Update on Oilers’ 2003 Draft Picks

Marc Pouliot: 9gp, 0-0-0, -7 (NHL), 10gp, 3-5-8, -1 (AHL). He’s in the AHL and that’s not good baby. The Oilers 2001 pick (Hemsky) is an established 1line winger, their 2002 pick (Niinimaki) is an established 1line bust, and Pouliot was somewhere in between last spring. Now? If the Oilers sent him to Pittsburgh for a pick would anyone be surprised? It seems to have gone sideways in two ways: MP didn’t do his strength and conditioning work and he got passed in coaching meetings before TC by Cogliano and (maybe) Gagner. Either way, he’s as dead as Zoolander’s dead mother in the Oilers organization right now. I think he has an NHL career, but for the first time since he was drafted it’s uncertain it’ll be as an Oiler.

Colin McDonald: 19gp, 4-8-12, -5 (AHL). You know, it’s funny (this is a phrase you should always be wary of, like “I’m going to be completely honest with you”). He’s 6 months older than Pouliot, spent 4 years with the Providence Friars not scoring goals while we all talked about Pouliot and right now I’d say he’s probably in at least as good a spot as Pouliot moving forward. Of all the Coke Machines drafted 01-04, McDonald has adjusted better than anyone to the pro game (based on results and published reports). Weird.

Jean-Francois Jacques: 9gp, 0-0-0, -3 (NHL), 15gp, 3-5-8, -10 (AHL). Good grief. What the hell is going on with these French kids? The guy is 4gp, 0-0-0, -4 in his last 4 AHL games so it looks like he can’t score in the NHL or the AHL now. This is awful.

Mikael Youkov: 22gp, 2-3-5 (RSL). russianprospects.com reports he was dropped from his line recently in favor of a 17 year old kid (Kirill Petrov). It’s been awhile since anyone in the Oilers organization even mentioned him. 2 points in his last 11 games.

Zack Stortini: 13gp, 0-0-0, -2 (NHL). There were two plays last night that kind of describe him as a hockey player. First sequence he’s flattened at the blueline, picks the wrong guy to fight and hugs him until all the males viewing become uncomfortable. Second sequence is late in the game where the Oilers were hemmed in their own end for a LONG time and Stortini managed to be out of position for all of it. ALL OF IT! He must be doing something to impress, like bench pressing MacT’s house or something. He doesn’t do much to help the team win, that I’m confident in saying.

Kyle Brodziak: 22gp, 3-5-8, -3 (NHL). A full year older than Pouliot, Brodziak is the one player from the 2003 Oilers’ draft who is establishing himself at the NHL level this season. Unlike Pouliot (and Nilsson), Brodziak is able to follow up good performances with better ones.

Mathieu Roy: 4gp, 0-0-0, -1 (NHL). Hard luck Roy is picking up a concussion every two games or so at the NHL level. One wonders about his long term future, but he’s certainly a guy who looks like he can play at this level in a 5/6 role.

Jozef Hrabel: 28go, 1-5-6 (RSL). He’s not delivering offense like he did last season, but at age 22 he’s played over 100 games at a very high level (RSL and Czech Elite League). I don’t honestly know if he’s still Oilers’ property (in a hockey sense).

Troy Bodie: 18gp, 4-3-7, +1 (AHL). He was drafted 278th overall so he’s a success no matter what happens from here on out. Big man, huge even. Guy Flaming says his skating has improved. You never know.

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9 Responses to "Update on Oilers’ 2003 Draft Picks"

  1. Nelson88 says:

    what’s the betting line on the last 4 picks having more career NHL games than the first 4 when all is said and done?

    i’m a believer that the oiler’s drafting has improved significantly in the last 6 years but in a strong 2003 draft they must have had a collective brain fart.

    i liked your carcillo comparison. lets hope jfj gets there and its with the team that drafted him.

  2. Bruce says:

    By K-Lowe’s standards this is a good draft, five guys have played in the NHL this season, right? That four of them have a combined 35 GP, 0-0-0, -13, speaks volumes. The silver lining is Brodziak looks like a player, a solid third-liner who may yet have some upside. But it’s a pretty weak showing to date from a deep draft year.

    This guy Bodie has intrigued me every time I have seen him (which admittedly is not often). Like Stortini, he’s huge, and has got a lot of try. Raw talent, on the other hand …

  3. Andreas says:

    I will never understand why a player like Joukov went to a top club in Russia when he was about to have a break out year as 1st line center in the Swedish 2nd division.

    It must be much better to play tons of minutes at a little lower level then be a 4th line grinder with very limited ice time.

  4. dawgbone says:

    I know it’s kosher to beat up on Stortini (both on the ice and on the internet), but that cycle the Hawks had was far from his fault.

    Torres was doing just as much running around, and was in fact responsible twice for not being on his point man when the puck got down there. 3 times he was down in the corner with no one on his point.

    Stoll also wasn’t covering for anything. While Torres and Stortini were bouncing up and down the walls going for pucks, Stoll was busy alternating between standing beside the other 2 defencemen.

    And correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t the Hawks only manage 1 shot on goal during that cycle? You can spend 3 minutes in your end, but if all the other team is doing is playing catch on the wall, it’s not a threat.

  5. George B says:

    Never been a fan of any of the 2003 picks. I was hoping Pouliot was going to be a player, but this draft to me is very hurtful.

    There are tons of draft hacks that could have done a far better job than the folks getting paid the big bucks to do it.

    That said, I feel fortunate that Sam Gagner was the best player on their list in 2007.

  6. Dennis says:

    DB has a point, here. That shift was absolute chaos. At one point, there were three Oilers to left of Roli, just about mid slot. All I was thinking was, “I wonder if we can take it to OT” because I was sure the Hawks would tie it.

    But, my deal with Stortini is if we’re not worried about winning games this year, and look at the way Lowe built this team and the way MacT runs the bench at certain times, ie the 8-13-89 line taking an own zone draw vs the Kane lane after a TV timeout had allowed everyone to rest, then my question is: why are we wasting development time on Stortini?

    Wouldn’t it be better to give that time to Pouliot or Thor? I don’t mention Nilsson because he’s had some time with 10-83 and if he was creating chances, he’d get to stick around.

    In any case, on these prospects, yeah, hard to go against Macdonald. His year year shows promise in terms of being a player, not an offensive one mind you, but we might be able to fashion something out of him.

    Regarding Pouliot and Jacques, I’m not saying I’m against giving these kids their kicks in the AHL ass but every now and then, some guys just shut it down and say fuck it and wait until they get dealt. I’m not saying that’s what either of MP or JFJ are doing, it just looks odd that both are slumping. Then again, maybe it’s just a case of bad puck luck.

  7. ClaytonMagnet says:

    He’s 6 months older than Pouliot, spent 4 years with the Providence Friars not scoring goals while we all talked about Pouliot and right now I’d say he’s probably in at least as good a spot as Pouliot moving forward.

    I think I’d much rather be in MacDonald’s position than MAP. We all know MAP had a spot to lose on the team, all he needed was to act like a pro athlete, show up ready, and bust his ass. How many kids would die for that chance? And by all accounts, he skipped the hard work, and shit the bed as a result. IMO, that is enough to seal his fate, espescially with MacT.

    MacDonald, however, has the benefit of not having his shot yet. LT, I think you had a link a while back to an article about him, where his dad (total unbiased, I’m guessing) was raving about Colin’s work ethic, how he was totally A-type, to the point of over-doing it, whenever he set his mind to something. I think if he really does work that hard, he’s got a great shot of at least a cup of coffee. The one thing Huggy Bear has going for him is he tries like crazy. And apparently, if you have lots of size, then talent, speed, hands, and brains are optional, all you need is lots of try. So in that case, MacDonald will get his chance.

  8. Bruce says:

    why are we wasting development time on Stortini?

    Cuz Stortini is 22 years old, a young and developing forward. One could argue that Oilers have been wasting time on pretty much all of their 22-year-old prospects this year, judging by results:

    Pouliot 9 GP, 92:50 TOI, 0-0-0, -7
    Stortini 13 GP, 88:24 TOI, 0-0-0, -2
    Jacques: 9 GP, 55:27 TOI, 0-0-0, -3

    Let’s roll out a new (?) stat, -/60 (minus per 60):

    Stortini -1.36
    Jacques: -3.25
    Pouliot -4.52

    So by that metric Stortini has actually been by far the least useless :) of those three “prospects” from that 2003 draft. It certainly explains why Pouliot and Jacques are in the minors.

    I have to say I’m with dawgbone on this one … as an Oiler fan I’m prepared to give Stortini just as much rope as those other guys, or Nilsson or Schremp for that matter. They’re young guys, they’re going to make mistakes, the question is how bad do we get clobbered during their OJT. And so far, that’s Stortini least of all.

    Here’s a kid just turned 22, a 94th overall draft pick, and he’s already got 42 NHL games under his belt over parts of two seasons. He’s big, he’s tough, he’s conscientious, and he’s eager to learn. Sure his skating needs work, and he doesn’t exactly evoke memories of Dave Brown when he drops the mitts. But he is NOT without promise; in the long run he could be another widebody forcing play in the other team’s zone, and maybe earning a little respect around the league and the space that comes with it. I say give the kid some time, and give him a little support while we’re at it.

  9. Ribs says:

    He must be doing something to impress, like bench pressing MacT’s house or something.

    Haha.. I don’t know what that means, but it’s hilarious.

    I’m still a believer when it comes to Pouliot. I think it’s just a matter of time and circumstance before we see him break out as an impact player. Whether that’s in Edmonton or not is anyone’s guess.

    I don’t feel the same love for JFJ but it sure would be nice if he figured out how to be effective….at anything.

    Brodziak makes me wonder if this team really does miss Ethan Moreau.

    I imagine Roy’s hockey career will be a short one, and that’s truly a shame.

    When it comes to coke-machines, I’d just as soon move on to the next guy. They are always inconsistent and there are only a handful of guys in the league at any given time that can fulfill any of the lofty expectations that come with them. It’s hard for me to expect much from Colin McDonald.

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