American Hockey League (AHL)

Logan Stankoven, Brandt Clarke Highlight Robust U23 Crop Of AHL All-Stars

Logan Stankoven, Brandt Clarke Highlight Robust U23 Crop Of AHL All-Stars

The 2024 AHL All-Star Classic will include a higher number of U23 players as youngsters continue to exert their influence on the league.

Feb 4, 2024 by Chris Peters
Logan Stankoven, Brandt Clarke Highlight Robust U23 Crop Of AHL All-Stars

After the NHL celebrated its own All-Star weekend in Toronto, they’re giving way over the next 48 hours to the next wave of budding stars as the American Hockey League will hold its 2024 All-Star Classic which will include a skills competition on Sunday and a series of games among divisional all-stars Monday in San Jose, California.

TechCU Arena, home of the San Jose Barracuda, will play host to the future of the game in a series of festivities meant to showcase the best the AHL has to offer and give fans a glimpse of the guys they’ll probably see at the NHL event a few years down the line.

The 2024 All-Star weekend is loaded with young talent, which is indicative of the influence of some of the AHL’s youngest players who are making a substantial impact on the league this season. There will be 25 players participating in the game that are under 23 years of age and that doesn’t even include some of the players that had to be replaced due to injury.

Players that have a high level of success in their U21-U23 seasons in the AHL generally have a higher probability of hitting as NHL impact players. Some of these players have already gotten a taste of the NHL, while others likely will before the season is out. 

But there’s one thing that is certain – as the NHL’s prospect pool deepens across the globe, the star power in the AHL grows as it continues the tradition of being the top finishing school for many of the NHL’s best talents.

The U23 influence is plainly evident in the AHL’s scoring leaderboard as Texas Stars duo of Logan Stankoven and Mavrik Bourque currently sit first and second, respectively, in scoring. Stankoven, who was the CHL’s Player of the Year two seasons ago, leads the entire AHL with 51 points in 41 games. Bourque, meanwhile, just surpassed his rookie point total from last season with his 48th point. He had 47 last year in 29 more games than he’s played so far in 2023-24.

Meanwhile, six of the eight goalies invited to participate in the AHL All-Star festivities are still U23 players. That includes reigning AHL Goalie of the Year Dustin Wolf, who is currently second in the AHL with a .926 save percentage and appearing in his second straight All-Star Game.

As the game at the NHL level continues to get younger, it’s happening too at the AHL level. Players are arriving from their junior, college or European pro clubs as well prepared for professional hockey as they ever have, which leads to great rewards for the AHL.

AHL teams, across the board, are receiving and graduating higher quality players with regularity. It is continually improving the product of the league and the growing star power and name recognition of top prospects playing extended periods in the league attracts NHL fans to the AHL product get a glimpse of the future for their favorite teams.

There will be no better chance to see who is on the way than this weekend as AHLtv, NHL Network and TSN will present the Skills Competition and All-Star tournament on Sunday and Monday.

To help get you ready to see who is on the horizon, here are some notes on each of the U23 players selected to participate in the 2024 AHL All-Star Classic.

U23 AHL All-Stars


Mavrik Bourque, C, Texas Stars (DAL)

Having already surpassed last season’s impressive rookie point total, Bourque appears on the cusp of a call-up. He has yet to play for Dallas in the regular season, but has clearly progressed in a rapid way at the AHL level. His 48 points rank second behind teammate Logan Stankoven.

Logan Stankoven, C/W, Texas Stars (DAL)

Leading the AHL in scoring in his first professional season, Stankoven is averaging 1.24 points per game. The Dallas Stars may want to give the youngster a look soon with how he’s played, but he’s already proven that his remarkable junior career is translating into something special as a pro as well.

Brennan Othmann, LW, Hartford Wolf Pack (NYR)

A tremendous sniper at the junior level, Othmann has seen his offensive game translate smoothly to the AHL. He has 31 points in 38 games with Hartford and has already appeared in three NHL contests with the Rangers. It's looking more and more like he could be a full-time NHLer next season.

Samu Tuomaala, RW, Lehigh Valley Phantoms (PHI)

Perhaps one of the most pleasant surprises of the AHL season, Tuomaala is making his first full campaign in North America count. A gifted playmaker with excellent touch on the puck, Tuomaala has 35 points in 43 games for Lehigh Valley after he had some up-and-down seasons recently in his native Finland.

Graeme Clarke, RW, Utica Comets (NJD)

Despite his youth, this is already Clarke’s third full season in the AHL and each year he has shown progression. Making his first All-Star appearance Clarke has 34 points in 40 games for Utica and also recently earned his first NHL call-up. He's an intelligent playmaker that looks like he can fit into the highly-skilled youngsters currently with the New Jersey Devils.

Gage Goncalves, C, Syracuse Crunch (TBL)

A dynamic playmaker in the midst of the best year of his AHL career, Goncalves got his first NHL call-up last month. On pace for more than 50 assists this season, Goncalves looks like he can be the next graduate of a farm system that has helped develop a large chunk of Tampa’s core.

Jiri Kulich, C/W, Rochester Americans (BUF)

Among the most talented goal scorers outside of the NHL currently, Kulich is still just 19 years old. He captained Czechia to bronze at the most recent World Juniors and is on pace for more than 30 goals this season after scoring 24 at 18 years old last year. Kulich got called up to the Sabres earlier this year and there’s a good chance he’s going to be filling nets in Buffalo in the very near future.

Isak Rosén, C/W, Rochester Americans (BUF)

The 14th overall pick in the 2021 NHL Draft, Rosén is on pace to surpass his rookie point totals from a season ago. A solid skater with a nose for the net, Rosén is at 27 points in 37 games so far this season. He also appeared in seven games with the Sabres.

Arshdeep Bains, LW, Abbotsford Canucks (VAN)

Signed as an undrafted free agent out of the WHL two years ago, Bains is averaging nearly a point per game this season and is on pace to nearly double his point total from his rookie year with Abbotsford. A gifted scorer in junior, Bains has been a reliable source of production as a pro.

Matt Coronato, RW, Calgary Wranglers (CGY)

It looked for a bit that Coronato might just stick in the NHL as he had three points in 15 games with the Flames after starting the season with them. Calgary wisely sent the former Harvard star to the AHL to get the right kind of role and ice time and it has paid off big. Coronato is averaging better than a point per game and already has 12 goals in 30 AHL contests. His stay in the league will likely be short.

Josh Doan, C/W, Tucson Roadrunners (ARI)

Though named as an injury replacement, Doan has shown over the course of this season that there’s way more to him than a famous last name. He has 17 goals and 29 points in his first full season as a pro, continuing what has been a fairly rapid ascent since his USHL days with the Chicago Steel and his two-year run with Arizona State.

Brad Lambert, C/W, Manitoba Moose (WPG)

These last few years have certainly been a journey for Lambert, but the 20-year-old speedster is really taking a step in his first full pro season in North America. He has 28 points in 35 games and has shown an ability to use his feet and quick hands to his advantage.


Logan Mailloux, D, Laval Rocket (MTL)

Playing big minutes in his first pro season, Mailloux has been especially productive from the back end with 29 points in 43 games. He’s got skill and mobility to go along with a big frame. Montreal is letting him take his time developmentally, as they should, but the progression has been a positive one for the former London Knight.

Jack Thompson, D, Syracuse Crunch (TBL)

On pace for 50 points from the blue line in his second AHL season, Thompson has been a bit of a revelation. Defensively there is still work to do, but he has the puck a lot and makes a lot of positive plays. With 29 points this year, he’s already smashed his rookie scoring total in 30 fewer games.

Brandt Clarke, D, Ontario Reign (LAK)

The highest-drafted player participating in this All-Star Game, Clarke has proven worthy of that eighth-overall selection by Los Angeles. He’s over a point per game from the back end as a 20-year-old defenseman in his first full pro season. The hockey sense he has and his ability to make plays all over the ice should make him an effective NHLer within the next year.

Ethan Del Mastro, D, Rockford IceHogs (CHI)

With a hulking 6-foot-4, 205-pound frame, Del Mastro has surprising touch on the puck for a big man. He’s been productive as a rookie with 21 points in 41 games, but has also shown an ability to defend and protect well in his own zone. His game has been on a rapid ascent these last two years.

Shakir Mukhamadullin, D, San Jose Barracuda (SJS)

Coming off of his first NHL call-up over which he recorded his first NHL point, an assist, Mukhamadullin is hopping into this game as an injury replacement. But there’s no doubt the former Devils first-rounder, who was part of the Timo Meier trade from San Jose, has a deserved spot in this game. The big blueliner continues to round out his game and has 26 points in 41 AHL contests so far.

Olen Zellweger, D, San Diego Gulls (ANA)

The two-time WHL Defenseman of the Year, Zellweger recently got a call-up to Anaheim, but is back in time for this All-Star weekend. The 20-year-old has 26 points in 36 games so far and got into four NHL games with Anaheim, where he picked up one assist. A dynamic puck-mover, Zellweger is a significant piece of Anaheim’s future.

Ryker Evans, D, Coachella Valley Phantoms (SEA)

A second-time all-star, Evans has been outstanding in the AHL since making the jump from the WHL. Evans has split this season between the AHL and NHL, appearing in 13 games with the Seattle Kraken. Evans is a gifted puck-mover who can jump into the play and create a lot of offense. He was a point-per-game player in Coachella Valley's run to the Calder Cup Finals and has 14 points in 25 games so far this season.


Joel Blomqvist, Wilkes Barre/Scranton Penguins (PIT)

A talented netminder with sharp technique, Blomqvist’s first full pro season in North America is going quite well. He has a .922 save percentage and is among the top-15 goalies in the AHL in terms of shots faced. The 22-year-old Finnish netminder appears to be trending in a very positive direction for a team that may need to address its goaltending in the near future.

Dennis Hildeby, Toronto Marlies (TOR)

The massive 6-foot-7 Swedish netminder is breaking out this year while splitting starts in the AHL. Over 22 games for the Marlies, Hildeby has a .914 save percentage and four shutouts, which is tied for second in the AHL. He still has more development ahead of him to prove he can be the future of the Maple Leafs' net, but he's trending up.

Dustin Wolf, Calgary Wranglers (CGY)

One of the most decorated goalies not currently in the NHL, Wolf has been the goalie of the year pretty much everywhere he’s been. Most thought he would push for NHL time this year and he’s gotten a few looks, but Wolf has still had to bide his time. He’s not wallowing, though, as he’s still among the top goalies in the league while seeing the third-most shots against.

Yaroslav Askarov, Milwaukee Admirals (NSH)

Askarov has been a bit of an internet darling this year with his post-game celebrations. Even though he has a flair for the dramatic, Askarov is playing some of his best hockey right now. He is 17-6-1 with a .921 save percentage and three shutouts. Additionally, he got his first NHL win in December and is starting to look more and more like the guy Nashville took in the first round 11th overall in 2020.

Jesper Wallstedt, Iowa Wild (MIN)

Though the numbers aren’t necessarily as impressive this year, Wallstedt is clearly the goalie of the future for Minnesota and could be between the pipes for the big Wild as early as next season. Now appearing in his second AHL All-Star Game, Wallstedt enters with a .908 save percentage and two shutouts. 

Jet Greaves, Cleveland Monsters (CBJ)

Greaves is one of the players that saw the pandemic alter his developmental path, but he's been working his way up and even appeared in two NHL games with the Columbus Blue Jackets this year. Greaves has a .904 save percentage while winning 19 of his 29 appearances so far for the Monsters.

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