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Vote for the PensBurgh Top 25 Under 25 list

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Help us out by throwing out your ranking of the top young players in the Penguins organization for our summer 2018 list.

Toronto Maple Leafs v Pittsburgh Penguins Photo by Matt Kincaid/Getty Images

We’re trying something new this year: in the comments, vote and rank the Top 25 Under 25 for the Penguins to help us out. I’ll average the consensus of the fans, and use that as a part of our voting group, so your voice will count on the final ranking.

By my count (and I’m sure someone will let me know if I’ve forgotten), there’s 36 eligible players that are in the organization and/or have their draft rights held by Pittsburgh. This list is alphabetical — your task will be to rank 1-25.

Now, for the age old question of these lists: what is better? The known quantity with a lower ceiling like Dominik Simon? Or a more variable prospect like Kaspar Bjorkqvist or Filip Hallander? There’s no real right or wrong answer at this point, and you’re free to call it as you see it.

We’ve heard the calls that it’s tough to rank unknown prospects against NHL-caliber players, and those concerns have definite merit. However, the purpose of the “Top 25 Under 25 series,” which almost every SB Nation NHL blog runs, isn’t to be a prospect ranking. It’s to take stock of the organizational strengths of a team’s young players and to give an idea of what the future may hold. So you’ll see Connor McDavid on Copper n’ Blue’s list, you’ll see Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner on Pension Plan Puppets’, and so on. So keep that in mind too; this isn’t meant to be solely about “prospects,” it’s about all the talented players from just-drafted guys to the two-time Stanley Cup champions. Yes, there is a wildly different level of play at stake here. Such is life when talking about young hockey players.

Also remember, this is a list for 2018’s top young players. In 2013, for instance, guys like Jake Guentzel and Matt Murray were barely on the radar. They would develop into elite NHL players, but in 2013, you probably didn’t have a ton of real evidence or more than a feeling to project them as particularly valuable at the time. However, of course, fast forward a few years, and they’ve become the gold standard.

If you want to favor the potential of a young guy like Calen Addison, knock yourself out, but for a 2018 list, it’s probably unreasonable (and incorrect) at this point to list him above a proven NHL top-four defenseman like Olli Maatta, for instance. Which isn’t to say that perhaps one day Addison will be a better and more valuable player, but our perspective is tied to the year of this exercise, so that’s worth keeping in mind as well.

Top 25 List

2018 Pensburgh Top 25 Under 25 Available list
2018 Pensburgh Top 25 Under 25 Available list
Addison, Calen
Almari, Niclas
Almeida, Justin
Angello, Anthony
Aston-Reese, Zach
Bellerive, Jordy
Birks, Dane
Bjorkqvist, Kaspar
Blueger, Teddy
Dea, J-S
Di Pauli, Thomas
D'orio, Alex
Drozg, Jan
Gorman, Liam
Guentzel, Jake
Hallander, Filip
Jarry, Tristan
Johnson, Adam
Jones, Ryan
Lafferty, Sam
Lauzon, Zachary
Linderg, Tobias
Maatta, Olli
Masonius, Joe
Miletic, Sam
Murray, Matt
Olund, Linus
Palojarvi, Antti
Pavlychev, Nikita
Phillips, Clayton
Reilly, William
Riikola, Juuso
Simon, Dominik
Sprong, Daniel
Taylor, Jeff
Tiffels, Frederik

We’ll give you until the end of this week to get your entries in. Good luck and have fun with it!