Josef Hrabal (left in photo) is a pretty good hockey player. Where he ranks on the Edmonton Oilers’ depth chart is still a mystery but we’re closer to having it solved than at any time since he was drafted 248th overall in the year Edmonton contracted Pouliot.
Unlike the buzz surrounding Jesus Mikhnov’s Atlantic (or Pacific, or Arctic) Crossing, there has been very little attention paid to Hrabal.
I’m pulling for this guy because Frank Musil must have done something to get him on the Oilers list and Frank Musil’s finds seem to be left in the Tickle trunk on draft day while the Oilers select 5 Swedes at a time every year.
I’m also curious about how good he might be, and about the fact we may have been fawning over the wrong guy (Traktor boy) while this fellow has been doing good things in the hinterlands. Consider the plus minus numbers for Hrabel’s 07-08 team:
- Alexander Shinin (23) 56gp, 9-8-17 +2 28pims
- Josef Hrabal (22) 56gp, 3-10-13 +10 73pims
- Petr Caslava (28) 54gp, 2-8-10 +5 69pims
- Yuri Aleksandrov (19) 45gp, 5-5-10 -2 32pims
- Mikhail Kuklev (25) 56gp, 1-6-7 -8 57pims
- Dmitru Krasotkin (36) 44gp, 3-1-4 -6 14pims
- Stanislav Egorshev (20) 21gp, 2-1-3 -1 8pims
- Dmitri Yushkevich (36) 29gp, 0-2-2 -7 22pims
- Pavel Kanarski (25) 10gp, 0-1-1 +5 10pims
- Sergei Gimaev (23) 39gp, 1-0-1 -4 30pims
- Andrei Esipov (27) 27gp, 1-0-1 -6 10pims
- Maksim Chudinov (17) 18gp, 0-0-0 -3 10pims
According to hockeydb (the numbers above are from eurohockey.net) his team (Cherepovets Severstal) scored 10 fewer goals than allowed and were slightly above .500 (26-24) as a team. Hrabel led the team’s defense in assists, +/- and pims.
Look, the RSL is a good league. Denis Grebeshkov was there in 06-07 and went 47gp, 8-8-16 +9 on a better club (by GF-GA and W-L) than the one Hrabel played for this past season. I’m not saying the Oilers mailed themselves another Grebeshkov but this guy might be a useful player as soon as this season.