ESPN released their top 100 NHL prospect rankings for the upcoming season. Boston has three prospects in the top 100, including the #4 overall rated prospect Charlie McAvoy. The 19-year-old Boston University prospect is the top-rated defenseman in the rankings. However the top rated BU prospect is forward Clayton Keller.
The cornerstone of the Bruins remains that reliable star defenseman. Watching the Bruins over the past couple of seasons, Zdeno Chara just isn’t the same superstar he was. Boston has needed a young defenseman to come in and take the place of Chara when he calls it quits.
Enter 19-year-old McAvoy. Boston called McAvoy up late last year who showed impact immediately. His offensive skill set coupled with his natural defensive skills gave the Bruins a needed boost heading into the playoffs. McAvoy’s natural ability allows him to step in and help the Bruins to start the 2017-2018 season. McAvoy spent last season showcasing his unique skill set at the World Juniors, BU and in the NHL.
The ESPN list includes three young Bruins prospects. In addition to McAvoy, Urho Vaakanainen ranks 75th, their first round pick this year. Jake DeBrusk ranks 88th overall as the Bruins third prospect in ESPN’s 100.
Boston didn’t make an impact in free agency or at the trade deadline this offseason. McAvoy will be their big addition from offseason activity. Boston should use McAvoy as a main defensemen to start the year. Rask needs help in front of him, and McAvoy should provide Rask some protection and improve a weaker defense.
Here is a quick glimpse of what Charlie McAvoy can provide. This 19-year-old has star potential and will be fun to watch for a long time.