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Canadiens Prospect Power Rankings: Kidney Scoring At Will

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Montreal Canadiens prospect Riley Kidney

Life is good if you’re a Montreal Canadiens prospect.

This week we saw fantastic performances from several of the top players in the prospect pool, with a new player earning the top spot on the list for the second week in a row.

Let’s jump right into it.


Canadiens Prospect Power Rankings Week 12

 

1. Riley Kidney, Centre, Gatineau Olympiques (QMJHL). Drafted: 63rd overall (2021), Age: 19

Points This Week: 2 GP, 2 G, 4 A. Season Totals: 38 GP, 18 G, 46 A, 64 PTS.

Previous Ranking: 2nd (+1)

Sean Farrell and Lane Hutson had great weeks, and we’ll get to those two shortly, but as it stands, there’s no denying Riley Kidney is the hottest Canadiens prospect.

With a six-point week in the books, Kidney vaults to first overall on our list for the first time this season, and not only because he earned his fifth and sixth multi-point games since his trade to the Gatineau Olympiques.

In just seven games with his new team, Kidney has scored an impressive four goals and 15 assists, and that includes his first game, in which he was held scoreless.

To put his ridiculous production in context, his two-point game against Val D’Or Foreurs actually worsened his points-per-game pace with the Olympiques (2.71).

He’s also getting style points, scoring on high-difficulty plays which should translate to the professional ranks, or, at the very least, is an encouraging sign when it comes to his eventual transition to the AHL or NHL.

 

2. Sean Farrell,  C/LW, Harvard University (NCAA). Drafted: 124th overall (2020), Age: 21

Points This Week: 2 GP, 2 G, 2 A  Season Totals: 19 GP, 12 G, 17 A, 29 PTS.

Previous Ranking: 1st (-1)

You could argue Hutson and Farrell both deserve the second spot this week. You could even argue they both deserve the top spot on the list.

Consider it a three-way tie if it makes it easier to digest because Kidney, Farrell, and Hutson all enjoyed fantastic results.

With another two goals and two assists to his credit, Farrell pushed his points-per-game pace to 1.53, one of the best scoring rates in the NCAA.

Four of his 12 goals this season have been of game-winning variety, and he’s featured on 35 percent of the Harvard Crimson’s scoring plays this season.

Despite spending an extra year in the USHL, at 21 years old, Farrell was expected to dominate the NCAA this season.

And that’s exactly what he’s doing.

Schedule permitting, there’s a strong possibility he finishes his season in the NHL with the Canadiens.

In the meantime, Farrell was one of the three Habs prospects nominated for the Hobey Baker Award, given to the NCAA’s top player.

 

3. Lane Hutson, Defenceman, Boston University (NCAA). Drafted: 62nd overall (2022) Age: 18

Points This Week:  2GP, 1 G, 4 A. Season Totals: 22 GP, 9 G, 18 A, 27 PTS.

Previous Ranking: 5th (+2)

Again, it feels ridiculous to have Hutson ranked third, even though he’s coming off a five-point week that only included two games.

If not for his slight drop last week, he’d likely be in first place. His ranking is simply an encouraging statement regarding the depth of the organization’s prospect pool.

READ MORE: Lane Hutson Is A Very Special Player

Hutson is the Canadiens prospect with the most potential, and the mere fact that he’s competing with much older players is worth celebrating.

While on the topic of celebrating, Hutson was also named the Big Hockey East Rookie of the Week for the third time this season, and, unsurprisingly, joined Farrell among the Hobey Baker nominees.

 

4. Joshua Roy, Right Wing, Sherbrooke Phoenix (QMJHL). Drafted: 150th overall (2021), Age: 19

Points This Week: 2 GP, 2 G, 0 A  Season Totals: 31 GP, 31 G, 30 A, 53 PTS.

Previous Ranking: 4th (unchanged)

When it comes to evaluating Roy’s progress, it’s more a matter of intensity than production. We all know he can produce, and when the pressure’s on he finds another gear.

Roy kept up his scoring ways this week, but more importantly, he was hard on the puck and displayed the same type of ferocious forecheck that led to his success alongside Connor Bedard at the 2023 World Junior Championship.

The Phoenix are one of the best teams in Canada and will count upon Roy to find that next level as they gear up for a potential Memorial Cup run.

 

5. Owen Beck, Centre, Peterborough Petes (OHL). Drafted: 32nd overall (2022), Age: 18

Last Week: 3 GP, 1 G, 1 A  Season Totals: 36 GP, 19 G, 24 A, 43 PTS

Previous Ranking: 4th (-1)

Beck has taken a little more time than anticipated to acclimatize to his new team.

He’s endured a rather steep drop-off in production since joining the Peterborough Petes, earning three points in his first six games. He’s even seen a drop in his faceoff efficiency.

But it’s much too early to panic. Beck is a cerebral player and has always responded to adversity. Besides, it’s difficult to describe two goals and an assist in six games as adversity.

In all likelihood, this is but a blip on the production radar.

His shot rate has taken the biggest hit, but more shooting opportunities should arise as he familiarizes himself with his new teammates.

 

6. Jared Davidson, Centre, Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL). Drafted: 130th overall. Age: 20

Points This Week: 2 GP, 2 G, 0 A. Season Totals: 37 GP, 23 G, 33 A, 56 PTS.

Previous Ranking: 6th

It will be difficult for Davidson to crack the top 5 as a 20-year-old Canadiens prospect playing in the CHL, but it’s also impossible to ignore his fantastic production.

If not for Kidney, Davidson would lead all prospects in the organization in terms of raw points, and currently trails only Roy and Kidney in points per game (1.51).

The question remains whether his skillset will translate to the NHL.

The jury is still out when it comes to his skating, but he has shown flashes of NHL-level talent on several occasions this season.

7. Adam Engstrom, Defenceman. Rogle BK Angelholm (SHL). Drafted: 92nd overall (2022), Age: 19

Points This Week: 2 GP, 0 G, 1 A Season Totals: 27 GP, 4 G, 3 A, 7 PTS.

Previous Rank: 8th (+1)

It’s difficult to maintain the same level of analysis for Engstrom as we do for the majority of the players in the Canadiens prospect pool.

For the most part, I rely on reports from local experts.

Engstrom earned an assist during Rogle’s 6-2 loss to Malmo, and by all accounts, continues to play well in a professional hockey league against much more experienced competition.

There’s not much to dislike when it comes to this silky skater.

 

8. Logan Mailloux, Defenceman, London Knights (OHL). Drafted: 31st overall (2021), Age: 19

Points This Week: 2 GP, 0 G, 3 A. Season Totals: 33 GP, 13 G, 18 A, 31 PTS.

Previous Ranking: 9th (+1)

Mailloux had yet another multi-point effort, earning three assists against Cedrick Guindon and the Owen Sound Attack.

It was a good game from an offensive standpoint, but not his greatest performance in his own zone, as the first-round pick struggled to quickly retrieve pucks in his own zone, leading to a few sustained offensive shifts for his opponents.

But as has been the case throughout the year, Mailloux showed flashes of excellence, sometimes on those very same shifts that exposed some of his defensive weaknesses, as evidenced by the first clip in the video below.

He continues his slow, but steady development and has likely cemented his spot in the top 10 for the rest of the season.

 

9. Jakub Dobes, Goaltender, Ohio State (NCAA), Drafted: 

Stats This Week: 2 GP, 1 Win,  0.935 SV%.  Season Totals: 16-9-1, 0.921 SV%, 3 SO.

Previous Ranking: 10th (+1)

Following a disappointing 4-0 loss to Wisconsin, the 6’4″ sophomore responded in a classic Dobeshian manner, earning a 27-save shutout against the very same team the following night, his third shutout of the season. He stood particularly tall during an early 5-on-3 for the Badgers.

To get a better idea of Dobes’ importance to the Ohio State Buckeyes, we can simply look at his consistent usage by the team.

Dobes has played 1511 minutes for the Buckeyes, whereas Ryan Snowden and Reilly Herbst have played a grand total of 37 minutes combined.

 

 

10. Filip Mesar, Right Wing, Kitchener Rangers (OHL). Drafted: 26th overall (2022). Age: 18

Points This Week: 3 GP, 0 G, 1 A Season Totals: 25 GP, 10 G, 15 A, 25 PTS.

Previous Ranking: 7th (-3)

Like Beck, it’s much too early to panic when it comes to Mesar’s recent production lull.

Both players are 18 years old, and every single player will go through peaks and valleys at that age.

But these are the power rankings, and recent production carries a lot of value. In Mesar’s case, there’s little to no production to speak of since he returned from a very successful 2023 World Junior Championship.

MUST READ: Filip Mesar On World Juniors, Habs Development Team

On the bright side, he was named one of the most difficult opponents to play against in the CHL, joining former Canadiens prospects Arber Xhekaj and Kaiden Guhle.


Best Of The Rest

11. Cedrick Guindon (+1 ) 11. Oliver Kapanen (-1).  13. Anthony Richard (unchanged), 14. Emil Heineman (+1). 15. Joel Teasdale (new)


Reminder: 

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.

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

Week 5: Prospects Heating Up Ahead Of WJC

Week 6: Sean Farrell’s Impressive Scoring

Week 7: Filip Mesar Shines

Week 8: Owen Beck Takes Over First Place

Week 9: Filip Mesar Makes A Big Jump

Week 10: The Jakub Dobes Show

Week 11: New Reigning Champion

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Billy739

Farrell over Kidney for one important reason
Kidney is top 10 in QMJHL but not CHL leading all Canadian Development players.
Farrell is top in NCAA and overall in the US Develeopment systems players

While Kidney is good for his league he doesnt accomplish much outside of it.
Farrell on the other hand is a leader on any team he plays for.

I get why you did it but you have to look at more then just points.
You have to look at the level of competition they’re facing

Billy739

Dichow should also get some love.
Despite some undersireble numbers at first glance.
He’s part of the leagues 3rd best SHL tandem on the 4th best team.
Playing behind one of the most experienced career SHL goalie.

Despite some better numbers personally their win/loss rates seperated by 2 OT Loss’s that Johansson has over Dichow. While he takes longer to settle in once he does he’s just as capable of pulling out a win as any SHL Goaltender. His biggest weakness this year is it takes 3 goals for him to settle in and deny all comer’s .(to be expected in a rookie playing in a tandem at the level he is especially at 6’6 and age 21 .)

He’s our next best shot at a REAL Starter .
Dobes is Primeau but hasnt hit the same Heights Primeau did and is taking longer to do less. He’s a fine AHL Starter option or NHL fringe back up but isnt built to be an NHL starter based on his Endurance alone (its just to much to overcome going from planning games around Weekends and Holidays versus the rest of the world where early on you adjust to the long haul playing /training for 10-11 months a year)

Dichow is the one being Groomed to be a starter.
Getting to play the equivelant to a Taxi Squad guy during the Pandemic helped expose him to a level of Training he wouldnt have had in Denmark’s Pro League where he was until the Pandemic gave him his break Way earlier then he was projected. He is on his 3rd system in 3 years and with Lars Johanson’s return from the KHL is Dichow not Aarsund who has claimed that back up spot.

While on Paper they seem less favorable.
Johanson offers more a versitile and overall a solid Hybrid like Jusi Saro’s
Dichow like Dryden is a stand up goalie who will sometimes just stay on his knee’s to deal with the higher skilled opponents relying on his massive frame. They’ve come a long way in molding his style more into a Hybrid style pushing the limits of his conditioning early on in his career.

By age 21 he went from a Goalie in the Danish League to one of the top tandem goalies in his rookie year on basically the NHL’s European Equivelant on MTL’s European equivelant . All this during a Pandemic in which most people’s development took a hit

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