The clock could strike midnight for several top junior-aged prospects this week when general managers around the NHL are forced to make franchise-defining decisions on the immediate future of those young stars.
Will Florida Panthers defenseman Aaron Ekblad, chosen No. 1 in the 2014 NHL Draft, take the next step in his career? Can Jonathan Drouin, selected No. 3 by the Tampa Bay Lightning at the 2013 NHL Draft, stick with the team that returned him to the Halifax Mooseheads in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League at the end of training camp in the 2013-14 preseason?
Those questions will be answered as early as Wednesday.