The Top 25 Under 25 is a collaboration by members of the Mile High Hockey community. Eight writers have ranked players under the age of 25 as of July 1, 2021 in the Colorado Avalanche organization. Each participant used their own metric of current ability and production against future projection to rank each player. Now, we’ll count down each of the 25 players ranked.
When the Colorado Avalanche selected Jean-Luc Foudy with the 75th overall selection in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft, it was expected that it would be a while before we saw him at the professional level. One of the younger players in the draft and still with a lot of physical maturing to do, Foudy was seen as a long-term project that might one day be able to provide depth to the organization’s forward depth chart.
“Speed defines his game and it’s speed that is incredibly disruptive and unsettling to opponents. Creates turnovers, backs up defenders to create space and make teams uncomfortable. A catalyst.” TSN draft analyst, Craig Button describes his game in his draft year.
Jean-Luc Foudy spent last season in the AHL on an amateur tryout (ATO) contract due to the cancellation of the OHL season. During his time with the Eagles, Foudy showed why the team was ecstatic to have him drop to them in the third round of the draft. Playing as one of the youngest players in the league, Foudy ended the season with 14 points in 34 games, while showing that he has the type of speed to play in the Avalanche system. It was a brief preview of big things to come for Foudy as a professional hockey player.
Surprising many, Foudy didn’t look out of place in the AHL. His elite level skating, playmaking and ability to play at speed, all shined through. That is something the Avalanche have been coveting in their prospects. Elite skating and ability to play with it.
“When you step back and look at it, he’s an 18 year old kid. He’s playing against men that probably played in the NHL for a certain amount of time.” Greg Cronin, Eagles head coach said about Foudy.
When the Eagles season ended, the Avalanche awarded Foudy with his ELC in May after his impressive first season with the Eagles. Foudy will have a chance to again impress coach Cronin, by suiting up for the Eagles this fall. With the CHL and NHL coming to an agreement to let junior players who played more than 20 game in the AHL, return to the AHL for this coming season, instead of returning to juniors. Foudy will be one of these players, which is excellent for his development. As one of the few natural centers in the Avalanches development system, it isn’t a stretch to think, if Foudy plays well enough, he might get a look later on in the year. His skating is pro ready, if he can add some muscle to his frame, shot the puck more from the slot, and round out his defensive game, I would be bet he gets a look.
#12 Justus Annunen
#13: Oskar Olausson
#14: Shane Bowers
#15: Drew Helleson
#16: Sean Behrens
#17: Mikhail Maltsev
#18: Alex Beaucage
#19: Trent Miner
#20: Colby Ambrosio
#21: Dennis Gilbert
#22: Daniil Zhuravlyov
#23: Tyler Weiss
#24: Nikolai Kovalenko
#25: Nick Henry