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Winnipeg Jets Top 25 Under 25 - Honourable Mentions

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We look at the top 25 players under the age of 25 in the Winnipeg Jets organization, as voted by eight of the authors for Arctic Ice Hockey.

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It's that time once again! Hockey news is slow and we at Arctic Ice Hockey look at some of the most promising young players in the Winnipeg Jets organization. Here you can find last years series, incase you want to look at how we were last year.

Axel Blomqvist

Acquired 2013, Free Agent
Birth Year 1995
Age 19
Position RW
Height 6'6"
Weight 212 lbs


Axel Blomqvist almost made the top twenty five. In fact, Blomqvist and the player voted into the top 25 both averaged 26.x for rankings. Blomqvist is new to AIH's Top 25 Under 25, as he was signed after the series ran. The best part of Axel Blomqvist is that he came absolutely free. No draft pick needed. No trade.

AIH Authors' Thoughts:

Truck:

Axel is another big bodied scorer that carries some intrigue. He clearly made a big impression with Jets' brass in the pre-season a year ago. Despite going undrafted, he earned himself an Entry Level Contract and became a member of the Jets prospect pool. A rocky start to the season (with the tire fire Lethbridge Hurricanes) ended with a trade that saw Blomqvist post nearly a point per game with the Victoria Royals. He is tracking well, but remains a project. It will be interesting to see how much of a step he can take next year.

Arby:

Blomqvist has size, but he uses it awkwardly. However, he seems to get to where he needs to go at a decent clip. His hands are impressive for a big man, but little guys look to have an easy time skating around and under him.

Garret:

Blomqvist is a player I can see rising up into the list slightly by next year. There are a lot of question marks that surround Blomqvist, often citing work ethic; however, this is often a common miscast of large players who are not overly physical. Big guy, smart passer, and protects the puck well.

Pavel Kraskovsky

Acquired 2014, 6th Round
Birth Year 1996
Age 17
Position C
Height 6'4"
Weight 187 lbs

The Jets drafting a Russian player with a 2 year KHL contract was quite surprising. An intriguing pick, with Kraskovsky being a highly touted prospect that fell throughout the year, despite being one of the youngest draft eligible players and experience playing in the second best league in the world.

AIH Authors' Thoughts:

Truck:

Kraskovsky is the only player within the top 30 that I have not seen play, but I have read enough about him to be intrigued. Pavel is a big bodied centre who can score. He finished 8th among u-18 scorers in the MHL, and earned himself a trip to the World Under 18's. Kraskovsky also earned himself a look in the KHL - which is an impressive feat for a 17 year old. Kraskovsky is likely to spend his next few seasons in Russia and he may or may not ever venture to North America, but he will be interesting to track.

Arby:

An absolute wildcard, Kraskovsky is intriguing for many reasons. But I have to wonder what the chances are that a Russian already in the KHL would be after the Burmistrov debacle.

Garret:

A player like Kraskovsky is one of my three favourite uses for late round picks: 1) Goaltenders, 2) Skilled players who fell due to risk with size, 3) Skilled players who fell due to risk with being European. The fact that he was less than a week away from being a 2015 draft pick is icing on the cake.

Ben Chiarot

Acquired 2009, 4th Round
Birth Year 1991
Age 23
Position LD
Height 6'2"
Weight 209 lbs

Last year Chiarot was an afterthought for AIH's Top 25 Under 25 and wasn't even on the voting ballot. However, a strong season and even a call up shot pushes Chiarot just outside of the top 25.

AIH Authors' Thoughts:

Truck:

Chiarot appears to have made some fans in the one place that matters most - within the Winnipeg Jets organization. Chiarot is a physical, stay at home defender. He plays a gritty game similar to that of Mark Stuart. Despite a slight bump in his offensive numbers, he is not an offensive defender. Chiarot could be in the mix for one of the Jets depth defender spots this year and if he doesn't stick with the big club, he will be towards the top of the call up list.

Arby:

Chiarot is an unspectacular stay-at-home d-man who appears to only be in the "mix" for the Jets going forward thanks to a jump in his +/- numbers this past season. He’s Mark Stuart-lite.

Garret:

For counting stats, Chiarot improved in all three for goals, assists and plus/minus. However, his goal scoring improvement appears to be predominately sh% driven with receiving PPTOI, assists from more games, and we all know how meaningful plus/minus is. Still, Chiarot did also improve well in his play from the previous season. He often gets compared to Mark Stuart due to their similar low scoring careers and gritty game. While he is no puck moving defenseman, Chiarot does have a better pass and shot that Stuart. Their skating mechanics though are equally ugly.

Marcus Karlstrom

Acquired 2013, 7th Round
Birth Year 1995
Age 19
Position RD
Height 6'2"
Weight 187 lbs

Marcus Karlstrom was the Jets 2.0 very first draft out of Europe. Last year Karlstrom did not make the honourable mentions, although he was noted to be a potential dark horse.

AIH Authors' Thoughts:

Truck:

Karlstrom is perhaps the most mysterious prospect in the Winnipeg Jets prospect pool. Karlstrom has spent the last couple seasons playing in the Swedish Junior 20 league. He will be moving to the Allsvenskan men's league for his upcoming, 19 year old season. This year should provide fans with more telling statistical output. If he has a big year it could shoot him up next year's rankings.

Arby:

Karlstrom is exactly where I ranked him, and it’s because he doesn’t strike me as all that talented. He was okay at the development camp earlier this summer but he I wonder if he stood out a touch simply because he was playing amongst a lot of blue-line invites. He needs to put on some weight.

Garret:

Karlstrom started the year leading his league in goals and points per game for defenders. His second half though was a lot less productive, as his team spun into a tire fire and landed into relegation. Next year Karlstrom will be playing professional men's level hockey. The higher level of hockey leads to a better measurement of Karlstrom's progress. Any success could lead to a possible role on Sweeden's WJC team, although currently he looks like a very outside shot.

Patrice Cormier

Acquired 2008, 2nd Round / Trade
Birth Year 1990
Age 24
Position C
Height 6'2"
Weight 201 lbs

Last year Cormier was ranked in the honourable mentions. We find Cormier in the same spot with no movement.

AIH Authors' Thoughts:

Truck:

Cormier just finished the fourth season of his pro career. Cormier has seen NHL ice time in each of those four seasons, but has yet to secure a permanent job. Cormier turned 24 this summer, so his time as a true prospect is winding down and at this point it is hard for me to imagine much growth. So what is Patrice Cormier? He is a low cost fourth liner who can win some draws.

Arby:

I had Cormier at 21 as he’s at worst a classic 4th-line ‘tweener’ who for some reason can’t seem to find a roster spot over proven poor players like Chris Thorburn. His ceiling may not be all that high, but he seems like he could be a solid if unspectacular 4th-liner in the league.

Garret:

Cormier is what he is: a descent call up player. While he doesn't have any upside realistically, he is still a player who has filled a roster spot for 46 NHL games... which is 46 games more than probably quite a few players in the top 25 list.

What are your thoughts? Do you have any predictions for the Top 25 Under 25? Please let us know below!