It’s not often we give the American League much love around these parts (“these parts” being the Top 10, not THN). But we thought it was about time we looked at some AHLers and what they’re up to down on the proverbial farms.
We’ve got some prospects and some vets, some young guys and some old hands. Throw in a few surprises and it’s a nice mix to be sure. This is THN.com’s Top 10 AHL scorers:
The Barons left winger and 23-year-old Edmonton prospect scored six goals in one game this season, five in regulation and one in the shootout. For the season he has 13 goals and 26 points in 26 games.
Krog, 35, has 200-plus NHL games under his belt and was the AHL MVP in 2008 with 39 goals and 112 points. This season, the center is a point-per-gamer with six goals and 27 points.
At 26, Beaudoin is already a journeyman. Since finishing four years at Ohio State, he’s played with seven AHL teams, two ECHL squads and another in the Central League. This season, the Rampage right winger has 12 goals and 27 points in 25 games.
The diminutive Desharnais, 24, is a product of Chicoutimi in the Quebec League. Last season, the Bulldog led Montreal’s top affiliate in scoring and saw action in six Canadiens games. Despite seven goals and 28 points in 24 games, he might have trouble repeating as Hamilton’s top scorer this campaign.
In his seventh AHL season at age 26, Locke was the Ontario League’s leading scorer and a Canadian League first-team all-star in 2003 and 2004 with the Ottawa 67’s. The center has played in four AHL All-Star Games and is well on his way to another with seven goals and 28 points in 23 games this season.
Boychuk, 21, was taken 14th overall in the 2008 draft by Carolina. The shifty center lacks size, but makes up for it with smarts. He played 31 games with the Hurricanes last season and should get another shot this year. So far he’s racked up 10 goals and 28 points in 26 games with the Checkers.
Boychuk’s teammate also has 28 points, but gets the nod based on his 14 goals. The undrafted 23-year-old right winger is a late bloomer and has 94 goals in 235 AHL regular season contests, including 51 in his past 100 regular season games.
Pacioretty, 22, is the reason Desharnais might not win Hamilton’s scoring title this season (although expect to see Pacioretty spend some time with the big club). He has the same point totals as Desharnais and the Checkers above (14-14-28), but has played only 24 games, so he earns a Top 3 spot.
The Pittsburgh prospect has played 15 NHL games and he’s just 22 years old. He tallied 71 points in the AHL last season and, like Pacioretty, is well on his way to bettering those numbers if he stays in the development league all season, having already notched 13 goals and 30 points in 24 games.
Surprise, surprise, there’s a Bear at the top of the list. Well it is somewhat of a shocker, considering the name isn’t Keith Aucoin or Alexandre Giroux. The former has been slowed by injuries, while the latter is now in Oklahoma City. That leaves Gordon, 24, to carry the torch, which he’s managing nicely. The fourth-year right winger has 15 goals and 30 points to take top spot.
The THN.com Top 10 appears Wednesdays only on TheHockeyNews.com.
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