Todd Marchant was among a plethora of young forwards the Edmonton Oilers took a look at from 1993-1996. This group had considerable sustain, making the playoffs each season 1997-2001 and Ryan Smyth hung around long enough for the thrilling SCF by that beauty team in the spring of 2006.
I think now might be a good time to revisit this time in Oilers history, since “prolonged audition” is likely what is straight ahead for this organization.
1992-1993 was the nadir (for me, anyway) of this organization. Multiple players, multiple losses and the following season multiple coaches. That 1992-93 team lost 50 games, incredible considering how only 3 years earlier the Oilers were on top of the hockey world.
The 1993-94 team had a lot more promise than the previous year, with Doug Weight and Jason Arnott giving a clue about a bright, wonderful future. They weren’t the only ones. Steve Rice, Zdeno Ciger, Dean McAmmond, Kirk Maltby, Todd Marchant and others were on that team, and more came in 1994 and 1995 and 1996.
Would you like the entire list from 93-94? Okay, here’s the list of forwards who were not established NHLers when they arrived in Edmonton and in bold the ones who made it as NHLers:
- Jason Arnott, Zdeno Ciger, Steve Rice, Dean McAmmond, Kirk Maltby, Vladimir Vujtek, Brent Grieve, Scott Thornton, Louie DeBrusk, Peter White, Shjon Podein, Roman Oksiuta, Todd Marchant, Josef Cierny, Brad Zavisha, Alexander Kerch, Tyler Wright.
Some of the guys in bold you could argue over (Tyler Wright), and Ciger had a couple of nice years but he had only 2 seasons above 55 NHL games and despite terrific skills couldn’t establish himself for long despite 352 NHL games. Why? Contract disputes, indifference and general idiocy associated with the very young and the very stupid. That’s what you never know about kids, who has their head on straight and who is an assclown. Those who remember Ciger will know I’m not lying when stating that Zdeno Ciger had enough natural talent to rank in the top 2 on that list (Arnott) and that Maltby, Thornton, Podein and Tyler Wright passed more talented fellows on that list on their way to solid NHL careers as useful players.
Now, let’s list off all the players on the current roster who are not yet established as NHL players, along with a few from the AHL we may see before the end of the season:
- Jonas Almtorp, Troy Bodie, Kyle Brodziak, Andrew Cogliano, Sam Gagner, Stephane Goulet, JF Jacques, Fredrik Johansson, Colin McDonald, Robert Nilsson, Ryan O’Marra, Marc Pouliot, Liam Reddox, Rob Schremp, Patrick Thoresen, Slava Trukhno, Zack Stortini.
I’ve bolded Cogliano and Gagner because, well, duh! but for the rest on this list I have a few questions.
- Which two of these players (excluding Cogliano and Gagner) do you believe will get the most in terms of their NHL career out of this season, and why?
- If there were an expansion draft tomorrow and you (as GM of the Las Vegas Harlots) could choose only one player (once again, excluding Cogliano and Gagner), which one would you choose, and why?
- Which of these players is the modern Zdeno Ciger?
- Which of these players is the modfern Tyler Wright?
- If you could choose between the 1993 version of Weight/Arnott or the 2007 version of Cogliano/Gagner, which would you choose and why?
Thanks in advance.