TRAINING CAMP HOPEFUL NO. 6: BRAD MALONE

The Anton Lander role—No. 5 center, penalty killer—is wide open this fall and newcomer Brad Malone has a chance at the roster because of it. Malone fits under several Chiarelli/McLellan categories, including toughness and utility.

RE 17-18: 20GP, 1-1-2 (.100)

  • What role will Malone apply for? Malone would be 14F, No. 5 center and a penalty killing option with a physical presence.
  • Does he have a real chance? I think Malone has an excellent chance to play in the NHL this season, probably less than 50 percent to make the opening night roster, and I don’t think he’ll keep the job for a long stretch of the season.
  • What makes him attractive for this roster? Malone has some good numbers on the PK, leading the Hurricanes in 2015-16 with 35.80 Shots-against per 60. He was not effective in the previous season. Small sample size alert on both occasions.
  • What will his role be in Bakersfield? Condors don’t have a lot in the way of centermen, so Malone should get a prominent place. Offensively he’s more suited to a checking role even in the AHL.
  • What one thing will get him to the NHL? The PK option is intriguing. I have the Oilers with regulars Nuge, Letestu, McDavid, Caggiula, Jokinen, Kassian among what might be the top 12F. Some of those men were not outstanding in that role a year ago. Malone might be the seventh option out of camp and that could get him a job.
  • What will keep him from getting an NHL look? Numbers, goals for. In terms of getting into the lineup, there are 12 men who are going to be ahead of him and that means pressbox unless injury or a struggling PK. I think Jujhar Khaira has the edge but that’s only on paper. Malone’s path to an NHL job is narrow, but PK, faceoffs and being able to sit for a week at a time do have value.
  • How many players can he reasonably be expected to pass in one winter? I don’t think he’s going to pass anyone, but could complement the group. The key advantage Malone has is that he’s a center. Edmonton’s depth chart is impressive (McDavid, Draisaitl/Strome, Nuge, Letestu) but there are still enough chores to warrant a 5C.
  • Anyone else? There could be someone (Mitch Callahan?) among the wingers who can fill this role adequately. That’s the sole reason for such a low GP RE. Malone has the clearest shot at this job based on what we know, but we’ll see how things look in TC. Todd McLellan may decide he doesn’t need an extra center.

RE 17-18 (SO FAR)

I should have the forwards done by this time next week, we’ll spend the middle part of August on a fairly substantial group of defensemen and then the goalies. Hope you are enjoying the series!

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11 Responses to "TRAINING CAMP HOPEFUL NO. 6: BRAD MALONE"

  1. OriginalPouzar says:

    Good depth to have in the organization – he does have almost 200 NHL games.

    Given his age and experience, there won’t be many surprises with him at camp – PC kind of knows what he acquired.

    If he does play in the NHL this year, it likely means either injuries have hit significantly or the PK is costing us hockey games.

  2. cowboy bill says:

    Malone & Khaira will battle it out for that 14th forward spot . Malone is the more experienced .

  3. stush18 says:

    If him and Khaira show well enough this season, is letestu moved?

  4. Lowetide says:

    stush18:
    If him and Khaira show well enough this season, is letestu moved?

    Letestu is a Swiss Army knife, neither man can do what he can.

  5. theDjdj says:

    Lowetide: Letestu is a Swiss Army knife, neither man can do what he can.

    Quite a clever signing by Chiarelli really. He is the God of Small Moves. A lot of merit in debating his big ticket trades but we could all agree his smaller moves have been good to great to genius.

    Bringing in Malone et al as organisational depth/challenge to the prospects/small bid gambling is something you see mature organisations do. Glad to see it at OEG.

  6. jp says:

    He’s unlikely to ever make it as high as 4C on a regular basis, but still good depth to have. PC signed him for 2 yrs, so gotta think the does have a legit shot at 14F.

    Also, OT, but just noticed Zach O’Brien on your depth chart from this morning. Didn’t recognize the name, looked him up, and agree he could be a scorer for Bakersfield. Amazing thing though – the man has taken just 9 minor penalties over the past 7 yrs of hockey. 1 minor over 3 yrs in the Q and 8 in his 4 yrs as a pro. Never seen anything like that before.

    http://www.eliteprospects.com/player.php?player=44601

  7. Munny says:

    LT said…

    The PK option is intriguing. I have the Oilers with regulars Nuge, Letestu, McDavid, Caggiula, Jokinen, Kassian among what might be the top 12F. Some of those men were not outstanding in that role a year ago

    Especially Nuge. And this should be a calling card for him. Maybe the load he’s carrying at EVs is affecting his numbers or maybe it’s the platoon and not him, but he needs to be better. Worst numbers on the team last year.

  8. stush18 says:

    Lowetide: Letestu is a Swiss Army knife, neither man can do what he can.

    Sure. But I really felt the PK suffered with him on the ice. If he doesn’t win the faceoff, he isn’t that valuable imo.

    As far as the power play goes, I’m hoping one of slepy/strome/JP can fill that role.

  9. Scungilli Slushy says:

    PK is skating and anticipation. Simply standing in lanes. Forwards without agility and a quick first step will struggle, and players who don’t think well.

    D can be a bit slower footed because they are at the bottom of the triangle and have less distance to move.

    Letestu is smart, sturdy, skilled, and has slow boots, his kryptonite.

  10. digger50 says:

    Looking at the REs as a team, you can certainly see the different layers of offence.

    Would love it if we had another 45-50 point player but we don’t. Pray Jessie gets there but I think this year he comes in around 35. Drake I’m guessing around 30. Klefbom 35-40?

    Looking at the group however we really cannot afford to drop Nuges point production.

  11. digger50 says:

    Floridas moves are unusual in that:

    They buy out Jussi J
    Lose Marchesault to expansion
    Let Jagr walk
    Let Vanek walk

    All these guys would be if interest to us, and Oeter did sign Jussi.

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