This is a very important time for Anton Lander as an Edmonton Oiler. The organization has to procure 6′s and 7′s and 9′s from their minor leagues and Lander has a very nice resume. If he can fill a 3 or 4 line role next season, the club has one less issue to address and can spend money elsewhere.
We’ve always liked Anton Lander as a fanbase. Some comments on his draft day:
- H-Bomb: That scouting report, right down to the player’s origin, screams “Detroit pick”.
- RiversQ: Sounds great. Seriously. The good thing about taking the Swedes too, is that the Oilers are protected from themselves for at least one year and the SEL is way better than junior hockey.
- Jon K: Lander’s scouting report reads a lot like Zetterberg’s as a prospect. Seems like that’s where the Oilers are hoping he’ll head developmentally. It’s a pick I’m willing to trust that the scouting staff is making the right choice.
- Steven R: Anton Lander is a interesting pick because he was Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson’s linemate last season for Timra. These two had a lot of chemistry and speed last season for Timra.
I posted an article at ON about Lander last night. Oiler fans have been following him for five years now and this summer we’ll put that 2009 draft to bed. The last 17 NHL games could have a bearing on things—if Lander can play well enough to project himself onto next season’s roster, that’s a very useful player.
ANTON LANDER PLAYER CARD
Lander’s entry-level career is completely bass-ackwards because Oilers. The 56 games should be this year, not his first season. Going back to H-Bomb’s quote above, the pick might look like Detroit but the handling was straight out of the California Seals playbook. Lander’s bio (good check, no score) tells us part of the story, and of course his major league at-bats tell the punch-and-Judy story.
Anton Lander has posted two good offensive seasons—his last one in Timra and this year in Oklahoma City. If the Oilers really want to see what he can do, I’d suggest putting him with Luke Gazdic and Ryan Jones is a poor idea. With Ales Hemsky gone, the Oilers have a couple options:
Or, they could put Lander on a 4line but with some hope of possession survival:
I don’t think they do it—this is a Gazdic game—but if Lander/Gazdic is a line one hopes Ryan Smyth joins them.
Tonight could be the NHL debut of Oscar Klefbom. In the history of the Edmonton Oilers, there have been very few first round picks devoted to defensemen. Here’s the complete list with their total NHL games-played:
- Paul Coffey 1409 (1980)
- Kevin Lowe 1254 (1979)
- Jeff Beukeboom 804 (1983)
- Francois Leroux 249 (1988)
- Jim Playfair 21 (1982)
- Selmar Odelein 18 (1984)
- Alex Plante 10 (2007)
- Matthieu Descoteaux 5 (1996)
- Nick Stadjuhar 2 (1993)
- Jason Soules 0 (1989)
- Oscar Klefbom 0 (2011)
- Darnell Nurse 0 (2013)
I expect Klefbom and Nurse will push their way into the top five on this list eventually, and maybe higher. Klefbom’s injuries are an absolute concern, but if he does make his NHL debut today it’ll be a fun moment for the young man. I’d give my left nut to have played even one shift in the NHL, and this kid gets to do it tonight. Good on him. He will be the fourth Oscar to have played in the NHL, and he could easily end up being the best one.
We liked Klefbom on his draft day.
- Smarmy Boss: He’s a big bruising puck mover from what I’ve heard. I think we’ll like him.
- Rick: Not the upside of a Larsson, but this kid could be a heck of a player 3 years down the line. Nice mix of speed and physical play. Maybe he can pick up more of an offensive game in Sweden next season.
- spOILer: Absolutely love this pick. Serious chance of being a better dman than Siemens, Bealieu and Oleksiak. Only issue is hockey sense, but has ALL the tools.
- PunjabiOil: I don’t like taking defenceman, but by the sounds of it, this guy does have top pairing potential.
If they play him tonight, I hope he gets paired with Petry or Ference. I don’t think he’ll play.
TALK ABOUT THE DAMN GAME!
Sure. On December 27th the Oilers were 39GP, 12-24-3. In the 25 games since, Edmonton is 10-10-5. In their last 10: 6-2-2. This is a Corsi David v Goliath but they play the games for a reason.
It seems the #1 overalls cannot flourish at the same time. Yak is finally out of the ditch and now Nuge can’t find the ocean. Hall remains quality, Perron is golden and Gagner is posting a lot of points for a guy who could be bought out (I still think that’s an option). Goodbye Hemmer, knock ‘em dead.