For Edmonton Oiler fans, it’s hard to look at Jeff Petry as anything less than a saviour for the defense. He’s young, skilled, has size and can do all kinds of difficult things with seeming ease. A smooth puck mover, he’s already an excellent passer. He’s a quality skater and has shown surprising effectiveness when jumping into the offensive play.
As with all young defensemen, Petry is taking some time to adjust to the blazing speed at which plays are made in the NHL. That said, he’s a smart kid and a quick study.
Jeff Petry 10-11
- 5×5 points per 60: 0.21 (8th among Oil D)
- 5×4 points per 60: 1.67 (5th among Oil D)
- Qual Comp: 5th toughest among D
- Qual Team: 7th best available among D
- Corsi Rel: 2.0 (tied for 4th best among D)
- Zone Start: 49.1% (3rd toughest among D)
- Zone Finish: 50.5% (5th best among D)
- Shots on goal/percentage: 41 shots/1 goal 2.4% (7th among Oil D)
- Boxcars: 35gp, 1-4-5
- Plus Minus: -12 on a team that was -52
- What do these numbers tell us? A nice beginning. Petry faced third pairing opposition with Laddy Smid (52.6%) and Jim Vandermeer (27%) and survived it. In fact, his CorsiRel was in the top 4 range during his 35 games.
- How could these numbers be better? Petry is a mobile player with a nice range of skills, so the offense (worst on the team) is likely to improve. His minus 12 is a subpar number (expected: -8) but considering zone start and his situational stats I think it’s a solid debut.
- Can he be a complete defenseman? There’s some evidence Petry might be able to play in all situations. Coach Renney used him on PK, PP and EVs this season and rode him pretty hard at evens, so there seems to be a willingness to let him run.
- You didn’t like him as a prospect. I liked him, but others better. Guy Flaming was right all along, Petry is a quality prospect and the foot speed doesn’t look like an issue from here.
- Shouldn’t you surrender? Already did, it’s here.
- Can’t wait for your Smid surrender post. I’ll get right on it.
- Are they bringing him along properly? I think so, yeah. Renney in TC: “We have to make sure–even with a player who has been very impressive here–as more of an adult looking player here at this camp; Jeff is not an NHLer today. It’s not the wrong thing for us to make sure he goes to Oklahoma City, so he can get a feel for the physical nature of the game. We can expect too much of this player who is so good in so many areas, and then three months from now we’re saying ‘what happened?’ Well let’s not go there.” Seems to me there were cautious and measured.
- He didn’t bring much offense with him from college. He’ll be fine. Petry isn’t going to be featured on the PP, so most of his points will come at evens. He went 2-10-12 on the PP in OKC, and 1-0-1 on the PK.That means he was 4-7-11 at even strength in 41 games. I think he’ll hit 20 points next season (if he plays some on the PP) and improve over the next few seasons. He’ll be able to post some offense.
- What’s his downside? I think he’ll have the same problems as Tom Gilbert. Fans will sour on him as they learn he’s not a knuckle dragger.
- Is that really a concern? Have you read or heard what they’re saying about Gilbert? Edmonton fans like their defensemen toothless and bloody.
- Is he ready for the top 4? I don’t know. He’s an older prospect so that bodes well and he’s played 35 games at NHL speed now. Ideally, Peckham and Petry would be the 5-6 pairing and the Oilers would have the 2000 Niinimaa, Smith, Staios and Brewer in front of them. But they don’t, and so the growing pains are going to be more severe.
- How important was his season to the Oilers? Huge. HUGE. The fact that he didn’t fall flat gives the team some hope for him (and Peckham) moving forward. It might (and I say might) allow the team to take the BPA in this draft instead of Adam Larsson (who might be the BPA) as a need. I don’t know for sure that he played well enough, but suspect he did.