At the beginning of the summer, we talked about the Oilers having a bunch of young kids at forward who were “neck and neck” to make the club. The Desjardins NHLE numbers for Nilsson, Jacques, Brodziak and Pouliot were very close and Rob Schremp wasn’t far behind.
Here, let me list the AHL 06-07 Desjardins’ NHL stats for Oilers prospects so we can see just how close it was in terms of counting numbers:
- Robert Nilsson 82gp, 10-27-37 (21)
- Marc Pouliot 82gp, 16-20-36 (21)
- Jean Francois Jacques 82gp, 13-23-36 (21)
- Kyle Brodziak 82gp, 15-20-35 (22)
- Rob Schremp 82gp, 10-21-31 (20)
- Tom Gilbert 82gp, 3-18-21 (23)
- Mathieu Roy 82gp, 7-13-20 (23)
- Tyler Spurgeon 82gp, 6-12-18 (20)
- Alexei Mikhnov 82gp, 6-12-18 (24)
- Danny Syvret 82gp, 3-11-14 (21)
- Zack Stortini 82gp, 7-5-12 (20)
- Brock Radunske 82gp, 3-0-3 (23)
- Troy Bodie 82gp, 0-2-2 (21)
- Bryan Young 82gp, 0-1-1 (20)
That’s per 82gp, numbers are nicked based on 06-07 age (as per Gabriel Desjardins NHLE). In any given year if you have 5 guys (like 1-5 above) knocking on the door a team should be thrilled that two have established themselves. We shouldn’t be terribly surprised either that it was Nilsson and Brodziak who found a way, since one was part of the Smyth return (and without overstating it they were going to have a long look at a guy like that) and the other was made in the image of the head coach. Not to take anything away from either, they’ve both earned it.
The question now is about Pouliot and Jacques, two rfa’s. Do the Oilers sign either to a one-way contract at fewer dollars for 08-09? Or do they deal them in the summer for a mid-round pick? It’s possible Marc Pouliot will play tonight. If he does, he needs to show something.