FAVORITE MISTAKE

Every year, without fail, I figure out who to cheer for among the Oilers’ draft picks. It can’t be a No. 1 overall, that would be gauche. No, my favorite player has to be a decided underdog. Sometimes, other fans choose my year favorite for me—if a bunch of noodle-puss and fuzz-brain fans are picking on some poor kid, well, I’m a Dad and man that pisses me off. So, I adopt those guys, too. Mitch Moroz wasn’t originally a favorite but Jesus Murphy people were so over the top I said to hell with that noise this is unfair.

That’s the great part of being a fan. I cheer for all these guys, even (mostly) the lost causes like Mathieu Roy who got hurt so often it was insane, or Chris Hajt who may have had a skajting problem. Here, by year this century, are the young men all the saints who cheer for lost causes adopted and suffered for in the name of hope and justice.

  • 2000: Brad Winchester. 390 NHL games and now an OKC Barons player. Talk about your deja vu, I’ve been feeling it all week.
  • 2001: Doug Lynch. Even before his injury (hand, diagnosed incorrectly—cost him an NHL career) he was a favorite.
  • 2002: Jesse Niinimaki. No-brainer. If your team drafts a guy No. 15 overall and no one knows who he is? God, that’s perfect.
  • 2003: Marc Pouliot. Only his Mom and Dad cheered more for him than me, I’ll go to my grave believing he could have been a good NHL player.
  • 2004: Liam Reddox. I remember reading around the draft that he was highly touted entering junior but had been passed during his time in the OHL. Underdog!
  • 2005: Slava Trukhno. I saw him good in his first TC, brilliantly skilled player. Small p Pouliot, thought he’d have a career.
  • 2006: Theo Peckham. Always cheered for Teddy Peckman, he’s exactly the kind of blue who should have owned Edmonton for a decade.
  • 2007: Riley Nash. By this time badly wanted to see a center with size and skill. Nash turned out okay, just not here.
  • 2008: Teemu Hartikainen. There’s still a light on, hope he finds his way back to the NHL.
  • 2009: Anton Lander. His resume reminded me of Doug Jarvis, who was a favorite back in the 1970s.
  • 2010: Curtis Hamilton. Reminded me of those Habs wingers of my youth, range of skills. Still hoping.
  • 2011: Martin Gernat. Instant favorite because he was a rangy kid who immediately became an Oil Kings player.
  • 2012: Mitch Moroz. The things that were written about this young man, just because he was chosen by the Oilers in the second round? Shameful.
  • 2013: Greg Chase. I met him when he was just a kid. Nice young fellow, a little shy. Reminded me a little of my own son.
  • 2014: Tyler Vesel. I liked his story, seemed to be coming from way back (that’s important) and his interviews were interesting.

I can’t choose a favorite until they’re drafted and sometimes it takes awhile to choose said player. You may ask ‘why on earth would you cheer for a long shot?’ but for me that’s as natural as drawing a breath. Maybe it’s about how I see the world, or myself in the world, but it’s always been there. I remember well reading a Hockey World magazine in about 1970, this was the expansion year with Buffalo and Vancouver, and they listed all the players who would make the team and a few who might make an appearance. Every team had their page, and the good teams had names that were familiar. Even the 1967 expansion teams had players who I’d at least seen on a hockey card.

Then Buffalo. Right at the end of their page, a line that read something like “Larry Mavety is also available” and that was all she wrote. I watched for Mavety every year, usually found him in the minors (The Hockey News listed the top scorers all year but would have features and Mavety would appear from time to time) and he did make it to the WHA, but never the NHL.

Larry Mavety. Don’t ask me why but for me a big part of this wonderful sport is cheering for guys who haven’t yet made their appearance in Total Hockey, don’t have their name in black ink in the scroll of hockey men who made it all the way to the promised land.

Godspeed, Curtis Hamilton. I’m cheering for you.

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121 Responses to "FAVORITE MISTAKE"

  1. OilLeak says:

    I like Vesel, he’s the ultimate boom bust player, could be great or terrible. As for chase, I think everyone is already cheering for him, but he has a good chance at a career though.

  2. Lowetide says:

    Darnell Nurse not playing tonight, probably no big deal he played last night and the team clinched.

  3. Lowetide says:

    Brossoit starts.

  4. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Aidan Muir is that main guy for me right now. Drafted out of Gord knows where. Saw him good at the 2013 development camp, 6’4 212(elite prospects) winger that’s finding the range in WMU. Maybe Coughlin because he’s a pretty unanimously disliked pick.

    Maybe one of them surprises and you feel rewarded for cheering like hell for the underdog.

  5. Evilas says:

    “Underdogs” I have been cheering hard for the last 3-5yrs are:

    1. Lander – he oozes effort and he is clearly a popular fellow with his teammates. I cannot wait to see what he becomes in the next 5 years. Unfortunately if Nelson is not brought back next year, I doubt we see it in Edmonton.
    2. Paarjarvi – He has skills, but no confidence anymore. I remember when he had a hat-trick I his first pre-season with Edmonton vs the Bolts. I thought he was going to be something….I think again if Nelson is kept on and Edmonton is able to re-acquire PRV he could be a real effective player with his best buddy Anton.
    3. Dubnyk – Even in his early days we as Oiler fans saw his value and that even with his successes he had a lot of room for improvement. Especially after his brutal year last year and an awful poster about him after he was traded was being passed around on FB. I felt so bad for him, also knowing that he had a newborn that year. I hope he cleans up in the awards department this year and gets a great contract from a good team. I don’t usually cheer for any other team than Edmonton, but this year I will be cheering hard for Minny in the playoffs because of him.
    4. Yakupov – He loves the game and works very hard. He’s been bashed and battered by the media since he entered the league. I love this kid and I hope he sees big success soon, but I am a believer that the difficulties he has experienced will make him a better player in the end. Another reason why I hope Nelson is brought back, he knows how to work his roster and help young players build their confidence back up.
    5. Tkachev – I hope we can get him in the draft. I was in Penticton this year and he really could be an impact player at the NHL level in 2-3 years. Fingers crossed.
    6. Todd Nelson – for many of the reasons above and for being overlooked by management on a couple of occasions. He has been a loyal and very successful employee of the Org. I think he deserves a chance to run this team next year.

  6. Gordies Elbow says:

    Based on your history, could I get you to start cheering for the Calgary Flames prospects?

    🙂

  7. JAG-041 says:

    The Oilers players should read your blog for emotional support LT (perhaps not the comments section though).
    Your undying faith in these men is inspiring!
    Somehow you keep me interested in the Oilers even when all seems so lost… you’re not working for 6 rings are you?…

  8. Lowetide says:

    C. Hamilton-Williams-Ford
    Miller-Yakimov-Stretch
    Moroz-Ewanyk-Schaber
    K. Jones-C. Jones-Winquist

    Hunt-Davidson
    Simpson-Musil
    Gernat-Oesterle

    Brossoit starts

  9. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Lawson Crouse with 2A in the 1st period on 2 goals by Sam Bennett.

  10. Ca$h-Money! says:

    Lander for me, honorable mention to Khaira.

  11. John Chambers says:

    Ca$h-Money!,

    Man things might’ve been different back when if Kim Issel and Joe Hulbig panned out. I wonder how far of a reach those picks were.

  12. Gordies Elbow says:

    Personally, Mitch Moroz. I’m a big Oil Kings fan, and him with Kristians Pelss’ jersey after the Memorial Cup win is unforgettable.

    #PlayForPelssy

  13. stephen sheps says:

    Dashingsilverfox:
    Lawson Crouse with 2A in the 1st period on 2 goals by Sam Bennett.

    Excellent news. Thank you for sharing. Crouse is for me what MAP is for LT.

    I remember saying to someone here a few weeks back that with Bennett back on the Fronts, Crouse’s boxcars would improve dramatically. He’s so much better than many people want to believe. Not top 5 good, but really an excellent young player.

    The Fronts as a team don’t score a lot of goals. I wonder what the percentage of his offence actually is relative to the team scoring. I can’t do the maths, but perhaps Ricki, G, FRJonK (brilliant work this afternoon!), NYCOil or Woodguy has the brain power (and the time) to figure that out. I really am curious about that particular number.

    Also – I too am cheering like hell for Lander. I’ve been excited about him since he was drafted and am absolutely loving the player he’s becoming. I hope the Oilers don’t Oiler and send him away or let him go for nothing.

  14. Dashingsilverfox says:

    stephen sheps: Excellent news. Thank you for sharing. Crouse is for me what MAP is for LT.

    I remember saying to someone here a few weeks back that with Bennett back on the Fronts, Crouse’s boxcars would improve dramatically. He’s so much better than many people want to believe. Not top 5 good, but really an excellent young player.

    The Fronts as a team don’t score a lot of goals. I wonder what the percentage of his offence actually is relative to the team scoring. I can’t do the maths, but perhaps Ricki, G, FRJonK (brilliant work this afternoon!), NYCOil or Woodguy has the brain power (and the time) to figure that out. I really am curious about that particular number.

    Also – I too am cheering like hell for Lander. I’ve been excited about him since he was drafted and am absolutely loving the player he’s becoming. I hope the Oilers don’t Oiler and send him away or let him go for nothing.

    I don’t recall which thread but someone posted his percentage of team scoring earlier and it was very, very good.

    With Bennett (who now has a 3rd goal tonight) back, those numbers should soar.

  15. Woodguy says:

    stephen sheps,

    I think I read the same thing DSF did.

    He wasn’t far off Marner in term of % of team offence iirc.

    I’ll check into it later.

  16. stephen sheps says:

    Dashingsilverfox: I don’t recall which thread but someone posted his percentage of team scoring earlier and it was very, very good.

    With Bennett (who now has a 3rd goal tonight) back, those numbers should soar.

    I’ll see if I can track that thread down – I was buried in grading and job application hell for a couple weeks and kind of stopped caring about hockey, blasphemous as that may sound. I suspected the number would be quite good. Thanks!

  17. Lowetide says:

    Hunt (Ford, Miller) 1-0 OKC

  18. stephen sheps says:

    Woodguy,

    Thanks, Woodguy!

    Not too far off from Marmer, eh? Excellent.

  19. Woodguy says:

    Oops.

    Way off.

    Going into tonight Marner had points on 41% of his team goals.

    Crouse had points on 25% of Frontenac’s goals.

  20. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Woodguy:
    Oops.

    Way off.

    Going into tonight Marner had points on 41% of his team goals.

    Crouse had points on 25% of Frontenac’s goals.

    I wonder how that number is since Bennett returned?

    Much better I expect.

  21. stephen sheps says:

    Woodguy:
    Oops.

    Way off.

    Going into tonight Marner had points on 41% of his team goals.

    Crouse had points on 25% of Frontenac’s goals.

    Ok, well that really proves how insanely talented Marner is. 41% of a lot of goals is ridiculous. But for a team that doesn’t score much, to be involved in 25% of the scoring is not bad at all.

    How’d you find the numbers so fast?

  22. Woodguy says:

    I remember Getzlaf being dinged for the same thing in his draft year.

    He had points on 28% of his team’s goals in his draft year.

    In terms of goals:

    Getzlaf had. 41g/gm

    Crouse. 52g/gm

    Getzlaf way ahead on assists.

    Might change a bit with Bennett back.

  23. Lowetide says:

    jfry:
    article on joey legs

    http://collegehockeyinc.com/articles/developing-story-joey-laleggia

    good writeup good writeup.

  24. Woodguy says:

    Dashingsilverfox: I wonder how that number is since Bennett returned?

    Much better I expect.

    I’d expect that.

    Still a warning sign if he can’t create on his own like Draisaitl did on a meh PA team.

  25. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Crouse with his 28th goal…Bennett with an assist.

  26. Pouzar says:

    Corey Pronman ‏@coreypronman 32m32 minutes ago
    Incredible how much BU—-a top ranked team in a top conference, is leaning on a U18 defenseman in Noah Hanifin. Every big situation.

  27. stephen sheps says:

    Woodguy,

    it might, but there are only a few regular season games remaining, so it won’t change that much with Bennett in the lineup – not enough to be that statistically significant at least.

    Great point about production on meh teams. I think the differences can be found both in terms of deployment as well as position. Even though he is a winger, Crouse does a lot of PK and D-zone work. Having not watched even a moment of LD’s junior career, especially in PA, I have no idea what his role was with the team outside of carrying the load offensively. It’s still a great point you raise though.

    jfry,

    yup, that’s a good read.

  28. Woodguy says:

    stephen sheps: Ok, well that really proves how insanely talented Marner is. 41% of a lot of goals is ridiculous. But for a team that doesn’t score much, to be involved in 25% of the scoring is not bad at all.

    How’d you find the numbers so fast?

    Hockey db.

    Find the player, click on the team, manually add up all the goals the team has scored.

    Easy peasy.

  29. striker says:

    Ca$h-Money!: Lander for me, honorable mention to Khaira.

    Those are my two guys as well.

  30. John Chambers says:

    Dashingsilverfox,

    We can be thankful for Bennett’s injury because otherwise Crouse has about 20 more points and gets selected 3rd overall in the 2015 NHL entry draft by Craig MacTavish…

    … That is to the extent that I want to be grateful for ANYONE’s injury, Calgary Flames’ prospect or otherwise.

  31. stephen sheps says:

    Woodguy: Hockey db.

    Find the player, click on the team, manually add up all the goals the team has scored.

    Easy peasy.

    palm, meet face. my PhD not withstanding, I feel really effin dumb right now. But in a good way 🙂

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/koosah1066/10574265464/

  32. Gordies Elbow says:

    jfry,

    Great article on Joey Leggs. Thanks!

  33. Woodguy says:

    stephen sheps: palm, meet face. my PhD not withstanding, I feel really effin dumb right now. But in a good way

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/koosah1066/10574265464/

    Ha!

    That’s the trouble with you PhDs, you think everything is so complicated.

    I got my undergrad with while attending ~70% of the classes so I look for the easy way first.

    😀

  34. godot10 says:

    Woodguy:
    Oops.

    Way off.

    Going into tonight Marner had points on 41% of his team goals.

    Crouse had points on 25% of Frontenac’s goals.

    Percentage of even strength goals would probably be more relevant.

  35. stephen sheps says:

    Woodguy,

    if only you knew what my undergrad transcript looks like… and thank the gords my students don’t have a clue!

    still, thanks for the effort looking that up for me. I should have known there was a simple solution… 😉

  36. Woodguy says:

    godot10: Percentage of even strength goals would probably be more relevant.

    Agreed

  37. Woodguy says:

    godot10: Percentage of even strength goals would probably be more relevant.

    I think you can look it up on Josh Weisbock’s site chlstats.com

    I’m on my phone, so it too difficult at the moment for me.

  38. Unicorns says:

    Great piece on Legs. He seems like a quality young gent. I think if we’re being realistic about the Oilers, he should be considered a nice pick as a valuable asset.

    He’s a quality player, a little undersized but stocky I would say at 5′ 10″ 185lbs and 22 YO. He’ll play pro at 5 lbs heavier I’d bet. Let’s not forget Marincin was playing in the NHL at 185 and 6′ 5″ or so the numbers read.

    Edit: the problem with this is when injuries occur. It is far better to have self sufficient players that can play with any partner and keep quality.

    Strength may not be an issue if he can use angles and speed and brains and be a reliable specialist. The only thing I ponder about specialists is if they can score but only play third pairing, do they become too expensive? Perhaps they become valuable to trade for needs.

    Still, with Klef, Nurse, Marincin and all the LD prospects where does he fit? Maybe if they do deal MM and don’t draft Hanifin or Provolone 🙂 he could pair with Musil as a third pairing that compliments strengths.

    Edit: the problem with this is injuries. It’s better to have players with more rounded capabilities so they can pair with whomever is avaialable and still play well.

  39. haters says:

    Funny. The more successful a team gets the more it drives fans away ? Like in the 80’s attendance actually started to dwindle around the 4th cup run I believe. It’s human nature to cheer for the underdog because of the system we were brought up and raised in. Everyone successful is thought to be corrupt.

    Anyway, I think that’s why I love the Oilers and this city, it’s not about the 25 times you lost to the same team it’s about that one awesome amazing inspired time we crushed them 10-1 and lil Sammy Gagner stood amoung Giants and everything was right in the universe that night.

  40. Lois Lowe says:

    I am total sucker for underdogs and longshots, so it’s easy to cheer for the prospects because they’re pretty much all longshots. My favorite kids are Greg Chase, Dillon Simpson, and Vladdy Hockey. A mixed bag to be sure, but they’re my hill to die on.

  41. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Tank Battle Update:

    Buffalo loses in regulation.

    Carolina loses in regulation.

    Toronto loses in regulation.

    Buffalo – 44

    Edmonton – 48

    Arizona – 50 (no score after the 1st against NJ)

    Carolina – 58

    Toronto – 60

    Carolina still has 3 games in hand over Toronto

  42. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Lois Lowe:
    I am total sucker for underdogs and longshots, so it’s easy to cheer for the prospects because they’re pretty much all longshots. My favorite kids are Greg Chase, Dillon Simpson, and Vladdy Hockey. A mixed bag to be sure, but they’re my hill to die on.

    Does that mean you’re cheering for the Flames to make the playoffs?

  43. Gordies Elbow says:

    haters,

    I bought a “walk up” ticket for a game on Tuesday, May 22nd, 1990. Face value, it was “tens of dollars.” At the time, didn’t think anything of it – it was normal for Edmonton to be in the finals.

    For the underdogs? Already mentioned Moroz. Tonight, due to the great article posted by Jfry, add Joey Leggs to the list. Small defender, but with good vision and plus wheels? Yep, sounds good to me.

  44. Lois Lowe says:

    Dashingsilverfox,

    Actually, I do want the Flames to make the playoffs because it would mean no chance at McEichel. Bennet, Monahan, and Johnny Hockey are formidable enough; no need to add another good, young piece.

  45. Gordies Elbow says:

    Lois Lowe,

    Yep, I could cheer for Calgary, for the same reasons. If they could take out the Canucks in the first round too, that’d be great. I don’t dislike the Flames, but the Canucks fans deserve 0 cups.

  46. Woodguy says:

    Great thing about Josh’s site is that he does some age adjustments.

    If you are not familiar with adjustments, read this:

    https://twitter.com/coreypronman/status/562460876322918402

    Age adjusted pts/gm:

    Crouse .85
    Marner 1.83
    McJesus 2.29
    Strome 1.65

    5v5 pts/60 (not age adjusted)

    Crouse 2.08
    Marner 4.52
    McJesus 5.83
    Strome 4.66

  47. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Lois Lowe,

    They’re likely in the point in their rebuild where they would benefit more from adding some veteran players.

    They already have too many centres, an above average D and decent goaltending.

    Another veteran second pairing D and a couple of scoring wingers and they’ll be scary good.

    And, of course, they have the most free cap space in the league in the offseason.

  48. Bruce McCurdy says:

    How is Jonathan Drouin as a a comp for Marner?

  49. Lois Lowe says:

    Gordies Elbow,

    I edited my post but I had initially written something along the same lines. Hopefully the Flames and Canucks meet in the first round, and then the winner gets trounced in the second. I hope that Vancouver continues to wander the desert forever.

  50. Gordies Elbow says:

    50-50 split between Edmonton drafting 28th or 29th has Edmonton going 7 wins, 6 losses, 0 ties over the remainder.

    Final games from NHL.com are:
    MAPLE LEAFS, BLUE JACKETS, FLYERS, JETS, AVALANCHE, STARS, AVALANCHE, DUCKS
    KINGS, FLAMES, KINGS, SHARKS, and CANUCKS

    7 wins is doubtful. Edmonton looks to be drafting 3rd. Any thoughts as to moving down to 5th or 6th? Edmonton’s like looking at defenders, who traditionally drop during the draft. Perhaps this is the year to move down (somewhat) in the draft? Thoughts?

  51. Gordies Elbow says:

    Woodguy,

    So, what you’re telling me, is we want McJesus?

    🙂

  52. leadfarmer says:

    Dashingsilverfox,

    They should troll the oilers brass by signing Petry to a 4 year 4.5 million a year contract.

    I do want the Flames to make the playoffs, raise the pressure on Katz to get rid of Lowe mact and Co

  53. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Gordies Elbow:
    50-50 split between Edmonton drafting 28th or 29th has Edmonton going 7 wins,6 losses, 0 ties over the remainder.

    Final games from NHL.com are:
    MAPLE LEAFS, BLUE JACKETS, FLYERS, JETS, AVALANCHE, STARS, AVALANCHE, DUCKS
    KINGS, FLAMES, KINGS, SHARKS, and CANUCKS

    7 wins is doubtful. Edmonton looks to be drafting 3rd. Any thoughts as to moving down to 5th or 6th? Edmonton’s like looking at defenders, who traditionally drop during the draft. Perhaps this is the year to move down (somewhat) in the draft? Thoughts?

    7 wins is very generous. I’ll say 3.

    What are the odds one of SJ/LA pass CGY and the jets take a wildcard? Wishful thinking? Flames fans don’t deserve the playoffs, not like we do 🙁

  54. leadfarmer says:

    Gordies Elbow,

    Hanifin and Marner are going 3rd and 4th imo. I think oil favor the dman and Arizona the forward. I would not trade down. Other than a few people trying to get web hits, Hanifin has been the best dman all year with many claiming he would go 1 in most drafts.

  55. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Gordies Elbow:
    50-50 split between Edmonton drafting 28th or 29th has Edmonton going 7 wins,6 losses, 0 ties over the remainder.

    Final games from NHL.com are:
    MAPLE LEAFS, BLUE JACKETS, FLYERS, JETS, AVALANCHE, STARS, AVALANCHE, DUCKS
    KINGS, FLAMES, KINGS, SHARKS, and CANUCKS

    7 wins is doubtful. Edmonton looks to be drafting 3rd. Any thoughts as to moving down to 5th or 6th? Edmonton’s like looking at defenders, who traditionally drop during the draft. Perhaps this is the year to move down (somewhat) in the draft? Thoughts?

    The odds are actually in favour (overall) of a team that doesn’t finish in the bottom 3 winning the lottery.

    My hunch is that it will be Toronto leaving Buffalo 2nd, Arizona 3rd and Edmonton 4th.

    Then what do you do?

  56. Dashingsilverfox says:

    leadfarmer:
    Dashingsilverfox,

    They should troll the oilers brass by signing Petry to a 4 year 4.5 million a year contract.

    I do want the Flames to make the playoffs, raise the pressure on Katz to get rid of Lowe mact and Co

    We shouldn’t overlook the huge financial benefit of a team making the playoffs since that revenue is not shared with the players.

    Let’s say the Flames get 3 home games…that’s about $6 million that goes directly to the bottom line.

    Not to mention the halo effect in merchandise sales and the potential to raise ticket prices.

    The Flames aren’t hurting for cash but that kind of injection becomes a huge competitive advantage over time.

  57. TemujinBC says:

    I always tried to keep up with Tony Hrkac. Maybe it was his unique name (pronounced Her-Cus) but that poor guy played for damn near every team in the NHL and a pile of minor league teams along the way. Had a few good seasons and was highly touted, winning the Hobey Baker Award in 1987, but could never stick with any club.

    Not really a true underdog but I cheered for him every time I heard his name.

  58. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Minnesota, uncharacteristically, outshot 42-19 by St. Louis but win the game 3-1.

    Dubnyk with a .976 save percentage.

  59. Evilas says:

    Pouzar:
    Corey Pronman ‏@coreypronman32m32 minutes ago
    Incredible how much BU—-a top ranked team in a top conference, is leaning on a U18 defenseman in Noah Hanifin. Every big situation.

    Hanifan plays for BC, not BU. Eichel with 3 assists, O’Connor with a 27 save SO. BU put 55 shots on Merrimac net…. They have a Finnish player who seems to be an elite goal scorer, might be a player to keep track of, Ahti Oksanen, he isn’t on Eichel’s line, he likely plays point on the PP (he’s their Byfuglien) he has 9pp goals.

    Has anyone seen him play?

  60. Gordies Elbow says:

    Assume that Edmonton’s pick is #3 (Edmonton ends up 2nd, and someone other than Columbus and Buffalo win) With the trade, Columbus picks 3rd, Edmonton picks 7th. (and picks up the #36th pick in exchange)

    I could see: McDavid, Eichel, Marner, and Strome taken in the first four.

    How many of the following in the next four?
    Crouse, Rantanen, Zacha, and Meier

    Defenders available include:
    Hanifin, Kylington, and Provorov

    If Edmonton’s targeting one of the defenders – could they trade down and get a nice piece? Should they?

    Could Edmonton move it’s pick to Columbus for their 1st rounder and their 2nd rounder (which would be about the ask I’d expect, and give Edmonton 3 picks in the 2nd/) Marner would be compelling at that point – and while not really a need from Edmonton’s perspective, might be leverage enough to get a pick to take Mackenzie Blackwood.

  61. Gordies Elbow says:

    Dubnyk with a .976 save percentage.

    Good on him. Many here believed in him, glad to see him doing well.

  62. jp says:

    Woodguy: Hockey db.

    Find the player, click on the team, manually add up all the goals the team has scored.

    Easy peasy.

    You could also go the OHL site and take the team GF-GA numbers. Easy peasier.

    Woodguy:
    Oops.

    Way off.

    Going into tonight Marner had points on 41% of his team goals.

    Crouse had points on 25% of Frontenac’s goals.

    Dashingsilverfox: I wonder how that number is since Bennett returned?

    Much better I expect.

    I had a quick look at the total PPG and IPP numbers (not restricted to EV scoring).

    Kingston 2.95 GPG
    London 4.26 GPG

    Taking into account games missed by the players (using a pro-rated team GPG rather than removing the specific games the players missed):
    Marner 2.00 PPG 47.0% IPP
    Crouse 0.91 PPG 30.8% IPP

    For comparison Marner’s drafted linemates went:
    Domi 1.77 PPG 41.6% IPP
    Dvorak 1.65 PPG 38.6% IPP

    Now for Crouse and Bennett since the latter’s return (9 games, in which Kingston is 8-1 scoring 40GF-17GA):
    Bennett 9-11-10-21 2.33 PPG 52.5 IPP
    Crouse 9-6-6-12 1.33 PPG 30.0% IPP

    So Crouse and the Frontenacs have been scoring more since Bennett returned, but his points percentage hasn’t moved at all.

    And Marner is an absolute monster. Crouse isn’t in the same ballpark, even since Bennett returned. Marner has clearly benefited from his older linemates, but he’s outscoring the two of them handily both in real points and IPP. Extremely impressive!

  63. Lois Lowe says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    That’s the one that makes the most sense to me.

  64. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Gordies Elbow: Good on him. Many here believed in him, glad to see him doing well.

    If there is any justice, Dubnyk easily wins the Hart Trophy.

    The problem is, though, that the Wild are playing him every game and he may burn out and they don’t have any “backup” plan.

  65. Gordies Elbow says:

    Dashingsilverfox: If there is any justice, Dubnyk easily wins the Hart Trophy.

    The problem is, though, that the Wild are playing him every game and he may burn out and they don’t have any “backup” plan.

    After the Edmonton, Nashville, Montreal, and Arizona experiences, I’d say if anyone can, it’d be him.

  66. speeds says:

    Lowetide: I’d be thrilled with Marner.

    quick follow up:

    @hockeysymposium he can be a C FWIW and has been a lot during his OHL days. On the wing when playing w Domi which he is now.— Corey Pronman (@coreypronman) March 15, 2015

  67. spoiler says:

    speeds:
    Interesting note here from Pronman:

    http://insider.espn.go.com/nhl/story/_/id/12462309/corey-pronman-mock-draft-10-nhl-draft?ex_cid=InsiderTwitter_Pronman_MockDraft1

    I think he’s dead wrong on Phoenix. If Phoenix drafts 3rd or later, and Marner is still on the board, they take him in a heartbeat. They can bring an entire Junior line to the NHL.

  68. speeds says:

    If they believe Marner can successfully play C at the NHL level, even if requires another OHL year, that could, potentially, be enough to tip the scales in his favor, particularly if they think Strome is too much like Draisaitl and if they are looking to avoid another LH D unless they think he’s clearly the best player.

  69. Gordies Elbow says:

    Dashingsilverfox,

    Dashingsilverfox: The odds are actually in favour (overall) of a team that doesn’t finish in the bottom 3 winning the lottery.

    My hunch is that it will be Toronto leaving Buffalo 2nd, Arizona 3rd and Edmonton 4th.

    Then what do you do?

    I expect that Edmonton drafts first, so that Bettman can show other cities what they get when they build a multi-billion dollar complex with taxpayer dollars.

    If not, and Edmonton is forth, assuming McDavid and Eichel go 1 and 2 (safe bet,) I’d say it’s still likely that Arizona takes Strome or Marner, leaving Hanifin, who I think is the real target. If they don’t take Hanifin, the good news is that this is an apparently really deep draft. and Edmonton could end up with Marner and a good defender with their other 1st round pick.

    Good year to have 6 picks in the top 90.

  70. Woodguy says:

    jp,

    Good catch on gp, totally missed that.

    Good post.

  71. flyfish1168 says:

    I can’t believe I’m cheering for Jarome and Alex tonight. Its a 1st

  72. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Arizona loses 4-1.

    Tank on.

  73. Woodguy says:

    Bruce McCurdy:
    How is Jonathan Drouin as a a comp for Marner?

    As per JP above:

    Marner 2.00 PPG 47.0% IPP

    Just had a look at Drouin (Josh’s site doesn’t go back 3 years)

    Drouin 2.14 PPG 42.5%IPP

    Pretty close.

    FWIW

    Kane 2.50 PPG 56.4% IPP (sick)

    McJesus 2..53 PPG 53.7% IPP

    Kane’s team averaged .31 g/gm more than Erie this year.

  74. Ryan says:

    Dashingsilverfox:
    Arizona loses 4-1.

    Tank on.

    Yeah, but your Canucks won, so you should be elated.

  75. Lowetide says:

    1+1 for Marco Roy tonight, closing well. Hope he has a strong playoff and Mem Cup.

  76. Gordies Elbow says:

    Dashingsilverfox:
    Arizona loses 4-1.

    Tank on.

    Not concerned with other teams:

    If Edmonton goes .500 for their remaining games, they have a 50% chance of ending 3rd last, a 49% chance of 2nd last, and a 1% chance at last. Looking at who they play, I’d say that Edmonton is likely 2nd last.

    That said, assuming that Arizona is beneath them, and they don’t win the lottery:
    – There is a 20% chance Buffalo wins, and Arizona takes Eichel
    – There is a 13.5% chance that Arizona wins, takes McDavid, leaving Eichel to Buffalo
    – Edmonton has an 11.5% chance at McDavid
    – There is a 55% chance that another team drafts McDavid, and Edmonton falls to 4th
    – Eichel is drafted #2, no question.

    If Edmonton’s target is Hanifin, looks like they’re in a good position. Forwards tend to go before defenders, and if Edmonton misses out of Hanifin, they’ll get one of the others available.

  77. Lowetide says:

    1+1 for Kyle Platzer tonight, he’s now 30-45-75 in 65GP. Very nice season.

  78. Tarkus says:

    speeds:
    Interesting note here from Pronman:

    http://insider.espn.go.com/nhl/story/_/id/12462309/corey-pronman-mock-draft-10-nhl-draft?ex_cid=InsiderTwitter_Pronman_MockDraft1

    Anyone have access to the full draft? Curious to know who Pronman has the Oilers taking with the Pitt 1st.

  79. Gordies Elbow says:

    Lowetide:
    1+1 for Kyle Platzer tonight, he’s now 30-45-75 in 65GP. Very nice season.

    Wow, better than I would have expected. He’s really doing well.

  80. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Gordies Elbow: Not concerned with other teams:

    If Edmonton goes .500 for their remaining games, they have a 50% chance of ending 3rd last, a 49% chance of 2nd last, and a 1% chance at last. Looking at who they play, I’d say that Edmonton is likely 2nd last.

    That said, assuming that Arizona is beneath them, and they don’t win the lottery:–There is a 20% chance Buffalo wins, and Arizona takes Eichel–There is a 13.5% chance that Arizona wins, takes McDavid, leaving Eichel to Buffalo–Edmonton has an 11.5% chance at McDavid–There is a 55% chance that another team drafts McDavid, and Edmonton falls to 4th–Eichel is drafted #2, no question.

    If Edmonton’s target is Hanifin, looks like they’re in a good position. Forwards tend to go before defenders, and if Edmonton misses out of Hanifin, they’ll get one of the others available.

    I also think Hanifin is the most likely Oilers pick.

    Too bad the rebuild is still proceeding backwards.

  81. Gordies Elbow says:

    Dashingsilverfox,

    I agree on the pick.

    I think that the rebuild is proceeding as expected. Nurse is great, Draisatl is ripping up the WHL. Edmonton has a farm team that is good, and it’s best players are under 25.

    Based on what I’ve heard, the goal is to be competitive for 2016-2017, for the opening of the new building.

    Hanifin might be too young to join Nurse and Draisaitl, but it’ll be close.

  82. Kmart99 says:

    Dashingsilverfox: The odds are actually in favour (overall) of a team that doesn’t finish in the bottom 3 winning the lottery.

    My hunch is that it will be Toronto leaving Buffalo 2nd, Arizona 3rd and Edmonton 4th.

    Then what do you do?

    Odds are in favour of one of the bottom 4 drafting 1st overall… so there’s that.

  83. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Gordies Elbow:
    Dashingsilverfox,

    I agree on the pick.

    I think that the rebuild is proceeding as expected. Nurse is great, Draisatl is ripping up the WHL. Edmonton has a farm team that is good, and it’s best players are under 25.

    Based on what I’ve heard, the goal is to be competitive for 2016-2017, for the opening of the new building.

    Hanifin might be too young to join Nurse and Draisaitl, but it’ll be close.

    Rebuilds shouldn’t take 10 years.

  84. jp says:

    Dashingsilverfox: I also think Hanifin is the most likely Oilers pick.

    Too bad the rebuild is still proceeding backwards.

    Better backward than never? I don’t know.

    Dashingsilverfox: Rebuilds shouldn’t take 10 years.

    That much is clear. At this point if it ever ends I think we’ll all be happy.

  85. Big Dan says:

    My 2nd favorite player for a decade was Todd Marchant. Hands of stone, heart of steel, great speed.

    Of course nobody touched Ryan Smyth.

    But you could fit mine into three buckets:

    (a) I’ve always had a soft spot for the little guys like Linus Omark who have to fight an uphill battle. Tkachev was a great story. I guess Vesel and Lagellia are my next generation to cheer for.

    (b) I also have a soft spot for guys who I feel are totally underrated. Like Marchant or Moog in the past. I think that’s why the Nuge and Petry appeal to so many Oiler fans. And the Yak because the media hate him.

    (c) And I love the goalies. Broissoit’s my favorite – I hope that kid can make it. Great guy.

  86. Dashingsilverfox says:

    jp,

    If the rebuild takes too long you run the risk of having to start over when the weight of your contracts becomes too much to bear.

    If the Oilers draft another wunderkid, they’re going to have to pay him before they’ve won anything.

    Think Chicago and Los Angeles without any cups.

  87. cabbiesmacker says:

    Dashingsilverfox:
    jp,

    Think Chicago and Los Angeles without any cups.

    Cups are tough to win. Not making the playoffs for this many years might be even tougher.

  88. JohnnyRocket says:

    http://m.thn.com/blog/lightnings-plan-for-rookie-jonathan-drouin-was-shocking-but-savvy/

    Interesting article on the development of Drouin in TB. Points out the fantastic job Stevie Y is doing developing him slowly and managing expectations. Makes pointed, albeit passing, reference to the poor job Edmonton does in rushing prospects into the NHL. The article made me think of Yakupov and he might have been brought along under a better managers watch.

  89. Jon K says:

    Dashingsilverfox: I don’t recall which thread but someone posted his percentage of team scoring earlier and it was very, very good.

    With Bennett (who now has a 3rd goal tonight) back, those numbers should soar.

    Bennett’s going to be a great one. Still think he was the correct pick over Draisaitl. Based on age and skillset thought he should have been first overall. Of course I was wrong, Ekblad has justified being first overall.

  90. Ca$h-Money! says:

    Dashingsilverfox: Rebuilds shouldn’t take 10 years.

    Yup.

    Is there someone around here claiming this has been going well? Or that management has been doing a good job?

  91. Jon K says:

    Dashingsilverfox: I also think Hanifin is the most likely Oilers pick.

    Too bad the rebuild is still proceeding backwards.

    Hanifin’s a good pick. Wrong pick for the rebuild though. Forwards develop quickly, defenders slowly. Take defenders first.

    Oilers rebuild based on wingers without any depth up the middle or on the backend.

    Being an Oilers fan should be a recognized form of masochism.

  92. flyfish1168 says:

    I notice Darnell played Friday evening game but not tonight’s game. Wonder if he is re-injured.

  93. Jon K says:

    flyfish1168:
    Very tough to send any 1st overall back to juniors. Erik Johnson went back to college in 2006, Alex Ovechkin stayed in Russia due to the strike. Marc-Andre Fleury played 22 games before being sent back in 2003. These players are to good for junior but not old enough to go to the AHL. Time to think whats bestfor the players career versus a rich junior team owner. JMHO

    First overall picks sell hope better than anything else. Plus there is immense pressure from the player and agent to start the UFA clock ticking as soon as possible and start earning.

  94. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Ca$h-Money!: Yup.

    Is there someone around here claiming this has been going well?Or that management has been doing a good job?

    Yes.

    See above.

  95. flyfish1168 says:

    JohnnyRocket:
    http://m.thn.com/blog/lightnings-plan-for-rookie-jonathan-drouin-was-shocking-but-savvy/

    Interesting article on the development of Drouin in TB. Points out the fantastic job Stevie Y is doing developing him slowly and managing expectations. Makes pointed, albeit passing, reference to the poor job Edmonton does in rushing prospects into the NHL. The article made me think of Yakupov and he might have been brought along under a better managers watch.

    Very tough to send any 1st overall back to juniors. Erik Johnson went back to college in 2006, Alex Ovechkin stayed in Russia due to the strike. Marc-Andre Fleury played 22 games before being sent back in 2003. These players are to good for junior but not old enough to go to the AHL. Time to think whats best for the players career versus a rich junior team owner. JMHO

  96. Tarkus says:

    Ben Betker was 1+1 and first star in Everett’s victory tonight.

  97. flyfish1168 says:

    Jon K: First overall picks sell hope better than anything else. Plus there is immense pressure from the player and agent to start the UFA clock ticking as soon as possible and start earning.

    True enough. Its unfortunate that you can piss of the player and agent. These players are also targets if the go back to junior.

  98. frjohnk says:

    Lowetide,

    Woodguy,

    Sorry I did not get back to you two earlier about my post on the previous thread earlier today.

    You guys can feel free to use all or part of that post. Or any post of mine. I don’t have a blog and I don’t plan on starting one. This is the only hockey blog I actually post comments on. So have at it.

    Really appreciate the positive feedback. Thank you.

  99. jp says:

    Dashingsilverfox:
    jp,

    If the rebuild takes too long you run the risk of having to start over when the weight of your contracts becomes too much to bear.

    If the Oilers draft another wunderkid, they’re going to have to pay him before they’ve won anything.

    Think Chicago and Los Angeles without any cups.

    For sure 10 years in the dessert doesn’t guarantee an exodus is coming. But another wunderkid beats not having another wunderkid. Especially if he’s better than all your previous wurderkids.

    So, if the Oilers are the Hawks or the Kings without any Cups, what are the Canucks? 14 playoff rounds won in 34 years.

  100. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Tough loss for the Barons tonight, 2-1, giving up the winner at 19:58 of the 3rd. A powerplay goal, with Curtis Hamilton in the bix for a slashing infraction with 27 seconds left in regulation. Poor guy gets featured here & then winds up making the ultimate “skate of shame”.

    They trailed for 2 seconds all night & never got a point. Ouch.

  101. Bruce McCurdy says:

    jp: For sure 10 years in the dessert doesn’t guarantee an exodus is coming. But another wunderkid beats not having another wunderkid. Especially if he’s better than all your previous wurderkids.

    So, if the Oilers are the Hawks or the Kings without any Cups, what are the Canucks? 14 playoff rounds won in 34 years.

    44 years, no?

  102. jp says:

    Bruce McCurdy: 44 years, no?

    Oops. At some point it’s all just a blur I guess (that’s how this Oilers rebuild feels anyway).

  103. jp says:

    Woodguy: As per JP above:

    Marner 2.00 PPG 47.0% IPP

    Just had a look at Drouin (Josh’s site doesn’t go back 3 years)

    Drouin 2.14 PPG 42.5%IPP

    Pretty close.

    FWIW

    Kane 2.50 PPG 56.4% IPP (sick)

    McJesus 2..53 PPG53.7% IPP

    Kane’s team averaged .31 g/gm more than Erie this year.

    The Kane mention made me think of Gagne:
    Sam in 06-07: 2.23 PPG 48.8% IPP. Shy of Kane, but definitely not too shabby.

    Then I wondered about some guys who were great for more than 1 game:
    Crosby in Rimouski: 2.55 PPG 53.7% IPP
    Mario in Laval: 4.03 PPG 53.5 IPP (Crazy PPG, but Laval scored 527 goals that year – 7,53 GPG!)
    Gretzky in SSM: 2.84 PPG 58.7% IPP. As a 16/17 year old. Wow.

    Gretzky’s best IPP year in the NHL (I believe) was 84-85: 2.60 PPG 51.9% IPP.

    But Mario le Magnifique blew that completely out of the water:
    Mario in 88-89: 2.62 PPG 60.3% IPP. Now THAT is a sick number. Just completely insane.

    Moving back to reality and mortal beings, some of the guys from the 2015 draft class have already been noted:
    McDavid 2..55 PPG 53.3% IPP
    Marner 2.00 PPG 47.0% IPP
    Crouse 0.91 PPG 30.8 IPP (1.33 PPG and 30.0% IPP post-Bennett)

    The other top forwards:
    Eichel 1.79 PPG 46.6% IPP
    Strome 1.81 PPG 37.9% IPP

    Some real shine comes off of Strome here.
    For comparison Draisaitl was 1.64 PPG and 48.6% IPP last year.

    One last thought. Moreau has been used as a comp for Crouse. That sounds sensible, but Moreau actually scored considerably better than Crouse in his draft year, both by actual points and by IPP:
    Moreau 1.66 PPG 40.0% IPP (Crouse 0.91 PPG and 30.8% IPP).

    I’m not suggesting Crouse won’t play in the NHL, but projecting him as an offensive player of any note is difficult.

  104. SwedishPoster says:

    I love the underdog as well. My guys atm are,
    Aidan Muir, off the grid pick who imo if you look at his numbers in context is a pretty solid pick with an intriguing mix of size, skating, two way play and ok hands. Needs to “learn to produce” and will never be the guy who runs the show on his line but it’ll be very interesting to see where his numbers go when/if he ever gets first line duty with a good playmaking center in the NCAA.
    Joey Legs, size against him but just keeps on putting up good offensive numbers, seems like a character kid as well.
    William Lagesson, swedish kid who was pretty off my radar when picked but when looking at him closer the kind of kid you really want to succeed, puts everything out there to win and has understood what he needs to do to maximize his somewhat limited talent.

  105. Ca$h-Money! says:

    Dashingsilverfox: Yes.

    See above.

    Where?

  106. Woodguy says:

    jp,

    Strome 1.81 PPG 37.9% IPP
    Some real shine comes off of Strome here.
    For comparison Draisaitl was 1.64 PPG and 48.6% IPP last year

    When you consider that he doesn’t play on the same line as McJesus and how much McJesus is scoring it doesn’t tarnish him that much.

  107. PhrankLee says:

    Dashingsilverfox: With Bennett (who now has a 3rd goal tonight) back, those numbers should soar.

    I am completely terrified of this kid. He is going to slip into the game like an assassin and take your eyes. Miss your Draft+1 year for surgery and rehab. You become invisible. You are cold as a new razor-blade. Sam Bennett was born to slaughter babies. Sam Bennett is shiftier than the man with 6 fingers. He will be overwhelmingly fast, skilled and everyone will ask where did this kid come from? 1 slot ahead of Leon but about 30 % faster, by eye of course.
    Im scared, lordy lord. Im shakin’, Im terrified..

  108. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Not to be douche ferguson on purpose or anything…

    but what you folks keep calling IPP above is not IPP (Individual Points Percentage). IPP relates solely to ON-ICE, 5×5 stats, not to TEAM stats in general.

    What you are referring to is sometimes called TEAM POINTS PERCENTAGE.

    Carry on.

  109. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Dashingsilverfox: Yes.

    See above.

    I haven’t read the whole thread carefully, but if there is someone championing the wisdom of the Oilers of the past near decade they are a huge outlier on this blog. We all know this. It’s a truism and not in need of contest.

    Carry on.

  110. Lowetide says:

    PhrankLee: I am completely terrified of this kid. He is going to slip into the game like an assassin and take your eyes. Miss your Draft+1 year for surgery and rehab. You become invisible. You are cold as a new razor-blade. Sam Bennett was born to slaughter babies. Sam Bennett is shiftier than the man with 6 fingers. He will be overwhelmingly fast, skilled and everyone will ask where did this kid come from?1 slot ahead of Leon but about 30 % faster, by eye of course.
    Im scared, lordy lord. Im shakin’, Im terrified..

    I had Bennett No. 1 overall last year, so am not surprised. It’s also true that Leon Drasaitl is a wonderful player and one of the concerns about Bennett is his ability to play that style at his size. I remain fine with Leon.

  111. admiralmark says:

    Tarkus: Anyone have access to the full draft?Curious to know who Pronman has the Oilers taking with the Pitt 1st.

    23. Edmonton Oilers (from Pittsburgh Penguins)

    Erik Cernak, D, HC Kosice (Slovakia)
    Age: 17 | GP: 43 | G: 5 | A: 8

    Cernak has played very well in Slovakia’s top league and has established himself as a player who should be taken in the middle to low end of the first round. While the Oilers have several strong defenseman prospects, Cernak is one of the best players available here on talent and will provide more depth at the position for Edmonton, with Darnell Nurse set to graduate and Oscar Klefbom already doing so. However, if they end up with a defenseman such as Hanifin instead of Eichel or McDavid as their top pick, maybe this calculus changes, because their system would be very light at forward in that scenario.

  112. Bruce McCurdy says:

    jp: Oops. At some point it’s all just a blur I guess (that’s how this Oilers rebuild feels anyway).

    What’s a decade between friends?

  113. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Woodguy:
    jp,

    Strome 1.81 PPG 37.9% IPP
    Some real shine comes off of Strome here.
    For comparison Draisaitl was 1.64 PPG and 48.6% IPP last year

    When you consider that he doesn’t play on the same line as McJesus and how much McJesus is scoring it doesn’t tarnish him that much.

    Agreed. I have a real problem with IPP as a stand alone number. It can provide context for a guy carrying a low scoring team, but it punishes guys on high scoring teams with multiple scoring lines. In his 100+-point seasons with the Gretzky Oilers, Mark Messier’s IPP was only around 25%, does that mean he was a bit player?

  114. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Agreed. I have a real problem with IPP as a stand alone number.It can provide context for a guy carrying a low scoring team, but it punishes guys on high scoring teams with multiple scoring lines. In his 100+-point seasons with the Gretzky Oilers, Mark Messier’s IPP was only around 25%, does that mean he was a bit player?

    I would certainly hope no one would use IPP “as a stand alone number”

    But, once again… this is not IPP.

  115. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: I would certainly hope no one would use IPP “as a stand alone number”

    But, once again… this is not IPP.

    Right you are, it’s not IPP, my bad. But these sorts of numbers, while useful, are very much contextual in nature, much more complementary information than an end in themselves.

  116. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Right you are, it’s not IPP, my bad. But these sorts of numbers, while useful, are very much contextual in nature, much more complementary information than an end in themselves.

    Indeed. And their status as a complementary piece of information rises when we are information-poor in other areas (i.e., when we don’t have shot information).

  117. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: Indeed. And their status as a complementary piece of information rises when we are information-poor in other areas (i.e., when we don’t have shot information).

    Yeah that’s fair. I have some issue with somebody having a high TPP on a team that can’t score because some of that failure reflects directly on their top players. But as a puece of information, i’d rather have it than not have it.

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