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New York Islanders: Top 5 NHL Ready Prospects

By Matthew Collins
Jun 26, 2015; Sunrise, FL, USA; Mathew Barzal poses with team executives after being selected as the number sixteen overall pick to the New York Islanders in the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft at BB&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 26, 2015; Sunrise, FL, USA; Mathew Barzal poses with team executives after being selected as the number sixteen overall pick to the New York Islanders in the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft at BB&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports /
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Jan 7, 2016; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Adam Pelech (50) controls the puck against Washington Capitals right wing Stanislav Galiev (49) during the third period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 7, 2016; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Adam Pelech (50) controls the puck against Washington Capitals right wing Stanislav Galiev (49) during the third period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports /

. . Defenseman. Adam Pelech. 4. 106

Adam Pelech was drafted 65th overall in 2012 by the Isles and has evolved into a promising prospect. At 6’3″ and 210 lbs, he would provide the Islanders with plenty of size in their own zone.

The 21-year-old has been praised for his positional play and leadership, as well as his developing puck-moving abilities. He clearly is the second best defenseman and the best two-way defenseman the prospect pool has to offer.

Even more enticing is that Pelech surprised many with his solid stint in the pros, where he was handed the lead role of replacing an injured Johnny Boychuk. The young buck was able to log big minutes in Boychuk’s place and did so with effective defensive prowess.

One area of concern is his lack of offensive production in both the AHL and NHL. He was able to produce in the OHL towards the tail end of his junior career, but that hasn’t transferred over to the more advanced leagues.

The Islanders may want his offensive skills to develop more in the lower leagues before he takes on a bigger role. Because of this, the Isles may stuff him in the AHL and call him up once in a blue moon to replace an injured player.

But with that being said, the Islanders still haven’t replaced Zidlicky or Strait, meaning there is an open defensive spot as well as a few availabilities in the reserves. If it remains like this there is a strong probability that Pelech will see plenty playing time next year.

Next: Scott Mayfield

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