While the Seattle Kraken‘s prospect pool may be small, there are three players who will be competing in the Canadian Hockey League (CHL) playoffs this year. Two will be from Ontario Hockey League (OHL) teams while the other comes from the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL). Here is a breakdown of the three prospects.
Tye Kartye – Soo Greyhounds
After a strong season in the OHL, the Seattle Kraken signed Ty Kartye to an entry-level deal on Mar. 1, 2022. The 20-year-old registered 79 points in 63 games while finishing 20th in the league in scoring. This included 16 points in his final 10 games to help the Greyhounds clinch the fourth seed in the playoffs.
Kartye will be relied upon heavily as the Greyhounds’ opponents, the Guelph Storm, were the strongest defensive team in the OHL’s Eastern Conference this season. Led by Anaheim Ducks 2021 third-round pick Sasha Pastujov and Vegas Golden Knights 2021 second-round pick Daniil Chayka, this Guelph team will be a tough out in the first round. The Seattle Kraken prospect will be relied upon heavily to provide offence, especially on the power play where he led the OHL in power-play goals with 23 to help the Greyhounds make it to the second round.
Ryan Winterton – Hamilton Bulldogs
Since returning from a serious injury that cost him almost his season, Ryan Winterton has been on fire putting up 46 points in 37 games for the Hamilton Bulldogs. Selected in the third round of the 2021 Entry Draft by the Kraken, he will be a key player for them while playing alongside Anaheim Ducks 2021 first-round draft pick Mason McTavish.
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The Bulldogs were the best team in the entire OHL and it is easy to see why. They come into the playoffs having won 14 of their past 15 games and ended up finishing the season with 51 wins. They were also the only team in the entire league to claim over 100 points with a whopping 107 in 68 games. They will be matched up against the Peterborough Petes in the first round who also have some stars in New Jersey Devils’ 2021 first-round pick Chase Stillman and overage Emmett Sproule. Expect Winterton to have a big series and playoffs as Hamilton looks to win their second J. Ross Robertson Cup in franchise history.
Jacob Melanson – Acadie-Bathurst Titan
The QMJHL still has a few games to go before the playoffs but it is confirmed that Jacob Melanson and the Acadie-Bathurst Titan will be in the playoffs. The team looks like it will finish fourth in the Eastern Conference with the most likely challenger being the Rimouski Océanic. With just six games remaining, the Kraken’s 2021 fifth-round pick is projected to be over a point-per-game player this season registering 54 points in 51 games.
Melanson is currently ranked third in points on the team while ranked second in goals with 34. He has been fantastic on special teams all season as he not only leads the Titans with 15 power-play goals but is also tied for the QMJHL league lead in shorthanded goals with five. Lastly, he makes his shots count as 115 of his 198 have been designated as dangerous shots by the league statisticians. He is making an impact and will be a major contributor as the Titans seek out their third President’s Cup.
More Than Three Prospects Kraken Fans Should Be Watching
The CHL Playoffs offer Kraken fans not just the opportunity to cheer on their own prospects, but also get a glimpse of players that may be available in the 2022 NHL Draft. Whether it is Shayne Wright who is expected to go first overall or a player like Fraser Minten who the Kraken could pick up in the later rounds, there is a lot of scouting that can be done from coast to coast. They get going on Apr. 21, 2022, with tons of action leading up to the Memorial Cup in St. John’s, New Brunswick at the end of June.