We are deep in the summer, and deep in our favorite time of year: list season. Well, maybe favorite is a bit of an overstatement. The lists don’t usually wind up being things that we love, but rather vehicles for us to get Mad Online. And maybe that’s what we love. I don’t know. I don’t know your life.
Anyway, we got a new list today! A ranking earlier this month had the Flyers with the second best farm system in the league, and it seems we have a rebuttal. Corey Pronman over at The Athletic’s been working through his ranking of NHL farm systems over the past few weeks, and today was the Flyers’ day! He ranked the system, and the prospects in the system, and...well... it’s a lot. And we’re here with some reactions.
Before we get into that, if you haven’t seen the list, or just need a refresher, you can take a look here.
Okay now to the feelings.
Maddie: So. There’s a lot to dissect here, folks. But the Flyers now have the 12th best farm system in the league, we are told. Initial thoughts?
Kyle: I believe it’s a fair ranking for the team, but the individual rankings are a bit questionable.
Maddie: I have mixed feelings. I can kind of see it. But the drop from first (from last summer) to twelfth with just the departure of Nolan Patrick and Travis Sanheim feels a little sharp to me. It feels a little low. I don’t know.
Kyle: Yeah I think there’s maybe a few prospects that are a bit underrated that drag the ranking down. Sure, they lost some top talent but the drop does seem a bit much.
Kurt: It’s important to note that the reason Pronman ranked the Flyers where they are is because he personally hates the Flyers’ organization as well as their fans.
Kelly: People forget that, Kurt.
Maddie: Seems legit.
Jay: I can see being low on Wade Allison, but I can’t forgive ranking him below a goalie who hasn’t played in a year and happened to have multiple knees surgeries. It’s inexcusable and disingenuous.
Kyle: I agree wholeheartedly with Jay. That one made no sense.
Kelly: Yeah if anything stuck out to me it was this. Someone (I think Charlie) mentioned that Pronman was extremely low on Allison in his draft year but like...still dude. He’s played incredibly well in college. Reassess.
Jay: Nope. And for someone notoriously lower on goalies than others, it makes it even more glaring.
Kyle: The Hart ranking being a perfect example of this. Especially when Allison was at a PPG pace before his injury, well on his way to being at the very least top 10 in Division 1 scoring.
Brad: Speaking of Hart, I don’t like how one of the negatives used is that he “doesn’t have an explosive element to his game.” Like, If a goalie is always making huge explosive saves, he’s likely out of position way too much.
Maddie: Yeah, it seems like kind of a strange defense.
Brad: And as far as him being put into the “legit NHL prospect” tier, I get that goalies are hard to predict, but I really feel that he should be bumped up a tier. One higher, the “very good” tier, says “projects as a starting goaltender” and well, that’s what he projects as. Doesn’t mean it’s a guarantee of course, but he certainly projects to be one.
Anyway, Carter Hart Defense Squad signing off.
Maddie: On the flip side, I was surprised by how high a couple of guys were ranked. Matthew Strome, Olle Lycksell, and Wyatt Kalynuk at 11, 12, and 13, respectively. I’m a big Lycksell fan, so I like that one, personally, but those were all kind of surprising.
Kyle: Seeing Noah Cates at 10 was probably the biggest surprise for me in terms of unexpected names near the top. He was impressive at the WJSS though, so this is nice to see.
Kelly: Given how far the Flyers dropped in his ranking, I’m interested to see how Pronman has arranged his top-10 organizations this year.
Craig: Not just Allison being below Stolarz, but also being below Pascal Laberge. Whether the rankings are being based on success to date, upside, or some sort of combination, I don’t know how Laberge is put above Allison. Besides that, I’m not too shocked with these rankings. There are a lot of minor complaints, but nothing else is really blatantly wrong to me. Like stated above and by Charlie on Twitter, the way he did these rankings didn’t bode well for how the Flyers’ prospect pool is put together.
Brad: I just have one more thought to add here. Mark Friedman was omitted entirely and I just think he should’ve at least been placed in the depth tier.
Craig:...Alright, I lied. That’s another thing I have a problem with. Especially when guys like Wyatt Kalynuk and Adam Ginning have a chance.
Maddie: That one feels pretty glaring. I get that he didn’t have a stellar first season in the AHL, but omitted while a college guy and brand new draftee make this list? Kind of hard for me to wrap my head around.
Brad: I can accept Ginning being there, I guess, but Kalynuk surprised me for sure. I’ll probably pay closer attention to him moving forward because of where Corey ranked him.
Maddie: Yeah, that’s an interesting flip side. I guess it’s easy to rip on the list, but we should probably also give some weight to who Pronman’s excited about. It’s not nothing.