On the weekend they chose him, I wrote the following about Jesse Puljujarvi: The Oilers have enjoyed a lifetime of good luck at the last two drafts, especially the first rounds. They lost the lottery, and won the war. A brilliant, fast train with two-way acumen is a tremendous addition to a forward group who often forget their lessons defensively. We have miles to discuss, but he could start his NA career in Bakersfield as early as this fall—possibly receiving an NHL look. Either way, absolute manna from heaven. Music!
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- New Lowetide: A superb summer in three movements.
- New Jonathan Willis: McDavid’s season shows how much the NHL has changed.
- Lowetide: Looking at Oilers No. 2 line for 2018-19
- Jonathan Willis: An 8-point plan for the Oilers’ offseason.
- Lowetide: Ethan Bear’s first 10 games.
- Lowetide: What are the Oilers getting in Cooper Marody?
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: The Oilers and the Republic of Finland
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: The Oilers and Sweden.
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: The Oilers and the QMJHL.
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: Oilers and the WHL.
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: Oilers draft history and the OHL
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: The Oilers and the NCAA.
WATERLOO SUNSET, YEAR OVER YEAR
- March 2016: 7-6-0, goal differential 0 (14 points)
- March 2017: 10-2-1, goal differential +21 (21 points)
- March 2018: 7-4-2, goal differential +6 (16 points)
- March 26, 2016: Los Angeles 6, Edmonton 4 (Source)
- March 2017 schedule complete
The Oilers have three more games this month and a chance to hit 20 points. Considering the season we’ve all just witnessed, that seems impossible. Connor McDavid going whatever comes after super nova, Cam Talbot’s return to Cambot status and improved special teams are reasons for recent success.
AFTER 76, YEAR OVER YEAR
- Oilers 15-16: 29-40-7, goal differential -48 (65 points)
- Oilers 16-17: 42-25-9, goal differential +38 (93 points)
- Oilers 17-18: 34-36-6, goal differential -25 (74 points)
- March 24, 2016: Edmonton 6, San Jose 3 (Source)
- March 30, 2017: Edmonton 3, San Jose 2 (Source)
We’re close to the end of the season (six games left, including tonight), and the gap between the 15-16 team and last year’s club remains massive. In the final six games of the regular season 2015-16, Edmonton went 2-3-1 to finish 31-43-8, 70 points. The 2016-17 group, already a massive success, would wind down 5-1-0, to conclude 47-26-9, 103 points. This year’s group has been working like hell to finish strong, I keep thinking this lands around 80 points.
WHAT TO EXPECT FROM MARCH
- At home to: Nashville, NY Rangers, Arizona, NY Islanders, Minnesota (Expected 2-3-0) (Actual 3-2-0)
- On the road to: Calgary (Expected 0-1-0) (Actual 0-1-0)
- At home to: San Jose (Expected 0-0-1) (Actual 0-0-1)
- On the road to: Florida, Tampa Bay, Carolina, Ottawa (Expected 1-2-1) (Actual 3-1-0)
- At home to: Los Angeles, Anaheim, Columbus (Expected 2-1-0) (Actual 1-0-1)
- On the road to: Vancouver, Calgary (Expected 1-0-1) (Actual 0-0-0)
- Overall expected result: 6-7-3, 15 points in 16 games
- Current results: 7-4-2, 16 points in 13 games
The Oilers have reached and exceeded my RE with three games to go, I don’t recall a month this season more pleasing. Too late by plenty, but it’s been enjoyable just the same.
OILERS AT THE DRAFT, 2018
- First Round—No. 10 overall
- Second Round—No. 41 overall
- Third Round—No. 72 overall
- Fourth Round—No. 103 overall (Oilers acquired goaltender Al Montoya from the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for a fourth-round pick in 2018)
- Fifth Round—No. 134 overall
- Sixth Round—No. 165 overall
- Seventh Round—No. 196 overall
All this damned winning has poked a giant hole in the Oilers draft pick numbers. Edmonton is actually tied with NY Rangers for No. 22 overall, but have one more win so would in fact select No. 10 before the lottery drawing. Things could change, but the dream of a top-five pick will have to rely on a lottery win.
OILERS MOCK DRAFT 2018
- First Round—No. 10 overall— LD Quinn Hughes, Michigan (NCAA). Fast as lightning defender, smooth as silk.. NHLE: 21.80. Steve Kournianois: Hughes is a strong playmaker with excellent vision, capable of threading the needle with either hard or saucered cross-ice passes. Additionally, he has a heavy shot with a quick release, and goaltenders have to work hard to control rebounds of his shots. Hughes makes plays on his backhand look effortless, and he’s adept at receiving and settling down pucks while traveling at a high rate of speed. His defensive play is relatively sound in terms of positioning and one-on-one tactics. Hughes is a clever thief with a quick stick who transitions from defense to offense in the blink of an eye. He has top-pairing potential and can quarterback any power play regardless of the talent or skill level of the surrounding personnel. Source
- Second Round—No. 36 overall— LC Milos Roman, Vancouver Giants (WHL). A smart player in all areas of the ice. He is a playmaker with the puck on his stick and is a reliable player defensively. A nice range of skills. NHLE: 20.
- Third Round—No. 67 overall—W Samuel Fagemo, Frolunda (SuperElite). Good boots and an excellent shot, he’s a bit one dimensional but scoring goals is the hardest thing to do. Scored five goals in five games at the Hlinka, he shoots right and often plays left-wing. NHLE: 16.6.
- Fourth Round—No. 98 overall (Oilers acquired goaltender Al Montoya from the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for a fourth-round pick in 2018)
- Fifth Round—No. 129 overall—RC Aidan Dudas, Owen Sound Attack (OHL). Small (5.07) and highly skilled (31-34-65 in 68 OHL games) forward. Fabulous with the puck on his stick, elusive and possesses a plus shot. NHLE: 23.5.
- Sixth Round—No. 160 overall—L Jack Randl, Omaha Lancers (USHL). Strong two-way winger who blossomed this season offensively, scoring 19 goals in 42 games. Not on the radar but he can score goals. NHLE: 15.3
- Seventh Round—No. 191 overall—L Cole Fonstadt, Prince Albert Raiders (WHL). Finesse skill winger, great hands. NHLE: 24.1.
It’s a weird draft this season, the Oilers are going to be able to grab one terrific prospect and then a bunch of mid-level bets. They have done well in this area recently (Ethan Bear, Caleb Jones, Filip Berglund, Ostap Safin, Dmitri Samorukov, Kirill Maksimov) and my mock is a series of selections who have at least some offensive ability along with one or two other skills. Roman and Fagemo look like excellent prospects. My goal is to have the top 100 for 2018 published by Wednesday, my recent top 75 is here.
39 saves for Stuart Skinner.
Through three games Skinner has a 1.01 GAA and a 0.972 SV%. https://t.co/6ne1PrBsSM
— EDM Prospect Watch (@EDProspectWatch) March 27, 2018
Most of the goalie prospects struggled this season, Skinner absolutely tore up the charts. After being dealt to the Swift Current Broncos, he’s been an outstanding goalie and I expect he’ll get signed sooner than later.
Verkligen. Och Filip Berglund håller på att växa ut till en jävla storback.
— Robin Lindgren (@robinlindgreen) March 21, 2018
It sounds like Berglund is having a good playoff run (loose translation: “and Filip Berglund is growing out to a fucking sundaresan”). Perhaps Swedish poster can tell us about sundaresan, but it sounds good.
— Bakersfield Condors (@Condors) March 24, 2018
I suspect Joey Laleggia will be heading toward the ‘journeyman’ portion of his career, likely to sign with another NHL team. With the recent success of former Oilers’ farmhands like Jordan Oesterle and Brad Hunt, I wonder if an NHL team will sign Laleggia and deploy him (again) as a defender? He is ideally suited to the modern game, I can see someone taking a shot.
Jesse Puljujarvi needs to be patient….with Strome and Lucic.
— Dustin Nielson (@nielsonTSN1260) March 23, 2018
I read the Craig Simpson comments the other day and honestly think the world has this backwards. This isn’t about Jesse Puljujarvi ‘learning to be a pro’ but it is about the Edmonton Oilers figuring out how to develop talent that isn’t merely plug-and-play. This is a test, sure as hell. The Oilers are the subject.
LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE
A busy, fun morning as we edge nearer baseball’s opening day. At 10 this morning, TSN1260. Scheduled to appear:
- Jonathan Willis, The Athletic. Connor McDavid in the material world.
- JP Hornstra from the Southern California News Group. Is this the Dodgers year?
- Scott Cullen, TSN. McDavid for Hart, Islanders miss playoffs, mlb.
- Jesse Rogers from ESPN Chicago. What about the Cubs? Can Tinker to Evers to Chance work their magic again?
10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. Talk soon!