The Canadiens prospect rankings take on a holiday theme this week with the 2023 World Junior Championship just around the corner, and the NCAA December schedule freeze in full effect.
Overager Jared Davidson made one of the biggest jumps this week, owing to his consistent production and affinity for putting together a ridiculous number of multi-point games, whereas Filip Mesar returned to the top 5 based on his recent uptick in his goal-scoring pace.
Let’s get right into it!
The Canadiens prospect power rankings are based on the overall season, as well as the most recent week of action.
Factors such as the strength of a prospect’s team, the league in which they play, their age, and expectations related to their draft position will also be considered.
Prospects playing in professional leagues based in Europe, will, however, be included.
Week 1: Lane Hutson Takes Top Spot
Week 2: Owen Beck Jumps To First
Week 3: Lots Of Movement In The Top 10
Week 4: Lane Hutson Back In First Place
Canadiens Prospect Power Rankings Week 6
1. Lane Hutson, Defenceman, Boston University (NCAA). Drafted: 62nd overall (2022) Age: 18
Points This Week: 2 GP, 1G, 0 A. Season Totals: 16 GP, 7 G, 11 A, 18 PTS.
Previous Ranking: 1st (Unchanged)
You could almost argue Hutson had a disappointing week, or at least relative to his ridiculous pace to start the season.
He was held off the scoresheet in Boston College’s wild 9-6 win over Boston University, which can only be described as a chaotic game that did not display Hutson at his best.
He quickly bounced back by scoring the Terriers’ second goal in a 3-2 win over the University of Connecticut Huskies. The goal was Hutson’s 7th of the season.
Boston University’s next game is on Dec.30 against Sean Farrell and Harvard, but unfortunately, Canadiens fans probably won’t have an opportunity to watch them face off, as Hutson is considered a shoo-in for Team USA”s World Junior Championship roster.
Hutson scores his seventh of the season to give BU the lead early in the second period!
— Florence Normand (@Florence_1553) December 11, 2022
2. Sean Farrell, C/LW, Harvard University (NCAA). Drafted: 124th overall (2020), Age: 21
Points This Week: 0 GP, 0 G, 0 A Season Totals: 11 GP, 7 G, 11 A, 18 PTS.
Previous Ranking: 2nd (Unchanged)
Sean Farrell’s production has reached new levels, and for the time being, his impressive 1.64 points per game, which is second in NCAA, will remain quite high.
Harvard is in the midst of a very long break in its schedule. They’ll have to wait until Dec.30 to have an opportunity to remove the sour taste from their mouths due to their 6-4 loss to Colgate University.
Despite the hiatus, Farrell still ranks strongly against some of the most exciting players in the NCAA.
3. Owen Beck, Centre, Mississauga Steelheads (OHL). Drafted: 32nd overall (2022), Age: 18
Last Week: 1 GP, 1 G, 2 A. Season Totals: 24 GP, 16 G, 17 A, 33 PTS
Previous Ranking: 3rd (Unchanged)
Owen Beck received some disappointing news this week, as he was left off Team Canada’s 2023 World Junior Championship roster.
But seeing as he’s 18 years old and made it to the final round of cuts, he can take some solace in knowing it wasn’t due to his lack of effort.
Team Canada has a very strong roster this year, and Beck should go into next season as a lock in Canada’s top six.
SIX SECONDS INTO THE PP 🙌 Owen Beck scores on the power play to put the Trout on the board first! #MadeofSteel
— Mississauga Steelheads (@OHLSteelheads) December 7, 2022
4. Joshua Roy, Right Wing, Sherbrooke Phoenix (QMJHL). Drafted: 150th overall (2021), Age: 19
Points This Week: 1 GP, 0 G, 1 A. Season Totals: 26 GP, 18 G, 25 A, 43 PTS.
Previous Ranking: 4th (Unchanged)
Joshua Roy cruised his way onto Team Canada’s 2023 WJC roster and should play a prominent role in Canada’s bid to defend their gold medal. He’ll be the lone Canadiens prospect on Team Canada.
He had multi-point efforts in both of Team Canada’s tuneup games against the USports All-Stars, which falls in line with his production in the QMJHL. Roy is coming off 16 points in his last 8 games with the Sherbrooke Phoenix.
— Hockey Canada (@HockeyCanada) December 12, 2022
5. Filip Mesar, Right Wing, Kitchener Rangers (OHL). Drafted: 26th overall (2022). Age: 18
Points This Week: 2 GP, 2 G, 2 A. Season Totals: 17 GP, 10 G, 12 A, 22 PTS.
Previous Ranking: 9th (+4)
Not only has Mesar returned to the Canadiens prospect rankings top 5, but he’s also found his scoring touch in the OHL, with four goals in his last three games.
There couldn’t be better timing for the skilled centre to enjoy an uptick in scoring, as he will be counted upon to lead the charge for Team Slovakia at the 2023 WJC.
Filip Mesar (#GoHabsGo) with a smart cross-ice pass on the power play to make it 1-0 Kitchener.
He's up to 19 points (8 goals, 11 assists) in 15 games and a period. pic.twitter.com/uApdqZLk4C
— Hadi Kalakeche (@HadiK_Scouting) December 9, 2022
6. Adam Engstrom, Defenceman. Rogle BK Angelholm (SHL). Drafted: 92nd overall (2022), Age: 18
Points This Week: 2 GP, 0 G, 1 A. Season Totals: 23 GP, 3 G, 2 A, 5 PTS. (Rogle BK U-20: 7 GP, 4 G, 9 A, 13 PTS)
Previous Rank: 8th (+2)
Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, but yet another Canadiens prospect will be heading to Moncton and Halifax later this month
Engstrom wasn’t originally projected to play a significant role for Sweden, but now that Simon Edvinsson turned down the invitation, he may be in store for an uptick in minutes.
Seeing as the silky-smooth skater has spent the majority of the season playing against professional athletes who are much older than him, the World Junior Championship will present a perfect opportunity to gauge Engstrom’s progress against his similarly aged prospects.
7. Oliver Kapanen, Centre, Kalpa (Liiga). Drafted: 64th overall (2021), Age: 19
Points This Week: 3 GP, 2 G, 0 A . Season Totals: 31 GP, 7 G, 7 A, 14 PTS. (Finland U-20: 5 GP, 5 G, 2 A, 5 PTS)
Previous Ranking: 9th (+2)
He’s scoring goals in a professional hockey league against opponents with much more experience, he’s obliterating his Draft season production, and he should play a key role for Finland over the holiday season.
There’s really not much to dislike about Kapanen’s season.
It’s always difficult to get a great read on players developing overseas, but all signs point to Kapanen being one of the most underrated players in the Canadiens’ prospect pool.
Maalikooste! #NuoretLeijonat ei antanut Ruotsille mahdollisuuksia, loppuluvut Tshekin Ostravassa 6–1.
— Leijonat (@leijonat) November 12, 2022
8. Riley Kidney, Centre, Acadie-Bathurst Titan (QMJHL). Drafted: 63rd overall (2021), Age: 19
Points This Week: 1 GP, 0 G, 0 A. Season Totals: 28 GP, 13 G, 28 A, 41 PTS.
Previous Ranking: 6th (-2)
It was a very disappointing week for Kidney, and not just from a production standpoint. He picked up an injury in Team Canada’s tuneup game against USports, which played a significant part in the decision to leave Kidney off the roster.
Unfortunately, the tournament takes place in Halifax, which also happens to be Kidney’s hometown.
9. Jared Davidson, Centre, Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL). Drafted: 130th overall. Age: 20
Points This Week: 4 GP, 4G, 2 A. Season Totals: 23 GP, 16 G, 18 A, 34 PTS.
Previous Ranking: 13th (+4)
For the majority of the season Davidson finished in the best of the rest category in these rankings, mostly because despite his fantastic points production, he is much older than the majority of the players he’s competing against.
But with yet another great week in the books, it’s becoming difficult to ignore how often Davidson hits the scoresheet.
Davidson has produced multi-point efforts in 10 of his 23 games this season.
— The WHL (@TheWHL) December 11, 2022
10. Cedrick Guindon, Centre, Owen Sound Attack (OHL). Drafted: 127th overall (2022), Age: 18
Points This Week: 3 GP, 0 G, 1 A. Season Totals: 29 GP, 11 G, 25 A, 36 PTS.
Previous Ranking: 5th (-5)
Guindon saw the biggest drop this season, owing to a fairly muted level of production from an offensive standpoint.
At 18 years old, he’s still one of the most exciting players in these rankings, but due to the overall strength of the prospect pool, a bad week can lead to a big drop, as we saw in Guindon’s case.
Best Of The Rest
11. Anthony Richard 12. Vinzenz Rohrer (-2) 13.Logan Mailloux (-1) 14. Xavier Simoneau 15. Justin Barron (+1)
Do you agree or disagree with the Canadiens’ prospect rankings? Let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for next week’s list.