Draft and Fallow

At the media avail last week, Peter Chiarelli told the gathered throng he was open to trading the first-round pick (unless Edmonton wins a lottery). What’s the value of that pick? Why would Edmonton contemplate such a thing? I believe the answers are “bigly” and “if a potential impact forward isn’t there at No. 9 they’re trading down or out” at this time.

THE ATHLETIC!

Great offer! Includes a free 7-day trial so you can try The Athletic on for size free and see if they enjoy the in-depth, ad-free coverage on the site. Offer is here.

  • New Lowetide: Connor McDavid’s incredible season (will link)
  • Lowetide: Rattie signed, more work to do on right-wing.
  • Lowetide: Trio of Condors blue have very different rookie experiences.
  • Black Dog Pat: Not firing Chiarelli a slap in the face to Oilers fans.
  • Lowetide: Trading the first-round pick: Oilers ponder summer
  • Lowetide: Oilers summer to-do list short and sweet.
  • Lowetide: Draft 2018: The Oilers and Russia: A draft tragedy.
  • 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 2018Oilers and the WHL.
  • Lowetide: Draft 2018: Oilers draft history and the OHL
  • Lowetide: Draft 2018: The Oilers and the NCAA.

The 2018 Draft

The Oilers badly needed Jesse Puljujarvi to turn out immediately and that hasn’t happened. I think the club would be very interested in drafting a top-end forward if available at No. 9, but are likely less enthralled with a defensive option not named Rasmus Dahlin or Quinn Hughes. This is my opinion. Since we have 10 days before the lottery, I thought it would be a good idea to discuss options for the eight teams ahead of Edmonton, and then what might be left at No. 9. I’m going to focus on forwards through the piece and will use the latest ISS April list as my guide.

  1. Buffalo Sabres: LD Rasmus Dahlin, Frolunda (SHL). Buffalo could use a franchise player at any position, and the depth chart at LHD (based on 5×5 ice time: Marco Scandella, Jake McCabe, Nathan Beaulieu) could use the spark. I’m hoping Arizona wins the lottery but the choice at No. 1 will remain the same. If Buffalo falls out of top spot, look for a scoring winger to be high on the wish list (and there are a few available).
  2. Ottawa Senators: L Filip Zadina, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL). Ottawa is open to make a trade but there’s some exceptional talent at the top of the draft. I believe the club will pass on the Russian (last player from that country chosen in the first round by Ottawa: Anton Volchenkov, 2000) and pick up the Czech. His NHLE is 33.5 and he could be a plug and play.
  3. Arizona Coyotes: R Andrei Svechnikov, Barrie Colts (OHL). He’s very likely the second best player in the draft and could be No. 1five years from now. Svechnikov is that rare player who has both elite skill and a complete skill set. It’s a rare item, Steve Shutt had it but you can go a long time without seeing it. I’m excited to see him in the NHL.
  4. Montreal Canadiens: RC Oliver Wahlstrom, U.S. N. D. P. (USHL). Has pretty much everything the Habs will be looking for, including skill and natural goal-scoring ability. The defensemen will be tempting, but if this elite talent solves the center problem in the next couple of years, Montreal will be thrilled with the selection.
  5. Detroit Red Wings: LD Quinn Hughes, Michigan (NCAA). This is a perfect fit for the Red Wings, who are going to need some astute drafting in the next few years. Fast as lightning, highly skilled and he plays in their back yard.
  6. Vancouver Canucks: L Brady Tkachuk, Boston University (NCAA). They had a chance at his brother, I don’t think Vancouver will pass on another Tkachuk. He’s a rugged player and may be able to step right into the Canucks rebuild.
  7. Chicago Blackhawks: RD Evan Bouchard, London Knights (OHL). The Blackhawks could go any number of ways but grabbing a fairly complete defenseman is a grand idea. The team is in a weird spot, this isn’t a rebuild, but the team is in rare air in terms of the draft and this may be their man at this spot.
  8. New York Rangers: RD Adam Boqvist, Brynas (SuperElite). Another skill pick from the defense, he appears to have his cannons as a prospect pointed toward the offensive end. Because of it, he could fall, but I don’t think he gets to Edmonton.
  9. Edmonton Oilers: LC Joe Veleno, Drummondville Voltigeurs (QMJHL). He’s a highly regarded two-way center and the offense (NHLE: 32.7) spiked in the second half of the year. Edmonton avoids the QMJHL (I wrote about it here) but if names like Quinn Hughes are gone I expect a trade or a forward. Note: I remain convinced Ty Smith will be the best player available at No. 9 overall.

My Top 100 is here and I’ll be talking to Simon Boisvert this morning on the Lowdown about what to do at No. 9 overall. I believe they’ll trade the pick.

WHAT CAN YOU GET FOR NO. 9 OVERALL?

The Oilers were in a conversation with the Vancouver Canucks as the 2013 draft approached. If I recall, the rumored deal was Edmonton’s first-round selection, a second rounder and quality prospect, in exchange for goaltender Cory Schneider. Craig MacTavish balked, and Van sent the goalie to NJD for the selection that turned into Bo Horvat. Here is a brief recent history of picks sent away in this area of the draft.

  • Calgary traded their first-round pick in 2018 (now No. 12 overall), the Flames second-round pick in 2018 and a conditional second rounder in 2019 for D Travis Hamonic. This was a very specific trade and few thought the Flames would miss the playoffs. I don’t think we can gain much knowledge from this deal.
  • Arizona dealt their first rounder in 2017 (No. 7 overall) and Anthony DeAngelo to NY Rangers for Derek Stepan and Antti Raanta. The Rangers were sending money away too, so there’s added  value. Edmonton could possibly look at this deal as a template for immediate help but can’t take on cap so elements of this trade are problematic.
  • Los Angeles Kings traded their first-round selection (No. 13) in 2015, plus Martin Jones and Colin Miller to Boston for Milan Lucic. Edmonton doesn’t have a lot in terms of prospects/young players to send away but this kind of package might be possible (and the pick is higher).
  • Calgary traded their first-round pick (No. 15) in 2015 and two second round picks (No. 45 and No. 52) to Boston for Dougie Hamilton. I think this might be something Edmonton could work with. They have No. 9, No. 40 and No. 71 this year.
  • Edmonton traded their first-round pick (No. 16) and second-round pick (No. 33) to NY Islanders for Griffin Reinhart. This is something Edmonton could do!

WHAT COULD THE OILERS GET FOR NO. 9 AND NO. 40?

The Calgary Flames don’t have their own first-round selection but Dougie Hamilton isn’t coming to Edmonton. The St. Louis Blues are also without their own first rounder, would they ever consider trading Colton Parayko (in a bigger deal)? They traded Bob Hess, so anything is possible. My greatest fear? Oilers trade for Brent Burns.

Central is a guide, the final ranking doesn’t mean as much as Bob McKenzie’s list. However, the final list will offer us clues about spiking Euros and fading North Americans. Things to look for:

  • Joe Veleno moving up from No. 13 North American.
  • Ty Dellandrea moving up from No. 76 North American.
  • Liam Foudy moving up from No. 91 North American.
  • Aidan Dudas moving up from No. 131 North American.
  • Dominik Bokk moving up from No. 8 European.
  • Samuel Fagemo moving up from No. 40 European.

TRADER PETE

It sounds like the priorities are a righty blue and a substantial backup goalie. I think they’ll also look to add a winger or two. The Oilers will have $3-5 million in cap room for one major addition, likely a puck mover. The goalie should cost them $1-1.5 million. Wingers? I think that may involve trades. Who is leaving? That is the question.

Ryan Strome is vulnerable, although management may have seen enough to return him. It may come down to the contract. Jonathan Willis has mentioned Zack Kassian a few times, he’s expensive for a fourth-line winger. I believe Jesse Puljujarvi is vulnerable to a trade but my guess is the big man is back here in the fall. We don’t think of him as an expensive cap investment, but the $2.5 million in possible bonuses must be accounted for opening night. It’s also possible one of the men who own an NMC (Lucic, Sekera, Russell, Talbot) waives and is dealt.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

A busy morning after an incredible sports weekend. It begins at 10, TSN1260. Scheduled to appear:

  • Pierre Lebrun, TSN and The Athletic. Opening playoff series coming into view, panic in Toronto, worry in Winnipeg and a party in Vegas.
  • Simon Boisvert, Prospect Insider. We’re going to discuss what happens at No. 9 overall, the wisdom of trading out or down, and the best player available in that area.
  • Jason Gregor, TSN1260. After all the press conferences, it sounds like Edmonton is going to add a puck mover and a goalie. Anything else?

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!

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224 Responses to "Draft and Fallow"

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  1. SwedishPoster says:

    JimmyV1965: +1

    This is a draft and develop league now and you have to make some hits in the lower rounds or you’re going nowhere.

    On the positive side, I think our drafts have been much better since Chia took over.

    I posted this last night.

    “Just finished listening to a podcast with Keith Conroy from the Boston Herald. When asked why the team could retool so quickly, the first thing he mentioned was the 2014 draft and then the 2015 draft.”

    Agree. Draft, develop. Minor moves for undervalued players. If you are to make a bigger trade, try to not be the guy initiating the trade, that’s how you overpay, which basically means you hold on to your top guys until someone overpays to get them. During FA shop in the bargain bin, no cap killer whales.

    The Sharks vs Ducks series is like an actual shark would fight a duck. Stupidly onesided.

  2. Jaxon says:

    On another 5-on-5 Primary Points Equivalency observation:
    RW Serron Noel is 3rd in Canadian Junior after Svechnikov and Zadina with 2.29 5-on-5 Primary Pts / 60, which is equal to #1 overall Nico Hischier’s equivalency adjusted stat from last year and Jacob Voracek’s. 6’5″, 201lbs and among the youngest in the draft. Pick that guy at #9?

    Cam Robinson – Dobber Prospects – January 9th: “A long, fluid stride generates loads of power and speed for such a big man. A goal scorer first and foremost, he also offers underrated playmaking ability. Quite young for this crop.”

  3. Wilde says:

    Jaxon,

    Serron Noel’s a great prospect. Somehow underrated even though he’s a giant.

    I think a team in the top 10 will end up taking him.

  4. JimmyV1965 says:

    Jaxon:
    Okay, I just read the NHL.com scouting report news release and they mentioned how Svechnikov heated up after returning from his injury in December. So I checked his 5-on-5 primary points in his last 33 games and he was scoring at a pace of 4.45 5-on-5 Primary Pts / 60!!!!!!!!!!!! That puts him ahead of McDavid and Crosby in their draft season. McDavid scored at a pace of 4.41. Crosby scored at a pace of 4.62 in the QMJHL, which equalized to the OHL, works out to 4.06.

    5-on-5 Primary Pts / 60 (equivalency adjusted to OHL)
    Svechnikov (last 33 games) = 4.45
    McDavid = 4.41
    Crosby = 4.06
    P Kane = 3.34
    Hall = 3.02
    MacKinnon = 2.89
    Tavares = 2.73
    Seguin = 2.73
    Stamkos = 2.65
    Zadina = 2.59

    He is far outproducing some very elite NHLers in their draft years. When you look at that list the order is fairly accurate in relation to their production at the NHL level.

    Is he being overshadowed by Dahlin and maybe his “Russianess”? It’s crazy that he is not being talked about as a generational or at least close-to-generational talent. He’s an elite finisher, passer, and skater, he’s big, and good on both sides of the puck. But half the scouting lists have him at #3, behind Zadina. Instead, maybe he should be trading places on half the scouting lists with Dahlin for #1. I know points aren’t everything but the verbal in reports is also near perfect. Is there something the scouts are seeing or not seeing that isn’t mentioned in the reports? Weird.

    That is absolutely crazy!! Wow.

  5. Bulging Twine says:

    Ducks cross checking everything that moves.

  6. Younger Oil says:

    Looking at the Ducks’ penalties tonight:

    One holding
    One cross-checking
    Two roughing
    FIVE SLASHING

    Where the hell were these calls last year?

  7. Pretendergast says:

    Younger Oil:
    Looking at the Ducks’ penalties tonight:

    One holding
    One cross-checking
    Two roughing
    FIVE SLASHING

    Where the hell were these calls last year?

    Hear Hear!

  8. GMB3 says:

    Wilde: It’s not an NHL thing, it’s not a hockey thing, it’s a men thing.

    Every guy I’ve ever seen mention his height in public has exaggerated 2″.

    Until they get down to 5’6″, then they’re 5’9″.

    Source: Most of my friends are women and encounter this especially on Tinder etc. (Even though they never even ask/really care about men’s height as long as they’re not >2″ taller than the guy)

    I know this post isn’t true because you said most your friends are women. Everything I’ve read on twitter says men and women can’t be just friends.

    Lies!

  9. GMB3 says:

    In response to jaxons post about Svechnikov, I think the reason some lists have Zadina over Svechnikov is due to how well he played at the WJHC. This seems to be a common reason some players get overrated by a lot of scouting lists. See JP’s WJHC dominance and cross reference that with not stellar offensive numbers anywhere else.

  10. Wilde says:

    GMB3: I know this post isn’t true because you said most your friends are women. Everything I’ve read on twitter says men and women can’t be just friends.

    Lies!

    I said friends, not *just* friends.

    GMB3:
    In response to jaxons post about Svechnikov, I think the reason some lists have Zadina over Svechnikov is due to how well he played at the WJHC. This seems to be a common reason some players get overrated by a lot of scouting lists. See JP’s WJHC dominance and cross reference that with not stellar offensive numbers anywhere else.

    JP had very good numbers with Karpat for a true 17 year old.

  11. OriginalPouzar says:

    Pretendergast:
    Skinner with the 25 save shutout to move the Broncos past the Warriors.

    Side note: Broncos had to beat probably the best 2 teams in the WHL other than them to get to the 3rd round. Wild cards are weird.

    Yup, on paper, Lethbridge is a much easier opponent than they’ve face but, if the kids think that way themselves, well, we know how sport works.

  12. GMB3 says:

    Wilde,

    1) fair

    2) I originally compared him to Barkov, Laine, and Aho. Didn’t realize I was looking at Aho’s draft +1. Looking st how both Terivainen and Aho spiked in their draft +1 makes me wonder if leaving him the Finland for another year would have been a good idea

  13. GMB3 says:

    Does ethan bear remind anyone else of MAB a touch?

    It will be interesting to see how Berglund and Lagesson pan out, hope both come to training camp and get into some preseason games

  14. ArmchairGM says:

    Four heart-warming wins last night!

  15. ArmchairGM says:

    Damn! Don’t tell me Hall can’t play defensive hockey. He took over that ice in the third, all 200 feet.

  16. OriginalPouzar says:

    GMB3:
    Does ethan bear remind anyone else of MAB a touch?

    It will be interesting to see how Berglund and Lagesson pan out, hope both come to training camp and get into some preseason games

    I think Lagesson is committed to coming over to North America this year so I’m sure he’ll be at camp and in at least a few pre-season games.

    Although all SHL players have an NHL out in their contracts, Berglund is on record stating he’s not quite done with his club team and will spend one more year in Sweden before coming over. WIth that said, I think he’s been here for training camp the last few years and will likely be here again for camp before crossing back over the Atlantic.

  17. OriginalPouzar says:

    GMB3:
    Does ethan bear remind anyone else of MAB a touch?

    I don’t really see it except that they are both offensive minded d-men with defensive deficiencies.

    I see Bear’s defensive deficiencies due to skating and positioning (due to being a rookie pro) whereas MAB was somewhat jittery out there – with and without the puck.

    I see Bear as a much calmer puck distributor.

    Also, Bear is two years younger than MAB was when MAB made his NHL debut, I believe.

  18. ArmchairGM says:

    @Woodguy 2.0 (in reference to the Reinhart trade)

    Acquiring players before their Actual NHL value is known is a key reason why good teams do good and bad teams do bad.
    ******************************************************************
    Good teams don’t pay Actual NHL value for a player before Actual NHL value is known. The Oilers paid Actual NHL value for Reinhart, turns out his value is zero.

  19. Genjutsu says:

    ArmchairGM:
    @Woodguy 2.0 (in reference to the Reinhart trade)

    Acquiring players before their Actual NHL value is known is a key reason why good teams do good and bad teams do bad.
    ******************************************************************
    Good teams don’t pay Actual NHL value for a player before Actual NHL value is known. The Oilers paid Actual NHL value for Reinhart, turns out his value is zero.

    It kinda cuts both ways. If GR turned into the player the team thought he was going to his value would’ve huge and the trade would have looked terrific.

    There were a lot of people that thought GR was going be a very good player. That’s why he was so highly ranked and drafted.

  20. ArmchairGM says:

    Jaxon:
    On another 5-on-5 Primary Points Equivalency observation:
    RW Serron Noel is 3rd in Canadian Junior after Svechnikov and Zadina with 2.29 5-on-5 Primary Pts / 60, which is equal to #1 overall Nico Hischier’s equivalency adjusted stat from last year and Jacob Voracek’s. 6’5″, 201lbs and among the youngest in the draft. Pick that guy at #9?

    Cam Robinson – Dobber Prospects – January 9th: “A long, fluid stride generates loads of power and speed for such a big man. A goal scorer first and foremost, he also offers underrated playmaking ability. Quite young for this crop.”

    Serron Noel:

    Ranked #28 by Hockeyprospect.com
    Ranked #21 by ISS Hockey
    Ranked #31 by Future Considerations
    Ranked #21 by McKeen’s Hockey

    Trade #9 to PHI for #14 and #19? Use #14 for whomever falls out of the “consensus” top-10, #19 on Noel.

  21. ArmchairGM says:

    Genjutsu: It kinda cuts both ways. If GR turned into the player the team thought he was going to his value would’ve huge and the trade would have looked terrific.

    There were a lot of people that thought GR was going be a very good player. That’s why he was so highly ranked and drafted.

    No, disagree completely. Chairelli payed actual NHL value for a defenseman that wasn’t. If GR turned into the player the team thought he was going to his value would’ve been a 1st and a 2nd – exactly what Edmonton paid. Witness:

    Hamilton went for a 1st and two 2nds. At the time Hamilton was coming off his third NHL season (a veteran of 197 NHL games at 22) in which he tallied 42 points in 72 games, having averaged 21:20 per night – already a 1st pairing d-man at 22.

    Hamonic went for a 1st and two 2nds. At the time Hamonic was a veteran of 461 NHL games, well established as a big-minute shutdown defenseman.

    Reinhart went for a 1st and a 2nd. At the time Reinhart, 21, was a veteran of 8 NHL games having posted 1 assist during that time. His AHL season prior to being acquired was 59, 7-15-22 and -13. One of these is not like the others.

    Even if Reinhart had magically become a Hamilton (really, it was too late, Hamilton was already miles ahead), he wouldn’t have commanded any more than he did.

  22. Scungilli Slushy says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Scun

    I met Edler and he was in shorts no shoes. Listed as 6’3, not a chance, maybe with skates. I’ve just been noticing height seems to be helpful to NHL players, even if most aren’t as tall as they are listed.

    I was just poking fun with my comment, nothing intended.

  23. Scungilli Slushy says:

    ArmchairGM: No, disagree completely. Chairelli payed actual NHL value for a defenseman that wasn’t. If GR turned into the player the team thought he was going to his value would’ve been a 1st and a 2nd – exactly what Edmonton paid. Witness:

    Hamilton went for a 1st and two 2nds. At the time Hamilton was coming off his third NHL season (a veteran of 197 NHL games at 22) in which he tallied 42 points in 72 games, having averaged 21:20 per night – already a 1st pairing d-man at 22.

    Hamonic went for a 1st and two 2nds. At the time Hamonic was a veteran of 461 NHL games, well established as a big-minute shutdown defenseman.

    Reinhart went for a 1st and a 2nd. At the time Reinhart, 21, was a veteran of 8 NHL games having posted 1 assist during that time. His AHL season prior to being acquired was 59, 7-15-22 and -13. One of these is not like the others.

    Even if Reinhart had magically become a Hamilton (really, it was too late, Hamilton was already miles ahead), he wouldn’t have commanded any more than he did.

    The 2nd alone given how high it was would have been an overpay for actual performance but at least more palatable.

  24. ArmchairGM says:

    Scungilli Slushy: The 2nd alone given how high it was would have been an overpay for actual performance but at least more palatable.

    Yes. A high second would be in line with “he’s going be a very good player. He was highly ranked and drafted, we’re confident in his ability and willing to pay for potential.”

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