The marquee at the Consol Energy Center, home of the Pittsburgh Penguins and the 2012 NHL Draft, will be emblazoned with the name of Nail Yakupov, the No. 1 overall prospect in this year's class and a surefire future NHL All-Star.
The top forwards, led by Yakupov and other elite scorers, possess finely polished offensive talent and an acumen for the game that is beyond their years, especially considering that many are just 18 years old. Most importantly, they know how to finish a play and create offensive excitement.
This draft year could produce the next Pavel Datsyuk, Corey Perry or Anze Kopitar. That's high praise for such an untested group of skaters, but this series will aim to put these burgeoning talents into context by comparing them to notable NHL names, making it easier to envision what each player could bring to the table.