DRAFT WEEK POST #4: TRUST YOUR BOARD

If I had a million dollars, I’d bribe Stu MacGregor to give me his draft list. My wife would kill me, but in the moments before death I’d be a happy man.

You’ve heard it a million times–don’t draft for need, take the best player available. I believe that absolutely, but I also believe teams draft for need all the time. The first overall pick is different though; with the clear #1 being Nail Yakupov, Edmonton’s choice is a no-brainer. Right?

The Edmonton Oilers scouting staff under Stu MacGregor has accomplished the following:

  • Selecting Jordan Eberle 22nd overall in 2008. Any re-draft from that year would include Eberle in the lottery.
  • Choosing wisely with previous #1′s Taylor Hall and the Nuge. The 2010 pick was a can’t miss, but the Nuge selection was not a clear cut item. It was debated long and hard, but it has been months since we heard a word about it.
  • Added solid prospects outside the first round in years 08-11. I’d include Bunz and Roy in goal, Klefbom, Marincin, Gernat, Musil and Simpson on the blue; forwards Hartikainen, Lander, Pitlick and Rieder.

The story that best reflects this scouting staff is Martin Gernat. Selected in the deep reaches of the 2011 draft (5th round, 122 overall), the scouting department had him in their top 35 overall. That meant they sat on Gernat while satisfying the goalie scout (Perhonen), the annual effort to add grit (Ewanyk) and two guys they must have had fairly high too (Simpson and Rieder).

I like that kind of confidence from the scouting staff. Long after the suits are gone to congrulate themselves on a job well done, the real business of scouting rocks on.

Scouting staffs have access to all kinds of information fans like you and me don’t have, they have evalution models that they trust. Yakupov is ranked #1 the world over, but even those who follow the draft closely  feel there’s some question about how this shakes out. In this interview with Bob McKenzie of tsn, he perfectly frames the issue:

  • McKenzie: “It’s a tough call for Edmonton. If they truly believe Yakupov is clearly the best prospect, they should take him. You don’t draft by position when you’re holding the top pick. That said, if you think Ryan Murray or Griffin Reinhart, both defensemen, are in the same class as Yakupov, then you step up and take one of them and not worry about others saying Yakupov is the clear or consensus choice at No. 1. It’s going to be very interesting to see which way Edmonton goes here.”

If I could give one piece of advice to the Oilers scouting department it would be this. Fuck ‘em, fuck ‘em all. Sooner or later, everyone gets the shiv, might as well go down with the courage of your convictions. You were looking for a job when you found this one.

And you’ve been right a lot doing what you’re doing. It’s important to remember that this week.

written by

The author didn‘t add any Information to his profile yet.
Related Posts

65 Responses to "DRAFT WEEK POST #4: TRUST YOUR BOARD"

  1. regwald says:

    I will give you $50 towards the $1M LT. Let’s get ‘er done !

    And yes, I’m serious.

    Okay, make it a $100 if you share it with us all !!!

  2. Maverick says:

    Interesting week ahead in good old Oilersville.

    Woodguy and I wrote a pretty compelling argument about drafting a forward at nearly the same time yesterday and I still believe drafting a forward is the right decision long term and the present.

    However, it seems there is something about a RW forward Yakupov that has them questioning his selection. I don’t think its the player, they like him alot, I think it is more of the Oilers not knowing what direction to go. (There is depth at RW not all goal scoring 2nd line depth but depth non the less.) Drafting an another defenseman with a higher percentage chance of making it or are they truly trying to get two assets out of one? The need for a Centre is also a major concern.

    If the Oilers get a defenseman in a trade from another club to trade down and then use that selection for a defenseman would be counter-productive. All that accomplishes is it makes Edmonton the second coming of a Nashville roster, lots of ‘D’ not enough offensive forwards.

  3. Halfwise says:

    >You were looking for a job when you found this one.

    That’s how I think about my golf ball, too.

    Best Player Available could mean lots of things, but any definition would include “Player with the most value to the most teams.” And drafting 18 year olds comes with uncertainty. So the definition ought to have an element of probability, e.g. “Player with the best chance of having top value in the future.”

    Yakupov is the consensus #1 pick, at a forward position. Most value to the most teams. Lower uncertainty than if he was a goalie or defenseman of draft age.

    I don’t know how you pick anyone else at #1. And, just like the rest of us geniuses are saying, someone will have to overpay to get you to trade that #1.

  4. Maverick says:

    Listening to Gregor on the way home yesterday he made an interesting comment; what if the Oilers select Yakupov then around Toronto’s pick 5th overall Galchenyuk is still on the board, would you then trade Yakupov to the Leafs for Schenn and the 5th pick and then walk back to the podium and select Galchenyuk? Has that ever happened at the draft before? Draft a player and then trade him and select another player?

  5. dulock says:

    Maverick,

    I do know that the Canadiens tried to get Bobby Clarke from Philadelphia right after they drafted him. i think it’s a hard move to sell to your fanbase as well as doing so live on TV.

  6. Traktor says:

    Is Tambellini not as high on Yakupov as the rest of the planet or does Tambellini not have a strong resume of addressing needs via trade and not selecting Nail the easiest way for Tambellini to upgrade his defense?

    I could be wrong but the smart play seems obvious. Draft Yakupov and the trade Gagner/Hemsky/Omark/31st/ect for some help on D.

    Then substitute some of the smaller skilled forwards for bigger stronger options like Teemu Hartikainen.

    Basically you hit 3 birds with one stone.

    1. Add 30-40 goal scorer
    2. Upgrade D
    3. Add some size up front that can take a pass

    If Edmonton drafts Murray it better because they feel he is the BPA and not because drafting him creates less work for Tambellini.

    Also, a little OT but I was looking at Dubnyk’s stats yesterday and realized that in 10 years, going all the way back to his junior days he has only played 10 playoff games. He has never won a series and has only made the playoffs 2/10 times.

    And I had a dream last night that tells me I spend too much time on this message board. Edmonton traded Belanager for a 4th round pick (I think it was to NYI) and then 5 minutes later Belanger was traded to a different team for a 3rd round pick. Woodguy was absolutely grilling Tambellini for not knowing Belanger’s value.

    That said, I will happily take a 4th for Belanger.

  7. Jordan says:

    The Marty Gernat selection is quite poignant when talking about Stu’s drafting. Not only did they pick a player they had rated in the 2nd round later than that, but it was 3 rounds later than that! That’s not just (as we know from his play to date) excellent player evaluation, but also awareness of the other teams’ value of him as a prospect.

    A part of that has to be luck, but… well… lets just say I don’t think I’d like playing poker with Stu.

    If the Oilers do end up gambling with the #1, and it turns out well, I think we may need to start talking about the Gernat Rule when it comes to drafting with Stu M.B. MacGregor – He is the smartest man in the room, so if he does something you don’t expect, role with it, because it’s pretty likely to turn out well.

  8. Cactus says:

    Jordan,

    Exactly what I was thinking. The Gernat selection shows that, if anything, the Oilers can not only evaluate talent but also draft it at the appropriate time (generally). That’s probably why we’re not hearing any rumours about Murray #1 anymore, it’s either draft Yak or trade. There’s no value to be had if they reach on the defenceman at 1st overall.

  9. Rosco11 says:

    IMO the Oilers know who they’re taking and I think it’s Yakupov. This is someone they are probably quite elated about getting but also quite happy watching all of the rumors and speculation swirl, while waiting for the phone to ring with an offer they can’t refuse. At least that’s what I’d like to believe

  10. jonrmcleod says:

    LT, sorry to nitpick, but Klefbom was selected in the first round.

  11. Bruce McCurdy says:

    The 2010 pick was a can’t miss, but the Nuge selection was not a clear cut item.

    Hmmm. RNH was ranked #1 before last year’s draft by Bob McKenzie’s group of scouts for TSN (9 of 10 contributors agreed), ISS, Red Line Report, Kirk Luedeke, Blue Bullet, McKeen’s, and the North American list of Central Scouting. Seems/seemed pretty clear cut to me.

  12. Captain Obvious says:

    Bruce McCurdy:
    The 2010 pick was a can’t miss, but the Nuge selection was not a clear cut item.

    Hmmm. RNH was ranked #1 before last year’s draft by Bob McKenzie’s group of scouts for TSN (9 of 10 contributors agreed), ISS, Red Line Report, Kirk Luedeke, Blue Bullet, McKeen’s, and the North American list of Central Scouting. Seems/seemed pretty clear cut to me.

    Interestingly, clear cut #1 Hopkins wasn’t good enough to play on Canada’s world junior team in his draft year, but Yakupov was good enough to play on the first line for Russia.

    Now, I’m of the mind this says more about backwards ideas about lineup construction in Canadian hockey than it does about relative talent levels. But it says something.

  13. Stocc says:

    I’ve got nothing to read on my lunch break and my mind is apparently trying to make stuff up for me. I’ve misread the title of this post twice so far: Once as “Trust Your Broad” and once as “Trust Your Beard”. Get ‘em done, LT.

    (Trust I’m Bored)

  14. jonrmcleod says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    I thought there was more debate about Talyor vs. Tyler.

  15. gd says:

    Jordan:
    The Marty Gernat selection is quite poignant when talking about Stu’s drafting.Not only did they pick a player they had rated in the 2nd round later than that, but it was 3 rounds later than that!That’s not just (as we know from his play to date) excellent player evaluation, but also awareness of the other teams’ value of him as a prospect.

    A part of that has to be luck, but… well… lets just say I don’t think I’d like playing poker with Stu.

    If the Oilers do end up gambling with the #1, and it turns out well, I think we may need to start talking about the Gernat Rule when it comes to drafting with Stu M.B. MacGregor – He is the smartest man in the room, so if he does something you don’t expect, role with it, because it’s pretty likely to turn out well.

    The Gernat selection and bringing him here to play for the Oil Kings are the most encouraging sign that this org is getting smarter. I saw about 10 Oil Kings games and I thought Gernat was better than Reinhart in at least 8 of them (and he’s only 9 months older). If he can even become average as a defender I can’t see how he can’t be a top 4 Dman in the NHL. I would hire someone full-time whose only job is to teach him how to play solid D. Hire Strudwick, or whoever was a key guy in Chara’s development, or some Slovak defenseman from the 80s. If Gernat has a 10 year NHL career, he becomes the crown jewel in Stu’s drafting career, along with Eberle and possibly Reider.

    That said I don’t think Stu should risk his legacy on picking Murray 1st. If they don’t want Yak, they need to trade down anywhere in the top 15. Even the scouts that love Murray don’t seem to think he is that much better than someone like Reilly. If they want to take Murray even at 2, means they better think he is almost as good as OEL or Doughty and I’m just not seeing that much upside to Murray.

  16. commonfan14 says:

    gd: along with Eberle and possibly Reider

    Speaking of Reider, you’ve gotta think that he’s trade bait If they do take Yak, right? That would be quite a logjam at RW for him to overcome.

    I wonder what his value is right now.

  17. Lowetide says:

    Bruce McCurdy:

    The 2010 pick was a can’t miss, but the Nuge selection was not a clear cut item.

    Hmmm. RNH was ranked #1 before last year’s draft by Bob McKenzie’s group of scouts for TSN (9 of 10 contributors agreed), ISS, Red Line Report, Kirk Luedeke, Blue Bullet, McKeen’s, and the North American list of Central Scouting. Seems/seemed pretty clear cut to me.

    So we’ve forgotten the miles and miles and miles and miles of discussion about Adam Larsson? I think we have to remember these things because looking back at final rankings ignores the process that got everyone to the final stretch. Larsson WAS a factor a year ago.

  18. speeds says:

    If their board does not have Yakupov at #1, given his consensus status, they should very seriously look into why.

    On the one hand, yeah, you want to trust what you see. On the other hand, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wisdom_of_Crowds

    It’s not like this, or any, scouting group is infallible LT. If the vast majority of other professional scouting organizations have Yakupov at 1, other organizations that are equally as sure of their judgement as EDM’s, wouldn’t it be wise to really investigate where and why they differ? Which do you find more likely if EDM is one of the 10%* of organizations that have a non-Yakupov player at #1? That they are right, or that the 90% is right?

  19. prairieschooner says:

    Oilers have huge holes in their defence.
    The top 6 forwards look pretty good moving forward, with a bit of room for bubbling unders
    The teeter totter of forwards to Dmen is not close to being balanced one end is on the ground!
    Perhaps the BPA for the Oilers is a defenseman.
    If we do not get Schultz which is very likely we are looking at finding NHL ready Dmen somewhere,
    can someone tell me where we will get them from?
    Deals are always easy on paper but not so much in real life because the other teams do not just roll over in the negotiations.
    I have no problem with trading the pick if we add a real Dman and a have a high pick.
    At some point we have to get out of the lottery position.

  20. Bar_Qu says:

    I suspect the issue with Belanger, as it was with Brule, Fraser, Brodziak, etc is that the depth in the bottom six is not good enough to let off on the pressure for them. You put these guys on a team with an actual supporting cast they seem to do just fine.

    My point is this, rather than promote Harski right away, why not add a couple of vets who can play in the bottom six. Stempniak would be a great addition, is unlikely to be back with the Flames from what I hear, so why not sign him along with Smyth and allow Harski to be forward 13 on the roster?

  21. franksterra says:

    Schooner i think you’re underplaying the chances of landing a couple of decent to v.good D through FA. Three things we can offer, financial overpay (to a point), a good amount of icetime given the weak D, and the chance at lightning in a bottle playing with the Kids.

  22. Maverick says:

    prairieschooner:
    Oilers have huge holes in their defence.
    The top 6 forwards look pretty good moving forward, with a bit of room for bubbling unders
    Theteeter totter of forwards to Dmen is not close to being balanced one end is on the ground!
    Perhaps the BPA for the Oilers is a defenseman.
    If we do not get Schultz which is very likely we are looking atfinding NHL ready Dmen somewhere,
    can someone tell me where we will get them from?
    Deals are always easy on paper but not so much in real life because the other teams do not just roll over in the negotiations.I have no problem with trading the pick if we add a real Dman and a have a high pick.
    At some point we have to get out of the lottery position.

    Top 6?? Who do you think will provide offense after Hall, Eberle and RNH?

  23. snipes67 says:

    Has Stu ever done anything for our trust in him to wane? No. I propose we rename the draft to ‘Boogie With Stu’. I’m personally surprised LT hasn’t used that one yet…I don’t see any chance of them taking anyone other than Yakupov…he is the Tatar Gem!

  24. oilersfan says:

    MAverick

    I definitely think Gagner and Hemsky are legitimate top 6 complimentary players on any team in the NHL. Both need big guys who can score to play with, which is why they both played so well with Penner. They don’t play well together because they are both puck possession players with skill and good vision but not the best shot, and neither are all that good at puck retrieval.

    Penner (before the playoffs) has a decent shot and is good at finishing and puck retrieval, but not that good at puck possession and playmaking. IMO his linemates were too much like him during the regular season, contributing to his poor season.

    I would play Gagner at center with Hall and Eberle, two guys who can finish and get the puch back.

    I would play Hemsky with RNH and Yakupov. By all accounts, Yak can finish and playing with two elite playmakers he may just light up the league. RNH has a much better shot and speed to play with Hemsky than Gagner, too. I put Yakupov on the left wing and let that be the soft minute line. I think it would be a top 5 offensive home ice line in the league.

  25. thurmtim says:

    re: trding up/down…

    First rule of thumb for negotiating: he who brings the horse to market does not set the price.

    If we go out and say we want to move an asset, the other parties will present the least they think they can get away with to acquire that asset as their first offer. The final deal, if they are in the wheelhouse, will be closer to their offer than our desired outcome. A skilled negotiator will work the opposition into making the first play, meaning they offer more in their first offer to ensure they win the percieved competition for the asset. Then, it becomes them competing for the deal, rather than us trying to get the best price at our garage sale. It is imperative then, that the party moving the asset maximize value by either creating competition for the asset , or by increasing desire for the asset , if there is only one serious bidder. In both cases, it undermines value by appearing too eager to move the asset. The other parties have to know you are willing to walk away from any deal you deem insufficient for your own needs.

    In this light, so much of the predraft posturing and rumour generation is very clear. Buttons are being pushed to see who responds. It does not mean the assets mentioned in these instances are the ones who will be finally offered or accepted, but they are declaring each parties valuation in the trade to the market. It is only to set a benchmark.

    Let’s not get too escited on the first iterations of this dance, people. The flotsam and jetsam of rumours will fall away as any serious parties progress towards the end dance and we will see if there are any serious considerations offered. Then we can get excited (or not)) with more reason.

    These are only the first steps of this dance and we may not even be dancing with the same partners or to the same song at the end….

  26. rickithebear says:

    commonfan14: Speaking of Reider, you’ve gotta think that he’s trade bait If they do take Yak, right? That would be quite a logjam at RW for him to overcome.
    I wonder what his value is right now.

    if he does not make the team this year you sign his ass. let him run up 2 to 2.5PPG and half of them being goals in th OHL.

    i found 5 that did this:
    Bolland and Downie 06-07
    Bolland & wojlski 05-06
    Perry 04-05

    then if you want to trade him! good luck with that!

  27. Captain Obvious says:

    Lowetide: So we’ve forgotten the miles and miles and miles and miles of discussion about Adam Larsson? I think we have to remember these things because looking back at final rankings ignores the process that got everyone to the final stretch. Larsson WAS a factor a year ago.

    And one year later taking Larsson would have been a huge mistake.

    A 2011 redraft one year later based upon BPA would look something like this

    1. Nugent-Hopkins
    2. Landeskog
    3. Couturier

    One year later those are pretty clearly the top three players of the draft. Then I’d go

    4. Huberdeau
    5. Hamilton
    6. Baertschi
    7. Larsson

    Taking Larsson wasn’t a catastrophe on the order of Schiefele but not taking Couturier was still a huge mistake.

  28. hungoverman says:

    I wonder if the 3 amigos want to make a splash how about 1st and Mr. Gagner (RFA) to Colorado for their first and Duchene? Wasn’t there a rumor at one point about the Av’s moving him along.
    Seems pretty even although in the division?
    Or I may need more beer.

  29. Maverick says:

    oilersfan:
    MAverick

    I definitely think Gagner and Hemsky are legitimate top 6 complimentary players on any team in the NHL. Both need big guys who can score to play with, which is why they both played so well with Penner. They don’t play well together because they are both puck possession players with skill and good vision but not the best shot, and neither are all that good at puck retrieval.

    Penner (before the playoffs) has a decent shot and is good at finishing and puck retrieval, but not that good at puck possession and playmaking. IMO his linemates were too much like him during the regular season, contributing to his poor season.

    I would play Gagner at center with Hall and Eberle, two guys who can finish and get the puch back.

    I would play Hemsky with RNH and Yakupov. By all accounts, Yak can finish and playing with two elite playmakers he may just light up the league. RNH has a much better shot and speed to play with Hemsky than Gagner, too. I put Yakupov on the left wing and let that be the soft minute line. I think it would be a top 5 offensive home ice line in the league.

    Schooner’s comment was a good top 6 going forward that does not include Yakupov and the Oilers might be better off drafting a defenseman. Your point states drafting Yakupov, those are two differing items and ideas.

    Nonetheless, I do not have the faith in Hemsky sticking around after his current contract runs out in two years, I say he is dealt before the deal expires. As for Gagner he is a RFA who is two years away from UFA status, the contract he signs this summer will dictate where he belongs going forward. These two elements of uncertainty of Hemsky and Gagner is why drafting a forward on Friday the 22nd is of utmost importance.

  30. nathan says:

    ” No. I propose we rename the draft to ‘Boogie With Stu”

    snipes67,

    How about until the draft we rename the web site “Stewing ’til Stu”

  31. oilersfan says:

    just following on that, i would play Horc with Smyth and Jones as the tough minutes line and yes Gagner with Hall and Eberle against secondary toughs. I think there ready for it and in fact will excel at it. That soft minutes line of RNH Hemsky and Yak would really rack up the scoring chances I would think

  32. Lowetide says:

    speeds:
    If their board does not have Yakupov at #1, given his consensus status, they should very seriously look into why.

    On the one hand, yeah, you want to trust what you see.On the other hand, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wisdom_of_Crowds

    It’s not like this, or any, scouting group is infallible LT.If the vast majority of other professional scouting organizations have Yakupov at 1, other organizations that are equally as sure of their judgement as EDM’s, wouldn’t it be wise to really investigate where and why they differ?Which do you find more likely if EDM is one of the 10%* of organizations that have a non-Yakupov player at #1?That they are right, or that the 90% is right?

    speeds: Exactly. If the scouting department doesn’t have him #1 what is the reason? What could possibly keep them from selecting him? He’s the most offensively gifted player in the draft, all the draft numbers suggest he’s the best, and yet there appear to be questions. Why?

    Knee was fine at the combine, he was back playing in the post-season. Did he not play well enough down the stretch? Was that concussion worse than thought? Is there some question about Larionov’s being so public about things?

    I don’t have the answer.

    However, if I hire a man to do a job, I’d like him to know his business.

  33. oilersfan says:

    well maverick I definitely agree with you. Yakupov all the way.

    And if not him, Galchenyuk.

  34. OilLeak says:

    Captain Obvious: And one year later taking Larsson would have been a huge mistake.

    A 2011 redraft one year later based upon BPA would look something like this

    1. Nugent-Hopkins
    2. Landeskog
    3.Couturier

    One year later those are pretty clearly the top three players of the draft.Then I’d go

    4.Huberdeau
    5. Hamilton
    6. Baertschi
    7. Larsson

    Taking Larsson wasn’t a catastrophe on the order of Schiefele but not taking Couturier was still a huge mistake.

    You think taking Larsson would have been a mistake? Larsson played great hockey this past season and I would have not been disappointed with picking him. Also, you rank Larsson behind Huberdeau, Hamilton, and Baerstchi? With the exception of Baerstchi, those players have not played a single game in the NHL, too soon to be calling them better players then Larsson.

  35. prairieschooner says:

    Maverick

    My top 6 would be Hall, Eberle, RNH, Gagner, Hemsky with number 6 being from Smyth , Harski or Pitlick.
    We have immediate needs to fill defensively I do not think we can worry about about contracts coming up in 2 years time.I do think it is important but not as far as addressing current team needs.
    A high powered offence would be fun to watch but a puck moving Dman is the straw that stirs the offensive drink.
    How many times have we been frustrated watching the oilers unable to get the puck out of our own end?
    At least for face offs after a goal we will start at centre ice

  36. nathan says:

    “If the scouting department doesn’t have him #1 what is the reason?”

    Lowetide,

    The catch for everyone looking is that Stu and the execs all have strong reasons not to have an official #1. The execs to avoid leaks and to keep the fans open to whatever transpires. Meanwhile Stu needs to kill group think.

    If I’m Stu and all scouts seem to be leaning for one guy (just for fun let’s call him Hall), I’m gonna lean my questions and comments towards the next guy (might as well call him Seguin?). And if that leaks, then even better.

    That wisdom of crowds wiki entry highlights why you keep the information flow and the final rankings wide open:

    “Where choices are visible and made in sequence, an “information cascade” can form in which only the first few decision makers gain anything by contemplating the choices available: once past decisions have become sufficiently informative, it pays for later decision makers to simply copy those around them. This can lead to fragile social outcomes.”

    Besides Stewing ’til Stu moves tickets, ads and hits.

  37. Maverick says:

    prairieschooner:
    Maverick

    My top 6 would be Hall, Eberle, RNH, Gagner, Hemsky with number 6 being from Smyth , Harski or Pitlick.
    We have immediate needs to fill defensively I do not think we can worry about about contracts coming up in 2 years time.I do think it is important but not as far as addressing current team needs.
    A high poweredoffence would be fun to watch but a puck moving Dman is the straw that stirs the offensive drink.
    How many times have we been frustrated watching the oilers unable to get the puck out of our own end?
    At least for face offs after a goal we will start at centre ice

    Your comments are valid, however, a seasoned NHL defenseman that can move the puck would be a more reasonable expectation. Pinning the Oilers hopes on a 18/19 year old rookie defenseman to improve the team is a difficult proposition.

    Looking at contracts two years down the road is very important as to Hall/Eberle/RNH will be in their second contracts and also if they draft a defenseman this year might take 2-3 years before making an impact. Remember the defensemen this year are not Pronger or Doughty and may take them a little time to develop and make an impact.

  38. bookje says:

    If I had a million dollars, I’d bribe Stu MacGregor to give me his draft list. My wife would kill me, but in the moments before death I’d be a happy man.

    This statement really helps me understand why the discussions around the draft get so crazy – there is a clearly lot of emotional investment in this.

    I might give $50 bucks for the list, but at the $75 mark, I would start to shy away as visions of fine steaks and beer out-competed the interest in the draft list (assuming that I would not be free to offer up the list to other NHL teams at a profit).

  39. Captain Obvious says:

    OilLeak: You think taking Larsson would have been a mistake?Larsson played great hockey this past season and I would have not been disappointed with picking him.Also, you rank Larsson behind Huberdeau, Hamilton, and Baerstchi?With the exception of Baerstchi, those players have not played a single game in the NHL, too soon to be calling them better players then Larsson.

    Larsson did not play great this season. He barely kept his head above water and was a healthy scratch for most of the playoffs. He profiles as a solid player with a very high chance of realizing his potential but without star upside. I’d take him on my team but I’d rather have a star.

  40. Traktor says:

    The entire Oilers Now show has been dedicated to slagging Yakupov today.

  41. nathan says:

    Stauffer tries out the Yak could fall to 4th or 5th shtick.

  42. Traktor says:

    Stauffer saying that in the last 48-72 hours Yakupov’s value has fallen lol

    When was MacT hired again?

  43. spoiler says:

    Redline’s Latest.

    Draft deep in defenseman, but top end talent “good–not great”…

    Dumba is dynamic with his fiery intensity and offensive skills. He loves to go looking for the huge blow-up hit in open ice, and usually finds it. The problem is that, at just 6-0, 175 pounds, we’re not sure he can continue to play that style against 30 year-old men in the NHL 82 times a year without getting broken in half by midseason. If he learns to pick his spots a bit more judiciously, while at the same time continuing to excel at the offensive end, he’ll be a major fan favorite and team sparkplug wherever he goes.

    Murray is the most NHL-ready and the most complete blue-liner available. He plays like a 10-year NHL vet and is capable of stepping right into an NHL lineup and performing steadily for 18 to 20 minutes a night. Murray’s chief assets are his tremendous natural hockey sense and understanding of game situations, combined with superb agility and the ability to make crisp outlet passes consistently on the tape.

    While technically we have Rielly weighing in at No. 3 on our list, we have to hedge our bets here somewhat by saying that Red Line actually believes Rielly has the highest offensive upside of the bunch. If not for the early-November knee injury that cost him most of the season, we’re confident he would have been our top rated defenseman, and perhaps as high as No. 2 overall on our draft board.

  44. Archie says:

    oilersfan:
    well maverick I definitely agree with you. Yakupov all the way.

    And if not him, Galchenyuk.

    Some would question if Galchenyuk wasn’t injured all year, who would be better and what I understand in the playoffs Galchenyuk’s play was Superior to Yakupov’s. IMO Galchenyuk would be a better fit for Edmonton.

  45. Archie says:

    nathan:
    Stauffer tries out the Yak could fall to 4th or 5th shtick.

    He easily could, if Edmonton passes on him, Columbus and Montreal will most likely pass on him for the same reasons.

  46. Woodguy says:

    Traktor:
    The entire Oilers Now show has been dedicated to slagging Yakupov today.

    I didn’t listen to the show, but someone else told me this as well.

    Stauffer had been pro-Yak pretty hard for a while.

    Last time he turned on a dime was when he went from “Trade Hemsky” to “Sign Hemsky”, and we all know Hemsky signed.

    I’m not saying Stauffer has been directed to sayu anything, but something obviously changed.

    I think the line on the Oiler’s taking Yak has gone from -130 to +130.

    God I hope they don’t trade for Schenn.

    The love of 1st round picks who haven’t panned out as hoped in the Oiler organization is borderline mania.

  47. nathan says:

    Well we can rule out fatal DUI’s. So what exactly comes to light about a consensus #1 where 3 teams independently walk away on draft day?

  48. nathan says:

    I think the line on the Oiler’s taking Yak has gone from -130 to +130.

    Woodguy,

    If you had to define a market where every player that bets on the latest news is fleeced, the draft watch is it. Even without the Oilers connection hacks like him generate audience by chasing in one direction until its time to chase in the other. The best part is that his excesses in one direction must be what the Oilers think, so the new direction must be even more what they think.

  49. edwards_daddy says:

    Maverick: Top 6??Who do you think will provide offense after Hall, Eberle and RNH?

    Smyth was 37th in points for LWs last season, while Hemsky was 41st amongst RWs and Gagner was 43rd in the list for centres. If we take 31-60 as 2nd line forwards, all three performed above average in scoring for 2nd liners.
    Secondary scoring isn’t the problem, it’s points and GA from the back end that’s the real problem.

  50. Doug McLachlan says:

    Frack it off godsdamnit.

    I believe we have been around this bush twice now and each time we go through the same exercise – “should I follow the mob and take the consensus number one pick? (Taylor Hall in 2010; RNH in 2011, Yakupov in 2012) or should I decide I’m smarter than everyone else.” Really, we are going to fall for this again? Hall-Seguin was, and remains, a legit debate even today but as LT mentioned in a previous post, we don’t really talk about it anymore in the Oiler echo-chamber because we think we make the right call. Right up until he was picked there were concerns about RHN’s ability to physically handle the NHL – until he handled it just fine.

    So after two seasons where there were legitimate questions about who to take first over all where we still opted for the consensus number one pick, now we are going to go off the board (either directly or via trade) to get someone other than Yakupov?!?!?

    Sometimes when there is smoke there is fire but I have to believe that this is a smoke screen laid to intentionally obscure things – one set to see if we can get something from Columbus so we don’t select the player they are targetting who doesn’t have a Russian Passport. Anything else seems very, very uncharacteristic of this managment group.

  51. spoiler says:

    If the Roughriders are this bad all year, this could be the best summer ever!
    June 13, 2012 – 8:24 pm

    I take it that Mrs. Lowetide is not on Twitter?

  52. bookje says:

    Doug McLachlan,

    Never mind that every member of the management group has indicated that with the 1st pick overall, you have to pick the best player available.

    We need to remember the role of the media – ‘to keep people interested in their programs/websites so that they can sell advertising’. Controversy does that – boring talk about the consensus #1 pick does not.

    I do think the Oilers are more open to trading it than they have been in the last few years, but I think it would take a young top-2 dman and a top 5 pick, something they are unlikely to get.

  53. Stephen says:

    bookje:
    Doug McLachlan,

    Never mind that every member of the management group has indicated that with the 1st pick overall, you have to pick the best player available.

    They’ve said several times you need to pick who you think will be the best player in the future, not necessarily right now. I worry they are priming us for the “We think Ryan Murray will be the better player 10 years down the line (when he’s 3 years into UFA and playing for another team)” speech post-draft.

  54. Rondo says:

    I’m worried about the 91st pick and the 93rd pick.

  55. hunter1909 says:

    Lemme see…

    Oiler’s are universally ridiculed as a gongshow franchise. It’s so bad, that Calgary fans show a clearer understanding of the predicament than Oiler fans.

    They’re so disfunctional they get to pick first for three year running, as a testament to their pure unadulterated suckitude.

    6 years ago they “almost” won the cup, but of course failed to. Then they handed out retirement contracts like drunken sailors to third rate players. They’re no more than proven fools.

    So now, according to rumour, these fools are planning to once again outsmart everyone(Niinimaki, M.A. Pouliot) by jettisoning the miracle that appears to be Nail Yakupov, then hope their package of prospects and draft picks eventually pays off before this electrifying player wins a cup somewhere else.

    And people think I’m nuts.

  56. Cactus says:

    hunter1909:

    And people think I’m nuts.

    You are nuts. You’re taking unsubstantiated media reports at face value. Given that, I have some ocean-front property to sell you. In Saskatchewan.

  57. BlacqueJacque says:

    LT, I’m surprised.

    You are among the loudest of many voices who call into question our defence. Drafting Murray would compound the problem – it would give Dithers an excuse to avoid making a play for a defenceman who can contribute while Taylor Hall still has knees and his eyes haven’t crossed permanently from repeat head shots.

  58. Lowetide says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    LT, I’m surprised.

    You are among the loudest of many voices who call into question our defence.Drafting Murray would compound the problem – it would give Dithers an excuse to avoid making a play for a defenceman who can contribute while Taylor Hall still has knees and his eyes haven’t crossed permanently from repeat head shots.

    I have, from the beginning, suggested Yakupov is the #1 player available. My final final top 30 goes up tomorrow morning and Yakupov will be where he belongs.

    #1.

    My point in this article is that if the Oilers scouting department believes Murray is the better player, they should take him. I have no idea if Bob McKenzie’s scouts are still telling him the truth or engaging in subterfuge.

    But I know my scouts are on my fucking side.

  59. sliderule says:

    Cactus
    If you haven’t already drunk all the oilers kool aid after June 22 you can have some more.

  60. hunter1909 says:

    If they draft Yakupov, then find the right frigging coach to develop him+Hall MacT can lead the cup parade.

  61. Cactus says:

    sliderule,

    I simply don’t buy into the pessimism that is endemic to certain posters (and to some entire websites). You call it kool aid, I call it accuracy.

  62. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Lowetide,

    Lowetide: So we’ve forgotten the miles and miles and miles and miles of discussion about Adam Larsson? I think we have to remember these things because looking back at final rankings ignores the process that got everyone to the final stretch. Larsson WAS a factor a year ago.

    No of course I haven’t forgotten, there have been miles and miles of discussion about various options every year including this one. I just thought that by “the Nuge selection was not a clear cut item” you were referring specifcally about when the “selection” was made, by which point there was very broad consensus. Oilers’ scouts were themselves reportedly unanimous. Certainly that consensus came together relatively late in the process.

  63. Lowetide says:

    Bruce: That’s how I remember it too. I hope we get the same thing (white smoke) this time. :-)

  64. uni says:

    Doan! Doan! Doan! I mean Yakupov! Yakupov! Yakupov!

    I mean haven’t we seen this movie before? The one where they think they’re the smartest ones in the room? Hemsky was the only time it ever worked, and all they did since was screw the pooch trying to prove it wasn’t a fluke and failing with only Ninnimakiis to show for it.

    Personally I wanted Larsson. FPB was simply rabbid for Couturier with good reason as well. Still too early to say who turns out as the best player. I still like Larsson, though I’d be happy to be wrong in this case.

  65. DeadmanWaking says:

    Good post. Echoes of my BDA comment: best decision available / management is hired to manage, but with a lot more style. I’m working out how to clap loudly while patting myself on the back. On the Nuge front, I agree in part with Bruce that the fog of who-the-fuck was clearing rapidly in the final run-up.

    Interestingly, clear cut #1 Hopkins wasn’t good enough to play on Canada’s world junior team in his draft year, but Yakupov was good enough to play on the first line for Russia.

    I’ve always thought the expression “hindsight is 20-20″ was overrated. If you’re pulling together an impromptu Aussie-rules rugger squad with your fate in the balance and your draw from the Chalice of the Antechamber to the Afterlife is “Legends of the CFL” does George Reed make the cut when Pinball or Gizmo doesn’t?

    From this we infer in retrograde that pipsqueaks suck.

    Bear in mind this is almost the afterlife: a player tackled into the turf hard enough could fall right through. Even Pinball with all his moves–and well disguised in a helm of orcish armour–would find it difficult to sneak out through the gates of Mordor in time to take the field for the second half. “Wow, Pinball, unbelievable you made it back. Try not to get tackled by Thumper again and don’t look at the scoreboard since you were gone–it’ll ruin your eternity.” Tragic how easily Hindsight drops his pants to bugger horses-for-courses.

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

© Copyright - Lowetide.ca