The Anaheim Ducks have historically done an excellent job of drafting and developing players. This has given the Ducks a sustainable pipeline of young talented prospects.
As roster players such as Teemu Selanne and Saku Koivu have retired and other players like Kyle Palmieri and Francois Beauchemin leave via trade or through free agency, there is always a prospect ready to take the roster spot.
In the salary cap era, this has allowed the Ducks to stay a competitive team and a perennial Stanley Cup contender.
Top 10 Anaheim Ducks Prospects
1. Nick Ritchie – Left Wing
Ht/Wt: 6-2/226 lbs
2015-16 team(s): San Diego (AHL), Anaheim (NHL)
Drafted tenth overall in the first round of the 2014 draft by Anaheim
Ritchie made his pro debut playing time in the AHL and the NHL playing over 30 games in each league. His offensive production in the NHL was underwhelming with four points, but his offensive game transitioned from junior to pro at the AHL level. His points will come in Anaheim as soon as this season as he is poised to make the jump to the NHL full time.
2. Shea Theodore – Defenseman
Ht/Wt: 6-2/182 lbs
2015-16 team(s): San Diego (AHL), Anaheim (AHL)
Drafted 26th overall in the first round of the 2013 draft by Anaheim Ducks.
The addition of Kevin Bieksa to the Ducks poses a problem for Shea Theodore to crack the roster with Sami Vatanen, Cam Fowler, Hampus Lindholm, Simon Despres, Josh Mason and Clayton Stoner all in the fold. Trade rumors of the Ducks moving a defenceman haven’t materialized as of yet, but that won’t stop Theodore from cracking the roster by the end of the season.
3. Brandon Montour – Defenesman
Ht/Wt: 6-0/172 lbs
2015-16 team(s): San Diego (AHL)
Drafted 55th overall in the second round of the 2014 draft
After one year of college, Montour turned pro and had a monster rookie season for the Gulls scoring 57 points in 68 games and was the second highest scoring defenceman in the league as a rookie. His offensive upside is off the chart, but he needs some more time developing his overall game at the AHL level. If he can iron out the defensive warts in his game, he can be more than a PP specialist at the NHL level.
4. Max Jones – Left Wing
Ht/Wt: 6-3/201 lbs
2015-16 team(s): London Knights (OHL)
Drafted 24th overall in the first round of the 2016 draft by Anaheim
Jones was a key player to a dominant London Knights roster that steam rolled their way to a Memorial Cup Championship. He has underrated speed, pro ready size, a goal scorer’s nose for the net and is a super pest. In short, he can play the game anyway and be effective throughout a roster. He is a few years away, but will be a factor when he arrives.
5. Jacob Larsson – Defenseman
Ht/Wt: 6-2/191 lbs
2015-16 team(s): Frolunda (SHL)
Drafted 27th overall in the first round of the 2015 draft by Anaheim
Larsson had a busy season wearing eight different jerseys from the Hlinka tournament to the WJC to the Champions League with his club team Frolunda. Larsson will play again this year in Sweden before making the transition to North America. When he does come over, he will see some playing time in the AHL, he is a few years away but has top four pairing upside.
6. Julius Nattinen – Center
Ht/Wt: 6-2/191 lbs
2015-16 team(s): Barrie Colts (OHL)
Drafted 59th overall in the second round of the 2015 draft by Anaheim
Nattinen made the jump to North America to play junior in the OHL for the Barrie Colts. He had a great year scoring 71 points in 52 games. The 19-year old won a Gold Medal with Finland as the third line center at the WJC. While his offensive production there was limited, he was a valuable defensive player. He projects as a solid third line two-way center in a few years.
7. Kalle Kossila – Center
Ht/Wt: 5-11/174 lbs
2015-16 team(s): St. Cloud State University (NCAA), San Diego (AHL)
Undrafted, signed as a free agent
The Ducks may have found a hidden gem in the undersized college pivot. Kossila wrapped up a four year college career with 54 points in 41 games before making a brief debut in the AHL. Kossila will play his first full season in the AHL, after posting four points in six games to end last season. He is a versatile player and an underrated prospect on the rise.
8. Kevin Boyle – Goaltender
Ht/Wt: 6-1/200 lbs
2015-16 team(s): UMass-Lowell (NCAA)
Undrafted, signed as a free agent.
Boyle has signed with the Ducks after a four year NCAA career. With the graduation of John Gibson, Boyle is now the Ducks top goaltending prospect. In his fourth and final season with UMass, he posted some impressive stats with a 1.83 GAA and a .934 save%. With Gibson and Bernier in Anaheim, Boyle will be given the opportunity to start in the AHL.
9. Stefan Noesen – Right Wing/Left Wing
Ht/Wt: 6-2/205 lbs
2015-16 team(s): San Diego
Drafted 21st overall in the 2011 draft by Ottawa
After two injury plagued seasons the 23-year old winger finally played a full season in the AHL scoring 32 points in 65 games. Having only played in 30 games the past two seasons his development has understandably been hindered, but he is a prospect on the rise in the Ducks system and started to show signs of the offence he displayed in junior.
10. Marcus Pettersson – Defenseman
Ht/Wt: 6-4/167 lbs
2015-16 team(s): Skelleftea (SHL)
Drafted 38th overall in the second round of the 2014 draft by Anaheim
Pettersson has a pro height but is rail thin at 167. He had a good showing for Sweden at the WJC, but struggled through his first pro season in the SHL. Pettersson needs time to bulk up and learn the pro game. The Ducks will slow cook this prospect, allowing him to develop in Sweden and then give the 20-year old some AHL seasoning before he challenges for a NHL job. He eventually projects as a middle pairing defender with puck moving ability.