DRAFT AND COLLEGE VOL 2

Do you remember the Robin Kovar selection? The Oilers tried to draft him in 2002 when he was ineligible, inspiring the Canucks table to shout “cheaters” because everything about the Canucks is exactly as ridiculous as it sounds. To tell the story, I’ll ask USA Today to do the honors:

  • No. 123 (compensation, pick later voided): Edmonton receives bonus pick as compensation for loss of Group III free agent Igor Ulanov. Edmonton attempts to use the pick to select forward Robin Kovar from Vancouver (WHL). Kovar was, however, ineligible because he had failed to opt in to the draft. The NHL computer allowed the pick to go through in error, and Edmonton protested. NHL settled issue by awarding 2003 fourth-round pick to Edmonton as compensation for computer error.

Jonathan Willis takes it from there, but I would suggest you steel yourself before reading.

Recently, Rom and Willis posted on the players we discussed yesterday in the D&C Vol 1 post: Evan Campbell, Liam Coughlin and Tyler Vesel (who is in the cover photo for this post). I would like to add Kyle Bigos and Kellen Jones to that group—totaling five draft picks who were 19 or 20 and from a college feeder league at the time of their draft. That’s the family we’re discussing here, the prospects who were passed over several times, still play in a tier 2 league, and are on their way to college.

The point is an easy one to make: in math terms, these are not wise picks. In real terms, the men who have turned pro (Bigos and Kellen Jones) do not have the look of future NHL players.

Rom did a fabulous job of detailing the possible reasons and the pratfalls of the reasoning. One thing he wrote was especially interesting (in regard to success avoidance):

  • Rom: Part of the subtext goes like this: what if we get too many good hockey players? where are we going to put them all? we’re only allowed 50 on the reserve list and I don’t like having to rush my decision making!

And considering the large number of players signed from the 2011 draft and who will need to be signed in the year ahead, it makes sense. Edmonton has drafted 26 players 2011-2014, that’s about 9 a year. Not a bad plan to space out the group needing to be signed next summer and the next—Edmonton did a similar thing in 2005, as we discussed yesterday (although we don’t know if it was planned). But you have to get value! Rom also quoted the GM, and this is a big part of the scenario from here:

  • Craig MacTavish: For every player that we draft in those mid to later rounds, we want to be able to make a case of why this guy has the potential to be really a top 7 forward, anyone of the 3 top center positions and the four top wing positions, or a top 4 defenseman. If that player doesn’t look like he has the potential to develop into that, then we’re gonna pass and try to find somebody that fits that need.

I think that’s it, right there. I believe the scouts probably looked at Chase De Leo, Michael Bunting, Dysin Mayo, Daniel Audette, Aaron Irving, Reid Duke, Edgars Kulda, Spencer Watson and Jacob Middleton and concluded that these players did not have the potential to be a top 7 forward, anyone of the 3 top center positions and the four top wing positions, or a top 4 defenseman. If Craig MacTavish looks them in the white of their eyes and says ‘do you really believe in this guy?’ and the answer is maybe? Well hell, maybe let the other man have a lash this time.

Watson the perimeter player, Audette the wisp, De Leo good but not Petan, Bunting the tweener, Middleton the backwards traveller. Just a theory, but in a weak draft, we know math did not rule the day.

Remember when Stu MacGregor talked about MacT’s draft emphasis?

  • MacGregor: “Well with Mac, skill is really important to him. That’s something that he’s looked for. Obviously the other intangibles of character, hard work, quality of people and players who are passionate to play the game are important, but he really has a high regard for skill.

I think the Oilers are willing to look at the math, but if (as in the case of Spencer Watson) there’s a question mark (perimeter player, owes much offense to linemate) then he’s not on the list. I think we’re spending time discussing the thought process that had Coughlin ahead of Watson on their list, but it’s probable Spencer Watson wasn’t on their list at all. When we talk about the draft next year, we should be hopeful math is in the room but mindful of the mission statement. It is vague enough to exclude a lot of quality in the name of these mysterious intangibles.

Kyle Bigos. Kellen Jones. Evan Campbell. Liam Coughlin. Tyler Vesel: The Kovar collection. I think MacT has to re-set the mission statement, and use the math people way more. Of the three forwards drafted this summer, only Draisaitl and Vesel did well in math. I hope Liam Coughlin beats the daylights out of Spencer Watson as a prospect.

And hope is all I have.

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38 Responses to "DRAFT AND COLLEGE VOL 2"

  1. Oilanderp says:

    You mean this kind of hope? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n0VsAjQMrBs

  2. Lowetide says:

    Brock Otten from OHL Prospects talks about the good and bad with Spencer Watson

    Spencer Watson – Kingston Frontenacs
    Watson is an uber talented offensive player. By the time his OHL career is done, he’s a likely candidate to finish top 5 in scoring. Heck, he led the Ivan Hlinka tournament in scoring this year. However, he’s got some strikes against him and that’s why he fell to the 7th. He’s undersized and he currently plays too much of a perimeter game. His game really didn’t evolve much from his rookie season. As a rookie in 2012, he was impressive and you assumed that he’d get stronger, become more involved without the puck, and begin to drive the net more for scoring chances. None of those things happened. The key to Watson’s development moving forward is his desire to play with more gusto/tenacity. If you’re going to be undersized, you need to play hard to beat defenders to the play (see Robby Fabbri). The Fronts will be a contender in the East next year (if they get Sam Bennett back). I expect Watson to come back next year with a chip on his shoulder and I see him being an 80 point player. That said, even if he scores 40, it won’t matter much if he doesn’t improve his overall game.

  3. 36 percent body fat says:

    Hey LT,

    My only thoughts on drafting these players is to give extra time to develop them without taking pro spots. I would draft Euro Goalies, Euro players or USHL players if this is the case. Why overages instead of first time eligible. Turn them into 5 or 6 years non-pro development.

    Take Adian Muir and Greg Campbell off the list last year and add Andreas Johnson, Henri Ikonen or Gustav Possier. How Elite would our draft have been.

    I have lost all confidence in any member of the scouting department that has been around or associated with the Pendergast-McGregor area. It scares me that Pendergast is a scout for the Canadian National Teams now. Thank good it is more pro scouting than Amateur.

    Its not just the strong drafts that define a scout. Its the week ones also.

  4. Lowetide says:

    36: Well, I think they did well before No. 130, so I’m not going to bury them. However, I do think there was a pick there at No. 130 and Coughlin was on the list and Watson wasn’t, and for me that’s something they should address.

  5. 36 percent body fat says:

    Lowetide,

    Im in a pretty detailed hockey sim league. http://www.exchl.com/exchl2/wrapper.php?link=index_inc.php We have a 210 player draft every year. The condition for eligble is the player needs to have their rights owned by an NHL team, (no AHL such as holmberg) and can not have played more than 10 NHL games. (last year lagenaire was elibable to be drafted).

    Not that size does not matter in the league but there is two of us that grab late draft picks at no cost to get these type of players. When they turn out like Andrea Palat you can trade them for Michael McCarron or Nick Ritchie. Not to say go that far off the board but you get the idea. Last year I picked up Ikonen, Gustav, Possier. In the middle of the draft this year and I have grabbed Chase de Leo, while Watson and Middleton or on my list. Will likely have to grab them at the end of the 6th round. But the risk is minimal. I don’t see why Oilers dont wait until the 7th to get these oeragers Junior A players. Yet we pass on JC Lipon twice, who had good numbers in the toughest junior league.

  6. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Here’s the part where I get confused.

    Let’s say the scouts looked at that list of CHL talent: Watson et al. and said: “Look, these are fancy kids, but they can’t get their nose dirty and I don’t think their skill will translate to the NHL, perimeter players all of them”

    Ok. I can buy that. Why? The scouting reports support that. And, the general history of players taken 4th round and later not making it supports it.

    So… the odds are stacked against the De Leos of the world. Fine. I can accept that as true.

    BUT… I don’t get how that gives you license to talk yourself into the Evan Campbells and Liam Coughlins of the world.

    These players also have a poor track record of making it to the NHL (much worse, I would hazard than the De Leos).

    The whole situation is like this: because there is a only a small chance X hits, I’m willing to take an even smaller chance on Y for any number of reasons.

    Which… to a certain extent you want to say: “fine… all these players are crapshoots, might as well give scout X his guy”…

    but if that is the reasoning… it’s not good enough.

  7. Lowetide says:

    Rom: Exactly my point. If you take those names off the list, consider Watson NP because of MacT’s marching orders, then you check down to the next best name. When the next best name is Liam Coughlin, you need to reject all signals are look at your mission statement again.

    When you’re fishing this far inland, you might want to head back to the ocean.

  8. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Lowetide,

    And… If it was just Watson… ok. You could buy it. But, it wasn’t. There were a lot of guys passed on. And passed on several times.

    And it highlights something we’ve mentioned before but largely let slip. Guys like Campbell and Muir were taken AHEAD of Chase.

    If that’s their actual ranking (and not some kind of draft gamesmanship, i.e., I rank Muir lower than Chase, but I have to take him first)…

    two things:

    1. how did that happen on draft day? how did you get it so wrong (I say this with great confidence despite the fact we are 4 years out from decision day)

    2. how did you not learn something from that? I mean isn’t it clear a year out that you had your order off a bit and maybe you are overvaluing these overage players?

  9. 36 percent body fat says:

    some one copy and paste these threads and send them to Craig and Stu

  10. RexLibris says:

    I know there is no way that a team is going to reveal their draft list, even years after the fact.

    But what would be interesting to find out is what, if any, auditing and review processes there are in place for a scouting staff.

    Who and what determines the successful performance review of the scouts and the processes in place used to create the draft list?

    My approach would be to review the entire process, break down the system by weight of impact on the final decision, then assign successes, failures and extenuating circumstances to each over a period of time in order to find the weaknesses in the system, be they procedural or personnel.

    I dearly hope it doesn’t come down to “well, Bob found us that stud winger kid in that backyard rink in Fredericton eight years ago, so we’ll follow his lead in the 2nd round this year”.

  11. RexLibris says:

    Also….it would really suck to be an Argos fan tonight. Thankfully they’re just fictional.

  12. Lowetide says:

    “Our European scout Frank Musil was pushing for him. We’d seen him as a 17-year-old at the World Junior in Saskatoon. He was tall and slender and could skate well and had real good sense with the puck. A lot of the decision involved the knowledge he planned to come to North America to play junior as an 18-year-old.”

    http://www.edmontonsun.com/2012/10/22/jones-edmonton-oilers-2010-draft-class-could-be-off-the-charts

  13. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide:
    “Our European scout Frank Musil was pushing for him. We’d seen him as a 17-year-old at the World Junior in Saskatoon. He was tall and slender and could skate well and had real good sense with the puck. A lot of the decision involved the knowledge he planned to come to North America to play junior as an 18-year-old.”

    http://www.edmontonsun.com/2012/10/22/jones-edmonton-oilers-2010-draft-class-could-be-off-the-charts

    Yep. And that is why when I reviewed the Oilers scouting group broken down by region I held Mr. Musil in such high esteem.

    That man knows what he is doing.

    He was also responsible for doing some leg work on Pelss to see if he’d come over to NA.

  14. wheatnoil says:

    RexLibris:
    I know there is no way that a team is going to reveal their draft list, even years after the fact.

    But what would be interesting to find out is what, if any, auditing and review processes there are in place for a scouting staff.

    Who and what determines the successful performance review of the scouts and the processes in place used to create the draft list?

    My approach would be to review the entire process, break down the system by weight of impact on the final decision, then assign successes, failures and extenuating circumstances to each over a period of time in order to find the weaknesses in the system, be they procedural or personnel.

    I dearly hope it doesn’t come down to “well, Bob found us that stud winger kid in that backyard rink in Fredericton eight years ago, so we’ll follow his lead in the 2nd round this year”.

    I agree with you. It would be rational to review the entire process as you mention. I wonder, though, what’s the incentive for a general manager to do that?

    I mean, how long is the average general manager tenure in the NHL? It’s longer than coaches and some general managers have been around since seemingly forever. However, beyond your first 100 picks, most of the players you’re picking really won’t be ready for the show for a good half-decade. In the vast majority of cases, the current general manager won’t be the general manager at that future date. In a very real sense, half of your draft is to the stock the cupboards for the guy that’s going to end up taking your job down the road.

    Now, I don’t mean to take that argument to an extreme and imply that GMs don’t care about later round picks at all or they’re assuming they’re going to be fired in the next 3 years. However, the human mind tends to pay more attention to acute problems than long-term ones. In that way, I wonder if us hardcore fans have longer memories than general managers. We’ve all been fans for longer than MacT has been GM… and in all likelihood we’ll all be fans long after he’s gone and replaced by someone else.

    Again, I agree with what you’re suggesting. However, the incentive for MacT is greatest for figuring how to make the right trade, then it’s figuring out how to get the first round right, then it’s how to get the right free agents, then it’s rounds 2 and 3. Getting rounds 4-7 right should be important… and I’m sure it is. It’s also probably well down his list because odds are it’s going to be someone else’s problem. This is a flaw with the system and perhaps the person who has the greatest incentive to change it is not MacT… it’s Katz… or at this rate, Lowe.

  15. RexLibris says:

    wheatnoil,

    Flip that perspective around, perhaps if a GM were to maintain a higher degree of draft success, even extending it to a general approach of talent identification and acquisition, then perhaps he would keep his job longer.

    And there are GMs who run organizations with solid draft records and have kept their jobs for a relatively long time. Murray in Anaheim, Holland in Detroit, heck even Sather in New York.

    In fact, one could argue that the GMs who keep their jobs the longest are the ones with the best scouts. Sort of an extension of Al Arbour’s old “get good players” motto.

    You are also assuming that it is MacTavish who is taking a direct interest and involvement with the review process for draft picks in the later rounds. I think your priority list is reasonable, but he has guys like Bill Scott, Scott Howson and a host of others in the management ranks who are at arms’ length from the scouts who could draft some review processes and run that part of the organization, under a more general process laid out by MacTavish.

    To return to the above paragraph, integral part of management = “get good people, keep good people”. I think MacTavish has some good people.

  16. nycoil says:

    Lowetide,

    Boy is there ever a lot of self-patting-on-the-back going on in that Sun article. And a lot of “smarter than the other guys in the room” type stuff. Very disheartening to look back on that period. I love Marincin and Hall but that draft could have been so much better, and I don’t think it is”off the charts” no matter how you look at it, given both Hall and Seguin would have been teriffic picks.

    They were drafting for size then, they say they are drafting for skill now, but their record shows either they aren’t or they have a different definition for skill (as you’ve suggested NHL transferrable skill may be different in their eyes).

  17. Yeti says:

    nycoil,

    As I recall, there was a similar amount of self-congratulation following the 2009 draft, specifically regarding the Hesketh pick where they believed they had really ‘snuck one’. I guess they should believe in the work they’ve done – that’s fair – but perhaps wait for a few more years before pronouncing their smartness.

  18. supernova says:

    RexLibris,

    Rex,

    Where do I find your scouts Review by area?

    I remember reading one but can’t remember the author I think there is a lot to that .

    —————-

    Also,it is fair to suggest that a few of those players weren’t even on the list.

    Watson nearly went undrafted

    Also we are questioning the sanity of their list this year so the possibility that all where not on the list also makes sense.

    At this point we can call their list badly done, but maybe in 5 years they will be successful

  19. Deadman Waiting says:

    Alright, so my lemon tree goes on a business trip to Montreal for the week, her first time there. On Friday evening she texted me about enjoying poutine and vino in the park and wishing I was there. That’s probably the most romantic text message we’ve ever exchanged. (It’s not our go-to medium.)

    While she’s away, my body takes a shine to moonlight. I cope with the walls single-handedly for a few days but tonight I got a really bad case of solo SOHO fever, so I head out to Tims at midnight for a coffee and bagel with cream cheese.

    ———

    This is a Saturday evening in the drinking side of town, so some of the people stumbling into the joint were choice numbers. I was imaging what it would be like to be a prison inmate stuck in solitary confinement for a week, and then your precious hour comes around to hang out with the general population. At first, the human-contact circuits are desperately relieved to take a few laps around the social track, but very quickly solitary starts to look ever-so-good again.

    This one girl in her early twenties staggers in showing a lot of upper leg. Under a loose top she was wearing the kind of hot pants that end right at the fold (a fold which likely has a vaguely disturbing Latin name.) She has a pretty-enough face when animated, but not the kind of prettiness that turns heads. I think she only needs about a one-pint upgrade to start looking pretty good. Especially with those legs.

    On her first glance around, she’s making unguarded eye-contact across the length of the facility to the far entrance, where I was seated. I know I only look half my age, but I’m pretty sure she could do far better for herself than latching onto a six-year-old.

    Anyway, this guy stumbles in after her, a bit swarthy, looking vaguely Slavic, but with a rather aquiline nose for that sprawling zip code. They eventually sit together and smooch openly at discrete intervals. She says something I overhear about being an art student—but I knew that already: someone scribbled a messy vase or fruit-bowl onto her right cheek (and right hand) with a pink magic marker.

    Swarthy dude shagged-out with a thick, black, vertical Fuller brush cut seems to be filling her proximal need, but at the same time I had the distinct impression she is starved for excitement. A lot of guys at that age fall into the “don’t rock the boat that rocks you” mode of thinking. Excitement suffers, and then the girls become perceptive with the whites of their eyes. (As we all know, there’s the other male contingent who keep life exciting by becoming total assholes. Some girls lap that shit up—for a while.)

    After three pints the male brain reduces a plain-yet-somehow-sexy girl like this mousy hotcake to seven Picasso pen strokes: four bold strokes capturing the essence of those long, bare thighs all the way to alpha tide, a loopy omega across the breast line, finished off with an inverted check mark to suggest her face—possibly decorated by a couple of after-doodles for the eyes or cheekbones.

    Or maybe not.

    ———

    A while later this other couple staggers in.

    This chick is taller than average, but it’s hard to judge precisely, because she’s walking en pointe—if you can call it walking—because the tendons at the back of her knees resemble Cupid’s bow string, freshly laundered. She’s wearing black-velvet stilettos of the most crippling jut: if she left a Blood Simple calling-card on the floor by traipsing across some fresh paint, Sherlock would need a spark-plug feeler to size the gap between stiletto and bunion. These shoes are a bit rich for the rest of her look. She’s also trailing a frizzy, bleached-raspberry mullet that appears to have been crinkle-permed into submission every morning for three years straight.

    A few moments later enters this skinny guy who looks like a Japanese version of Bruce Lee—a Bruce Lee who retired ten years ago and then lost interest in food altogether. Possibly he could still kill you with a single thumb. You can’t entirely rule this out. Possibly he could break his thumb while trying to open a stubborn can of tuna. You can’t rule this out, either.

    He’s got a face that Keyser Söze would see in a bad dream, if Keyser ever permitted himself to sleep unconsciously.

    Maybe when lanky Asian boy was fourteen a rival triad painted his face with rice syrup and pushed it into a giant anthill filled with the world’s smallest red ants and left him to suffer there for half an hour. Or maybe he was the Nicholas Cage understudy in The Wicker Man while they were still deciding between hornets, wasps, and honey bees for the Cage-mask funnel scene. “Well, we can’t afford to have the sting removed from all these varieties, so we’ll just have to make do with what’s at hand for the screen test. You don’t mind, do you?” “Hai! Of course not!” That mysterious tattoo behind the ear identifies him as a member of the ultra-secretive Tibetan Seals. He’s not going to flinch over mere cosmetics.

    He’s fairly tall for an Asian—and lanky—and he’s shod in the world’s most comfortable pair of hipster, slip-on sneakers.

    They plunk themselves down at the corner table and wait for their food order to come up. He pulls out his phone, which he stares at with a glassy expression. Apparently nobody of special note needs to be iced tonight.

    Their order comes up, and stiletto chick delicately hoists herself up onto her hammy highrisers. She then hobbles past my table in a low, bent-knee walking posture that would make the heart of any good power-skating coach skip three beats. Takes her about twenty-five steps there, and the same back again.. Bruce Lee could cover the same distance in the two whole strides he needs to propel himself up your chest with both feet and down the other side.

    On this occasion, our moth-eaten Keyser Söze Bruce Lee just sits there in the corner making glassy eyes into his cheap cell phone [I say "moth eaten" assuming Kahn's sweet-meat mind-fuck ear-larva mature post-armadillo-grub-phase into equally ravenous Leopardoptera who can scent an egg-incubating whisker follicle at a hundred paces].

    As she hobbles past I’m thinking, like, “good grief dude”. She’s had both feet housed in her black-velvet torture tack since whenever they left the house—maybe five long hours ago, with her dorsal surface taut as a fur-trader’s favourite pelt stretched out on the Dances with Wolves drying rack—all this for your enjoyment, and now her ligatures are so rubbery she’s tramping back and forth to the service counter with the skating posture of a ninety-year-old Jaromir Jagr while you just sit there glassing into your phone.

    I mean, really, those are epic don’t-wait-all-damn-night-to-take-me-home shoes. A wise guy needs to master his chivalrous signals. But I guess chivalry is in short supply among the Saturday-night bar spill.

    ———

    I won’t post “Cage losing his shit” even though the shoe fits. That one hurts too much.

    This one is a lot more fun.

    Howard imitates to Nicolas Cage, Al pacino, Christopher Walken

  20. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    supernova: Also,it is fair to suggest that a few of those players weren’t even on the list.
    Watson nearly went undrafted
    Also we are questioning the sanity of their list this year so the possibility that all where not on the list also makes sense.
    At this point we can call their list badly done, but maybe in 5 years they will be successful

    I think we can say a few things here.

    1. the fact that other teams passed on these players too (until they didn’t) isn’t much of an argument. They all passed on Chase. They were all wrong. Being an idiot in a room of other idiots isn’t something to congratulate yourself about.

    2. We have to wait five years. Absolutely, before we can know.

    3. But, on draft day, we can make some assumptions based on scoring rates, age, quality of league, etc. and project out a player’s future. Liam Coughlin has a very dim light a long, long way away.

  21. sliderule says:

    I am glad to see many of you taking a more critical view of oiler drafting.

    The argument that the reason they are making these off the wall picks because they have no space on the 50 man list doesn’t make sense.If that was the case why wouldn’t they make a three for one trade to move up the draft for a player with better odds .

    As most of these picks are from Stu’s territory I would think he is either rewarding locals or perhaps does not respect his scouts or even the whole later round selection process.

  22. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    sliderule:
    I am glad to see many of you taking a more critical view of oiler drafting.

    The argument that the reason they are making these off the wall picks because they have no space on the 50 man list doesn’t make sense.If that was the case why wouldn’t they make a three for one trade to move up the draft for a player with better odds .

    As most of these picks are from Stu’s territory I would think he is either rewarding locals or perhaps does not respect his scouts or even the whole later round selection process.

    You have to fight through the public statements of the club to exclude their concerns about the 50 man and being forced to make decisions on late rounders before they are ready.

    Besides, these aren’t mutually exclusive lines of thought.

    The problem with your other argument, which makes sense to some degree, is that it fails to account for the fact that the Oilers probably saw a weak draft, didn’t see a player worth moving up for, or couldn’t find a trade partner, and wanted the range of prospects.

  23. nycoil says:

    Deadman Waiting,

    I enjoyed your story, racial stereotypes and all, over my morning coffee. :) Incidentally, the tallest of my closest friends is a guy of Chinese descent who practices law in Calgary. 6’6″.

  24. wheatnoil says:

    Deadman Waiting:

    On her first glance around, she’s making unguarded eye-contact across the length of the facility to the far entrance, where I was seated.I know I only look half my age, but I’m pretty sure she could do far better for herself than latching onto a six-year-old.

    I laughed out loud into my coffee with this one.

  25. Lowetide says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: You have to fight through the public statements of the club to exclude their concerns about the 50 man and being forced to make decisions on late rounders before they are ready.

    Besides, these aren’t mutually exclusive lines of thought.

    The problem with your other argument, which makes sense to some degree, is that it fails to account for the fact that the Oilers probably saw a weak draft, didn’t see a player worth moving up for, or couldn’t find a trade partner, and wanted the range of prospects.

    That’s the conclusion I drew. I’m screaming at my television ‘trade up for one of the Oil Kings’ but they saw all the Oil Kings. They didn’t want them. They’re just not that into them.

    And again I go back to MacT’s quote and wonder if they’ve taken the meaning to biblical literal.

  26. Lowetide says:

    DMW is right as rain about the shoes. Should have been out of them miles ago.

  27. supernova says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    sliderule,

    Romulus Apotheosis: I think we can say a few things here.

    the fact that other teams passed on these players too (until they didn’t) isn’t much of an argument. They all passed on Chase. They were all wrong. Being an idiot in a room of other idiots isn’t something to congratulate yourself about.

    We have to wait five years. Absolutely, before we can know.
    But, on draft day, we can make some assumptions based on scoring rates, age, quality of league, etc. and project out a player’s future. Liam Coughlin has a very dim light a long, long way away.

    Rom,

    I agree almost completely with your article, and your synopsis that the most likely scenario is they didn’t like the draft that much, couldn’t find trading partners so went a different route. Or something close to this.

    I don’t agree with you for the Chase arguement portion. It is a draft and like a “live auction” the target and buyers move depending on the feel of the room.

    If everyone is bidding high on someone or something most if not all try to join the fray. However if no one is acting on someone they could not get a bid at all. Many times the best deal come when you have to ask yourself.

    ” am I crazy how come this didn’t go before? or for more? or both”

    Not saying it should work like this but it does.

    If Chase somehow goes HOF like Datsyuk the oilers will get tons of praise, but in reality they took an absolute flyer of a pick and really had no idea but thought lets take a gamble.

    Being the lesser idiot in a roomful of idiots usually yields great results, but being idiots you don’t know what to expect until that room actually gathers and leaves.

    Maybe the Kyle Dubas’ change this but it has always been a moving target

  28. RexLibris says:

    supernova:
    RexLibris,

    Rex,

    Where do I find your scouts Review by area?

    I remember reading one but can’t remember the author I think there is a lot to that .

    —————-

    Also,it is fair to suggest that a few of those players weren’t even on the list.

    Watson nearly went undrafted

    Also we are questioning the sanity of their list this year so the possibility that all where not on the list also makes sense.

    At this point we can call their list badly done, but maybe in 5 years they will be successful

    I’ve had a quick search but can’t find the link.

    It was an ON article a few years back now that broke down amateur scouting by region (WHL, OHL, QMJHL, NCAA, Europe) and then assembled teams of scouts responsible for those areas based on the information available from the OIlers site and the stories about how the scouting team works that have come out in the media. I then trace those regions’ selections dating back to 2008, I think, and drew up a list of names, excluding 1st overall picks, and ranking those prospects. The greatest level of success came from the European scouting groups who were, at the time, led by Musil.

    I’ll keep hunting around and if I find the link I’ll post it for you.

  29. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide:
    http://nhlnumbers.com/2013/5/24/who-are-the-oilers-best-scouts

    Saves the day.

    Thanks LT. I’ve never been good at cataloguing my own work. I’d better get around to that. I know Jonathan has said that he keeps them all saved on a spreadsheet with dates and topics. Not a bad idea.

  30. Henry says:

    Deadman Waiting,

    That post should be part of The Best of DMW.

  31. Henry says:

    I don’t know a thing about Liam Coughlin except that he’s from Southie and therefore might have a shiv in his sock. I do think that Spencer Watson was among the most heavily scouted players in hockey last year considering his linemate. And 200+ times the scouts found someone else they felt had a better chance of making it in the NHL.

    Especially with kids, the numbers have to be married well with some eyeballs. The numbers can be good to identify undervalued guys who the scouts should go see and make a case against. If they can’t, then rank the player well. The reverse is true too. If a scout likes a guy late in the draft that he only saw twice, the numbers better help him out or his anecdotal evidence could make him look foolish. The BCHL players, Hesketh and trading for Kale Kessy look sort of foolish in this regard.

    Question: Is it really feasible to use advanced stats to assess defensemen in the CHL?

  32. Lowetide says:

    Henry:

    Question:Is it really feasible to use advanced stats to assess defensemen in the CHL?

    Yes. But we don’t have them.

  33. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    supernova:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    sliderule,

    Rom,

    I agree almost completely with your article, and your synopsis that the most likely scenario is they didn’t like the draft that much, couldn’t find trading partners so went a different route. Or something close to this.

    I don’t agree with you for the Chase arguement portion. It is a draft and like a “live auction” the target and buyers move depending on the feel of the room.

    If everyone is bidding high on someone or something most if not all try to join the fray. However if no one is acting on someone they could not get a bid at all. Many times the best deal come when you have to ask yourself.

    ” am I crazy how come this didn’t go before? or for more? or both”

    Not saying it should work like this but it does.

    If Chase somehow goes HOF like Datsyuk the oilers will get tons of praise, but in reality they took an absolute flyer of a pick and really had no idea but thought lets take a gamble.

    Being the lesser idiot in a roomful of idiots usually yields great results, but being idiots you don’t know what to expect until that room actually gathers and leaves.

    Maybe the Kyle Dubas’ change this but it has always been a moving target

    A couple of points.

    1) I get the gaming the system argument. you have x, y, z ranked 1, 2, 3… but suspect you can only get them if you take them in z, x, y order because of how the market is trending.

    If that’s the case fine.

    2) even there it doesn’t explain how you end up with overage, underperforming kids from lesser leagues in your list AT ALL. What are they doing in there in the first place?

    3) It’s the job of scouts to identify projectable talent. They should have a list and be able to argue for the players on it regardless of the temper of the room on draft day.

  34. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Lowetide:
    “Our European scout Frank Musil was pushing for him. We’d seen him as a 17-year-old at the World Junior in Saskatoon. He was tall and slender and could skate well and had real good sense with the puck. A lot of the decision involved the knowledge he planned to come to North America to play junior as an 18-year-old.”

    http://www.edmontonsun.com/2012/10/22/jones-edmonton-oilers-2010-draft-class-could-be-off-the-charts

    Interesting how that article completely ignores the bust picks of Jeremie Blain & Drew Czerwonka like they never existed. Amusing in a less significant way is how the writer lost track of the round # in the late going. Round 6 became 5 & 7 became 6.

  35. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Interesting how that article completely ignores the bust picks of Jeremie Blain & Drew Czerwonka like they never existed. Amusing in a less significant way is how the writer lost track of the round # in the late going. Round 6 became 5 & 7 became 6.

    Both interesting and amusing is the careful, non-confrontational use of “the writer” in this case.

  36. FastOil says:

    So when did Pajaarvi become a quality NHL player? By my knowledge he still has yet to establish.

  37. Lowetide says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Interesting how that article completely ignores the bust picks of Jeremie Blain & Drew Czerwonka like they never existed. Amusing in a less significant way is how the writer lost track of the round # in the late going. Round 6 became 5 & 7 became 6.

    Czerwonka might have been out of hockey by then, don’t recall when he decided to retire (I think he returned eventually, CIS hockey?). As for Blain, you bet. That was a reach inside the top 100, and another one that didn’t work out.

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