WJC: More top prospects, predictions
I've covered a lot of key names for Team Canada, USA, Russia and Sweden for the upcoming IIHF Under-20 World Championship, as they are the teams filled with the most talent, but here are some names to know from the remaining rosters and my predictions on how the tourney will shake out.
These notes on some top NHL prospects are based on my own observations and from discussions I've had with scouts and front office executives:
Mikael Granlund, C, Minnesota Wild: It's pretty humorous Granlund is still eligible for the U-20 level after being one of the top scorers on the World Championship stage last spring. He's been first or second in scoring in Finland's top pro league all year, an unprecedented feat at 19, and has emerged as one of hockey's top-drafted prospects, if not the best overall. His possession skills are special, as his puck skills, vision and overall hockey sense are elite and at times look unique. He's a small guy who's just an average skater, but those limitations just keep Granlund from reaching generational prospect levels.
To see the full breakdown of the other impressive NHL prospects playing in the World Junior Championship, you must be an ESPN Insider.