Unlike last year, which saw P.K. Subban, Lars Eller, and Max Pacioretty graduate, this year's edition of the Top 25 Under 25 doesn't include a plethora of high quality players that are no longer eligible. There are however eight players that were featured on last year's ballot that are no longer with the team, or have turned 25.
|Player||2014 Rank||2013 Rank||2012 Rank||Current Status|
|Patrick Holland||27th||25th||19th||Traded to the Winnipeg Jets|
|Jiri Sekac||11th||N/R||N/R||Traded to the Anaheim Ducks|
|Jack Nevins||39th||N/R||N/R||Traded to the Buffalo Sabres|
Following an impressive performance by Tokarski once Carey Price was injured during the 2013-14 playoffs, the Habs decided to reward him by giving him the back up job over Peter Budaj, who was unceremoniously traded to the Winnipeg Jets.
Tokarski didn't see much action last season, given that Price was in the midst of a historic season, yet he did take part in 17 games, posting a 6-6-4 record, along with a 2.75 goals against average and a .910 save percentage. He finished with a 106 goals against percentage, which is his goals allowed percentage relative to the league average. When it comes to GA% the lower the better, and 100 is exactly average. For reference, Carey Price finished with a 78 GA%, the best result among all starters. To be fair, Tokarski received very little run support during his starts, and the vast majority of his games played took place on the road.
The highest Tokarski reached on our yearly rankings was 13th in 2014.
Signed as a free agent back in 2013, Condon was mostly an afterthought when discussing the Canadiens' goaltender prospect situation, but a fantastic season in the ECHL that saw him produce a .931 sv %, and a solid follow up season with the Hamilton Bulldogs (.921 sv% in 44 games) has changed the general consensus when it comes to his future with the Canadiens.
He'll be fighting with prospect Zachary Fucale, and Eddie Pasquale for the St.John's IceCaps starting goalie position this season.
Condon's highest ranking in the Top 25 Under 25 came last season, when he finished 34th.
There's no other way of putting it, 2014-15 was a disaster for Nygren. After a solid debut with the Bulldogs, 10 points in 15 games, the defender suffered a major concussion, an issue that lingered throughout the entire season. The symptoms were so devastating that the Canadiens allowed him to return to Sweden for his recovery.
Since then, Nygren signed a contract with Färjestad BK of the Swedish Hockey League, however the Canadiens still own his rights, seeing as they qualified him earlier this summer. It's not time to lose all hope for an eventual transition to the NHL, although odds are we won't see him playing at the Bell Centre any time soon.
Nygren's top ranking came last year, he finished 12th.
Pateryn defied many of the early rankings he was given in the Top 25 Under 25, surpassing several of the defensive prospects we had ranked ahead of him, and eventually finding his way to the NHL. He's not the most exciting player on the ice, but he provides a very solid presence on the back end, as well as coming with a very reasonable cap hit. His work ethic and his defensive prowess earned him more games with the Canadiens last season than highly touted defensive prospect Jarred Tinordi.
Pateryn's highest finish in the T25U25 was 16th.
Maxim Trunev left the organization not with a bang, but a whimper. The same can be said for tough guy Jack Nevins. Patrick Holland enjoyed a decent rookie season with the Bulldogs, but a disappointing sophomore campaign saw him traded to the Winnipeg Jets in the Peter Budaj deal. Now that Holland has left the organization, the only asset that remains from the Mike Cammalleri trade is goaltender Zachary Fucale.
Jiri Sekac impressed us with his flashes of brilliance, his effort level, and his speed, but in the long run the Canadiens deemed him to be expendable, which resulted in a trade that sent him to the Anaheim Ducks for Devante Smith-Pelly.
Before he was dealt, he scored one of the prettiest goals of the season:
Compared to past years, the 2015 edition of the Top 25 Under 25 lost very little talent, and this give us an opportunity to narrow down the rankings for the younger players, and provide us with a unique opportunity to explore the potential of some lesser know players, as well as debate their deserved ranking.