In May of 2011, before the Nuge draft, the Edmonton Oilers signed Stu MacGregor to a three year contract. Since 2008 (MacGregor’s first selection as head scout was Jordan Eberle) this blog called him “the Magnificent Bastard” and have remained boosters of his procurement department.
A new GM brings change, and the current scouting staff has been together for a few years now. The track record (depending on who you talk to) ranges from “the worst ever” to “very good” and every stop in between. Some articles about the era are available here and here.
The first round picks during MacGregor’s era have been stunning (Eberle, Paajarvi, Hall, Nuge, Klefbom, Yak, Nurse), and I give the staff full marks for the Eberle, Paajarvi and Nurse selections. The #1 overalls fall under “you don’t get credit for getting it right, only crap for making an error” category but I think the staff did well full stop.
THE NEXT TEST, SECOND ROUND
As the second round picks begin making their way to the NHL (Anton Lander got a head start, but that’s okay we’ll adjust) I’d like to find a line in the sand we can all agree on. I have a couple of candidates:
- The Scott Cullen version: He estimated the success rate (100 NHL games or more) to be 28% back in 2009. I’m not completely thrilled with the 100 game threshold, but do like the “or likely” portion where we don’t have to fret over every player–there’s a distinct finish line.
- This look suggests a 2nd round pick has about a 25% chance at success and gives 200 games as the finish line.
- Jason Gregor came to a conclusion of 23.7%, using 100 games here.
I welcome other studies, but it looks to me as though we might be able to use 25% and 200 games as a starting point, with Cullen’s “or likely” as an addition that allows us to measure the process “in-game”. Fair?
That set, let’s move on to the Oilers during the MacGregor era (2008-2013). We’re looking at one in four being a success (average) and anything more than that above average.
- 2008: No second round selections
- 2009: Anton Lander
- 2010: Tyler Pitlick
- 2010: Martin Marincin
- 2010: Curtis Hamilton
- 2011: David Musil
- 2012: Mitchell Moroz
- 2013: Marco Roy
7 players taken in the second round, 2008-2013. Using the 25% success rate, we should expect 1.75 of these players to become NHLers. Using the five year rule, there are no players who we can “judge” from this round, as the 2008 draft (the only year that has clicked the 5 year tumbler) didn’t have a second round selection. However, we have the Cullen rule (“or likely”) and we have good and bad arrows (and they can inform us about a player).
- Very bad arrows:
- Bad arrows: Curtis Hamilton
- Lukewarm arrows: David Musil
- Good arrows: Anton Lander, Tyler Pitlick, Mitchell Moroz, Marco Roy
- Very good arrows: Martin Marincin
- Covered the bet (or likely):
I’ve moved some players around since our last look, Marincin has very good arrows at this point. Curtis Hamilton is counted as a bad arrow, although his recent performance before his injury is encouraging.
Fair? I’m open to tweaking and welcome input.
Now, back to the matter at hand. MacGregor’s contract is up (as I understand it) at the end of the 2014 NHL entry draft. Bob Green is in the picture now and that may change things, and one imagines the individual scouts have to be signed as well.
2008-13 DRAFT (NHLers)
- Jordan Eberle 246, 85-111-196
- Taylor Hall 216, 83-109-192
- Magnus Paajarvi 193, 30-34-64
- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins 152, 35-78-113
- Nail Yakupov 95, 26-22-48
- Anton Lander 79, 2-5-7
- Teemu Hartikainen 52, 6-7-13
- Martin Marincin 14, 0-0-0
- Tyler Pitlick 3, 1-0-1
- Phil Cornet 2, 0-1-1
- Johan Motin 1, 0-0-0
Oscar Klefbom earned some nice reviews from Jonathan Willis and Todd Nelson earlier this month.
- Nelson: “You’re always worried about a guy coming back off injury, if he can get back to the level he was at just before he was hurt. He played three good games before he got injured, but tonight he was exceptional. Hopefully that continues and he has that consistency because he was a horse out there. I talked to Gerry and we both agreed ‘let’s put him out there as much as we can, because he’s playing so well and he’s a horse and he can handle it.’”
The positives for the MacGregor staff are:
- A run of first round picks that are the foundation of an outstanding NHL team.
- The Eberle pick at 22 is a home run by any measure.
- The second round picks, taken as a group, look on target or better (Marincin and Lander may end up covering the bet on their own).
- The 2010 draft came to life this season (Marincin, Pitlick, even Hamilton)
- Klefbom is coming around and lately has been better than that.
- Solid picks outside the first two rounds include Teemu Hartikainen, Dillon Simpson, Tobias Rieder, Martin Gernat, Jujhar Khaira, Bogdan Yakimov, Anton Slepyshev, Greg Chase.
I’ll bet they renew MBS and staff. We wait.