NHL Prospects to Watch | Metropolitan Division – FanRag Sports (blog)

No matter where they end up — playing for the team that drafted them, traded to acquire a win-now asset, or left out in the cold because they didn’t work out — prospects represent the future of an NHL organization.

We’re highlighting a prospect to watch during the 2017-18 season for each team, and the first division up is the Metropolitan.

Carolina Hurricanes — Haydn Fleury

The Hurricanes going young on defense? You don’t say.

Of the options, and there are several, Haydn Fleury seems most ready to join Carolina’s young blue line this season. Ron Hainsey’s departure opens up a spot, and Fleury put together a solid season with the Charlotte Checkers last year. He’s not lights-out offensively, but Fleury is solid in his own end, making him an excellent fit to fill Hainsey’s spot — perhaps even a better one than his predecessor.

Columbus Blue Jackets — Pierre-Luc Dubois

The Blue Jackets took a lot of heat for drafting Dubois where they did, and for good reason given players who were left on the board at the time. Since his draft, however, Dubois has developed into a very different player, and even many of his detractors are of the mind he’s ready to snag a spot on an NHL roster.

Dubois making the NHL later than many of his peers from the 2015 draft doesn’t matter. What does matter is the player the Blue Jackets see when Dubois gets there, and after this year’s development camp, all signs point to that player being a strong, two-way power forward who can easily slot into the lineup.

New Jersey Devils — Blake Speers

Everyone knows to watch Nico Hischier — who should make the Devils’ roster—next season. There’s another prospect, however, who’s worth the time

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