Philadelphia Flyers and 6 Teams Counting on Young Players to Step Up in 2012-13

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Philadelphia Flyers and 6 Teams Counting on Young Players to Step Up in 2012-13
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
Nail Yakupov is the latest phenom to join the Oilers.

A team like the Boston Bruins was so confident in its veteran talent on the roster that Peter Chiarelli basically stood pat during the offseason.

Chiarelli and Claude Julien have a solid and dependable defense with Zdeno Chara, Dennis Seidenberg, Johnny Boychuk and Andrew Ference manning key roles.

They also have perhaps the No. 1 rookie defensive prospect in Dougie Hamilton. Unless he has a disastrous training camp, Hamilton seems destined to stick with the big club and could be a key contributor.

But the Bruins are not counting on Hamilton to lead them this year. That's not the case with several teams, including the Philadelphia Flyers and Edmonton Oilers, who are depending on great years from their youthful talent.

In the Flyers' case, even more demands will be made on young players because they failed in their efforts to land Nashville defenseman Shea Weber. In the Oilers' case, they have been bringing in top young prospects for years and it's time for those additions to lead the team to the postseason.

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