Kukla's Korner

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Ready For A Breakout Season

from John Kreiser of NHL.com,

Here are seven candidates for a breakout season (if not a Stamkos-like one) in 2013-14:

Dougie HamiltonBoston Bruins: As they do with most of their young players, the Bruins have been extremely patient with Hamilton, the ninth player taken in the 2011 draft. They left him in junior hockey for a season after drafting him, and then worked him into the lineup last season -- he averaged 17:07 of ice time in the 42 regular-season games he played, and he responded with five goals and 16 points. However, he was a healthy scratch for 15 of Boston's 22 Stanley Cup Playoff games. Now, with Andrew Ference gone to the Edmonton Oilers as a free agent, there's a top-four spot on defense available for Hamilton, and he showed during his limited time last season that he has the skills to fill that role.

Slava VoynovLos Angeles Kings: Voynov may be on the cusp of stardom as he enters his third NHL season. After putting up eight goals and 20 points as a rookie in 2011-12, he scored six times and finished with 25 points in 48 games last season while seeing his average ice time grow to 22:18 per game. Voynov has flown under the radar on a team with stars like Anze Kopitar up front and Drew Doughty on defense; that's not likely to be the case for much longer.

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Comments

Da lil Guy's avatar

I see two players the Sens traded. One of the players they traded for was highlighted for a potential decline in a related article.

I think Mika Zibanejad may be a player to watch as a potential breakout, particularly if you agree Conacher will have a drop off.

Posted by Da lil Guy from Guelph, Ontario on 08/15/13 at 02:16 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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