Very excited about the upcoming NHL draft as it always a time of possibility and hope. That said, I am frustrated by the completely arbitrary and non-sensical rankings that are put together at Hockey's Future regarding the ranking of prospects and teams' prospects as a group.
The Canucks are listed as having the 29th ranked prospect pool - only the SJ Sharks are worse. By contrast the NY Islanders have the 3rd ranked prospect pool. Simply ranking the prospects on their draft position is completely arbitrary. For example, the Islanders top prospects are listed as:
Of this group the best one is probably Strome. Niederreiter has been OK, but not great in his time with the big club. De Haan has been a disappointment and may never be strong enough to play in the NHL and Nelson and Donovan have solid futures ahead of them but are not elite level talents.
Further, it is important to note that the Islanders play development system has had a solid record of wrecking young players by not developing them properly and failing to surround them with quality veteran leadership. Josh Bailey, Kyle Okposo, ... It is nonsense not to factor in the organizations ability to cultivate talent when looking at the prospect pool for each team. Simply having a prospect become an NHL player is not the goal - the idea is to maximize that player's potential. The Islanders are not better than the Canucks at doing this. Further, the Canucks top prospects are better overall fits for their system than the Islanders and their second tier prospects like McNally, Price, Labate and Grenier have more potential upside over the long term than most organizations - and at this point, if even only one of these guys becomes a good Pro, that would be beating the odds.
The Canucks top prospects are 1.) Kassian, 2.) Jensen, 3.) Schroeder, 4.) Connauton; and 5.) Lack - they all play pro hockey and should have promising careers with the Canucks when they are ready to play with a few of these players possibly being elite talents. They will be brought along at the right time by an organization that makes a large effort to go about player development the right way.
Hockey's Future should put that into consideration and stop making arbitrary rankings based on draft position and the easiest road to the NHL, regardless of whether when the prospects lands, whether they will succeed or not.