Though their postseason streak is over, with a strong core of prospects, the Anaheim Ducks future is bright. Let’s take a look at their top 10 prospects after the 2019 NHL Draft.
The Anaheim Ducks are getting younger. After it became obvious they wouldn’t make the postseason last year, they started calling up younger players. The results weren’t very pretty, but their prospects gained some valuable experience. To top it all off, former San Diego Gulls head coach Dallas Eakins will now be coaching the Ducks.
They have quietly assembled a pretty deep prospect pool, even with several members from last year’s top 10 prospects either graduating or being on the verge of graduating.
More from Puck Prose
- Philadelphia Flyers: Late March prospect report and update
- 2020 NHL Draft prospect profile: William Wallinder scouting report
- Arizona Coyotes rumors: John Chayka talking to Taylor Hall’s agent
- Calgary Flames: Top 3 questions that remain to be answered in 2020
- New Jersey Devils: What P.K. Subban’s New Game Show Means For Fans
Before I list their top 10 prospects, let me define what a “prospect” is. Everyone has different definitions, but mine is simple – anyone who is under 25 years old and has yet to play in a full NHL season is a prospect.
These rankings are purely my opinion and are based on NHL readiness, how great a prospect can be, and what their floor is. The Ducks seem ready to pass the torch from their older core, led by the timeless Ryan Getzlaf, onto their younger players. Let’s take a look at who their top 10 prospects are. First, the goaltenders because they are in a special category of their own.
1. Lukas Dostal
Acquired: 2018 3rd round pick (85th overall)
- SK Horacka Slavia Trebic (Czech): 24 games played, 2.50 GAA, .915 sv%
- Ilves (Liiga): 10 games played, 1.80 GAA, .922%; 7 postseason games, 2.71 GAA, .907 sv%
- KOOVEE (Mestis): 1 game played, 2.00 GAA, .938 sv%
Lukas Dostal impressed me quite a bit last season. He had the deck stacked against him, as he played for three different professional teams. If you’ve ever been a goalie, you know how hard that is. Yet Dostal was very solid at each stop.
I’d take his rather pedestrian numbers at Trebic with a grain of salt – the team didn’t play well in front of him at all. He did quite well at Ilves, though I think he got tired in the postseason. Which, considering the season he had, that’s understandable.
Dostal is only 168 pounds, so he’ll likely have to add more to his frame. Also, his durability needs to improve. But I like his athleticism and his positioning is very sound. Last year was a huge success for him, as he took a significant step forward in his development.
Dostal’s still a project, but I think his ceiling is the highest among the Ducks young goalies right now. He’ll be playing for Ilves next season.
2. Olle Eriksson Ek
Acquired: 2017 5th round pick (153rd overall)
- BIK Karlskoga (Allsvenskan): 16 games played, 2.77 GAA, .901
The 2018-19 season was a bit of a lost one for Olle Eriksson Ek, which is never good for a goaltender. I was hoping to see him make the jump to the SHL at some point, but he never did. Eriksson Ek is very fundamentally sound, but I’m not a big fan of his athleticism. I didn’t get to watch him much last year, though, so perhaps that has changed.
According to Elite Prospects, he will be joining the San Diego Gulls in 2019-20, though they could send him back overseas.