Anaheim Ducks are going through turbulent times. The Ducks fired head coach
Randy Carlyle and hired offensive-minded coach Bruce Boudreau. Then, there were
persistent trade rumors regarding star forward Bobby Ryan. If that was not
enough, the Ducks finished with the third worst record in the Western Conference.
Overall, it was not a illustrious season for the Anaheim Ducks and their fans.
Teemu Selanne's retirement on the horizon, the Ducks have drafted very well at
the forward position. Undoubtedly, Emerson Etem is the best prospect in the
Anaheim system. Nevertheless, general manager Bob Murray drafted another
two-way forward in the 2011 National Hockey League Entry Draft that can help
shape the Ducks in the scoring department.
Ducks, with the 30th overall pick, selected Plymouth Whalers forward Rickard
Rakell. Interestingly enough, he was selected 41st overall by the
Whalers in the Canadian Hockey League Import Draft. The Stockholm, Sweden
native played for the AIK junior program prior to crossing the pond.
first season in Plymouth, Rakell scored 19 goals and accumulated 24 assists in
49 games. His numbers increased during the 2011-2012 Ontario Hockey League
season as he scored 62 points in 60 games.
is a very well rounded player. He can play all three forward positions and is
very durable. His athleticism gives him the potential to be a top-six forward.
strong two-way game and hockey sense have helped make him a point-per-game
player in the OHL.
the World Juniors last season, Rakell was one of Sweden's go-to players and
really proved his worth as a contributor.
be returning to Plymouth for what should be his last season of junior hockey.
In two games this season, he has one assist but his numbers should pick up.
While he is still developing his frame, there
are no glaring weaknesses to Rakell's overall game. The only concern I have is
his consistency. If Rickard Rakell can maintain his pace in the scoring
department , then the Whalers should be a quality team this season.
next edition of the Prospect Preview, I will present to you Philadelphia Flyers
prospect Colin Suellentrop.
PHOTO: From NHL.com