With the first round pick already up on the big board, I think we’re beginning to see some differences between the Prendergast era and the Stu MacGregor years. From 2001-07 (KP’s time) the organization drafted 67 players. Of those, 20 (or 30%) were Euro’s playing in European leagues at the time they were drafted. An additional 4 (or 6%) were European kids playing in Canada.
Under KP, the Oilers devoted 24/67 (or 35.8%) to European players.
Although the Cooking with Stu era is just underway (and may not be a long era, Guy Flaming reports the Oilers scouting staff isn’t under contract for next season), after yesterday’s pick they’re humming along at 50% (3/6) from Europe.
The selection of MPS at #10 represents the highest European pick in franchise history. As an aside, all three Europeans 08-09 (Motin, Hartikainen, MPS) were clear of 6.00, 200 on their respective draft days.
What can we expect for today? I’ll guess the team takes players who have size and grit along with skill. Among the most talented players available today are Stefan Elliott and Charles-Olivier Roussel among defenders; forwards Jeremy Morin and Ryan O’Reilly and goaltenders Mikko Koskinen and Matt Hackett.
We can also hope for a trade today. It sounds like the Oildrop were aggressive on Heatley but drew the line at Gagner and Cogliano. Seems reasonable to me. Finally, a tip of the hat to Los Angeles and their GM Dean Lombardi. On a day the club selected Braydon Schenn in front of Toronto and Brian Burke, he’d already done enough to make my day. The added surprise was his comment in the Los Angeles Daily News with regard to the selection: “That was the main reason we took him, knowing that it would totally (upset) Burkie. It was worth it.”
The newspaper said he was joking, and I’m sure he was at the time. Still, it was a nice end to many weeks of public and private (according to Don Waddell) bullying on Burke`s part that netted him Jack Shit. Ah, good times.