IN SEARCH OF A FIRST-SHOT SCORER

I keep reading about all these goal-scorers bubbling under, and damned if I can find one sure thing in the whole bunch. What am I missing? The Edmonton Oilers have some fine offensive players at the NHL level but the group pushing up gives me a worried mind.

GOALS PER 82 NHL GAMES PLAYED

  1. Connor McDavid 29.7
  2. Leon Draisaitl 21.5
  3. Milan Lucic 20.5
  4. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins 19.7
  5. Jussi Jokinen 17.1
  6. Patrick Maroon 16.6
  7. Mark Letestu 14.4
  8. Ryan Strome 14.3
  9. Zack Kassian 11.8
  10. Drake Caggiula 9.6
  11. Anton Slepyshev 6.3
  12. Jesse Puljujarvi 2.9

The three men listed 10-12 are often mentioned as legit options and I do think all three will play on skill lines this winter in Edmonton. The question is can they hold on to the job? I’m honestly not certain any of the three is a lock to grab a scoring role on the 2017-18 Oilers.

OILERS PROSPECTS NHLE (GOALS)

  1. Kailer Yamamoto, Spokane (WHL) 15.4
  2. Joe Gambardella, UMass-Lowell (H-E) 13.7
  3. Jesse Puljujarvi, Bakersfield (AHL) 13.4
  4. Tyler Vesel, Nebraska-Omaha (NCHC) 12.7
  5. Joey Laleggia, Bakersfield (AHL) 11.5
  6. Jujhar Khaira, Bakersfield (AHL) 11.4

I don’t think the Oilers are looking for Joe Gambardella to grab an NHL job, but math is telling us to take heed and watch his progress. It looks to me as though Yamamoto and Puljujarvi are the most promising scoring prospects (based on age and league). Laleggia scored 18 goals in his final 43 games of the season, so he’s a player to watch in this category.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

I get the sense there is a belief in Oilers Nation that this will all work out fine. Arrive at camp, instant chem, winning! Lots of chatter about Anton Slepyshev finishing strong but the actual boxcars over the last 20 games (including playoffs) were 4-1-5, 23 shots. Drake Caggiula final 20 games? 4-1-5, 33 shots. Jesse Puljujarvi in the AHL? Final 20: 5-7-12, 53 shots. I love the shot total, but have genuine concern about his ability to beat a goalie on anything other than a breakaway or fantastic chance. Can Jesse Puljujarvi beat a pro goalie clean with his shot? I mentioned my concerns about Puljujarvi’s shot to Corey Travers from Copper & Blue yesterday, he agreed it was a fair criticism. The sample is now two seasons (Sm-Liiga, AHL) below the NHL and we are still looking for strong evidence of a quality goal-scorer.

  • Corey Travers: Despite his moderate success, the fact that he didn’t dominate at the AHL level suggest that a return to Bakersfield next year certainly isn’t out of the question.  Source

I think it’s fairly obvious in watching Puljujarvi that he is going to have an NHL career of some note. I remain fixated on the offensive portion of his game. His NHLE’s for the last two seasons (19.7 Sm-Liiga; 31.2 AHL) show progress and I think we can project him as (at least) a solid two-way winger. We can probably project him for 20-goal seasons if he spends enough time with Connor McDavid. What is the potential of Jesse Puljujarvi as a goal scorer? Sometimes we trick ourselves into the idea that more data is needed. The facts: JP has not been able to impact two leagues offensively. He is a teenager, and does not yet have “man strength”, could that be what we’re waiting for?

SERIOUSLY?

During the 2015-16 season, JP scored 13 goals on 175 shots, 7.4 percent. Patrik Laine played in the same league, scoring 17 goals on 253 shots, works out to 6.7 percent. Puljujarvi is not the volume shooter Laine is, but his success rate was in the range with the Jets sniper. Laine managed 19 shots per 60 minutes (in all disciplines) according to The Hockey News. Puljujarvi? He averaged 13.94 shots per 60 in all disciplines. He shoots less than Laine and that may impact his ability to flourish with Connor McDavid.

FORWARDS SHOTS PER 60 (ALL DISCIPLINES)

Perhaps the most encouraging bit of business is this graph showing Puljujarvi as the top RW shooting option. Can Jesse Puljujuarvi get 200 shots on goal this coming season? I think the answer is clearly yes. Can he score 10 percent of the time? That’s the question.

I know he is a teenager and it is unfair to frame him so early. The numbers so far suggest he is going to be a less impressive scorer than we had originally hoped on draft day. My RE for Puljujarvi will reflect what we have seen, and I’m honestly uncertain he will play inside the top 6F all year. It’s also possible he spends the year alongside 97, not cashing enough chances to make the investment worthwhile. That’s probably the biggest concern of all.

written by

The author didn‘t add any Information to his profile yet.
Related Posts

85 Responses to "IN SEARCH OF A FIRST-SHOT SCORER"

  1. Jordan says:

    I’m genuinely surprised that anyone is talking g about any of the three players highlighted as possible with gets for CMD. After all the hoopla this offseason about Connor zooming Leon, itseems a poor bet to make. Even if you win, you loose. Once Leon is signed, he and Kassian would be my picks to play with CMD, because they are cost controled, and you can see how they perform without riding the rocket scales express to a big payday. Considering what Patty Maroon s career average scoring rate looks like with and without McDavid, I don’t think there’s any arguing CMD makes okay players look good.

  2. flyfish1168 says:

    We need to find our new Jari Kurri. Sure miss his accuracy and one timers that goes along with his responsible defensive play.

  3. anjinsan says:

    A doubting, doubting Irishman ya be.

  4. dustrock says:

    Even as a major Draisaitl fan going back to junior days, I didn’t think he was going to score as much as he does in the NHL. Thought for sure he’d be 90% playmaker. He has surprised in a positive way.

    Hopefully we’ll see the same breakthrough with Jesse. Sure hope he’s listening to rock and roll and watching Tarantino films to work on his English 🙂

  5. godot10 says:

    It is not clear the Chiarelli “likes” the first shot scorer player-type (because of the other parts of their game that come with them).

    Kessel….traded.
    Seguin…traded.

    Even Wheeler…traded.

    First shot scorers tend to not be the Marchand-like or Caggiula-like puck hounds. First shot scorers are not pressure on the puck type of guys. They tend to look for gaps.

  6. Bryan says:

    The best thing going into camp is that they are not placing all their bets on one horse. There are multiple options that could make a big step forward and having Jokinen as a safety blanket is also a comfort. My personal money on becoming Connor’s long time henchman is with Jesse. The kid has a terrific one timer which is essential and speed and strength as well as terrific defensive acumen. I think we will still see a variety of people riding shotgun with Connor this season but I will be shocked if the big Finn doesn’t lock down the right wing spot beside the human rocket before too much more hockey is played.

  7. Ducey says:

    I have trouble understanding your concern re JP.

    We are supposed to wait 5 yrs on prospects. Here we have massive player (6’4″) who was the youngest player in the NHL last year, who was playing for the first time on small ice, and we are going to take much from his first 28 games?

    The guy is learning about his body, the language, the game, etc.

    There was a similar concern about Leon after his first foray into the NHL, that caused certain bloggers to suggest he might be a trade option. In his second season he “ran out of gas”. Now he is a star.

    JP has great wheels, a very good shot, terrific size and skill. He will be a terrific player. Setting him up to be Leon is not fair, but he is going to be very good. Unlike MPS you can see he has the offensive instincts.

    If your concern is just next season, fair enough. I think there is a very good chance he spends 40 games in the A. It’s likely he is not ready. I really hope Chia keeps him down until he is really ready. Like Detroit Red Wings ready.

    I’d be more concerned about Strome. A lot depends upon his ability to switch between C and RW and to find a productive spot on this team. He has to find a way to grab 45- 50 points and play good defense. He is the guy I will be watching.

  8. Lowetide says:

    Ducey: I think he is going to be a fine NHL player, there’s just too much talent. That said, scouting reports had him possessing a great shot, we haven’t really seen it yet. My concern is very specific, relating to his scoring ability. He’s a teenager, so this may wash away as he continues to develop. I am concerned for sure about this year, but also about JP’s scoring ability. Hopefully he blossoms this coming season as a scorer, many players with his pedigree have done it at this point in their careers.

  9. causewaycal2 says:

    If we are looking for prospect depth to push for roster spots, why not focus on some of the best first-shot pure goal scorers from the WHL. From the 2015 Draft, here’s your top 1997 born WHL goal scorers (career WHL goals) that have signed NHL contracts. Should be able to trade for a one of these guys

    Gabrielle – 250 GP / 110 Goals
    Merkely – 245 GP / 85 Goals
    Gennaro – 271 GP / 82 Goals
    Wagner – 238 GP / 79 Goals
    Kolesar – 243 GP / 77 Goals
    Harkins – 275 GP / 75 Goals
    Sideroff – 208 GP / 75 Goals
    Bradley – 209 GP / 74 Goals
    Musil – 251 GP / 65 Goals

  10. JDî says:

    Dick York was the best Darrin!

  11. jimdewger says:

    I’m in awe of your site this morning, LT. We get music, the need for finnish hockeyers, even a debate about the top 007s yesterday and always musings about our beloved oilers. Thanks for this corner of the interwebs

  12. Jaxon says:

    Small sample size and all, Laleggia had a goal NHLe of 20 goals to end the season.

  13. Lowetide says:

    JDî:
    Dick York was the best Darrin!

    Agreed, and it isn’t close.

  14. jtblack says:

    Hmmmmm …. I think we have to include the mirror men to be fair.

    On RW wing we probably have Neon Leon or R Strome. Both who have shown an ability to contribute at the NHL level. The only real wildard I see is RW2. Not much scoring is expected from RW3 or RW4. So the candidates you have listed (JP, Sleppy, Cagg) are fighting for 1 spot, RW2. Here is your list based on what you have been showing us ..(not showing left wingers) ..

    McD – Drai
    RNH – JP
    Strome – Sleppy
    Letestu – Kass

    or

    McD – Strome
    Drai – Sleppy
    RNH – JP

    I think there is really only RW#2 up for grabs where you would hope for 15 – 20 Goals …

    Will you be happy if JP gets 15? 20?

    If any hockey people were polled in Dec 2015, they would not have heard of Sheary, Rust, Guentzel, etc ….

    The reason you build a team down the middle is that you can plug wingers in and 1 or 2 of them will find chemistry and success. The Oilers have incredible Center Depth right now, and that will allow the wingers to flourish.

    Everyone thought we would have trouble scoring at LW when Hall was dealt. The top LW’s both produced more Goals than Hall (20). Maroon (27), Lucic (23). This isn’t because they are better than Hall, it’s because they were playing with excellent centers no matter where they were deployed.

    I believe you will see the exact same thing. We Lose Eberle’s 20 Goals. I think you will see “whoever” grabs regular RW2 score 15 – 20; along with Drai/Strome 25 at RW1.

    Cheers All!!!!!!

  15. blainer says:

    Really wouldn’t mind seeing a line JJ CMD JP at home taking on the softs for a few games.

    Get JP’s confidence going and shift the lines as needed which is what will happen when on the road.

  16. J-Bo says:

    Great article LT! My pondering this morning is about “at bats” and who we think should/will get them this year when Drai plays centre? Is Strome your Mcdavid guy? Do you leave Strome at centre all year and move Nuge to wing with McD or Drai? Is it JP? Cags? And what about when Drai plays wing, who is second line RW? I think my hope is that JJ -Strome-JP make a killer soft minutes 3 line all year and that Nuge shifts to wing when Drai plays center.

  17. Lowetide says:

    J-Bo:
    Great article LT! My pondering this morning is about “at bats” and who we think should/will get them this year when Drai plays centre? Is Strome your Mcdavid guy? Do you leave Strome at centre all year and move Nuge to wing with McD or Drai? Is it JP? Cags? And what about when Drai plays wing, who is second line RW? I think my hope is that JJ -Strome-JP make a killer soft minutes 3 line all year and that Nuge shifts to wing when Drai plays center.

    This is exactly where I am today, plotting the RE at-bats. 🙂

  18. Rake 2.0 says:

    https://theathletic.com/74290/2017/07/09/sunday-q-and-a-todd-nelson-and-his-jam-it-down-their-throat-coaching-philosophy/

    I feel like this coaching philosophy would have been great with our current lineup. It might also explain why nuge and poo were so good together that season. They are ideal players Nelson’s system.

  19. jtblack says:

    Lowetide,

    I think this shows the depth. In years past, we gifted spots. Now 2 players are vying for 1 spot.

  20. trencan says:

    Puljujarvi is an exceptional skater, more playmaker than shooter in my opinion, he plays a lot like Jere Lehtinen, but “with more offence.” I personally see Yamamoto as Connors future 1RW. JP will be 2RW with Drai.

    Edit: Drai as 2C

  21. Lowetide says:

    trencan:
    Puljujarvi is an exceptional skater, more playmaker than shooter in my opinion, he plays a lot like Jere Lehtinen, but “with more offence.”I personally see Yamamoto as Connors future 1RW. JP will be 2RW with Drai.

    This is a really astute post.

  22. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    Rake 2.0,

    Fantastic article, thanks for sharing.

    Really enjoyed the insight about small pockets of guys on the team when he took over from Eakins, going from pockets of 5 guys eating together to about fifteen.

  23. speeds says:

    It’s hard to know how his injury last year impacted his summer training. It seems unlikely that it helped, in addition to everything else involved in his move to NA/AHL/NHL.

  24. Pouzar says:

    Our new trigger man could be Nuge.
    Stauffer has him projected on Line 1.

  25. treevojo says:

    It might also explain why nude and poo were so good together that season.

    Are you sure you are on the right blog?

  26. leadfarmer says:

    Pouzar:
    Our new trigger man could be Nuge.
    Stauffer has him projected on Line 1.

    The old pump and dump treatment that hasn’t been seen in these parts in ages.

    I would like to see Chia go after Neal once he gets Drai signed.

  27. JDî says:

    Hockey 24|7‏ @iamhockey1 2h2 hours ago

    Hearing Draisaitl deal with #oilers is almost done 8×8 with 35+ million in signing bonus. Should be announced this week.

  28. speeds says:

    Pouzar:
    Our new trigger man could be Nuge.
    Stauffer has him projected on Line 1.

    This makes some sense to me, at least for a look.

    If they’re going to have to/choose to trade RNH, bumping the numbers isn’t a horrible idea?

    RNH-CMD-Maroon
    Lucic-LD-Slepyshev
    Jokinen-Strome-JP

    ???

  29. J-Bo says:

    Pouzar:
    Our new trigger man could be Nuge.
    Stauffer has him projected on Line 1.

    Glad to hear it! I sincerely hope they do this and it works out famously. That way, either they realize they must keep Nuge or he blows the doors off offensively and his value goes through the roof. That said, I do think this is Nuge’s last year as an Oiler. I think Benning is going to flourish this year and that Nuge will be traded for an excellent prospect next spring/summer. I hope his value moves up enough that he can be traded for a Sergachev level prospect.

  30. J-Bo says:

    JDî:
    Hockey 24|7‏ @iamhockey1 2h2 hours ago


    Hearing Draisaitl deal with #oilers is almost done 8×8 with 35+ million in signing bonus. Should be announced this week.

    Is this a legit source?

  31. Lowetide says:

    speeds: This makes some sense to me, at least for a look.

    If they’re going to have to/choose to trade RNH, bumping the numbers isn’t a horrible idea?

    RNH-CMD-Maroon
    Lucic-LD-Slepyshev
    Jokinen-Strome-JP

    ???

    I like Maroon more on RW than Nuge, recall he played there a little last season (maybe with ML and CMD). 3line is a concern but I do like that 2line.

  32. Thinker says:

    Not sure how JP wasn’t producing offence in the Liiga. Seems to be pretty good against history.

  33. JJS says:

    It is interesting that we suggest most other skills in hockey can be taught yet believe shooting/goal scoring are natural talents.

    There must be dozens of examples of players who learned how to score at the NHL level.

    Focused practice is the key to all talent building. The Oil should bring in some specialists and work with specific wingers.

    I like the chances of someone emerging from the pack – particularly when paired with one of the best players the league has ever seen.

  34. Todd Macallan says:

    J-Bo,

    I was wondering the same thing. Has over 3000 followers, including Dreger and Kypreos. Seems oddly specific with the signing bonus numbers as well. Wouldn’t trust it until others put out something similar but I could live with that number IF true.

  35. JDî says:

    Todd Macallan: Has over 3000 followers

    Yeah it seems like a pretty good source, but we’ll see.

  36. leadfarmer says:

    I find it kind of funny that both sides are negating the effects of the future lock out by paying their players anyway via signing bonuses. I think we’re going to lose a season. A lot of players are going to get paid whether they play or not

  37. JDî says:

    Any Windows phone experts in the house today? Not dabblers, but experts?

    crickets

    thought so…

  38. JDî says:

    leadfarmer: I think we’re going to lose a season.

    Don’t think of it as a lost season, think of it as a time to get reacquainted with the Premier Darts League.

    And hope that we get at least two compliance buyouts out of the mess.

  39. leadfarmer says:

    JDî: Don’t think of it as a lost season, think of it as a time to get reacquainted with the Premier Darts League.

    And hope that we get at least two compliance buyouts out of the mess.

    Yeah I remember when ESPN got rid of hockey after a lockout to show more World Series of poker. Those were great times.

  40. Pescador says:

    godot10:
    It is not clear the Chiarelli “likes” the first shot scorer player-type (because of the other parts of their game that come with them).

    Kessel….traded.
    Seguin…traded.

    Even Wheeler…traded.

    First shot scorers tend to not be the Marchand-like or Caggiula-like puck hounds. First shot scorers are not pressure on the puck type of guys.They tend to look for gaps.

    Here’s hoping Pulji can break that tend

  41. Bruce McCurdy says:

    LT: Isn’t Liiga the one that counts Fenwick as opposed to shots on goal, thus inflating shots totals but crashing shooting percentage?

  42. Lowetide says:

    Bruce McCurdy:
    LT: Isn’t Liiga the one that counts Fenwick as opposed to shots on goal, thus inflating shots totals but crashing shooting percentage?

    Had not heard that, but interesting. Puljujarvi actually compares pretty well to Laine in that league, one of the encouraging notes.

  43. jfry says:

    I’m curious why we’re now saying that he’s going to be a less impressive goal scorer than we originally thought? Outside of small sample size tournaments he’s never put up numbers.

    How are we looking at his draft year, now, and coming to this conclusion?

    I’m a huge math guy, but video leasing up to the draft showed that he had a muffin of a shot. At the time I said he was a slightly more dynamic MPS and I think it still fits. It always baffled me that he was part of the consensus top three and everyone made fun of Columbus for skipping in him.

  44. jp says:

    Lowetide: Had not heard that, but interesting. Puljujarvi actually compares pretty well to Laine in that league, one of the encouraging notes.

    Yeah, I was thinking that too. Laine went from 6.7% to 17% shooting in the NHL. Pulju clearly didn’t do it in lock step, but provides some hope for improvement.

  45. John Chambers says:

    This player should’ve played in Finland last year.

    Should be starting his ELC this year playing in Bakersfield til Christmas.

  46. Lowetide says:

    jfry:
    I’m curious why we’re now saying that he’s going to be a less impressive goal scorer than we originally thought? Outside of small sample size tournaments he’s never put up numbers.

    How are we looking at his draft year, now, and coming to this conclusion?

    I’m a huge math guy, but video leasing up to the draft showed that he had a muffin of a shot. At the time I said he was a slightly more dynamic MPS and I think it still fits. It always baffled me that he was part of the consensus top three and everyone made fun of Columbus for skipping in him.

    One of the things I do is collect scouting reports from draft day. Two of my most trusted sources, Pronman and Red Line, specifically mentioned his shot.

    Corey Pronman: He’s an unbelievable skater for a 6-foot-4 player, having a great top gear and a really fluid stride. He’s not that physically aggressive, but he closes on guys so well that he pressures and wins battles effectively. Puljujarvi shows a high-skill level, a plus shot and high-end hockey IQ. He is constantly around the puck and setting up his teammates.

    Red Line Report: Big horse looks and plays like a Mats Sundin clone. Has the four S’s: size, skills, skating, shot. Has all the tools to be a dominant power forward who combines top-notch skills with brute force.

    I don’t really trust video or tournaments, but these reports have been extremely accurate over the years. I think Puljujarvi HAD a good shot but maybe he doesn’t use it, or has lost confidence. Doesn’t really matter at some point, but it was part of the draft day conversation.

  47. Centre of attention says:

    Lowetide,

    I think Puljujarvi has an NHL shot. He was extremely unlucky last year. I’ve noticed it going back and re-watching games every now and then. Remember that chance he had right in his wheelhouse from a Connor feed, he posted it with the goalie completely down and out. Maroon cleaned it up. Puljujarvi had quite a few of those moments actually, and the fact he was at least getting looks is encouraging.

  48. godot10 says:

    Pescador: Here’s hoping Pulji can break that tend

    I don’t think Puljujarvi is a first shot scorer. I think he is an all around forward, a young and uncut rough diamond just out of the kimberlite

  49. godot10 says:

    Rake 2.0:
    https://theathletic.com/74290/2017/07/09/sunday-q-and-a-todd-nelson-and-his-jam-it-down-their-throat-coaching-philosophy/

    I feel like this coaching philosophy would have been great with our current lineup. It might also explain why nude and poo were so good together that season. They are ideal players Nelson’s system.

    Bummer that Arizona is going with Tocchet. This is the year of the assistant head coaches getting hired. Sakic hiring that clunker of a AHL coach last August cost Nelson his shot this year. Have to wait for all the promoted assistants to fall flat on their faces for the legit AHL guys to get a shot again.

    This will be Blaisdell’s 3rd year in Detroit…if he doesn’t get the Red Wings turned around, maybe Nelson will get his shot there.

    Maybe the Jets will tire of Maurice. That would be a great landing spot for Nelson also.

  50. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Too bad Jesse is guaranteed a top 9 roster spot, Slepyshev as well.

    Jagr still playing like a 1st line winger, wouldn’t be surprised if he signed 3 hours south of Edmonton and they ended up the better of the Alberta teams this coming season

  51. Evilas says:

    For those interested U19 Basketball Finals are on TSN 2 right now Canada vs Italy. This is historic for Canada. If you don’t have TSN FIBA.com is live streaming on YouTube.

    I watched Canada vs US at Universiad 83 at the Butterdome, they had Barkley and Karl Malone on that team, Canada beat them and then went to the final vs Yugoslavia, a basketball powerhouse and beat them for gold. For me it was the most incredible Canadian sports accomplishment in history.

    This is not close o that level, but it speaks to how our basketball is starting to be amongst the best in the world.

  52. Lowetide says:

    Centre of attention:
    Lowetide,

    I think Puljujarvi has an NHL shot. He was extremely unlucky last year. I’ve noticed it going back and re-watching games every now and then. Remember that chance he had right in his wheelhouse from a Connor feed, he posted it with the goalie completely down and out. Maroon cleaned it up. Puljujarvi had quite a few of those moments actually, and the fact he was at least getting looks is encouraging.

    I remember that play well, had already counted it as in.

  53. LadiesloveSmid says:

    I’m of the mind Pulju was a better prospect at the time of his draft than Draisaitl was, and nothing’s changed comparing their D+1s. Draisaitl took off in his D+2 but that remains to be seen for Jesse. I’ve got little doubts he can be a quality 1st line winger down the road. Very raw coming out of the draft.

  54. Derek says:

    jfry:
    I’m curious why we’re now saying that he’s going to be a less impressive goal scorer than we originally thought? Outside of small sample size tournaments he’s never put up numbers.

    How are we looking at his draft year, now, and coming to this conclusion?

    I’m a huge math guy, but video leasing up to the draft showed that he had a muffin of a shot. At the time I said he was a slightly more dynamic MPS and I think it still fits. It always baffled me that he was part of the consensus top three and everyone made fun of Columbus for skipping in him.

    Disclaimer: I’m not a scout.

    From his draft season
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4wdTpfxDhiw

    Looks like a decent snapshot with a quick release and a fairly nice looking one timer from the top of the circles.

    That could just be because he’s shooting on Finnish league goalies though.

    I believe he has a + shot, but he needs to figure out how to get it off in the smaller rinks.

    Fingers crossed.

  55. SwedishPoster says:

    Lowetide,

    The NHLes for Finland are pretty much useless, in particular when it comes to draftees and U20 players. They are skewed by the Petrells of the world combined with crappy sample size.
    Puljujärvi was scoring at a solid but not great clip for a guy in his draft year and he grew all year. He was fairly young for a draftee as well.
    Imo he needed another season back home, was pretty obvious he wasn’t NHL ready and I think he needed time to mature physically and mentally before moving to another country. He took the NA route instead and had an ok to mediocre first year, which tbh was fairly expected. Hopefully he comes back this fall after a full summer of training, he didn’t have that last year due to injury, more comfortable in his new home, thus more confident and fully grown into his body. The mental maturity will probably take a little longer but let’s hope last years experience jumpstarted that as well.
    I’d like to see Puljujärvi with confidence and in optimal physical shape before making any kind of educated guess regarding his offense at the NHL level. Way too early to be worried imo.

  56. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Puljujarvi overpowered a couple goalies in Penticton with a shot that appeared to explode on them, & handcuffed a few at the NHL level with the difference being ugly rebounds rather than ugly goals. His one goal vs Brian Elliott in the season opener being the exception, where Elliott appeared set but couldn’t quite handle the drive. But that was it.

  57. Scungilli Slushy says:

    How many first shot scorers are there in the league? Likely as many as their are elite offensive two way D.

    On the plus side at least they now have multiple forwards that can shoot the puck. There was a fair stretch of muffin shooters .

  58. season not played says:

    Something just seems off with your analysis of the young Oiler wingers. They are doing exactly what they need to in order to have a winning team that is sustainable. I feel like you are not saying what you actually want to say.

    Can’t quite put my finger on it.

  59. Lowetide says:

    season not played:
    Something just seems off with your analysis of the young Oiler wingers. They are doing exactly what they need to in order to have a winning team that is sustainable. I feel like you are not saying what you actually want to say.

    Can’t quite put my finger on it.

    Let me know when your mind reading comes back into view! 🙂

  60. frjohnk says:

    SwedishPoster:
    Lowetide,

    The NHLes for Finland are pretty much useless, in particular when it comes to draftees and U20 players. They are skewed by the Petrells of the world combined with crappy sample size.
    Puljujärvi was scoring at a solid but not great clip for a guy in his draft year and he grew all year. He was fairly young for a draftee as well.
    Imo he needed another season back home, was pretty obvious he wasn’t NHL ready and I think he needed time to mature physically and mentally before moving to another country. He took the NA route instead and had an ok to mediocre first year, which tbh was fairly expected. Hopefully he comes back this fall after a full summer of training, he didn’t have that last year due to injury, more comfortable in his new home, thus more confident and fully grown into his body. The mental maturity will probably take a little longer but let’s hope last years experience jumpstarted that as well.
    I’d like to see Puljujärvi with confidence and in optimal physical shape before making any kind of educated guess regarding his offense at the NHL level. Way too early to be worried imo.

    I specifically remember you saying that JP was not ready for the NHL and should have stayed in Finland.

    You totally nailed it.

    EDIT: I should add, I’m guessing the only reason he stayed up with the big club was to fast track his development.

  61. OmJo says:

    Rake 2.0:
    https://theathletic.com/74290/2017/07/09/sunday-q-and-a-todd-nelson-and-his-jam-it-down-their-throat-coaching-philosophy/

    I feel like this coaching philosophy would have been great with our current lineup. It might also explain why nude and poo were so good together that season. They are ideal players Nelson’s system.

    Good interview. Makes me miss him all over again. Also gives more insight into just how cancerous the locker-room must have been while Eakins was here.

    Nelson is going to be a good coach in this league one day, and I really hope it works out for him on a talented, functional team.

  62. jp says:

    Evilas:
    For those interested U19 Basketball Finals are on TSN 2 right now Canada vs Italy.This is historic for Canada.If you don’t have TSN FIBA.com is live streaming on YouTube.

    I watched Canada vs US at Universiad 83 at the Butterdome, they had Barkley and Karl Malone on that team, Canada beat them and then went to the final vs Yugoslavia, a basketball powerhouse and beat them for gold.For me it was the most incredible Canadian sports accomplishment in history.

    This is not close o that level, but it speaks to how our basketball is starting to be amongst the best in the world.

    I don’t really follow basketball, so thanks for mentioning this. Very cool, and seems like the gold medal game is going well for them so far!

    Also, who’s that RJ Barrett fellow. Leading the tournament in scoring as a 17-year old? That sounds like a big deal.

  63. jtblack says:

    John Chambers,

    I agree. not sure why more players don’t stay in Europe after they are drafted. Malkin and Ovie stayed and were over rype High picks that flourished immediately. I think JP should have done what you said. 1 year in europe. 1 year in AHL. then plan the jump to NHL as a 20 year old.

  64. Professor Q says:

    trencan:
    Puljujarvi is an exceptional skater, more playmaker than shooter in my opinion, he plays a lot like Jere Lehtinen, but “with more offence.”I personally see Yamamoto as Connors future 1RW. JP will be 2RW with Drai.

    Edit: Drai as 2C

    It’d be like having,

    LaFleur with St. Louis (hopefully)

    Sundin with Lehtinen

    Neely with Mini-Datsyuk?

  65. Doug McLachlan says:

    Not sure where all the JP fear is coming from.

    Young, young player who is much further ahead of his peers on the defensive side of the game.

    If Drai and Strome are swinging back and forth from McDavid’s right wing and center on the third line.

    So I see McLellan flipping through the line combinations but let’s go with:

    Maroon -McDavid-Drai/Strome
    Lucic-Nuge/Drai-JP
    Jokinen-Strome-Kassian

  66. Professor Q says:

    jtblack:
    John Chambers,

    I agree.not sure why more players don’t stay in Europe after they are drafted.Malkin and Ovie stayed and were over rype High picks that flourished immediately.I think JP should have done what you said. 1 year in europe. 1 year in AHL. then plan the jump to NHL as a 20 year old.

    I’m not sure if staying another year in Finland would have been significantly more helpful than if he’d spent all of it in Bakersfield, without the extended NHL time.

  67. jtblack says:

    jp,

    “ho’s that RJ Barrett fellow. Leading the tournament in scoring as a 17-year old? That sounds like a big deal”

    Consensus best player in his age Group. Canada producing some great Basketball players!

  68. jtblack says:

    Professor Q,

    “not sure if staying another year in Finland would have been significantly more helpful than if he’d spent all of it in Bakersfield” – I Think the tendenacy for all GM’s is to rush their draft picks … GM’s live in a WIN NOW world, while trying to balance a long term perspective … They take the chance that players can jump in and play early, but it’s so rare …. Bottom line is only about 4 or 5 kids a year play regularily as 18 yr olds …

    JP should not have been on the opening day roster … season him. Develop him … Even this year, I am find if he plays in the AHL all year or half the year … that’s a good thing …

    The Oilers and many other organizations have shown us what rushing prospects can do …

  69. jtblack says:

    Doug McLachlan,

    Its going to be really interesting .. IF RNH plays the toughs again, JP needs to be on another line ..

    My preference is that Leon Centers line #2 and see if he can drive play like playoffs … I see this as the “best” chance on a path to the Stanley Cup … I also think if and when RNH gets moved, Leon has to be an effective C …

  70. Pouzar says:

    frjohnk: I specifically remember you saying that JP was not ready for the NHL and should have stayed in Finland.
    You totally nailed it.

    Pouzar says Hello.

  71. jp says:

    jtblack:
    jp,

    “ho’s that RJ Barrett fellow. Leading the tournament in scoring as a 17-year old? That sounds like a big deal”

    Consensus best player in his age Group.Canada producing some great Basketball players!

    No doubt. Who dominates a U19 tournament at 17? That’s almost unheard of, at least in hockey.

    Congats to the team as well, just finished off the game vs Italy. Huge achievement for those young men!

  72. Munny says:

    I, for one, am glad Pujo came over last year and started the adjustment process sooner rather than later. This year he can focus on hockey which is much better than spending it half-bewildered by environment. You want to make it through the forest earlier rather than later when it comes to development. The goal isn’t to make the Math happy.

    Add in the NHL coaching and organizational attention he received last year, and Pujo will be a better player for it in the long run.

  73. JDî says:

    jp: No doubt. Who dominates a U19 tournament at 17? That’s almost unheard of, at least in hockey.

    I can think of one former Oiler who did it at 16:

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

  74. Bruce McCurdy says:

    jp: No doubt. Who dominates a U19 tournament at 17? That’s almost unheard of, at least in hockey.

    Who dominates a **U20** tournament at 17? Jesse Puljujarvi, that’s who. Scoring leader & MVP of the 2016 World Junior at age 17 years 8 months

  75. rickithebear says:

    Lt;
    How many types of scorers are there?
    First shot
    2nd shot
    No shot

    Lets llok at the shooting % the 3 seasons before the trade or signing
    And
    Shots per shift

    Kassian

    Maroon

    Lucic

    Desharnais

    Jokinen

  76. theres oil in virginia says:

    season not played:
    Something just seems off with your analysis of the young Oiler wingers. They are doing exactly what they need to in order to have a winning team that is sustainable. I feel like you are not saying what you actually want to say.

    Can’t quite put my finger on it.

    Channel your inner “Steve Smith”.

  77. jp says:

    JDî,

    Bruce McCurdy,

    Fair points both. Impressive performances all around.

  78. Jethro Tull says:

    frjohnk: I specifically remember you saying that JP was not ready for the NHL and should have stayed in Finland.

    You totally nailed it.

    EDIT: I should add, I’m guessing the only reason he stayed up with the big club was to fast track his development.

    Yes, because if you have trouble beating NHL caliber goalies, the place to learn is in a league you already dominate, instead if coming to North America and actually playing against NHL goalies.

  79. Lowetide says:

    Jethro Tull: Yes, because if you have trouble beating NHL caliber goalies, the place to learn is in a league you already dominate, instead if coming to North America and actually playing against NHL goalies.

    I’ve always felt it wise to move players along as soon as they dominate. I don’t think JP dominated the Sm-Liiga, nor the AHL, so would start him back in Bakersfield.

  80. --hudson-- says:

    Evilas:
    For those interested U19 Basketball Finals are on TSN 2 right now Canada vs Italy.This is historic for Canada.If you don’t have TSN FIBA.com is live streaming on YouTube.

    I watched Canada vs US at Universiad 83 at the Butterdome, they had Barkley and Karl Malone on that team, Canada beat them and then went to the final vs Yugoslavia, a basketball powerhouse and beat them for gold.For me it was the most incredible Canadian sports accomplishment in history.

    This is not close o that level, but it speaks to how our basketball is starting to be amongst the best in the world.

    Thank you for the context on that game! I went to it as a kid but didn’t understand it was a championship game. Now I’m getting a flood of memories… remember there being Canadian flags waved outside, cars honking their horns, Canada having a really small point guard that led the effort, and remember seeing them cut the net off the rim (which I didn’t know was a tradition).

    I also got the late Larry Highbaugh’s autograph in the stands.

  81. Jethro Tull says:

    Lowetide: I’ve always felt it wise to move players along as soon as they dominate. I don’t think JP dominated the Sm-Liiga, nor the AHL, so would start him back in Bakersfield.

    Kinda what i meant but didnt say :-).

    If you want to polish skills, then stand pat. If you want to improve, then play against better players. The AHL has better players and borderline NHLers. This is where you learn the NA game.

  82. frjohnk says:

    Pouzar: Pouzar says Hello.

    Sorry Pouzar you mentioned that as well.

  83. Evilas says:

    –hudson–,

    There not much info to be found on the Al Gore, but I found this: http://robvogt80s.blogspot.ca/2013/04/canadas-greatest-basketball-moment.html?m=1

    A few years ago I found a Universiade 83 Commemorative Hard cover book at the JP Value Village, it was in mint condition. Thumbing through the pages, I looked at the US roster, in 83 I was a young teen from a small farm near Onoway who only played basketball, but knew very little of it ( we only got 2 1/2 channels), but I voraciously read Sports Illustrated at the school library. I remember reading about Barkley in college, but didn’t know he was on this team.

    The Yugoslavian roster later formed the foundation of the 1990 world championship team.

  84. --hudson-- says:

    Evilas:
    –hudson–,

    There not much info to be found on the Al Gore, but I found this: http://robvogt80s.blogspot.ca/2013/04/canadas-greatest-basketball-moment.html?m=1

    A few years ago I found a Universiade 83 Commemorative Hard cover book at the JP Value Village, it was in mint condition.Thumbing through the pages, I looked at the US roster, in 83 I was a young teen from a small farm near Onoway who only played basketball, but knew very little of it ( we only got 2 1/2 channels), but I voraciously read Sports Illustrated at the school library.I remember reading about Barkley in college, but didn’t know he was on this team.

    The Yugoslavian roster later formed the foundation of the 1990 world championship team.

    Thanks again for this! Eli Pasquale was the little point guard I was remembering. Crazy how mentioning this brought back so many memories.

  85. Evilas says:

    You are welcome!

    Another reminder that despite its small size and relative insignificance in the world, Edmonton has been the site of some incredible sporting events. Especially in the 80’s.

    I attended the UofA in Phys Ed in 86-87and I volunteered for the Cdn Track & Field championships held at the Butterdome. I pressed the remote on the CP photographer’s automated camera, as he used his handheld camera to take photos of Ben Johnson as he tied the 60m World Indoor Record.

    Johnson is a surprisingly small man (I am only 5’10” and I towered over him) he was incensed at the false starts and was pissed because he thought they were doing it on purpose to throw him off. He so wanted to smash the record, but thought the false starts prevented that.

    Also, next door I would eat my lunch at Clare Drake arena and the fall of 86 as I watched 99 and several other Oilers including NHLers such as Doug Wilson scrimmage to prepare for training camp.

    Truly the 1980s were a golden age for sports in Edmonton (Eskimos, Trappers, Drillers, Susan Nattress, etc also come to mind).

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!
© Copyright - Lowetide.ca