We’re one month away from the Top 20 Prospects (winter edition) and it’s time to begin the evaluation of each player. It’s usually pretty obvious—Leon Draisaitl good, Taylor Fedun isn’t helping AT ALL—but here are the players under consideration for the winter top 20 and how they’re dong.
The summer list is here.
- C Leon Draisaitl—Up arrow. Made the NHL team, has two points in seven games and is playing in the world’s best league. He’ll turn 19 on Monday, probably against the Habs. Leon played his best game last night.
- D Darnell Nurse—Up arrow. Played his first NHL games and is now in junior where he’ll likely dominate before turning pro.
- D Martin Marincin—Major up arrow, but he won’t be on the December list (he’ll play his 50th NHL game next week, thus graduating from the LT list). Marincin is beginning to receive national recognition for his play. Elliotte Friedman: You can see why Vancouver wanted Martin Marincin as part of the package when the Canucks and Oilers talked Cory Schneider two years ago. To protect a one-goal lead on the final shift against Tampa Bay, Dallas Eakins put him out there with Mark Fayne, Boyd Gordon, Matt Hendricks and Jesse Joensuu as Edmonton held on. Source.
- D Oscar Klefbom—Up arrow. He’s 2gp, 1-1-2 in Oklahoma City and waiting for the next injury/transaction. It’s likely he’ll be in the NHL by the trade deadline and he’s certainly going to play when he gets here. He is the last of the four ‘locks’ in Edmonton’s system at this time.
- R Greg Chase—He is level at this time. Chase is just a shade below a point per game (9 points in 10 games) and once again not getting a lot of power-play points (just one PP point through the 10 games). Chase went 70gp, 25-31-56 at evens a year ago (.800) and is in exactly the same position this season. We’ll see how things roll over the next month but he remains a quality prospect. Curious about what they’re doing with the power play in Calgary.
- C Bogdan Yakimov—Up arrow. I think he’s going to end up being one of the Oilers’ NHL centers beginning next season. Edmonton has other options (Khaira, etc) but this fellow to my eye has established himself as ‘next after Leon’ among Oiler prospects.
- D Dillon Simpson—Up arrow. I was curious to see where he’d land—the Oilers sometimes send new pro’s to the ECHL—but he’s an AHL regular out of the box and working at establishing himself in pro hockey. I’ll have Eric Rodgers on the Lowdown this Monday and will ask about him.
- C Mark Arcobello—Up arrow, but he won’t be on the December list (he’ll play his 50th NHL game tomorrow night). A wonderful success story, he’s beaten long odds to get this far and I’ve long since given up on betting against him.
- C Marco Roy—Down arrow. He’s scoring well in the QMJHL (9gp, 4-6-10, all at even strength) but he turns 20 early in November and should dominate in junior. I’m not saying they won’t sign him or that he’s going to Trukhno, but the next few months are important for Roy.
- C Jujhar Khaira—Up arrow. Impressed in TC and damn near made the big club, his size is going to get him looks before a lot of the other prospects in the system. Not certain he’ll stay at center—Bogdan is ahead of him in my estimation—but if you’re thinking ‘modern Moreau’ that seems about right.
- D Martin Gernat—Down arrow. The Oilers sent him out early, making a point of letting the media know about his lack of conditioning. That’s Oilers code for ‘he’s drawing outside the lines and wandering the hallways during class’ and does not bode well for him inside the organization. His future outside the organization depends entirely on how he’s perceived and the conditioning item may have been noticed in other NHL cities. A tough fall so far for the young man.
- R Jackson Houck—Up arrow. He’s at 10gp, 5-8-13 and performing very well with the Giants. Houck’s skill and size are going to be attractive to the Oilers when he turns pro and it looks like he’ll finish junior on a high note.
- D William Lagesson—Up arrow. He’s 6gp, 0-4-4, which is solid for a guy whose skill set reads more defense and rugged play than offense. He’s miles away and we’re years from knowing, but Pronman liked him end of 2nd round and that puts him here.
- R Tyler Pitlick—Down arrow. He’s 3gp, 0-1-1 in the AHL but didn’t land a job he had a great chance at this training camp. It’s anyone guess about whether he’d be called up in case of injury, but Jesse Joensuu won the opportunity and is running with it. Pitlick is not in a good spot as a prospect, and he remains a perfect comp for Jared Knight, drafted one spot after Pitlick in 2010.
- L Mitch Moroz—he is flat. Moroz was sent down relatively early and hasn’t shown much so far in the AHL (2gp, 0-0-0). Early days, but there’s no real reason to move him up the list compared to Houck or Khaira. Oilers have some nice options here.
- D David Musil—Up arrow. Despite being -5 already in the AHL, the Oilers kept him up for a long time and I think the club likes him as a future 5-6D option. Musil’s issues have always been about skating, but I suspect they love his big defensive brain.
- G Zach Nagelvoort—Down arrow. Before Ben Scrivens started playing well this week in the NHL, the entire Oilers system was rife with subpar goalkeeping. Nagelvoort has been poor so far, sitting at .864 and being outplayed by his backup.
- L Anton Slepyshev—Up arrow. He’s playing well despite a recent downturn in production. 21gp, 3-4-7 in the KHL currently, that’s NHLE 82gp, 10-11-21 and puts him a little higher on this list come December.
- C Tyler Vesel—he is flat. Four games into his NCAA career, Vesel hasn’t scored but that’s probably less than one hour total ice time.
- G Laurent Brossoit—Down arrow. He’s playing in OKC as the starter, but an .867 SP isn’t going to get him a lot of playing time after Bachman returns. Edmonton really needs him to emerge as a legit prospect.
Among the players ranked 21-50 this summer, the following have up arrows and will be considered for the top 20:
- D Jordan Oesterle, playing well in OKC.
- R Iiro Pakarinen, also doing good things with the Barons.
- D Brad Hunt, won an NHL job.
- C Kyle Platzer, really emerging this season.
- R Steve Pinizzotto, damn near won a job with the Oilers.
- R Andrew Miller, leads the Barons in points.
- L Evan Campbell, who is having a huge start to his NCAA season.