Yet another Second Round player appearing on this list is forward Alexander Volkov, who was taken with the 48th pick at the 2017 NHL Entry Draft. The 23-year-old has spent the majority of the last three seasons with the Crunch. His first two seasons were eerily identical, as he recorded 23 goals in each, and improved ever so slightly with 48 points in his second campaign compared to 45 in his first. His 2019-20 season was on track for similar totals, as he had 30 points in 46 games.
The Tampa Bay Lightning clearly like what they seen from Volkov as a prospect, as he was able to make his NHL debut this past season. The Russian forward suited up for nine regular season games and was able to chip in with an assist. He also played in one Playoff game but was held pointless. Given how stacked the Lightning’s roster is, it could be tough to make the team out of Training Camp this season, but a big AHL season could go a long way in helping him earning a spot during the 2021-22 campaign.
3. Hugo Alnefelt
The Lightning are an organization that has been blessed with fantastic goalies over the years. They had Ben Bishop who is regarded as one of the NHL’s best, but traded him in 2017 to make room for who many consider the NHL’s number one goaltender in Andrei Vasilevskiy. As if having arguably the best goalie in the league weren’t enough, the Bolts have another in the pipeline who has a chance to be great in Hugo Alnefelt.
The 19-year-old was selected by Tampa in the Third Round (No.71 overall) at the 2019 NHL Entry Draft. After being drafted, he played for HV71 Jopping in the SHL as an 18-year-old which is not at all common, and is back with them again this season.
Bolts fans were able to watch him just days ago compete for Team Sweden at the 2021 World Juniors, which marked his second straight year participating. While he didn’t play his best hockey, it is a short tournament and not indicative of him as a player. He is an extremely promising prospect and Lightning fans should be excited at having another high-end goalie in the pipeline.