our winning percentages with the various CCHA refs over the past 5 years, with the number of games officiated in parenthesis (for comparison's sake, our overall winning percentage is .693):
Aaron: 56% (17)
Brown: 60% (5)
Hall: 79% (17)
Hill: 83% (6)
Hoberg: 80% (5)
Klosowski: 100% (3)
Kotyra: 100% (4)
Lisko: 78% (9)
McInchak: 74% (29)
Murphy: 100% (1)
Piotrowski: 72% (38)
Pochmara: 33% (6)
Sergott: 80% (5)
Shegos: 64% (32)
Wilkens: 78% (18)
Do keep in mind that strength of schedule isn't included as a factor. But it appears that my immense dislike of Aaron is partially due to the fact that we lose a lot when he does our games. And, well, perhaps The Miami Student would like to know that we don't actually have that great of a record with Matt Shegos as the head official.