Matt Fraser enjoyed a quality junior career but was never drafted by an NHL team. When he turned pro, Fraser ripped off seasons of scoring (AHL) of 37 and 33 goals, cutting through the Dallas Stars prospect list and passing drafted kids like a house on the side of the road. Since getting into his first NHL action in 2011-12, Fraser has had a hard time establishing himself as an everyday player. He is on organization No. 3 and time is running out.
MATT FRASER BOXCARS THREE-YEAR TREND
MATT FRASER FANCY NUMBERS THREE YEAR TREND
- He’s come from a long way back. You bet, he was basically Josh Winquist after turning pro, and built himself a solid minor-league resume.
- Will he make it? There are some issues. Fraser isn’t a fast train, that’s a fact. I’m also not certain he’s going to be effective in a two-way role, there seems to be a gap there.
- Who does he remind you of? Ryan Jones, although Jones was faster. The Oilers seem to like having scoring wingers on lines that should be devoted to two-way types. Been this way since MacT left imo.
- I forgot about the Jones argument. It isn’t the Jones argument, it’s the Pisani point. The Oilers lead the league in ‘fly the zone’ wingers but can’t find two guys for a 3line who can haul ass on the back check.
- So you don’t like him? I like him fine, but he’s a tweener. Fraser isn’t good enough to beat out Hall or Pouliot, and he isn’t good enough as a checker to beat out Hendricks. The Oilers have been trying to shoe-horn a scorer into the bottom 6F’s for a long time, instead of finding another Fernando Pisani.
- Can Fraser score 20 goals a year? Probably. He has an excellent shot, it gives goalies fits. If an expansion draft came along and things broke right for him, I think he could do that, yes.
- He has good size. 6.01, 205 and he has a physical element to his game.
- How many skill wingers who are clearly ahead of him? Hall, Eberle, Pouliot, Yakupov, Purcell.
- How many skill wingers are in his range? I’d say Anton Slepyshev if he signs, Andrew Miller showed well, Iiro Pakarinen might be a tweener too but he’s promising as a two-way type. Plus Draisaitl.
- Draisaitl? Oh yeah. There’s a chance we see Leon on the wing and if that happens he may flourish. That guy is very skilled, terrific player.
- So, Fraser will be down the line? I think so, yes.
- Opportunity wasted? No. Fraser is a tweener, there are some fine things but the speed issue is going to be a problem all down the line. I cheer for him, though.
- Sure sounds like it. Seriously, I’d love to see him catch on with McDavid and Yakupov, but the competition for skill spots on this team is going to be incredible.
- Who will be the eight starting wingers opening night? There will be changes, I’m not sure.
- Let’s say there are no changes on the wings. Okay, I’ll say Hall—Eberle, Pouliot—Purcell, Draisaitl—Yakupov, Hendricks—Klinkhammer/Pakarinen/Pitlick.
- Why doesn’t Yakupov get to play with Hall? Maybe he does, history tells me to elevate the experienced guy until further notice.
- So Fraser is out? Look, Fraser, Pitlick, really all the RFA’s are under review. There’s going to be a culling of the herd. This is RE, meaning reasonable expectations, and it’s not reasonable to expect Matt Fraser to beat out all these other guys and win the day. Could happen, it isn’t likely though.
- Chiarelli traded for this guy! AND he put him on waivers. I’m sure Chiarelli thought about it a few times after it happened, but the guy he called up (Jordan Caron) was no screaming hell either. Anton Lander is better than all these guys, in my opinion.
- Why this song? GREAT damn record. Holy man what a band. The line about adios and finding another place rings true, suspect we’ll see Matt Fraser down the line in time. I’m cheering for him, though. I was hoping the Bruins would keep him, frankly in my opinion he had a better chance to make it there.
- Did the Oilers sign Eetu Laurikainen? Lots of smoke, no fire yet. I’ll have a post up if it happens.