Prospect of the Week: October 24, 2013
We continue our Prospect of the Week award, an honor (virtually) given to one Tampa Bay Lightning prospect for their recent contributions on and off the ice.
The Prospect of the Week for October 24, 2013 is … Henri Ikonen, W (Kingston Frontenacs, OHL, Canada).
We didn’t plan on having a repeat winner just five weeks into the prospect season, but Henri Ikonen give us no choice.
The Lightning’s sixth round draft choice in this past summer’s NHL Entry Draft, Ikonen had eight points in two games last week. The energetic winger had a goal and three assists on Friday night in Kitchener then added two goals and two helpers the next night in Owen Sound. He has registered a point in every game this season, and has at least two points in his last six games. Three of those six games were 4-pointers.
For the season, Ikonen has six goals and 15 assists in nine games, good enough for his team’s point lead. His 21 points are also ninth-best in the Ontario Hockey League despite playing three-to-four fewer games than those above him on the table. He is fourth in assists.
Ikonen is certainly benefiting from playing with projected 2014 first rounders Sam Bennett (10 GP, 10-10-20) and Spencer Watson (8 GP, 6-7-13) as linemates, but he’s not just along for the ride.
Mark Edwards, director of scouting for hockeyprospect.com, attended Friday’s Rangers game and sent us the following report on Ikonen:
“He played a smart game vs Kitchener recently and positioned himself well in the offensive zone. It was good for a goal and three assists as he took full advantage of his high end linemates, Watson and Bennett. The line looked good together.”
While Ikonen is having a stellar season statistically, there’s still plenty of developmental work to be done.
“[Ikonen] over handles the puck at times, which leads to needless giveaways,” Edwards said.
Kingston was ranked No. 2 in the latest Canadian Hockey League Top-10 Rankings, and the Fronts have a long season in front of them. Expect Ikonen to grab our Prospect of the Week a few more times before all is said and done on 2013-2014.
2013-2014 Prospect of the Week winners:
October 15: Nikita Kucherov, W, (Syracuse Crunch, AHL, USA).
October 8: Henri Ikonen, W, (Kingston Frontenacs, OHL, Canada).
October 1: Andrey Vasilevskiy, G, (Salavat Yulaev, KHL, Russia).
September 24: Adam Erne, W, Tampa Bay (NHL) and Quebec (QMJHL)