Most people know that this summer could be a rocky one for the Carolina Hurricanes and the players on the team resulting in a new look for the 2014-15 season, but their AHL affiliate, the Charlotte Checkers, should also be sporting a different look.
With 13 free agents on the roster, the team may be saying good-bye to the likes of Chris Terry, Zach Boychuk and Michal Jordan, but the incoming rookies should be a fun and interesting bunch to watch.
Up front, OHL stars Brock McGinn and Sergey Tolchinsky can join the team. McGinn is looked at as a future powerforward and is arguably the best prospect in the Hurricanes’ system. The 20 year old is still competing as the Guelph Storm are in the OHL finals with the North Bay Battalion.
Most people know Tolchinsky from a highlight reel goal he scored earlier this season, but he’s also scored consistently this past year after not being drafted. He finished the season with 91 points in 66 games.
Other rookie forwards include NCAA prospects Phil Di Giuseppe, who played three games with the Checkers this season, scoring one point, and Patrick Brown, who was Johnny Gaudreau’s linemate at Boston College.
Throw in Victor Rask’s possible return to the lineup, if he does not make the Canes, and that’s a group of five young players that are young and are very much a part of the Hurricanes’ future.
Last year, the Checkers added Keegan Lowe, Danny Biega and Austin Levi as rookies, but this season, they’ll likely only get two in the form of Trevor Carrick and Dennis Robertson.
Carrick, a defenseman for the Sudbury Wolves, has a booming shot and could be a power-play specialist. Robertson already joined the Checkers last season at the tail end and is know as a defensive defenseman.
But perhaps the most interesting prospect for the Canes will be in net as Daniel Altshuller could be in Charlotte next season after recording 31 wins for the Oshawa Generals and eight wins in the playoffs.
It’s possible not every player on this list makes the Checkers, but the ones that do should make for an interesting season in Charlotte.