clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Winnipeg Jets Top 25 Under 25: Honorable Mentions

New, comments

Arctic Ice Hockey's Top 25 Under 25 is an annual look at the future of the Winnipeg Jets. A list and ranking of the best players under the age of 25 gives a great idea of what is to come. The criteria for the rankings were not pre-set. Every author compiled their own list based on their own criteria. These are the results.

Graig Abel/Getty Images

The Winnipeg Jets are blessed, by King Kevin Cheveldayoff, with one of the most impressive prospect pools in the league. There are players outside of the top 25 that would easily make the cut for many other teams. This depth was reason enough for us to create a post dedicated to the honorable mentions.

Ed. Note: Not all authors assigned definite rankings beyond their Top 25. In these cases, an automatic score of 26 was given.

Pavel Kraskovsky

Rank

DOB

Acquired

Pos

Allan

Andy

Phil

Daniel

Ryan

Cara

Ian

Brian

Tim

HM

1996/09/11

#164, 2014

C

21

26

20

26

26

23

26

26

26

Previous Rank: Honourable Mention

Pavel Kraskovsky is a bit of a sleeper. He is a massive young man and he plays a solid two-way game at the center position. Both of these facts lead to massive appeal. Pavel is also a solid offensive player, tallying points regularly, though not at at prolific pace. Where is his ceiling? Hard to say.

Stats:

AIH Authors' Thoughts:

Truck:

Very few North American fans have seen much of Kraskovsky. What they did see was full of valleys and peaks, highlighted by a massive performance in international competition. Is he underrated because of the distance? Is he overrated based on one tiny sample? Only time will tell, but what we do know is that he's big and he had enough skill to get pro looks at both 17 and 18. It'll be interesting to see what he does this year. Pro ice and/or an impressive run at the World Juniors could move him up the rankings.

Daniel:

Pavel Kraskovsky was drafted as a long-term, long-shot player from the get-go, and we need to keep that in mind when evaluating him.

Kraskovsky had what I consider to be a disappointing year. Playing in Russia's top junior league (MHL) for the third season in a row, Kraskovsky's production increased over 2013-2014 - but only slightly. He managed limited ice time in the KHL, playing in three games with Lokomotiv Yaroslavl, but that's actually a step back from the eight KHL appearances Kraskovsky made in 2013-2014. And Kraskovsky didn't make the cut for Russia's World Junior squad, which came as a bit of a surprise.

Having said that, it wasn't all bad. Kraskovsky was named an assistant captain for his MHL team, and was named to the Russian Selects team for the Subway Series, where he scored 2 goals in a game against the WHL All-Stars. Returning home, he scored 13 playoff points in 15 games, a significant step up from the goose egg he recorded in seven playoff games last season, and made an appearance with the senior national team.

He has one more year left on his deal with Lokomotiv Yaroslavl so he will almost certainly play in Russia next season, but Kraskovsky needs to be tested against better competition. He will likely be one of Russia's leaders at the next World Junior Hockey Championships, and with a strong showing may make the jump to North America for 2016-2017.

Philip:

For better and worse, Pavel Kraskovsky is still fundamentally the same player as when he was drafted. The calling card of this rather lanky looking 6'4", 192 pound center is his mature two-way game. Kraskovsky is the kind of player coaches learn to trust and lean on, with consistently excellent positioning aided by tremendous awareness, especially in the defensive zone. He oozes willingness, including both when it comes to engaging physically and using his long reach to keep opponents in check.

His edgework is awkward to watch at times and he'll never earn himself a Russian Rocket nickname, but all those aforementioned positives are usually enough to bail him out of trouble, at least against his current peers. He's no goal-scoring dolt or Mr. Stonehands, and is both a quietly solid passer and interesting net presence, but I'm uncertain as to how much offensive vision he actually possesses. To me he's reminiscent of Leafs prospect Frédérik Gauthier, and as with that comparable it will be his skating and ability to actualize offensive potential which largely determine his professional ceiling.

Tucker Poolman

Rank

DOB

Acquired

Pos

Allan

Andy

Phil

Daniel

Ryan

Cara

Ian

Brian

Tim

HM

1993/06/08

#127, 2013

D

25

18

26

23

24

26

26

26

26

Previous Rank: n/a

Tucker Poolman is an interesting prospect. He entered last season a few years older than most NCAA freshmen. His year was up and down and saw him play multiple positions. That said, the skill package is intriguing, and many rave about what they've seen.

Stats:

AIH Authors' Thoughts:

Andrew:

Tucker is 22 years of age, 3 years senior of fellow draftee and defencemen Jack Glover, but is actually situated lower on the Jets Depth Chart. Development may be stalling, and I hope he considers the AHL this year, if eligible to do so.

Brian:

With a North Dakota team riddled with injuries up front last year, the former USHL player of the year had to fill in for a decent sized chunk of the season. With eighteen points in forty games, North Dakota might be breeding themselves a poor man’s Dustin Byfuglien. After another year or two in college, he should be ready to step up to the professional game.

Daniel:

I was skeptical of this pick when the Jets made it (mostly due to Poolman's age), but so far Poolman has fared well.

Despite competing for ice time against a veteran blue line, Poolman played major minutes in his freshman season at UND and scored 18 points in 40 games. He is still a work in progress, but Poolman is skilled offensively and has developed good size for a defenseman. With the Blues signing Jordan Schmaltz to an ELC in May, Poolman will likely play a much more prominent part of UND's blue line next season.

Truck:

I'm still not sure what to make of the Poolman. Tucker has a very solid skill package and he is extremely versatile. He played everywhere this year from the third defensive pair, to the first powerplay unit, to first line wing. Versatility is nice, but you would like to see a prospect with this kind of skill package hold down a full time spot a little further up the defensive depth chart. Next year should bring a greater opportunity for ice time. It will be interesting to see what he does with it.

Jimmy Lodge

Rank

DOB

Acquired

Pos

Allan

Andy

Phil

Daniel

Ryan

Cara

Ian

Brian

Tim

HM

1995/03/05

#84, 2013

C

26

26

23

26

26

19

22

25

25

Previous Rank: 20th

Jimmy Lodge's season saw him run through a very odd trade scenario. It isn't uncommon for quality CHLers to get traded in their last year of junior, but it is uncommon to see such a player traded from one bad team to another bad team. This was Lodge's journey. He was easily the best player on both teams, but he didn't have much support at either stop. His upside remains a bit of a mystery.

Stats:

AIH Authors' Thoughts:

Ian:

Jimmy Lodge is a good sized player. Top notch passing and can still put the puck in the net. Hard working, coachable player. Really is that "True North" prototypical player that they like having in their organization.

Daniel:

Like Kraskovsky, Lodge is tall, thin, plays C, and didn't have the season I was hoping for. Drafted for his offensive ability, Lodge's offensive numbers have stalled the past two seasons, and he now projects as more of a two-way player.

An interesting wrinkle, though, is that Lodge maintained a point-a-game scoring pace this season playing for some bad OHL teams. I'm skeptical - I think the cream should rise to the top, especially in junior - but here's hoping that his stagnant offensive numbers are nothing more than a good player being dragged down by a bad team.

Truck:

Jimmy remains a very interesting prospect. His numbers have never been special, but he has decent size and many of the skills that teams desire. His coaches also raved about his two-way game this year. This represents solid progress in the right direction. Why hasn't it all come together to produce big numbers? Hard to say, but he has played on some bad teams. That may be the case again this year, but the Manitoba Moose should have some nice skill to pair him with - even if there are youth based struggles. Can Lodge take advantage? I hope so, but it has yet to be determined.

There you have it. The Winnipeg Jets honorable mentions are on the board. The Top 25 Under 25 will begin tomorrow. Did you have any of these guys ranked much higher? Let us know in the comment section.