The Oilers added another skill winger this summer and at this point have 5 terrific offensive options on the wings. Taylor Hall is the best Oiler in many, many years, and he’s just getting underway.
NHL CAREER, PER 82 GAMES PLAYED
- Taylor Hall 31-38-69
- David Perron 20-28-48
- Ryan Smyth 26-30-56
- Ben Eager 9-8-17
Hall’s boxcars are outstanding and going north, that my friends is the single best arrow in the organization. God bless Mr and Mrs Hall. Perron’s an established NHL player and a pretty good bet to score 40+ points this season. And then there’s a big drop off. I included Joensuu and Jones in the RW look, but one of those guys might end up here too. Smyth is my choice for 3line L (with Gordon and Hemsky) because I think Smyth will have a better year with a full training camp. He’s 37, he’s not dead, and in the last full season he played 94 did some good things. Ben Eager has a real chance here, the depth chart is setting up nicely for him.
AHL LW DEPTH CHART
- Ryan Hamilton 56, 30-18-48 in AHL last season (also played 10 NHL games) he’s 28, 6.02 230
- Ryan Martindale 41, 6-8-14 in AHL last season; he’s 21, 6.03 207
- Curtis Hamilton 61, 5-4-9 in AHL last season; he’s 21, 6.02 206
- Austin Fyten 14-29-43 in the ECHL this season; he’s 22, 6.02 200
- Kale Kessy 60, 21-22-43 in WHL last season; he’s 20, 6.03 192
As things stand right now, the Oilers are going to give someone from the 2010 entry draft (Martindale, Hamilton, Pitlick) a feature role in Oklahoma City. A guess at the top 6F would be Arcobello and Miller at center, Rajala and Nesbitt on RW and Hamilton plus Martindale on LW. There are some real holes in the roster, but guys like CJ Stretch have been signed and may be of use.
Ryan Hamilton is my ‘player to watch’ among the OKC Baron group. I spoke to his agent Tom Lynn last week and Lynn told me that Hamilton earned his NHL time by being very physical on the 4th line and delivering everything asked of him. That’s a similar story to what we’ve seen in Corey Potter (the Renney edition) and I think Hamilton (and Acton) have some momentum going into camp. Dallas Eakins won’t hand Hamilton a job, but he could very well earn one against this competition.
We don’t talk about Linus Omark much anymore, but the Oilers still retain his rights. I very much doubt the Oilers would bring him back, but the club did extend him a qualifying offer one summer ago–which I believe means the Oilers felt there was interest in him. MacT told Jason Gregor earlier this summer that he’d be open to trading Omark but there had been little interest. We would have seen something by now if a trade was in the works, so I expect Omark will pass into free agency next summer without much fanfare. A rather bizarre end to a pretty talented Oiler career.
(Barons photos by Rob Ferguson, all rights reserved).
LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE
More hockey on today’s show (Team 1260, 10am), as we wrap up the summer Oiler activity and look a little more globally to what the NHL has done overall during the last few weeks. Scheduled to appear:
- Michael Spiedel from Hockey Symposium. Speeds is the Oilogosphere expert on the cba and things like waiver eligibility and the draft. He also has a keen eye on the Oilers and the NHL in general.
- Lisa McRitchie from Kukla’s Korner. Lisa follows the draft closely and has had an opportunity in the past to talk to players like Greg Chase about their NHL dreams. We’ll discuss the 2013 draft from Lisa’s perspective, plus the Oilers and the new season ahead.
- Travis Yost from Hockeybuzz. I’m still wondering about an ‘Ales Hemsky to Ottawa’ trade, and Yost will bring the answers. We’ll also talk about the new conference and slotting the Oilers.
- Matt Henderson from Archeologuy. We’ll talk Gagner, draft and that tough new conference.
I’m also working on a couple of other guests, we’ll see if I can secure them before 10 this morning. 10-1260 via text and @Lowetide on twitter, looking forward to the show!
One item we should continue to follow closely: Kyle Clifford. The Kings are really up against the cap now, there’s zero wiggle room and Lombardi isn’t going to enter a season with nowhere to go on a Stanley-calibre team. Clifford could be heading out of town for just a pick or a prospect, and the Oilers I’m sure would be all over that one.
I wrote about it here, could happen.