PASS THE WINE (SOPHIA LOREN)

Today, we are going to look at the 60 best players in the 2016 entry draft. Eventually, we will stretch this thing out to 90, and then 120, as the draft year comes into view. The Central Scouting list is a big help, and will allow us to start looking into specific leagues and nations for the coming draft. Here we go.

THE OILERS IN THE 2017 DRAFT

  • First Round: No. 24 overall
  • Third Round: No. 77 overall (FROM ST. LOUIS—this is payment for Nail Yakupov)
  • Third Round: No. 86 overall
  • Fourth Round: No. 117 overall
  • Fifth Round: No. 136 overall (FROM Vancouver—this is payment for Phil Larsen)
  • Fifth Round: No. 148 overall
  • Sixth Round: No. 179 overall
  • Seventh Round: No. 210 overall

Edmonton has a valuable chip (first round) and a few lottery tickets, but their list has a look similar to 2014—and that was a poor draft. The Oilers need a second rounder, and one hopes they find a way to get it.

MY LIST

The LT draft list isn’t an attempt to project the actual draft order, but rather rank players based on specific strengths—NHLE, speed, range of skills—and prefers established leagues over distant ones. In projecting the draft, Bob McKenzie’s list is the projection bible, my list is kind of all over on draft day. Here are the Oilers picks in 2016, with my rankings in brackets:

  • No. 4 (No.3)—R Jesse Puljujarvi, Karpat (Sm-Liiga).
  • No. 32 (No. 34)—L Tyler Benson, Vancouver Giants (WHL).
  • No. 63 (No. 108)—LD Markus Niemelainen, Saginaw Spirit (OHL).
  • No. 84 (No. 145)—LD Matthew Cairns, Georgetown Raiders (OJHL).
  • No. 91 (No. 61)—RD Filip Berglund, Skelleftea AIK (SHL).
  • No. 149 (NR)—L Graham McPhee, U.S. National Development Team (USHL).
  • No. 153 (No. 112)—C Aapeli Rasanen, Tappara U20 (Jr. SML).
  • No. 183 (NR)—RD Vincent DeSharnais, Providence College (Hockey East).

The third best player (by my estimate) is Berglund, and he didn’t land until pick No. 91. It happens every year—there is an entire group of defense first blue and Coke Machines that go every draft year from about No. 45 to No. 70—so I wanted to make you aware of it.

 DRAFT TOP 62, 2017

  1. (1) RC Nolan Patrick, Brandon Wheat Kings (WHL). Size, complete skill set, impact player.
  2. (2) R Owen Tippett, Mississauga Steelheads (OHL). Size, speed, best sniper in the draft.
  3. (5) L Nico Hischier, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL). Soft hands, elusive, creative.
  4. (3) RD Timothy Liljegren, Rogle (Swe Jr). Mobile 2-way D, complete range of skills.
  5. (4) RC Gabriel Vilardi, Windsor Spitfires (OHL). Creative center with size.
  6. (6) RC Nick Suzuki, Owen Sound Attack (OHL). Speedy, creative, sublime passer, one dimensional.
  7. (7) LD Juuso Valimaki, Tri-City Americans (WHL). Big puck mover, talented, creative.
  8. (8) LC Casey Mittelstadt, Green Bay Gamblers (USHL). High skill, quick hands, extra gear.
  9. (11) L Elias Pettersson, Timra (Swe-1). Brilliant passer, creative, late bloomer.
  10. (18) RC Cody Glass, Portland Winterhawks (WHL). Smart 2-way center.
  11. (9) L Nikita Popugaev, Moose Jaw Warriors (WHL). Big winger, good skater, plus shot, passer.
  12. (10) L Eeli Tolvanen, Sioux City Musketeers (USHL). Plus skater, great one-timer. Sniper.
  13. (12) LD Nicholas Hague, Mississauga Steelheads (OHL). Rangy, aggressive, big shot from point.
  14. (13) C Michael Rasmussem, Tri-City Americans (WHL). Big C, dominant physically, good skater.
  15. (16) C Mason Shaw, Medicine Hat Tigers (WHL). Small skill C, terrific skills.
  16. (14) L Kristian Vesalainen, Frolunda (SHL). Big W, skilled, strong, good shot can play L or R.
  17. (19) R Kailer Yamamoto, Spokane Chiefs (WHL). Smart player, elusive, offensive. Lacks top gear.
  18. (15) LC Lias Andersson, Linkoping (SHL). Throwback 2-way C, aggressive, quick. 5.11, 200.
  19. (17) R Martin Necas, Brno (Czech). High speed skill W, just 5.11.
  20. (20) L Matthew Strome, Hamilton Bulldogs (OHL). Strong 2-way W, offensive potential.
  21. (22) RC Robert Thomas, London Knights (OHL). Speedy forward, creative offensive player.
  22. (21) G Mike DiPietro, Windsor Spitfires (OHL). 35gp, 2.15 .925, is on a very good run.
  23. (23) RD Cale Makar, Brooks Bandits (AJHL). Fast defender with exceptional puck-moving acumen.
  24. (25) RD Kallan Foote, Kelowna Rockets (WHL). Huge D, awkward skater, good passer, tough.
  25. (27) RC Ivan Lodnia, Erie Otters (OHL). Small skill C, great skater.
  26. (24) R Klim Kostin, Balashikha (MHL). Giant W with ability to bull his way, good offense.
  27. (26) G Jake Oettinger, Boston University (NCAA). 21gp, 1.81 .934. Fabulous numbers.
  28. (32) R Aleksi Heponiemi, Swift Current Broncos (WHL). Cerebral winger with skill, anticipation.
  29. (29) R Kole Lind, Kelowna Rockets (WHL). Speedy winger with skill.
  30. (30) RC Morgan Geekie, Tri-City Americans (WHL). Tall thin C with 2-way rep and emerging offense.
  31. (31) L Isaac Ratcliffe, Guelph Storm (OHL). Big winger, great skater, some skill.
  32. (33) R Nicholas Henry, Regina Pats (WHL). Emerging scorer making a move up the list. Not fast.
  33. (37) RD Conor Timmins, SSE Greyhounds (OHL). Impressive numbers, good at both ends of the ice.
  34. (28) LD Uro Vaakanainen, JYP (Sm-Liiga). Fast two-way blue with a good shot.
  35. (34) LD Miro Heiskanen, HIFK (Sm-Liiga). Puck-moving defender with excellent vision and speed.
  36. (35) LC Evan Barratt, USNDTP (USHL). Small finesse center with substantial skills.
  37. (41) LC Jake Leschyshyn, Regina Pats (WHL). Responsible 2-way C, I will love him.
  38. (36) LC Jaret-Anderson Dolan, Spokane Chiefs (WHL). Small, very quick skater and plus skill.
  39. (38) RC Joni Ikonen, Frolunda (Swe SuperElite). Small skill center with good speed.
  40. (50) LC Ryan Poehling, St. Cloude State (NCAA). Big skill C with an offensive reputation.
  41. (39) LD Noel Hoefenmeyer, Ottawa 67s (OHL). Fairly complete defender, good D and some offense.
  42. (40) RD Henri Jokiharju, Portland Winterhawks (WHL). Smooth skating Finn OD, needs defensive work.
  43. (NR) LC Morgan Frost, SSM Greyhounds (OHL). Smart, skilled, and emerging.
  44. (42) LC Joshua Norris, USNDTP (USHL). Two-way C showing good offense.
  45. (45) RD Kale Fleury, Kootenay Ice (WHL). Fascinating prospect. Haydn’s brother. Range of skills.
  46. (NR) R Stelio Mattheos, Brandon Wheat Kings (WHL). Excellent skater, heavy shot.
  47. (43) L Alex Formenton, London Knights (OHL). An absolute burner, has some skill.
  48. (49) RD Pierre-Olivier Joseph, Charlottetown Islanders (QMJHL). Two-way D, some nice boxcars.
  49. (NR) R Adam Ruzicka, Sarnia Sting (OHL). Big (6.04, 202) forward who plays intelligent game.
  50. (NR) L Jason Roberstson, Kingston Frontenacs (OHL). Big (6.02, 196), skilled. Oiler. Speed average.
  51. (44) LC Shane Bowers, Waterloo Blackhawks (USHL). Impressive two-way C, plus skill.
  52. (NR) RD Artyom Minulin, Swfit Current Broncos (WHL). Big defender with emerging skills.
  53. (46) L Maxime Comtois, Victoriaville Tigres (QMJHL). Skilled, good size, skating average.
  54. (47) LC Alexei Lipanov, Dyanmo Balashikha (VHL). Two-way C, a little shy offensively.
  55. (48) LC Marcus Davidsson, Djurgardens (SHL). Two-way center has some offense, nice range of skills.
  56. (NR) L Mackenzie Entwistle, Hamilton Bulldogs (OHL). Big winger, who can skate, check, some skill.
  57. (NR) RD Eemeli Rasanen, Kingston Frontenacs (OHL). Giant defender with skill, mobility.
  58. (NR) L Ostap Safin, Sparta Praha (Cze). Big forward, good skater, has plus skills. Nice range.
  59. (NR) C Jesper Boqvist, Brynas (SHL). Average size, good speed and skill.
  60. (NR) L Zach Gallant, Peterborough Petes (OHL). Fast skater, intelligent player, boxcars moving.
  61. (NR) RC Scott Reedy, UNDTP (USHL). Speedy center with range of skills, dynamic.
  62. (NR) LD Robin Salo, Sport Vaasa (SML). Mobine two-way defender, mature.

FIRST OILERS MOCK, 2017

I like to do these from time to time, give us a chance to check out some of the more obscure prospects early, before we slot them in on the final list.

  • First Round: No. 24 overall—RC Robert Thomas, London Knights. Edmonton should have some very good options here, and I would not be surprised to see them trade down in exchange for a second and another depth pick. I also think Cale Makar would be the choice if available, but suspect he will be off the board. I like Thomas for his range of skills and his emerging boxcars. He is an excellent prospect.
  • Third Round: No. 77 overall (FROM ST. LOUIS—this is payment for Nail Yakupov)—L Ostap Safin, Sparta Praha. One of the things that happens every year at drafts is really good players slide because teams grab Coke Machines, stay-at-home defensemen and goalies early. Safin has first-round pedigree based on his scouting report (big, strong, speedy), the boxcars are all in the Czech league and we haven’t seen him a lot in international play over the last several months. He is likely to climb the draft charts by June.
  • Third Round: No. 86 overall—RD Dylan Coghlan, Tri-City Americans. He is a big defender (6.02, 190) with a nice range of skills. Smooth and lacking one outstanding skill, he can get lost a little in an impressive crowd of Americans blue, but he has legit skill.
  • Fourth Round: No. 117 overall—LC Jordy Bellerive, Lethbridge Hurricanes. He isn’t getting a lot of love in draft lists I have seen, but has a solid resume in terms of skill and scoring. Just 5.10, he would represent great value at No. 86, let alone No. 117.
  • Fifth Round: No. 136 overall (FROM Vancouver—this is payment for Phil Larsen)—G Stephen Dhillon, Niagra IceDogs. There are a lot of goalies this year, Edmonton may choose to select a prominent option earlier in the draft. Dhillon has a pretty good track record, I think he is a solid option.
  • Fifth Round: No. 148 overall—LD Jack Ahcan, St. Cloud State. I expect he will be off the board far earlier, but 5.08 defensemen are not normally high selections. He was impressive at the WJs and I expect it will get him drafted.
  • Sixth Round: No. 179 overall—R William Wia, Djurgardens. His scoring rates at lower levels have been good.
  • Seventh Round: No. 210 overall—R Bobby Dow, Kemptville 73s. Oilers are now drafting from obscure leagues, Dow has skill and some size.

In summary, I think we should look for Edmonton to attempt adding picks at the deadline, although the players who might be in play (Benoit Pouliot, Brandon Davidson, Matt Hendricks) could be used to acquire NHL players as well. It is also possible Peter Chiarelli cashes in that first-round pick for two lesser choices, although that probably happens draft weekend.

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84 Responses to "PASS THE WINE (SOPHIA LOREN)"

  1. Jethro Tull says:

    If we’re aquiring picks at the deadline, something has gone very wrong and we’ll be talking about that, not who should we puck in the second round.

    Chia seems to be ahead of the curve with using NCAA free agents. Makes the need for these draft picks less important, if done right.

    Truth be told, the position the team is now, most Oilers fans don’t know what to do with their hands. So we fall into old habits. One of which is making sure we have plenty of draft picks to piss up against the wall come draft day.

  2. Lowetide says:

    Jethro Tull:
    If we’re aquiring picks at the deadline, something has gone very wrong and we’ll be talking about that, not who should we puck in the second round.

    Chia seems to be ahead of the curve with using NCAA free agents. Makes the need for these draft picks less important, if done right.

    Truth be told, the position the team is now, most Oilers fans don’t know what to do with their hands. So we fall into old habits. One of which is making sure we have plenty of draft picks to piss up against the wall come draft day.

    I think Chiarelli will use the deadline to add NHL players for the current roster and to offload players for picks. He may not succeed, but he is building an NHL team and attempting to build a lush prospect system. He needs picks.

  3. Aron_S says:

    Was at the Oil Kings game last night vs. PG (11-3 loss, second row, way to see the carnage up close). Hoped to catch some viewings of Popugaev, but it looks like he was a healthy scratch. Seemed to be following an inconsistent outing vs. Vancouver according to a CanucksArmy post.

    Couldn’t tell you much about the players otherwise, as the Oil Kings were severely outclassed. Poor defence and Dea did himself no favours in net (5 GA after the first, another 3 GA after the second). Dechane played the third. Guhle, Parade to the penalty box in the third after the 10th GA. Sabres selection, was the best player on the ice by far though. Calm and smooth defensive anchor.

  4. Jethro Tull says:

    Lowetide: I think Chiarelli will use the deadline to add NHL players for the current roster and to offload players for picks. He may not succeed, but he is building an NHL team and attempting to build a lush prospect system. He needs picks.

    I believe picks below the 2nd round aren’t that important to Chia, judging by his use of the college system for undrafted or under rated players.

    In this, i think he may have something. It increases the pressure on your scouting department, but the risk reward can be awesome, particularly when picks seem to be some kind of promissory currency for actual developed NHL players.

  5. Lowetide says:

    Jethro Tull: I believe picks below the 2nd round aren’t that important to Chia, judging by his use of the college system for undrafted or under rated players.

    In this, i think he may have something. It increases the pressure on your scouting department, but the risk reward can be awesome, particularly when picks seem to be some kind of promissory currency for actual developed NHL players.

    College signings are brilliant, but you are at the mercy of the available room on the 50-man list. The draft is another pool for fishing, and PC has traded away a lot of picks since he arrived (specifically 2015). He badly needs to increase the talent pool from the draft.

    I think the 2016 draft should be more representative of ideal than 2015, but you could be right in that Chiarelli values draft picks after the first round less than I do. I expect he is making a mistake if this is his plan.

  6. jm363561 says:

    How does Sophia Loren fit into this?

  7. Lowetide says:

    jm363561:
    How does Sophia Loren fit into this?

    It is a clue, you can pursue, or not. I do not give out all details. 🙂

  8. supernova says:

    Is Brandon Davidson for Brian Boyle fair value for both teams?

    Think about cap hits, future resignings, expansion, WoodMoney, trade values, etc

  9. Professor Q says:

    I don’t even know who Sophia Loren is…

  10. Clarkenstein says:

    I think it has become obvious that this team is far ahead of where we predicted it would be. Even in December some of us (LT :-)) were still feeling this was an 11th or 12th place team. This team has shown it may be much closer to a Stanley contender by as much as a year sooner. I wouldn’t plan the parade but crazy things happen in the first and second round of playoffs. Having said that I’d blow my brains out if I was Chia to ride this thing as far as I could this year. With Connor being Connor and Talbot the best ‘Tender in a generation a little tweak here and there might be the difference. If I could land the right player for the first rounder it has to be awfully tempting. Now if they shit the bed in February please disregard this entire post!!

  11. JDï™ says:

    jm363561:
    How does Sophia Loren fit into this?

    Smithers – have the Rolling Stones killed!

  12. VanIsleOil says:

    Pass the wine:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_R0KhAY9FXM

    Ahh Sophia, just because…

    http://tinyurl.com/heeokr3

  13. Soup Fascist says:

    Lowetide: It is a clue, you can pursue, or not. I do not give out all details.

    Oilers tied for first.

    Connor is the fastest to ever lace them up. (sorry Dylan).

    Snow is melting.

    It’s a Great time to be Alive!!

  14. Professor Q says:

    Soup Fascist: Oilers tied for first.

    Connor is the fastest to ever lace them up. (sorry Dylan).

    Snow is melting.

    It’s a Great time to be Alive!!

    I love how he called out Larkin in his interview,

    “I don’t know, maybe if I had a running start…”

    He seems to be so modest, but can subtlety throw shade both at the media and opposing players, like Matthews and Larkin.

  15. Soup Fascist says:

    Professor Q: I love how he called out Larkin in his interview,

    “I don’t know, maybe if I had a running start…”

    He seems to be so modest, but can subtlety throw shade both at the media and opposing players, like Matthews and Larkin.

    I can hear it now if a head-to-head matchup between McD and Larkin is proposed for the next All-Star game:

    Larkin: “I choose NOT to run …..er, skate”

  16. Lowetide says:

    I have watched the Puljujarvi play last night several times, still cannot understand why he didn’t get an assist.

  17. jimmers2 says:

    Lowetide:
    I have watched the Puljujarvi play last night several times, still cannot understand why he didn’t get an assist.

    LT, do you have an idea about his ice time last night? Just curious, for the obvious reasons.

    Also, after reading today’s missive, I’m crossing my fingers, lighting a candle, slaughtering a lamb for Benson. That pick will make a huge difference with a timely recovery and suitable development time.

  18. Woogie63 says:

    I saw Cale Makar play our Eagles on back to back nights a couple of weeks ago.

    Friday night he was the best player on the ice by a mile.

    Sunday morning I saw a few of the Eagle guys at my coffee shop, and I asked about Cale; they said super strong on his skates, chirped the bench all night, very quick release, fearless.

  19. Professor Q says:

    Lowetide:
    I have watched the Puljujarvi play last night several times, still cannot understand why he didn’t get an assist.

    He passed it right to Fayne!

  20. Bag of Pucks says:

    Lowetide: It is a clue, you can pursue, or not. I do not give out all details.

    Well, based on the Stones song, I’m guessing LT had a pretty nice Saturday night.

  21. leadfarmer says:

    Lowetide,

    Players of his magnitude couldn’t care less about AHL points.

  22. Lowetide says:

    leadfarmer:
    Lowetide,

    Players of his magnitude couldn’t care less about AHL points.

    Not at all my point, but carry on.

  23. JDï™ says:

    Someone has put together a side-by-side video of McDavid and Larkin, based on where they both start:

    http://streamable.com/5gvad

  24. kgo says:

    Jethro Tull:
    So we fall into old habits. One of which is making sure we have plenty of draft picks to piss up against the wall come draft day.

    Perfect analogy, imaginative and funny…More of this please commentors

  25. PunjabiOil says:

    They can honestly get more picks AND be a better team.

    Aim for moving Russell for a late 1st or two second round picks.

    Nurse is your internal replacement for Russell.

    Call up Fayne, send down Gryba.

    Of course this will never happen, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s not optimal.

  26. trencan says:

    I would like to see these boys against Price on shootout. They are similar age as Keslers son 🙂 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xhvw9mZtW9E

  27. supernova says:

    Stelio Mattheos at 46 is an intriguing player to me.
    Was a first overall WHL pick, RH and listed as a Center.

    From what I understand he might not have elite skills, but has very good hockey sense.

    Seen him projected as a NHL 3C

  28. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    PunjabiOil:
    They can honestly get more picks AND be a better team.

    Aim for moving Russell for a late 1st or two second round picks.

    Nurse is your internal replacement for Russell.

    Call up Fayne, send down Gryba.

    Of course this will never happen, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s not optimal.

    This is the correct answer.

    My favorite example is Doug Wilson selling Doug Murray for 2 2nds to Shero in PIT while SJS was comfortably in the playoffs at the deadline.

    Also,

    The draft is the lifeblood of every NHL team, not just the bad ones.

    One of the reason the good teams are good is because they draft well.

    Look at the best teams in the NHL and you will see that most of the lesser roles are filled by draft picks from outside the 1st round.

    Its vital.

    Then you will also see some very vital positions are taken up by players drafted outside the first round as well, like Matt Murray in PIT.

    Drafted 3rd round out of the OHL with a .875 SV% in 2011.

    In 2016 he was a key reason they won the Cup and is their starting goalie today.

    The draft.

    It matters every year, in every round for good teams and bad teams.

  29. Johnny Larue says:

    PunjabiOil:
    They can honestly get more picks AND be a better team.

    Aim for moving Russell for a late 1st or two second round picks.

    Nurse is your internal replacement for Russell.

    Call up Fayne, send down Gryba.

    Of course this will never happen, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s not optimal.

    I just can’t believe the irrational Russell hatred. We are in first place and you want to get rid of one of our top four defencemen (via coaches determination eg ice time) for picks. That mentality just drives me crazy..We are going to make the playoffs (99.7% chance) and will need to add some players and not get rid of them. Fanye is in the minors for a reason he is not in the top eight and can’t be given away.

  30. teddyturnbuckle says:

    Chia’s trades are looking better by the day (except for Reinhart). Larsson is growing into a great Dman while Hall is on pace for 22 goals and 62 points per 82 games. Fair trade. Yakupov will be on waivers soon then to KHL next year. Got to give Chia credit for turning this mess around. Next up, trade Eberle or Nuge this summer to free up salary for cheaper players that can match either ones production.

  31. Johnny Larue says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    Kris Russell is not Doug Murray can’t you give the Russel bashing a rest.

  32. Jethro Tull says:

    Johnny Larue,

    Lol, truth.

    We hate Russell, he’s a terrible player by the fancies.

    Luckily, the other 29 GMs are credulous buffoons and think he’s awesome.

    Should be able to get a first rounder or 2 2nd rounders for 20 games worth of him.

    #onesidedtrades
    #rightstoomarkforweber

  33. Lloyd B. says:

    supernova,

    The Oilers have tried drafting 3rd line players in the draft for years. Coke machines I believe was the terminology. Seeking out the next Lucic. Didn’t work that well.

    I believe the consensus around these parts is to draft high end skill and if he turns out to be a 3rd line checker, so be it.

  34. Scungilli says:

    PunjabiOil:
    They can honestly get more picks AND be a better team.

    Aim for moving Russell for a late 1st or two second round picks.

    Nurse is your internal replacement for Russell.

    Call up Fayne, send down Gryba.

    Of course this will never happen, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s not optimal.

    One of the most difficult things to take for fans who intimately watch the game for sure, the inexplicable love NHL teams have for some players and not others. I also liked Gryba for Michalek whom NYC says plays toughs, Use him at 3RD when Bennings doing good, 2 RD when not.

    They could trade a few guys for picks and not miss them, but then the reason they won’t miss them is the reason they are hard to deal.

  35. Jethro Tull says:

    Johnny Larue: I just can’t believe the irrational Russell hatred. We are in first place and you want to get rid of one of our top four defencemen (via coaches determination eg ice time) for picks. That mentality just drives me crazy..We are going to make the playoffs (99.7% chance) and will need to add some players and not get rid of them. Fanye is in the minors for a reason he is not in the top eight and can’t be given away.

    Strangely, Fayne is everything that most people here deplore. Not good at zonal defense, slower than molasses, can’t outlet pass to save his life, not strong for a big man, doesn’t shoot the puck, not great at penalty killing.

    In fact, his one qualification for playing in the NHL is that he has played in the NHL.

    If you don’t like Russell for these reasons, then i fail to see how advocating for Fayne to return is viable. Other than the narrative that he’s”a real NHL player.”

  36. Pouzar says:

    It was Dec 01, 2016….Nurse-Larsson…..In Winnipeg….13 gloriously awesome minutes. Then Nurse went down, like you would in WPG. But those 13 mins were real and spectacular.

  37. Lowetide says:

    Jethro Tull: Strangely, Fayne is everything that most people here deplore.

    It is true, but not this blog’s author. I like Fayne, and Russell and Larsson, happy to see defenders in the group. Fayne’s issue is footspeed, he (unlike Russell) cannot make that scoot back to retrieve the puck consistently.

    As for hatred of Russell, I haven’t seen any of that on this blog, you might be thinking of another spot you frequent. Seems people have been getting confused on that issue lately.

  38. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Johnny Larue:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    Kris Russell is not Doug Murray can’t you give the Russel bashing a rest.

    I didn’t bash Russell.

    I agree with a post about getting more picks by trading from a position of strength.

    Perhaps the problem is that you think you need to defend Russell at every turn and you see “Russell Hate” everywhere.

    Maybe you need a break.

  39. Glass says:

    I love these posts. It seems like we’ll be picking in the 18-22 overall range. With the tough February schedule ahead, I can see San Jose pull ahead, and the Rangers leap frog us. Anaheim and Nashville are also teams to watch out for.

    Robert Thomas looks to be a magnificent add. Could be the long-term 3RC we need, or develop into a 2RW for us. Would also be nice to acquire a 2nd round pick so we can draft a RHD such as Kale Fleury/Pierre Joseph or Eemeli Rasanen.

  40. Pouzar says:

    My money is on the Oilers trading down.

  41. blainer says:

    Johnny Larue:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    Kris Russell is not Doug Murray can’t you give the Russel bashing a rest.

    I get where WG’s is coming from on Russell as this is a stats based blog and he does not look good by most of the stats.

    I have been watching him closer lately though and a lot of the time he really does make the right play. Hangs onto the puck to make sure he gets it out right. He is just terrible on the zone entries and possession but a lot of that is because of playing the RT side..I think.

    I will say that the last few games Talbot has been making ALL our D look good. Man are we ever lucky to finally have goaltending. IMO the single most important position in Hockey !!

  42. Pouzar says:

    blainer: I get where WG’s is coming from on Russell as this is a stats based blog and he does not look good by most of the stats.

    I have been watching him closely lately and a lot of the time he really does make the right play. Hangs onto the puck to make sure he gets it out right. He is just terrible on the zone entries and possession but a lot of that I really do think is because of playing the RT side.. I think.

    I will say that the last few games Talbot has been making ALL our D look good. Man are we ever lucky to finally have goaltending. IMO the single most important position in Hockey !!

    He’s Andrew Ference except he actually defends after they pass through the turnstile.

    Yer post is spot on.

  43. LMHF#1 says:

    Do they really need picks?

    I’m always surprised there arent more baseball style prospect trades in hockey.

  44. Melman says:

    For the first time in a decade it’s the end of January and I don’t give a rat’s ass about the draft. Thank you 8 lb. 9 oz. baby Jesus….

  45. blainer says:

    Pouzar:
    It was Dec 01, 2016….Nurse-Larsson…..In Winnipeg….13 gloriously awesome minutes. Then Nurse went down, like you would in WPG. But those 13 mins were real and spectacular.

    Man If I was out playing forward and was coming down the ice and saw that I was coming against Nurse AND Larsson.. I’m dumping it in and saying * change *.

    Not interested in spending the next six months on the DL..lol

  46. Lowetide says:

    Pouzar:
    My money is on the Oilers trading down.

    Yes. Agreed. They may be able to get a reasonable pick for Pouliot (should they decide to deal him), but Davidson may stay for the season and be made available for expansion. I think McPhee will draft Reinhart, though.

  47. Woogie63 says:

    Jethro Tull:
    If we’re aquiring picks at the deadline, something has gone very wrong and we’ll be talking about that, not who should we puck in the second round.

    Chia seems to be ahead of the curve with using NCAA free agents. Makes the need for these draft picks less important, if done right.

    Truth be told, the position the team is now, most Oilers fans don’t know what to do with their hands. So we fall into old habits. One of which is making sure we have plenty of draft picks to piss up against the wall come draft day.

    Graduating college players come with lots of leverage over a NHL GM.

    IMO Shultz and Caggiula received $$ and play time commitments that say a Benson or Jones can not get. Also college grads have played a much smaller sample of games and zero difficult road schedule.

  48. LMHF#1 says:

    Hoping the Oilers upgrade Pouliot at or before the deadline and get that line going. Could be a big help.

  49. blainer says:

    Pouzar: He’s Andrew Ference except he actually defends after they pass through the turnstile.

    Yer post is spot on.

    Ya I was thinking that He is probably a Ference when Ference was playing with the Bruins.

    Wonder what his numbers were like back then.. Might be similar to Russell’s now..

    I would be really careful though not to give Russell more than a year maybe two on another contract.

    Depth on D who expected that this year !!

  50. Lowetide says:

    LMHF#1:
    Hoping the Oilers upgrade Pouliot at or before the deadline and get that line going. Could be a big help.

    If the Oilers move Pouliot out, I expect Lucic probably moves up. If EDM could get a C-L for the 3line, to play with Slepy and say JP, that might be the plan. I don’t know who that C-L would be, beyond he is the Pisani.

  51. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    A good example of the importance of the draft is CBJ

    8 regulars on the team came outside the top 10 picks – 6 of them outside the first round

    CBJ
    Atkinson – 6th round – top 6 F – leading scorer
    Wennberg – 14th overall -top 6
    Anderson – 4th round – regular bottom 6
    Jenner – 2nd round – regular top/bottom 6
    Savard – 4th round – regular top 4 D
    Sedlak – 6th round – regular bottom 6 C
    Calvert – 5th round – regular bottom 6
    Nutivaara – 7th round – regular 3rd pair Dman
    Prout – 6th round – 7th/8th Dman
    Korpisalo – 3rd round – (4gp)
    Bjorkstrand – 3rd round (5gp) –
    Forsberg – 7th round (1gp)
    Milano – 16th overall (2gp)

    Then you have players like Saad who were acquired mostly for prospects.

    The draft is very important and good teams draft and develop well.

    Who the Oilers draft this year will be filling vital roster spots in 2022 or so.

    Seems like a long ways away, but 5 years ago Oilers drafted RNH, Klef and Reider.

    Now that the Oilers aren’t drafting high, they can create the normal conveyor belt of kids who don’t get a sniff of the NHL until draft +3 year at the earliest and more likely draft +4, and if they have it in them to be a NHL regular, they will be about draft +5.

  52. blainer says:

    I find it interesting on who they will protect.

    Davey has not looked too good to me since returning.

    In watching the Condors a bit it looks like Reinhart has been pinching in a bit more and is posting some numbers lately.

    But his skating still looks off to me. I’m not sure if he is a poor skater or if he just doesn’t react fast enough. I guess the term we could use is quick. Maybe he needs to be quicker.

    I can see Davey getting exposed or traded but really hope he gets his game back to where it was last year.

    Reinhart seems to be coming along in a similar way as Forbot on LA. Very slow. I’m not ready to cast him away yet and do see a trade for him or Davey or both rather than to leave one of them exposed.

  53. blainer says:

    Lowetide: If the Oilers move Pouliot out, I expect Lucic probably moves up. If EDM could get a C-L for the 3line, to play with Slepy and say JP, that might be the plan. I don’t know who that C-L would be, beyond he is the Pisani.

    Hoping they are looking for a Center who can win draws is big and is good on the PK.

    Bergland ?

  54. Glass says:

    blainer,

    Problem is that if you trade one, the other is still likely to get claimed, which deals a massive blow to our leftorium. Oesterle is still a solid call-up option, who knows how good Simpson will get, and it seems Musil is still on the outside. Here’s to hoping that Paigan/Jones pan out.

  55. Lowetide says:

    blainer: Hoping they are looking for a Center who can win draws is big and is good on the PK.

    Burgland ?

    I am going to have a post up at 5pm with something on this very subject. I like Berglund, but there is no guarantee he will shake loose. I keep wondering if something around Pouliot+ for Hanzal might work, but don’t know if Chayka’s advanced metrics value BP as much as I do.

  56. blainer says:

    Glass:
    blainer,

    Problem is that if you trade one, the other is still likely to get claimed, which deals a massive blow to our leftorium. Oesterle is still a solid call-up option, who knows how good Simpson will get, and it seems Musil is still on the outside. Here’s to hoping that Paigan/Jones pan out.

    Very good point.

    I think there is going to be a lot of trades leading up to the draft this year though because of expansion.

    I even expect there to be more movement at the deadline this year than a normal year.

    The trades this year may be last minute as soo many teams are still in on the wild card.

  57. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    blainer: Ya I was thinking that He is probably a Ference when Ference was playing with the Bruins.

    Wonder what his numbers were like back then.. Might be similar to Russell’s now..

    I would be really careful though not to give Russell more than a year maybe two on another contract.

    Depth on D who expected that this year !!

    I actually wrote almost exactly that in my “I like Russell” post.

    Russell and Ference have very similar careers.

    Ference had a part of his career where he was effective in 2nd pair and Russell hasn’t quite shown that.

    Both were very good 3rd pairing Dmen who are/were useful NHLers.

  58. OilClog says:

    Fayne in for the playoffs.. 4 straight losses would be the result, he’s not a nhl defender anymore, well maybe good enough still for a lottery team. Gryba is the better player, younger, bigger, physical aaaaaaaand cap hit.

    Gryba wouldn’t survive waivers…

    Nurse will be coming back from months of injury, team is thinking smart he’s no more then a 6/7 for the rest of the year(Davidson), moving a top 4 D in Russell to give Nurse that time, not going to have a good time Mmmmmkay.

    Lars/Klef
    Sek/Benning
    Nurse/Russell
    Gryba

    If everyone is healthy imo this would be my ideal 7 going into playoff land. Oilers don’t have a Burns/Vlastic combo, so sending out a 22min a night defender for draft picks before the playoffs isn’t something that can justifiably be done with this team. Well if you have any intentions on winning that is

  59. hankster says:

    Wow Russell can get us a first rounder or two second founders! Then the guy agrees. Really? telling us how right you are, therefore how wrong we are for disagreeing with your biases disguised as facts. That is good form?
    If Russell = one 1st rounder
    Then
    Eberle = three 1st rounder or six 2nd rounder
    At least…
    Because he’s “been” a consistent scorer who’s fairly compensated at 6M.

    I didn’t realize I have to come to a sports blog armed with my differential equations and permutations macro.:)

  60. blainer says:

    Woodguy v2.0: I actually wrote almost exactly that in my “I like Russell” post.

    Russell and Ference have very similar careers.

    Ference had a part of his career where he was effective in 2nd pair and Russell hasn’t quite shown that.

    Both were very good 3rd pairing Dmen who are/were useful NHLers.

    I do like Russell fine but I really do think they have him playing a little too high in the order.

    I think Nurse would be getting a lot of Russell’s minutes by now if he hadn’t gotten injured.

    It will be really interesting to see how this all plays out IF we can get ALL our D healthy.

    I would love to see Nurse with Larsson for a few games too. Man that would be one very hard hitting pair.

  61. blainer says:

    Lowetide: I am going to have a post up at 5pm with something on this very subject. I like Berglund, but there is no guarantee he will shake loose. I keep wondering if something around Pouliot+ for Hanzal might work, but don’t know if Chayka’s advanced metrics value BP as much as I do.

    Hanzal would be great.. I think a lot of teams will need to stay patient to get the right deal for him.

    I still can’t believe what the return was for Petry. All the GM’s waited Mact out for the best deal. In the end though it worked out I guess as we used those picks to get Talbot I believe.

    Hanzal though is the player that can really make us a dangerous team in the playoff’s IF he can stay healthy..

  62. oscarmike says:

    It will be rude of Chiarelli if he traded Hendricks just because he’s a UFA. He’s one player that absolutely deserve to be an Oiler when they make playoffs. Before there was Nurse, Kass, Maroon and Lucic, Hendricks was the only one bleeding for this team. He showed leadership when there wasn’t any.

    In fact, any player working hard for the Oilers should be allowed to join the team in playoffs.

    Oilers are going to need depth at playoffs in case of injuries. It won’t be easy trading Davidson because he needs protection at the draft. Oilers should keep Hendy, Pouloit, and Davidson for playoff depth. They already know the coaching system and the team.

    Oilers 4th+prospect for a back-up goalie.(rental)
    Oilers are not trading for any top 4 RD or 3rd C rentals.
    Drake is bad at face offs. They can always double shift
    Nuge, Mcd, Drai and Letestu.

    Mar-Mcd-Drai
    Drake-Nuge-Ebs
    Lucic-xxx-Slepy
    Pou-Letestu-Kass

    Klef-Larsson
    Sekera-Russel
    Davidson-Benning

    Healthy scratches
    Hendy, Nurse, Gryba, Beck, Lander, JJ

  63. Chris says:

    Just looking at LT’s list, if we consider the Oilers recent acquisitions I think we can identify which players are likely to be of interest to Chiarelli.

    16 (14) L Kristian Vesalainen, Frolunda (SHL). Big W, skilled, strong, good shot can play L or R.

    If Chicago and Pittsburgh have taught us anything it’s that we are going to need a bounty of low cost productive wingers to shuffle through the line up. Further doesn’t big swilled strong winger with a good shot sound like the kind of player we’ve been bringing in over the past two years?

    20 (20) L Matthew Strome, Hamilton Bulldogs (OHL). Strong 2-way W, offensive potential.

    Much the same rational as above.

    26 (24) R Klim Kostin, Balashikha (MHL). Giant W with ability to bull his way, good offense

    This just sounds like we’d be drafting the Russian Patrick Maroon and right now I’m sure the Oilers would be happy to have another Patrick Maroon.

    (29) R Kole Lind, Kelowna Rockets (WHL). Speedy winger with skill.

    This might be a player we should also keep an eye on. We’ve seen the benefit of speed here recently and beyond McDavid the Oilers don’t exactly have in LT’s words a lot of fast trains. Lind isn’t small, he’s skilled and some speed could be a welcome addition.

    34 (37) RD Conor Timmins, SSE Greyhounds (OHL). Impressive numbers, good at both ends of the ice.

    6’1 180 right handed defenseman with 33 assists suggests that he can make and take a pass, he also has 53 PM in 47 games. I’m going to go out on a limb and suggest that also makes him GRITASTIC. Although seriously if you want a player that can add toughness a two way right handed defenseman who can make a good first pass is an okay place to lay down that marker.

  64. fifthcartel says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    I’ve seen people talking about Edmonton potentially moving the 1st for help at the deadline but this is why I’ve been against it.

    The Oilers have been so bad for so long that they missed out on the opportunity to draft a defensemen in the first round because their pick was always so high that the arguement to take the forward was always so strong.

    Granted, they drafted Nurse and Klefbom, but I think they kinda support my point. If they were one or two spots higher in 2013 I would have not been surprised if they opted for Monahan or Lindholm. And for Klefbom, he was used with second 1st rounder.

    Klefbom was drafted in 2011 and four years later he was playing 21 minutes a game for the Oilers. Now obviously you’d hope if they pick a defenseman this year they’re not playing 21 minutes in 2021, barring some miracle of a pick.

    The Oilers should be picking in the late teens to early twenties and they’ll finally be able to bring them along slowly and provide on a value contract in a few years.

  65. Colieo87 says:

    My prediction is maybe poo traded at the deadline but i dont think they will be buyers cause of the wrench the expansion draft. Keep the options open but i think pete sits on his hands unless we have disastrous February.

  66. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Trade Russell and bring up Fayner at the deadline. Russell has a nice skillset, it’s on display at 3v3. He can cover and keep up to his man. I didn’t like his signing but hoped he would bring more offence than Gryba at least, which he hasn’t really.

    If they replaced him with a right shot D that McLellan also trusts, this team would be notably better possession-wise. Hopefully recoup some assets from the experiment as well. The oil are tied first, there was no harm in it.

    Kevin Klein? Vatanen? Mike Green?

  67. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    fifthcartel:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    I’ve seen people talking about Edmonton potentially moving the 1st for help at the deadline but this is why I’ve been against it.

    The Oilers have been so bad for so long that they missed out on the opportunity to draft a defensemen in the first round because their pick was always so high that the arguement to take the forward was always so strong.

    Granted, they drafted Nurse and Klefbom, but I think they kinda support my point. If they were one or two spots higher in 2013 I would have not been surprised if they opted for Monahan or Lindholm. And for Klefbom, he was used with second 1st rounder.

    Klefbom was drafted in 2011 and four years later he was playing 21 minutes a game for the Oilers. Now obviously you’d hope if they pick a defenseman this year they’re not playing 21 minutes in 2021, barring some miracle of a pick.

    The Oilers should be picking in the late teens to early twenties and they’ll finally be able to bring them along slowly and provide on a value contract in a few years.

    Agreed all points.

    The only way I would move a 1st rounder is if the player had some term.

    Interesting that no rentals last year got a 1st.

    I think GM’s have finally clued into the value of a 1st vis a vis rentals.

  68. Confused says:

    What do you think it would take to get Yak back at TD?

  69. LadiesloveSmid says:

    If the oil trade Pou, I’d want them buy on Sharp/Kunitz/Jagr/Reilly Smith or my dream of Tomas Tatar

    Also Craig Smith in the off-season could be Edmonton’s Rich Peverley imo, maybe Eberle out the door as their Wheeler

  70. russ99 says:

    We’ve allowed 22 less goals this year than last year.

    If you can’t see value in Kris Russell due to what he’s done to help with that, there’s no need to try and convince you.

    Would be nice to have discourses that don’t completely ignore defense and are instead aren’t about generating more shots for.

    Kind of funny, it seems like we’ve moved on from fighting about the Hall trade to fighting about Russell/CF%. So I guess that’s progress.

    Good luck today Connor!

    Moose sighting!! Wayne wearing the Kings jersey is nigh on unforgivable, though.

  71. OF17 says:

    Post about an old thread, but I’m just now catching up.

    NYCOil, a few threads ago you asked if Arizona would trade Michalek for Gryba. In short, yes, and I’d want something else from them.

    Gryba’s two-way contract is a huge element. Worst case scenario, they’ve traded their veteran, physical, AHL RHD for a veteran, physical, AHL RHD. Michalek in that role will cost $1.25 million. Gryba costs $97,560. $1.15 million in cash for a talent swap that doesn’t matter? Chayka would love that phone call. So let’s make him pay for it.

    Nothing big, but a 4th might do the trick. Imagine offering Arizona a 4th in exchange for increasing their AHL payroll by $1.15 million. Probably not happening. Due to Pronger et al, Arizona has no issues with the cap floor this year, so those savings are purely discretionary. This is where having Katz rather than the EIG is supposed to help.

    Very nice job identifying the opportunity BTW. I wonder if Gryba + 3rd/4th is equal to Michalek + Vrbata. Looking at Hemsky and Purcell as comparables, Arizona is essentially trading a 4th/5th in exchange for $1.15 million paid before July 1st. Seems like a good place to start.

  72. LadiesloveSmid says:

    I guess we ask ourselves if Russell is the reason the oil went from a 988 all situations PDO to 1009 year over year. If yes, then we may have a demi-god that needs an extension.

  73. Lowetide says:

    russ99:
    We’ve allowed 22 less goals this year than last year.

    If you can’t see value in Kris Russell due to what he’s done to help with that, there’s no need to try and convince you.

    Would be nice to have discourses that don’t completely ignore defense and are instead aren’t aboutgenerating more shots for.

    Kind of funny, it seems like we’ve moved on from fighting about the Hall trade to fighting about Russell/CF%.So I guess that’s progress.

    Good luck today Connor!

    Moose sighting!! Wayne wearing the Kings jersey is nigh on unforgivable, though.

    I am going to need to see evidence of this Russel hatred, haven’t seen any. I think every Oilers fan will agree he is a veteran and has helped. We disagree on cap and term.

  74. gogliano says:

    blainer:
    I find it interesting on who they will protect.

    Davey has not looked too good to me since returning.

    In watching the Condors a bit it looks like Reinhart has been pinching in a bit more and is posting some numbers lately.

    But his skating still looks off to me. I’m not sureif he is a poor skater or if he just doesn’t react fast enough. I guess the term we could use is quick. Maybe he needs to be quicker.

    I can see Davey getting exposed or traded but really hope he gets his game back to where it was last year.

    Reinhart seems to be coming along in a similar way as Forbot on LA. Very slow. I’m not ready to cast him away yet and do see a trade for him or Davey or both rather than to leave one of them exposed.

    I’ve been noticing that as well. There seems to be some development, in any event. Still has the boots of clay.

    But if he is the expansion draft selection, that has value. We’re going to lose something of worth regardless and I see Reinhart as a reasonable bet for an expansion team yet expendable from the Oiler’s POV.

  75. kgo says:

    I see an obvious flaw with PDO…Not all shots are created equal, but they are counted equally wrt PDO ..For arguments sake, MacTs oilers only get perimeter shots on net (let’s say perimeter shots score an average of 3% of the time).. and all the shots they give up are from the slot, and juicy rebounds shots, breakaways etc….Say these types of shots score 12% of the time..A strong team only gets this type of shot for arguments sake. let’s assume save % is equal for both teams…(even though the weaker teams save % will suffer because guys are left open in front, screening goalie, breakaways etc.).The weak teams PDO would be 93% the strong team 102%.

    If I’m interpreting the interpretation of the analytics community correctly, they would infer the bad team was very unlucky and their PDO should regress to the meat….And the good team was getting lucky and will soon stop getting the bounces…..

    Go….

  76. treevojo says:

    Woodguy v2.0: I actually wrote almost exactly that in my “I like Russell” post.

    Russell and Ference have very similar careers.

    Ference had a part of his career where he was effective in 2nd pair and Russell hasn’t quite shown that.

    Both were very good 3rd pairing Dmen who are/were useful NHLers.

    I would argue Russel’s on ice goal results this year have shown him to be an effective 1st – 2nd pairing defender this year.

    I realize the predictive results of on ice shooting metrics but if we are just strictly talking about results of this year Russell has been 💰

    Whether that is a combination of goaltending, horseshoes, mcdavid, d partner, I don’t know the answer.

    But it’s pretty hard to argue with the 4th best 5v5 ga60 defender league wide continueing to be trotted out for over 20 mins a night if the team continues to get the results when he is on the ice.

    Ride the wave till it crashes then lower him in the lineup.

  77. Lowetide says:

    Please be respectful in your comments, please and thanks.

  78. Lowetide says:

    Testing.

  79. leadfarmer says:

    Video review during the ASG. Wow isn’t that fun!!

  80. Receptor Antagonist says:

    Lowetide:
    Testing.

    Your testes look great.

  81. Lowetide says:

    leadfarmer:
    Video review during the ASG.Wow isn’t that fun!!

    Haha. Man. What a world we live in! Oh well, I guess a million bucks is a million bucks.

  82. leadfarmer says:

    McDavid is the fastest player playing at half speed as well. In case you were wondering

  83. leadfarmer says:

    Here you go Mr simmonds take this ugly as hell Honda truck and drive it back to Philly.

  84. Glass says:

    russ99,

    We didn’t have Larsson last year. Klefbomb missed a lot of the season, same with McDavid. Perhaps Taylor Hall played a part in GA, look at New Jersey’s difference in GF/GA.

    Is Russell bad? Not necessarily. Should he be in our long term plans? I don’t think so, I wouldn’t mind a one year extension however.

    Ask yourself, do you think we can find a better option for our 2nd pairing RHD (that actually shoots right), that can push Benning down to 3rd pairing? I’m willing to bet there are a few good matches available, if not this year, then next year.

    Again, it’s not to say Russell is bad, but there ought to be better alternatives.

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