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Montreal Canadiens 2016 Top 25 Under 25: Introduction

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Our annual rankings of the best under-25 players in the Canadiens organization starts this week.

Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

It is that time of year again! Every year the EOTP staff gets together and ranks all of the players in the Canadiens organization that are under the age of 25. This year, we've even added an extra ballot into the mix.

In addition to participating EOTP staff, we added a ballot for the community, which was determined through a vote last week. As a result, we have a very wide range of opinions that went into determining this year's list.

Eligibility

The rules of eligibility are very simple; only players who are under the age of 25 when the 2016-17 season gets underway are eligible to be ranked. If a player is slated to turn 25 during the season, they are still eligible, but this would be their last year as a part of the group.

Here is the full list of players from which we made our selections this year. A 2015 rank of 99 denotes a player who was not a part of last year's vote.

Player Pos D.O.B 2015 Rank Current team
ADDISON, Jeremiah LW 21/10/1996 34 Ottawa (OHL)
ANDRIGHETTO, Sven RW 21/03/1993 8 Montreal (NHL), St. John's (AHL)
AUDETTE, Daniel C 06/05/1996 19 Sherbrooke (QMJHL)
BEAULIEU, Nathan LD 05/12/1992 3 Montreal (NHL)
BITTEN, William C/RW 10/07/1998 99 Flint (OHL)
BOURQUE, Simon LD 12/01/1997 30 Rimouski (QMJHL)
BOZON, Tim LW 24/03/1994 17 St. John's (AHL)
BRADLEY, Matt C/LW 22/01/1997 31 Medicine Hat (WHL)
CARR, Daniel LW 01/11/1991 16 Montreal (NHL)
CRISP, Connor LW/G 08/04/1994 33 St. John's (AHL)
DANAULT, Phillip C 24/02/1993 99 Montreal (NHL)
DE LA ROSE, Jacob LW/C 20/05/1995 6 Montreal (NHL), St. John's (AHL)
EVANS, Jake C/RW 02/06/1996 35 Notre Dame (HE)
FRIBERG, Max RW 20/11/1992 99 St. John's (AHL)
FUCALE, Zachary G 28/04/1995 22 St. John's (AHL)
GALCHENYUK, Alex C 12/02/1994 1 Montreal (NHL)
GALLAGHER, Brendan RW 06/05/1992 2 Montreal (NHL)
GREGOIRE, Jeremy C 05/09/1995 20 St. John's (AHL)
HAWKEY, Hayden G 01/03/1995 36 Providence College (HE)
HENRIKSON, Arvid RD 23/02/1998 99 AIK J20 (SuperElit)
HUDON, Charles C/LW 23/06/1994 5 St. John's (AHL)
JOHNSTON, Ryan RD 14/02/1992 99 St. John's (AHL)
JUULSEN, Noah RD 02/04/1997 18 Everett (WHL)
KOBERSTEIN, Nikolas RD 19/01/1996 37 Alaska-Fairbanks (WCHA)
LEHKONEN, Artturi LW 04/07/1995 12 Montreal (NHL)
LERNOUT, Brett RD 24/09/1995 26 St. John's (AHL)
LINDGREN, Charlie G 18/12/1993 99 Montreal (NHL) St. John's (AHL)
MacMILLAN, Mark C 23/01/1992 29 St. John's (AHL)
MATTEAU, Stefan LW 23/02/1994 99 Montreal (NHL)
McCARRON, Michael C/RW 07/03/1995 10 St. John's (AHL)
MCNIVEN, Michael G 09/06/1997 99 Owen Sound (OHL)
METE, Victor LD 06/07/1998 99 London (OHL)
PARISI, Tom LD 15/07/1993 99 St. John's (AHL)
PEZZETTA, Michael C 13/03/1998 99 Sudbury (OHL)
REWAY, Martin LW 24/01/1995 13 Sparta Prague (CEL)
SCHERBAK, Nikita RW 30/12/1995 4 St. John's (AHL)
SERGACHEV, Mikhail RD 25/06/1998 99 Windsor (OHL)
STAUM, Casey LD 01/08/1998 99 Nebraska-Omaha (NCAA)
SULLIVAN, Colin RD 26/03/1993 40 Boston College (HE)
THROWER, Dalton RD 20/12/1993 28 St. John's (AHL), Brampton (ECHL)
VEJDEMO, Lukas C 25/01/1996 21 Djurgardens (SHL)

Criteria

Our rankings are based on two factors; value and potential. The endeavour is to strike a balance between the two, so as to give every player a fair shake. Some players are already in the NHL, but the sheer potential of some who are not can push them ahead of a player who has already seen time in the Tricolore.

When we say value, we do not mean trade value. We are ranking these players solely in terms of their importance to the Montreal Canadiens. They may not always be a part of the organization, but for the purpose of this exercise their trade value is irrelevant.

Last year's results

2015 was the second year of Alex Galchenyuk's reign as our number one player under the age of 25. In fact, Galchenyuk has been in the top-three on our list since he was drafted - since before he even played a game for the Canadiens. Will this trend continue?

Brendan Gallagher was hot on his heels last year, and he figures to challenge once again for that number one spot. Here is how the voting went last year

Rank Player 2016 Eligible?
1 Alex Galchenyuk Yes
2 Brendan Gallagher Yes
3 Nathan Beaulieu Yes
4 Nikita Scherbak Yes
5 Charles Hudon Yes
6 Jacob de la Rose Yes
7 Zack Kassian No
8 Sven Andrighetto Yes
9 Jarred Tinordi No
10 Michael McCarron Yes
11 Michael Bournival No
12 Artturi Lehkonen Yes
13 Martin Reway Yes
14 Christian Thomas No
15 Devante Smith-Pelly No
16 Daniel Carr Yes
17 Tim Bozon Yes
18 Noah Juulsen Yes
19 Daniel Audette Yes
20 Jeremy Gregoire Yes
21 Lukas Vejdemo Yes
22 Zachary Fucale Yes
23 Gabriel Dumont No
24 Darren Dietz No
25 Mac Bennett No

As you can see, some of these players are no longer eligible, and we will cover those graduates and departed in a separate article. Following that we'll get into the rankings and who finished where.

We will unveil the results in ascending order, starting with number 25 on Monday morning. Stay tuned, as things tend to go pretty fast once we get started!