WHERE DOES THE NEW GUY RANK?

Before today, when Drake Caggiula was signed by the Edmonton Oilers, Russian Anton Slepyshev was probably the top prospect among wingers in the system. I count any prospect with under 50 NHL games as qualified for my top 20 list, and in a recent look had the Russian No. 4 overall—first among wingers. Where should we rank Caggiula?

Is this true? One way to suss things out is via NHL equivalencies. I like Christian Roatis system and use it pretty much exclusively now (he made it easy with the downloadable item). Let’s begin by listing forwards and defenders from my list with their NHLE (and inserting Caggiula). *Note: Although I count Connor McDavid as a prospect—under 50 games—including him here would be wildly unfair to these prospects.

NHLE FORWARDS 2015-16

  1. L Drake Caggiula 44
  2. L Josh Winquist 33
  3. R Tyler Pitlick 22
  4. C Jujhar Khaira 21
  5. C Marco Roy 18
  6. W Anton Slepyshev 17
  7. C Bogdan Yakimov 16
  8. R Greg Chase 16
  9. C Kyle Platzer 14

Seravalli’s suggestion is difficult to argue against based on boxcars and NHLE’s, clearly the young college man is miles ahead of the second place finisher—who remains unsigned. Slepyshev did have an injury-riddled season after beginning the campaign in the NHL, so the gap could be closer than this look implies. That said, the Russian’s NHLE from last season (28 points) is still miles behind Caggiula. Pretty safe to assume he is the top prospect (excluding McDavid) among forwards. What about blue?

NHLE DEFENSE 2015-16

  1. Ziyat Paigin 41
  2. Jordan Oesterle 22
  3. Ethan Bear 21
  4. Joey Laleggia 17
  5. Caleb Jones 17
  6. Dillon Simpson 14
  7. Griffin Reinhart 13
  8. John Marino 12
  9. William Lagesson 8
  10. D David Musil 8

Paigin’s number is so large I think we have to at least consider him as a better prospect. Now, we don’t have miles of track from Paigin on this number (massive spike), but Caggiula spiked too. Before we make the call, let’s run the other NHLE’s among Edmonton’s prospects just to be fair (my list loves offense but not at the expense of all).

sallinen capture2

OUTSIDE THE TOP 20 NHLE

  1. L Jere Sallinen 25
  2. F Tyler Vesel 17
  3. C Josh Currie 17
  4. L Braden Christoffer 14
  5. L Evan Campbell 13
  6. C Alexis Loiseau 13
  7. L Mitch Moroz 10
  8. L Kale Kessy 8
  9. F Aidan Muir 8
  10. D Ben Betker 6

Sallinen is an interesting player (he will no doubt be included in the top 20 this summer), and his offense has been on display for two KHL seasons.

CONCLUSION

Caggiula is either the No. 2 or No. 3 overall prospect in the system now, assuming you (like me) include McDavid as a prospect. I do think Paigin is in the conversation with Caggiula (behind McDavid) and suspect both of them will have NHL careers.

Below that trio, I think the NHLE does a splendid job pointing out Sallinen, Winquist, Pitlick, Khaira, Oesterle and Ethan Bear. I also hold out some hope that Joey Laleggia can step up when Brad Hunt is no longer a Conder, and should mention goalies like Laurent Brossoit and Nick Ellis will be in or around the top 20 in June.

EPILOGUE

Alex Thomas has written that Ahti Oksanen might be that player. It makes a lot of sense. We discussed Oksanen here.

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37 Responses to "WHERE DOES THE NEW GUY RANK?"

  1. Richard S.S. says:

    I think Chiarelli needs to get Ziyat Paigin over here as soon as possible. He’ll develop better and faster over here. This could be our ‘Chara’.

  2. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Oksanen and Caggiula and call it a day.

    Just wondering how age, TOI, and quality of linemates is accounted for in Caggiula’s case? Boeser and Schmaltz are both excellent players and that was a famous line. I didn’t watch any North Dakota games this year, but I’d love to see how much TOI they were getting, PP and evens.

    I want to get excited about this guy, too, but been fooled so often by the Oilers’ prospects in the past.

  3. fifthcartel says:

    Isn’t Ak Bars the team that barely played Paigin? I’d be a little worried he’s not going to play enough, so if there’s an option for him to play in Bakersfield I would probably prefer that over Brad Hunt getting every PP opportunity.

  4. Lowetide says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”:
    Oksanen and Caggiula and call it a day.

    Just wondering how age, TOI, and quality of linemates is accounted for in Caggiula’s case? Boeser and Schmaltz are both excellent players and that was a famous line. I didn’t watch any North Dakota games this year, but I’d love to see how much TOI they were getting, PP and evens.

    I want to get excited about this guy, too, but been fooled so often by the Oilers’ prospects in the past.

    Christian’s system doesn’t include age and of course TOI is not available (that I have found).

  5. DavyNavy88 says:

    Don’t see why Paigin wouldn’t come over. We took a chance on him and he’s producing 🙂

  6. Showerhead says:

    I’m not the sort to get excited about non-generational prospects but I do think college/European UFAs are an avenue that Chiarelli needs to pursue – especially if he’s going to burn picks on Reinhart-style gambles. So far, good. I like that he’s in the mix on these things.

    As we head towards the draft with chatter about trading the #4 pick, plus all of those 2nds likely in play, do worry a little bit – I was underwhelmed by Reinhart even if I could see the logic.

    Anyway, the reason I care about any of this is that if Edmonton is going to be good for any significant period of time it is going to need to pick up players who outperform their contracts. College UFAs, Europe, and the NHL draft are the way to do this and if Chiarelli can do well here, he can build and re-build around the stars in a meaningful way.

  7. mujidog says:

    Signing Drake Caggiula is an EXCELLENT move. But only if they intend to develop him as a prospect.

  8. Water Fire says:

    Showerhead:
    I’m not the sort to get excited about non-generational prospects but I do think college/European UFAs are an avenue that Chiarelli needs to pursue – especially if he’s going to burn picks on Reinhart-style gambles. So far, good. I like that he’s in the mix on these things.

    As we head towards the draft with chatter about trading the #4 pick, plus all of those 2nds likely in play, do worry a little bit – I was underwhelmed by Reinhart even if I could see the logic.

    Anyway, the reason I care about any of this is that if Edmonton is going to be good for any significant period of time it is going to need to pick up players who outperform their contracts. College UFAs, Europe, and the NHL draft are the way to do this and if Chiarelli can do well here, he can build and re-build around the stars in a meaningful way.

    Great points. I see a large part of the issue as a bias toward whatever teams have been strongest last becoming the goal of other teams with weak minded management.

    In anything with work, chasing what has been likely means you are headed to what used to be and not what’s coming. It’s why teams that project right become proclaimed genius, but of course their bias pegs them and someone else passes them.

    Keeping open minded to the league and the best players makes you the team that can stay in the mix. Basically ignoring luck and short term drives.

    I don’t think the game changes much outside of league interference through refereeing. The idea is to get the puck up the ice and keep it there with the intent to score, and to have a capable goalie.

    That’s it.

    I also don’t get excited about prospects that don’t seem to provide these things in an NHL sense.

    Still continually bringing in quality and moving out stagnant players gives you the best chance at getting to the 10-20% that might make it.

    And with low chance players there should absolutely be a focus on filling holes, because nobody knows who is better than anyone else. Simply odds.

  9. Магия 10 says:

    Good weekend for the Norquists. OT winner for Gustav. Canadian owned horse named after him wins the Kentucky Derby.

    And Nuge correctly called the trifecta in the PA”s news

    http://www.nhlpa.com/news/down-the-stretch-they-come

    Payout on Nuge’s line would have been $86.70 on $2

  10. kinger_OIL says:

    Showerhead,

    I like this: nice pithy post!

  11. Hilmar says:

    Boudreau to the Wild.

    Thumbs up!

  12. Rondo says:

    I like PLD better but Tkachuk is having quite a game tonight.

  13. Richard S.S. says:

    From the day he was drafted, Connor McDavid was the Oilers’ Top Prospect until he played his 42nd game. If heathy, he’s never ever going to be sent down. He really stopped being a prospect during Game1, when he became the answer.

    For all intents and purposes, Ziyat Paigin and Drake Caggiula can fight it out for top prospect. To keep using McDavid as top prospect brings questions into just how good everyone else is, meaning not very.

  14. dustrock says:

    Cant see this as anything but a positive development and nice to see a guy who could go anywhere still the Oilers were worthwhile.

  15. kinger_OIL says:

    – Totally random fact: Taylor Chorney has scored 2 goals in 7 years in the NHL (OK, only 123 games, but still!: 7 years!)

  16. kinger_OIL says:

    Sorry for the 3rd post in so short: I’m at the cottage, wife and kid asleep! I get that Drake is a good get, but really, if he is a guy that is expected to move the dial for this team next year; come on

    – I also get the slow news cycle, and this is positive news: but it is misdirection in terms of how this team is going to be better next year: Drake doesn’t matter for points next year.

    – He matters in that our organization wanted him, and he chose to come here, so collectively that’s an organizational win and a good sign to be sure

    – But as our so-called new #1 prospect, that’s more about how bad this team is, than how good Drake might be (he’s the 100th ranked NCAA prospect for crying out loud!).

    From another site: this is who he is: a top-6 AHL’er next year. That’s a smart pick-up:

    Basically this is a depth signing for the Oilers. Right now as an organization, forward wise, it’s a bit of dearth of pure skill. Not to say that Caggiula becomes instantly the organization’s best prospect, but it does help Bakersfield next season. I see no reason why Caggiula could not play in the top six as a rookie, albeit in the AHL level.

    All in all, this is a signing that is a win-win. It’s a free asset for the Oilers and Caggiula has an intriguing degree of potential.

  17. 99266in87 says:

    kinger_OIL:
    Sorry for the 3rd post in so short: I’m at the cottage, wife and kid asleep!I get that Drake is a good get, but really, if he is a guy that is expected to move the dial for this team next year; come on

    – I also get the slow news cycle, and this is positive news: but it is misdirection in terms of how this team is going to be better next year: Drake doesn’t matter for points next year.

    – He matters in that our organization wanted him, and he chose to come here, so collectively that’s an organizational win and a good sign to be sure

    – But as our so-called new #1 prospect, that’s more about how bad this team is, than how good Drake might be (he’s the 100th ranked NCAA prospect for crying out loud!).

    I agree, much like winning Connor, Drake should help the organization by pushing down our weak depth.
    From another site: this is who he is: a top-6 AHL’er next year.That’s a smart pick-up:

    Basically this is a depth signing for the Oilers. Right now as an organization, forward wise, it’s a bit of dearth of pure skill. Not to say that Caggiula becomes instantly the organization’s best prospect, but it does help Bakersfield next season. I see no reason why Caggiula could not play in the top six as a rookie, albeit in the AHL level.

    All in all, this is a signing that is a win-win. It’s a free asset for the Oilers and Caggiula has an intriguing degree of potential.

  18. Rondo says:

    Ethan Bear scores

  19. G Money says:

    I’ve tried my hand at NHLE’s (focusing specifically on elite players), and I can tell you that age makes a significant difference in the results.

    It is one of the reasons I’m not overly pumped about Auston Matthews. The fact that he “missed the last draft by two days” seems to be spoken of in positive terms. It’s not!

    His age means his stellar results need to be backdated a year, and they aren’t as stellar that way. We’re still looking at a terrific player, but I’ll be impressed and a bit surprised if he can match say a Taylor Hall.

    Side news: Boudreau has signed with the Minnesota Wild. That’s bad, since they’re in our conference, but good because they are not Calgary!

    Still hoping the Flames go for the whole experience/ring thing and hire a tandem of Carlyle and Crawford.

  20. Hockey Buddha says:

    Rondo:
    Ethan Bear scores

    Wow, Bear is rolling along, and I like our NCAA signings so far. Nick Ellis and Drake Caggiula are both reasonable bets and Ahti Oksanen would be another solid bet. I like the effort in acquiring these players. Free players from the NCAA is a nice way to restock the system. Good stuff.

  21. Hockey Buddha says:

    kinger_OIL,

    Taylor Hall got two goals 8 seconds apart a few years ago. Take that Taylor Chorney! Picture of Hall at the worlds up on the Oilers’ website–starting to look like a grizzled veteran.

  22. Chachi says:

    Just like Finns, the more Italian Canadian boys playing for the Oilers the better they will be. Also anyone who had him ranked as the 100th best prospect playing in the NCAA is probably not the brightest bulb.

  23. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    G Money:
    I’ve tried my hand at NHLE’s (focusing specifically on elite players), and I can tell you that age makes a significant difference in the results.

    It is one of the reasons I’m not overly pumped about Auston Matthews.The fact that he “missed the last draft by two days” seems to be spoken of in positive terms. It’s not!

    His age means his stellar results need to be backdated a year, and they aren’t as stellar that way.We’re still looking at a terrific player, but I’ll be impressed and a bit surprised if he can match say a Taylor Hall.

    Side news: Boudreau has signed with the Minnesota Wild.That’s bad, since they’re in our conference, but good because they are not Calgary!

    Still hoping the Flames go for the whole experience/ring thing and hire a tandem of Carlyle and Crawford.

    Yes, here is where ricki can help give us context…if you two are speaking again that is. 😉

  24. Gret99zky says:

    G Money:
    Side news: Boudreau has signed with the Minnesota Wild.That’s bad, since they’re in our conference, but good because they are not Calgary!

    Still hoping the Flames go for the whole experience/ring thing and hire a tandem of Carlyle and Crawford.

    Ron Wilson, please, Ron Wilson.

  25. OF17 says:

    kinger_OIL,

    You’ve been touting this #100 prospect in the NCAA thing for multiple threads now. I assume you’re talking about the sbnation ranking that puts Caggiula at #100. That ranking has Aidan Muir, yes that Aidan Muir, at #92.

    Anyone that thinks that Aidan Muir is a better prospect than Drake Caggiula deserves to have their opinion ignored.

  26. G Money says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: Yes, here is where ricki can help give us context…if you two are speaking again that is.

    Heh heh. I’ve always got time for Ricki, but when he starts getting mean, the time starts to become a hard time!

    Bears gotta Bear I guess!

  27. G Money says:

    Gret99zky,

    Wasn’t that a song by the Bear Naked Ladies?

  28. Tye says:

    Has anyone pointed out that if you could get them to play this –> https://youtu.be/JQrbd0VWxBU?t=67
    Every time he scores, every body everywhere would love the kid?
    You know cuz Caggueela… Taqqueela?
    Seriously, this should be a thing.

  29. spoiler says:

    G Money:
    I’ve tried my hand at NHLE’s (focusing specifically on elite players), and I can tell you that age makes a significant difference in the results.

    It is one of the reasons I’m not overly pumped about Auston Matthews.The fact that he “missed the last draft by two days” seems to be spoken of in positive terms. It’s not!

    His age means his stellar results need to be backdated a year, and they aren’t as stellar that way.We’re still looking at a terrific player, but I’ll be impressed and a bit surprised if he can match say a Taylor Hall.

    Side news: Boudreau has signed with the Minnesota Wild.That’s bad, since they’re in our conference, but good because they are not Calgary!

    Still hoping the Flames go for the whole experience/ring thing and hire a tandem of Carlyle and Crawford.

    I used to bitch about this a lot back in the day… likely to the detriment of the usual high level of entertainment here.

    I don’t think Gabe Desjardins ever intended his equivalency to say a 100 point 20 year old in Junior should have the same equivalency as a 100 point 17 year old. I always took them to mean draft eligibles.

    I think he used to have a stat, sumthin like expected 21 yr old NHL production given a 17 year old’s scoring (in the various leagues). Way more useful for the upper half of the draft.

  30. Lowetide says:

    Another big issue is TOI, something that impacts this draft year a lot—but impacts these Oilers prospects as well. I would submit that Paigin and Caggiula are far enough ahead of the pack that the general thought of the post—Paigin and Caggiula are the two best NHL prospects—is clear.

  31. bobinyvr says:

    Lowetide,

    Below is a link to a call for writers for new NHL rumors site.
    Perhaps you or some of your guests on Lowdown might be interested.
    mlbtraderumors is a great site, very professional and pretty accurate most times

    http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2016/05/seeking-writers-for-new-hockey-rumors-website.html

  32. Frank the dog says:

    Gret99zky: Ron Wilson, please, Ron Wilson.

    Where’s Dallas Eakins when we need him…..

  33. square_wheels says:

    Ok – so that was the longest 48hrs in my adult life. My amazing colleagues and our extended work family put 7000+ families on planes from our operation north of Ft Mc to Edmonton and Calgary from Wednesday am through Today 2am when I got on the last flights out.

    The variety of pets was astonishing – pigs, turkeys, turtles, cats and dogs……an iguana on a leash.

  34. Lowetide says:

    square_wheels:
    Ok – so that was the longest 48hrs in my adult life. My amazing colleagues and our extended work family put 7000+ families on planes from our operation north of Ft Mc to Edmonton and Calgary from Wednesday am through Today 2am when I got on the last flights out.

    The variety of pets was astonishing – pigs, turkeys, turtles, cats and dogs……an iguana on a leash.

    Amazing! God bless you all. Times like this really bring out special people, and you are one.

  35. square_wheels says:

    Lowetide,

    The best moment was a guy who was in complete tatters, one kid sleeping on his wife while the other grabbing at his pant leg comes up and asks how and where they pay for a flight.

    Felt pretty good to tell him, he doesn’t owe us a thing, just get in the plane.

  36. Hockey Buddha says:

    square_wheels:
    Lowetide,

    The best moment was a guy who was in complete tatters, one kid sleeping on his wife while the other grabbing at his pant leg comes up and asks how and where they pay for a flight.

    Felt pretty good to tell him, he doesn’t owe us a thing, just get in the plane.

    Great story, Square_Wheels! It’s quite honestly the kind of thing that maintains one’s faith in humanity.

  37. Bruce McCurdy says:

    square_wheels:
    Lowetide,

    The best moment was a guy who was in complete tatters, one kid sleeping on his wife while the other grabbing at his pant leg comes up and asks how and where they pay for a flight.

    Felt pretty good to tell him, he doesn’t owe us a thing, just get in the plane.

    Fantastic. My hat is off to you & your co-workers.

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