AUGUST 24, 2023  (2:26 PM)

A publication from The Athletic about the future of the Canadien has fans extremely excited about the future

The Athletic's prospect expert, Corey Pronman, has just published his annual ranking of the best pools of young players 23 and under, and the result is very exciting for Montreal Canadiens fans.

Due to several interesting draft picks and a few trades bringing promising talent to the organization, the Habs currently have the 6th best youth bank in the NHL.

The top-5 ahead of the CH consists of the Anaheim Ducks, Chicago Blackhawks, Buffalo Sabres, New Jersey Devils, and Columbus Blue Jackets.

The team's future looks very promising, as the work done by Kent Hughes has enabled building a lineup that ranks among the top tier in terms of future in the league.

Furthermore, in evaluating the youngsters belonging to the Canadiens, Pronman provided an overview of each of their potential. Although I mostly agree with him, some evaluations did surprise me.

Here's the ranking of the club's young players:

1. Cole Caufield NHL All Star
2. Juraj Slafkovsky - NHL All Star or Top Line Player
3. David Reinbacher Top Line Player
4. Kirby Dach - Borderline Top Line or Middle Line Player
5. Kaiden Guhle - Borderline Top Line or Middle Line Player
6. Alex Newhook - Middle Line Player
7. Justin Barron - Middle Line Player
8. Lane Hutson - Middle Line Player
9. Owen Beck - Middle Line Player
10. Joshua Roy - Middle Line Player
11. Sean Farrell - Middle Line Player
12. Arber Xhekaj Projected to play NHL games
13. Jan Mysak - Projected to play NHL games
14. Riley Kidney - Projected to play NHL games
15. Emil Heineman - Projected to play NHL games
16. William Trudeau - Projected to play NHL games
17. Filip Mesar - Projected to play NHL games
18. Jacob Fowler - Projected to play NHL games

He also placed the following players in the category "having a chance to play in the NHL":

- Emmett Croteau
- Jakub Dobes
- Adam Engstrom
- Oliver Kapanen
- Logan Mailloux
- Vinzenz Rohrer
- Miguël Tourigny

While most of the potential projections make sense, I completely disagree with the evaluations of Lane Hutson and Logan Mailloux.

Given what he's proven in a competitive circuit like the NCAA, in addition to his performances at the international level, including at the Senior World Championship, it doesn't make sense to label Hutson's potential as a "Middle Line Player."

And what about Pronman ranking Mailloux as a player "having a chance to play in the NHL"?

I don't know if the latter's history weighed in on the young man's assessment, but let's say it seems extremely unjustified to place him behind Xhekaj in terms of potential in the league.

In short, despite some eyebrow-raising evaluations, the takeaway from this very interesting article by Pronman is that the future of the Montreal franchise is very promising.

To see the complete ranking, go here: