Over the last few weeks, The Win Column has been ranking and profiling what we believe to be the Calgary Flames best prospects leading up to the 2022 NHL Draft.
With the release of our number one prospect profile today, it’s time we take a look back at the complete list of prospects in 2022, see how they compared to last year’s ranking, and take a deeper look at some of the individual rankings.
2022 Calgary Flames Prospect Rankings
As most predicted throughout the rankings over the last few weeks, Dustin Wolf was the consensus number one ranked prospect. He was ranked first in seven of our eight rankings, and was able to improve upon his top three ranking from last year.
For a seventh-round pick, Wolf has defied all of the odds so far in his career to make his mark on the development path. Although it will be at least another year or more before he can make the jump to the NHL, the Flames must be happy with what they see so far.
Many would be quick to jump to the Flames and goalie prospect history, with Tyler Parsons being the most recent candidate, but Wolf has done everything to prove that trend wrong so far.
Jakob Pelletier remained in the number two overall spot for 2022’s rankings, with him earning the other first place vote out of the eight ranking lists. No change year over year isn’t a bad thing for Pelletier, who has established himself as the best forward prospect in the organization. This could be the year he jumps into the NHL, but if not he will be feasting on the AHL competition.
Rounding out the top three is 2021 first-round pick Matthew Coronato. His first appearance on our list comes as the consensus number three ranked prospect. All eight prospect lists had Coronato ranked as the number three man, with his offensive upside just too tantalizing to ignore. There is a chance he can go even higher next year once the fans and team are able to see a bit more of him play. Regardless, he’s the small scoring winger that the fans can latch onto should another one leave the organization.
After the third spot, the rest of the lists start to vary significantly. Most Of the team had a combination of Adam Ruzicka, Matthew Phillips, and Connor Mackey in the fourth to sixth positions. As the lists moved down, the prospects started to vary even further.
In terms of the biggest moves from 2021, there was none more significant than Connor Zary. The number one ranked prospect from last year fell to the ninth spot in 2022. A significant move that caused a lot of chatter when released. Zary, who was the sixth ranked prospect on my personal list, often found himself in the eighth to eleventh spot, which means he could have been even further down the list than he ended up. My personal opinion is that it’s far too early to give up on him after a tough season, but it’s completely valid to not be as high on him as the team once was in 2020.
On a more positive note, Adam Ruzicka completely catapulted up many of the lists compared to 2021. Ranked eleventh last year, Ruzicka made his way all the way up to fourth overall in 2022. After showing he has the skills to play in the NHL, this certainly impacted the way he is viewed compared to other prospects. He is absolutely the number one candidate to earn a full time NHL spot this coming season, and his ranking jump reflects that.
In terms of prospects that were in last year’s top 15 that did not make an appearance this year there were a few for varying reasons.
- Ryan Francis, who was ranked seventh last year, was not given a contract by the Flames this offseason. Coming off of a Memorial Cup Championship, you wonder if the Flames might circle back and make an offer. The noise out of Stockton appeared to be more along the lines of the team not loving what they saw at the professional level, therefore since he was not a member of the organization at the time of ranking he was not included.
- Same can be said for Johannes Kinnvall, who was eighth last year and similarly signed overseas this summer and is no longer in the organizational depth chart
- Glenn Gawdin was the tenth ranked prospect in 2021, and earned some honorable mentions this year, but after showing little promise at the NHL level it’s no surprise he is fading out of the view of a legit NHL prospect
- Emil Heineman was ranked 14th last year, but was included in the Tyler Toffoli trade and was not considered
- Dmitry Zavgorodniy was 15th last year, but had his contract terminated by the Flames and is currently playing in the KHL
With that, the TWC 2022 Calgary Flames Prospect Rankings are complete. With the Flames holding just a few picks in this year’s draft, the list may see just a few additions next year, but it’s bound to change drastically based on historical performance.
Individual Ranking Lists
|1||Dustin Wolf||Dustin Wolf||Jakob Pelletier||Dustin Wolf||Dustin Wolf||Dustin Wolf||Dustin Wolf||Dustin Wolf|
|2||Jakob Pelletier||Jakob Pelletier||Dustin Wolf||Jakob Pelletier||Jakob Pelletier||Jakob Pelletier||Jakob Pelletier||Jakob Pelletier|
|3||Matthew Coronato||Matthew Coronato||Matthew Coronato||Matthew Coronato||Matthew Coronato||Matthew Coronato||Matthew Coronato||Matthew Coronato|
|4||Adam Ruzicka||Connor Mackey||Adam Ruzicka||Matthew Phillips||Connor Mackey||Matthew Phillips||Adam Ruzicka||Adam Ruzicka|
|5||Matthew Phillips||Matthew Phillips||Connor Mackey||Adam Ruzicka||Matthew Phillips||Adam Ruzicka||Matthew Phillips||Connor Mackey|
|6||Connor Mackey||Adam Ruzicka||Connor Zary||Connor Mackey||Adam Ruzicka||Connor Mackey||Connor Mackey||Matthew Phillips|
|7||Jérémie Poirier||Rory Kerins||Matthew Phillips||Rory Kerins||Jérémie Poirier||Rory Kerins||Jérémie Poirier||Connor Zary|
|8||Yan Kuznetsov||Jérémie Poirier||Jérémie Poirier||Jérémie Poirier||Rory Kerins||Jérémie Poirier||Connor Zary||Jérémie Poirier|
|9||Rory Kerins||Yan Kuznetsov||Yan Kuznetsov||Connor Zary||Connor Zary||Connor Zary||Rory Kerins||Rory Kerins|
|10||Connor Zary||Jack Beck||Rory Kerins||Yan Kuznetsov||Yan Kuznetsov||Yan Kuznetsov||Jack Beck||Yan Kuznetsov|
|11||Jack Beck||Connor Zary||Jack Beck||Arseni Sergeev||Jack Beck||Arseni Sergeev||Yan Kuznetsov||Arseni Sergeev|
|12||Ilya Nikolayev||Ilya Nikolayev||Ilya Nikolayev||Jack Beck||Arseni Sergeev||Jack Beck||Arseni Sergeev||Jack Beck|
|13||Arseni Sergeev||Arseni Sergeev||Mathias Emilio Pettersen||Ilya Nikolayev||Ilya Nikolayev||Ilya Nikolayev||Mathias Emilio Pettersen||Ilya Nikolayev|
|14||Martin Pospisil||Mathias Emilio Pettersen||Arseni Sergeev||Martin Pospisil||Justin Kirkland||Glenn Gawdin||Ilya Nikolayev||Martin Pospisil|
|15||Justin Kirkland||Justin Kirkland||Martin Pospisil||Justin Kirkland||Mathias Emilio Pettersen||Mathias Emilio Pettersen||William Stromgren||William Stromgren|
|Glen Gawdin||Mathias Emilio Pettersen|
|–||Justin Kirkland||–||Justin Kirkland|