Ryan Kennedy

Ryan Kennedy is the associate senior writer and draft/prospect expert at The Hockey News. He has been with the publication since 2005 and in that span, Don Cherry, Lil Jon and The Rock have all called his house. He lives in Toronto with his wife and kids where he listens to loud music and collects NCAA pennants.

Rimouski clinches second spot in the Memorial Cup field

Rimouski's Samuel Morin (Photo by Francois Laplante/FreestylePhoto/Getty Images)

One of the most vexing problems regarding the Memorial Cup is that the host teams haven’t been earning their spots lately. London, Shawinigan and Saskatoon all “backed in” to the CHL classic after bombing out early in their respective league playoffs.

So here’s a shout-out to the Quebec League, which already has its two bids sewn up this year thanks to a couple of elite teams who did what they were supposed to do.

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Detroit should worry about Steven Stamkos’ cold snap

Ryan Kennedy
Steven Stamkos (Scott Audette/NHLI via Getty Images)

Is there anything less predictable than a Game 7 in hockey? Sometimes you get classics, sometimes you get blowouts, but it’s very hard to figure out in advance what might transpire. I’m guessing there’s at least a bit of trepidation in Detroit right now as fans of the Red Wings prepare to watch their boys take on Tampa Bay without the services of top defenseman Niklas Kronwall.

But there’s another reason to be on guard if you’re Detroit and it involves Lightning captain Steven Stamkos. Because the prodigious sniper has not scored yet in this series – and the Wings will be sunk if tonight’s the night he gets off the Schneid.

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Prospect Hot List: Jack Eichel suiting up for Team USA again

Jack Eichel

Once again, Team USA has won the world under-18s thanks to a roster made up almost entirely of NTDP kids. Though one interesting takeaway from the tourney was goaltending. The Americans went with underager Evan Sarthou of WHL Tri-City, while Canada had a tandem of underagers in Moose Jaw’s Zach Sawchenko and Saginaw’s Evan Cormier. Sure, 2015 looks like a thin goalie draft, but this was a pretty interesting trend. With that point behind us, let’s look at some of the other prospects making noise in the hockey world right now.

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How fast can the Vancouver Canucks re-tool for the future?

Ryan Kennedy
Vancouver's Bo Horvat (Photo by Gerry Thomas/NHLI via Getty Images)

If Vancouver’s first-round series loss to underdog Calgary proved anything, it’s that the Canucks have some work to do if they hope to return to the upper echelons of the Western Conference. As is stands now, the franchise is in a bit of limbo, since the Canucks have a nice development pipeline going, but a lot of contracts already spoken for as well. So how fast can they re-tool?

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Fan favorite Paul Bissonnette & the AHL’s Manchester Monarchs hope to leave on top in final season

Ryan Kennedy
Paul Bissonnette (Photo By Fred Kfoury)

The Manchester Monarchs were one of the top teams in the American League this season and witnessing their Game 1 dismantling of Portland in the playoffs, it’s not hard to see why. But if you want to see the Monarchs flying next year, you’ll have to switch coasts and head out to California, when they become the Ontario Reign.

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Connor McDavid and Darnell Nurse ready for OHL playoff showdown

Ryan Kennedy
Darnell Nurse (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The Erie Otters and Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds have been on a collision course all season long in the Ontario League; they were certainly the favorites to meet in the Western Conference final and sure enough, the showdown is now upon us.

But thanks to the luck of the lottery balls, the series has one more subplot added into the mix: top Edmonton Oilers defense prospect Darnell Nurse will now be tasked with shutting down his potential teammate in the NHL next year – Connor McDavid.

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