They’re In the Gate!

This is Taylor Chorney. He was selected by the Edmonton Oilers in that very deep 2005 Entry Draft, at #36. Edmonton used the #25 pick on Andrew Cogliano and they also are in possession of the #15 pick from that draft (Ryan O’Marra) courtesy the Ryan Smyth trade.

A very high percentage of the top 30 picks that season have already played NHL hockey. Twenty of the top 30 picks have made the show, with a guy like TJ Oshie still on the outside looking in due to the college rules. Oshie is very likely to play some NHL hockey this winter.

Taylor Chorney is also a college player turning pro but he’s in a little different situation than Oshie. Chorney begins his pro hockey career in a horse race too close to call with several other kids of the same age, same position.

It’s actually pretty incredible, like the 1993 Harrisburg Senators. The Edmonton Oilers have about 75 defenders and of course only 6 can play at any given time. I think Kevin Lowe and Kevin Prendergast really want to keep the minor league team in Springfield because it looks to me like they’ve signed two teams worth of players. Here’s the D:

  1. Ladislav Smid (owns last NHL job, he’s no Secretariat)
  2. Mathieu Roy (one-way deal with Oilers)
  3. Josef Hrabel (has a lot of Cze and RSL experience)
  4. Theo Peckham (1 AHL season and Oilers #1 D prospect)
  5. Taylor Chorney (turning pro and Oilers #2 D prospect)
  6. Sebastien Bisaillon (explosive talent impressed)
  7. Bryan Young (100 AHL games, 17 NHL cups of coffee)
  8. Cody Wild (13 AHL games after college year)
  9. Jake Taylor (over 200 AHL games)
  10. Jordan Bendfeld (unique on this list in terms of style)
  11. Robbie Bina (fun college player turning pro)
  12. Mike Gabinet (37 of 122 NA pro games in AHL)
  13. Brad Farynuk (36 AHL games and is 26 years old)
  14. Cleve Kinley (has played in 3 NA pro leagues in 2 years)
  15. Ryan Constant (on the fringe of pro hockey)

Is that depth chart fair? Which players have the inside track? Would Peckham be the first callup? What about Hrabel? More to come.

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14 Responses to "They’re In the Gate!"

  1. Jonathan says:

    Looks right to me. Now it’s time to trade a couple of them to Tampa Bay for Chris Gratton.

  2. Ribs says:

    Chris Gratton is icky.

  3. jd says:

    Does the NHL team in partnership help by subsidizing the salary cost of the partnered AHL team?

  4. mjsh says:

    The Oilers do not need and hopefully do not want Chris Gratton. What they do need is a super star with his head on right and a true enforcer. I wonder how many of those D men will actually end up in the NHL. That sure is a lot of bodies for very few spots.

  5. Paper Designer says:

    Hrabel still needs to impress in North America before he’s that high on the depth chart. I think the Oilers see him as a guy who might be NHL ready this year, whereas they see Chorney as someone who may be NHL ready as soon as training camp (not that there’s any room for him).

  6. Lowetide says:

    The major factor that we cannot predict in regard to these prospects (Chorney, Wild, Bisaillon, Peckham, etc) is injury.

    Doug Lynch was an AHL all-star at age 20 and that misdiagnosed hand injury ended it all.

    That’s my big concern though with predicting the college trifecta (Chorney, Wild and Petry).

    Injury.

  7. Nelson88 says:

    I really don’t see Smid being part of the discussion. Can’t argue with the others.

    One of the things I like about this years team is the balance of puck movers and stay at home guys.

    Who gets called up depends on who gets injured. If it’s a puck mover who goes down then Chorney or Hrabel or someone of that ilk gets the tap.

    If you lose one of the stay at home guys or need toughness then it will be Roy, Peckham (he may very well be ahead of Roy) or Young.

  8. Lowetide says:

    nelson88: I included Smid for two reasons. First, he didn’t make the big club out of camp a year ago (Oilers sent him down October 2 and recalled him October 24) so he’s not that far removed from the minors.

    And secondly, although he clearly owns an NHL job at this time, should someone like Peckham play well enough to win a position (not out of the realm of possibility) then the options are Strudwick and Smid.

    Smid made a better starting point for discussion.

  9. Schitzo says:

    Damn, considering Petry isn’t even on that list, that’s a disgusting amount of depth

  10. Jonathan says:

    The Oilers do not need and hopefully do not want Chris Gratton. What they do need is a super star with his head on right and a true enforcer.

    Where does the money come from to pay a super-star? In terms of bang-for-buck, picking up a defensively responsible third-line centre with size is one of the best investments the Oilers can make.

    It’s also a player that could probably be acquired for some second-tier prospects.

  11. Paper Designer says:

    Jonathan, what’s the point of picking up Gratton this year? A shutdown third line center is the kind of thing you should pick up if you’re a contender. I’d much rather see if Brodziak can become that player, especially since he’s in the age gap between Gagner and Hemsky.

    Besides, isn’t that type of player typically available at the trade deadline anyway, and for not much more than a mid-level pick? If the Oilers are better than anyone could have possibly predicted (say, giving Detroit a run for their money at the top of the conference), I’m sure they can pull in that player.

    But until then, this is a team that, best case scenario, begins to contend starting next season. Too early to think of grabbing a veteran shutdown center.

  12. Dennis says:

    Because LT was too lazy;), here’s a link to the ’93 Harrisburg Senators.

    I don’t know how to shorten links so I apologize in advance.

    http://thebaseballcube.com/statistics/1993/10238.shtml

  13. Jonathan says:

    Jonathan, what’s the point of picking up Gratton this year? A shutdown third line center is the kind of thing you should pick up if you’re a contender. I’d much rather see if Brodziak can become that player, especially since he’s in the age gap between Gagner and Hemsky.

    I would agree, if I were absolutely sure that the team was going to make the playoffs. Right now I’m fairly sure, but a 3rd line guy centre would seal it for me. And Marek Malik ;)

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