SPRING, SUMMER, AUTUMN, WINTER, AND SPRING AGAIN

The regular season is finished for Edmonton’s CHL prospects, which gives us a chance to look at progress and perhaps gain some clues about the future for some of these kids. The Oilers have significant pressure on their 50-man list for next season, so it is not certain they will sign all eligible players graduating from junior.

  1. R Tobias Rieder (Kitchener OHL) 52, 27-29-56 after an enormous season (85 points in 60 games) one year ago. He’s 20, suspect the Oilers will sign him as he has a nice range of skills and plays in all three disciplines (17Ev, 8PP and 2PK goals this season). NHLE: 82, 13-13-26 (age 19 season).
  2. L Daniil Zharkov (Belleville OHL) 59, 25-18-43 is almost a photocopy of his previous season. Began slowly and played much better in the New Year. His 22 even strength goals is a significant total. He’ll return for another junior season in 13-14. NHLE: 82, 10-8-18 (age 18 season).
  3. D Martin Gernat (Edmonton WHL) 23, 3-10-13 and finishing up a trying season. Gernat was out with a shoulder injury early, and it took significant time to get back into the lineup. Once there, he showed just how much he’s improved during his Oil King career. I’m excited for his future, this kid looks like the real thing. If this were a baseball player, we’d be talking about 5-tool ability. NHLE 82, 3-11-14 (age 19).
  4. L Mitchell Moroz (Edmonton WHL) 69, 13-21-34 started off slowly but improved his play as the season progressed. Spent much of the year on a designated checking line, perhaps indicating the Oilers see him in that role. I would have thought the club might have been projecting him as more of an offensive player, but based on how he was used I suspect they see him as a checker/energy player. Moroz had 10 EV and 3PP goals. NHLE 82, 5-7-12 (age 18 season).
  5. D David Musil (Edmonton WHL) 62, 9-22-31 and a quality defender at the junior level. Watching Musil play his final stretch of junior was a  pleasure, he’s really a good coverage defender. The question is footspeed, we’ll begin to find out about his pro career in the fall. All 9 goals were at evens. NHLE: 82, 4-8-12 (age 19 season).
  6. L Travis Ewanyk (Edmonton WHL) 58, 8-15-23 but the 119 pims are what might earn him a contract. The Oilers are extremely high on this player, or at least they were midway through this past season. I don’t think he’ll ever deliver enough offense to play in the NHL. NHLE 82, 3-7-10 (age 19 season).

My guess is that it shakes out like this:

  1. Rieder signs and plays with OKC next season, possibly on a line with Pelss and Lander.
  2. Zharkov returns to Belleville.
  3. Gernat signs with the Oilers and starts his pro career in OKC.
  4. Moroz returns to Edmonton.
  5. Musil signs with the Oilers and starts his pro career in OKC.
  6. Ewanyk is not signed.

Now watch them sign Ewanyk tomorrow. :-) I think the safest bet to play in the NHL is Musil, but the potential of this kid Gernat is damn exciting. He might take his entire entry level deal, but I’ll tell you this kid has so much more than a guy like Alex Plante did at the same age. Wide, wide range of skills.

written by

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

16 Responses to "SPRING, SUMMER, AUTUMN, WINTER, AND SPRING AGAIN"

  1. Marc says:

    It’s not just the Oilers who love Ewanyk. I seem to recall Bob McKenzie tweeting before the World Jrs that Hockey Canada were disappointed that he got hurt because he had a good chance of making the team.

    I think he gets signed.

  2. Lowetide says:

    I think they could sign him, but have never seen a junior player post those numbers followed by a long career as a useful NHL player.

    Edmonton has 7 NHL ufa’s and an RFA (Peckham) they might walk plus another 9 contracts they could walk in the AHL.

    They’ll add Klefbom and Musil, so would have 34 before they started adding again. So, Ewanyk could be signed, but I don’t think it’s going to end well after three years.

  3. mattwatt says:

    Lowetide,

    Said it on here before, but I was very pleased with what I saw in Gernat last year. It was only one game, but the kid could play. That said, he could have sucked badly in the 3rd and I would have not noticed since I was failry polluted by then, but still. Made the right play often, more defensively aware than you think someone described as “raw” would be, and solid offensive instincts too. Stumbled away believe that there was a player there, and all words written on him confirm this sentiment.

    5-tool player is a very apt description of him Lowetide. Just hope now that he makes the big leagues.

  4. Scott Reynolds says:

    I’d probably do exactly as you’ve suggested with each of these players, but I think they’ll probably sign Ewanyk. He didn’t have much offense in his draft year, and they obviously liked him well enough then so I doubt that a lack of development offensively will hold him back from getting a contract.

    Also wanted to mention that the Islanders gave Colin McDonald a two-year contract yesterday at NHL money both years. He’s already been a regular for them this year, but the new contract more or less confirms him as an NHL player. He didn’t make it with the Oilers, but it’s always nice to raise a glass when a player we’ve followed a long time makes good.

  5. MrSmitty says:

    I am also a big believer in Gernat. He has the tools to be a quality NHL defenseman just needs some seasoning time in the AHL.

  6. Lowetide says:

    Scott Reynolds:
    I’d probably do exactly as you’ve suggested with each of these players, but I think they’ll probably sign Ewanyk. He didn’t have much offense in his draft year, and they obviously liked him well enough then so I doubt that a lack of development offensively will hold him back from getting a contract.

    Also wanted to mention that the Islanders gave Colin McDonald a two-year contract yesterday at NHL money both years. He’s already been a regular for them this year, but the new contract more or less confirms him as an NHL player. He didn’t make it with the Oilers, but it’s always nice to raise a glass when a player we’ve followed a long time makes good.

    The thing about Ewanyk is that he doesn’t (imo) bring enough offense to really project as a pro player of note. He did play on a shutdown line with Moroz much of this season, so maybe he shows better in pro.

    But I don’t see it. Moroz is a better player right now, why not wait the year and then sign Moroz?

  7. Scott Reynolds says:

    Lowetide,

    I wouldn’t sign either of them (unless Moroz has a big jump in offense next season), but I expect the Oilers to sign them both. It’s similar to Abney (who they shouldn’t have drafted but did and then shouldn’t have signed but did) in that they invested in these players relatively early in the draft with a specific role in mind. In Ewanyk’s case they probably knew that the offense wasn’t going to be there (Moroz was picked early enough that you’ve got to hope they thought he’d improve), but felt he could be useful anyway. If a team is going to invest in a guy like Ewanyk in the first three rounds of the draft, I would expect them to follow through with a contract.

  8. gcw_rocks says:

    Scott Reynolds,

    Scott, do you know if under 26 players can be bought at at 1/3 of contract value? If so, flushing Abney to free up the contract slot might be the right way to go if they want to sign Ewanyk.. The cap hit from the Abney buyout would be so small as to be irrelevant for the big club at this time.

  9. Hayek says:

    I was the guy arguing with you guys earlier this season about how Ewanyk didn’t have enough offence to get signed by the Oilers. I just want the right to say I told you so…..and as I say that, he gets signed in 2 weeks…

  10. TheOtherJohn says:

    The selection of Moroz was based on how much he came on at the end of the year. “Can play anywhere in lineup”. “Will score in Dub this year”. Never happened. So similar sized kid to Pitlick, who has much better offense, and we are now talking bottom 2 lines as a likely ceiling. Definition of a reach pick but may adjust to the Dub as a 20 year old scorer or in the AHL could leapfrog AHL prospect forwards as none of them are doing anything.

    Like Ewanyk. Good player, hard to play against.

    Gernat is a big skilled D man that is pretty weak positionally. Could, over time, develop into an NHL player expect he gets parked in Europe for a year.

    Hope Musil can overcome slow feet. Rest of his game is quality.

  11. Scott Reynolds says:

    gcw_rocks,

    I don’t think you’re permitted to buy out an ELC. As such, the Oilers are stuck paying Abney $110,000 for one more year of ECHL hockey.

  12. season not played says:

    All you need to look at to assess the management and scouting staff are the three busts at number 31. Sorry Lowetide, don’t need five years to assess these picks, numbers just are not tracking. Musil might end up as a depth defenceman/tweener type but thats about it. So to answer your question, no, management and scouting has not done enough.

  13. Genjutsu says:

    season not played,

    Are you serious? Yes you do need 5 years or more on any pick.

    Not sure you can write anyone off just yet. None of them are done yet.

    Musil looks like a player. Mitch is very likely to be in the bottom 6 for years and Pitlick has had a ton of injuries. Are blaming them for his health problems? Is it Lowe that gave Davidson cancer?

    Be real man, BE REAL.

  14. RexLibris says:

    I’ve watched Gernat play live about a half-dozen times now. He is better defensively than many people believe. He was being deployed on the first PK team last season along with Reinhart.

    Reinhart’s positioning wasn’t significantly better, Gernat simply prefers to use the stick to check/strip the offensive player and quickly pass it up ice. That he then beats the forwards to the blue paint is what makes him such an exciting prospect.

    I’d be alright with him in Europe next season for a year.

    As for Moroz and Ewanyk, the Oilers are wanting to fill out their bottom six through the draft. I’m alright with whatever Ewanyk becomes, because you make the best call you can on draft day and then let the chips fall where they may. The Moroz pick I think is tracking well, although I was very uncomfortable with the language surrounding his selection (that he was “trending” before the draft). Sounds like the same guff Prendergast fell for when he was drafting.

    I love the idea of a Pelss, Lander, Rieder line. That’d be fun to watch and a coach’s dream, defensively and getting the puck in deep.

    Just as a note, Khaira is posting .68 ppg and 49 PIMs in 37 games for Michigan Tech.

    Bigos has 111 PIMs in 30 gp. That is one unfriendly player. :)

  15. season not played says:

    Genjutsu,

    Ok, except that Moroz scored at less than half a ppg this past season meaning he will turn pro with far less offensive pedigree than say JF Jaques. He better bring some big league intangibles because he will not produce any offense. Do you think he is going to magically start scoring when he truns pro? So at best, a fourth line banger, more likely in the minor leagues. Musil looks slow playing defense in the WHL. That is a bad sign. Also, once again a player at that age on that team should be producing more than half a ppg, even on the blueline. So you say third pair penalty killer. Except he is too slow, go watch him play. NHLers will walk around him like he is standing still a la Alex Plante.
    I dont see a contributing NHL player in this group based on the evidence.

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

© Copyright - Lowetide.ca