Finding out Brandon Davidson’s back story means you’re a fan, it’s impossible to resist. The trick is to set history aside and ask this question: Is Brandon Davidson an NHL player?
RE 14-15: 2GP, 0-0-0
ACTUAL 14-15: 12GP, 1-0-1
- How many of these are you going to do? Many. There were a lot of players this year.
- Yeah, but at some point it gets a little much. I’m here, you’re here, what’s the problem?
- Fine. What do the numbers tell us? VERY small sample size, he’s a tweener and I would guess someone in the management group likes him a lot more than some other guys who are similar. There’s not much to separate a bunch of the AHL guys, Davidson has a little more experience and that probably helps explain the dozen games.
- Davidson is better than Martin Marincin. Who told you that?
- David Staples. You mean this? Well, that isn’t what he said, and I’d encourage you always to keep in mind (as David said in his piece) that conclusions drawn via small sample size are highly dangerous. Davidson could have a more productive NHL career, but Marincin has played more in the NHL than Davidson and that’s a reasonable way to keep score.
- Davidson is better than Marincin. I don’t think that’s a reasonable conclusion at this time, with due respect to David and his work. I think Marincin is and will be a better NHL defenseman moving forward, doesn’t mean it will happen but that’s the bet from here, today. I will admit that the Oilers may not feel that way, but we have 85 NHL games of Marincin now and the results seem to be giving us a promising answer.
- The Edmonton Oilers like Brandon Davidson better than Marincin. Probably true, but based on the past, that’s not an endorsement of Davidson as an NHL prospect. The Oilers have been wrong a lot over recent years in this area.
- Marincin was lazy in a playoff game, iced the puck and the Barons lost. That’s a bad play, he doesn’t want it. I think it’s very dangerous to take one play and frame it as anything other than a moment in time. Brandon Davidson may end up having a longer NHL career than Martin Marincin, but an icing play doesn’t tilt the balance in any way.
- Marincin has no sense of the game. Much too soft. I think it’s fair to suggest Marincin’s ability to retrieve pucks and recover real estate are issues, but he brings other things (wingspan, etc) to the trade that also have value. No one is saying Marincin is a complete defenseman, that’s simply not true. He has a better tool kit than Davidson, doesn’t mean he’ll have a longer career.
- Total denial. So sad. Anyway, let’s get back to Davidson.
- What do you like about Davidson? At the NHL level, he displayed a nice range of skills. He’s a good skater, has an aggressive nature and battled hard to win the puck along the wall. Without the puck, Davidson does a lot of things well. He has NHL size—6.02, 214—although well short of being a giant.
- Making him a solid NHL option. If the Oilers had fewer guys to fill the 5-6-7 role on defense, I’d agree. As it is, the role he would play is more likely to be filled by Andrew Ference, Niki Nikitin or Keith Aulie. It all depends on the new coach.
- Where do you rank him on the depth chart currently. He is an RFA. I would have Davidson (if he was signed) behind Klefbom, Fayne, Nikitin, Ference, with Darnell Nurse likely ahead by opening night. If you add Justin Schultz and Marincin, Davidson may not make the team even if the Oilers don’t add anyone.
- So, No. 8 overall. I’d say that’s fair. My list would be Klefbom, Fayne, Marincin, Nikitin, Ference, Schultz, Nurse, Davidson, Oesterle, Aulie, Hunt, Musil, Simpson, Laleggia, Betker. 15 blue, he’s in the middle.
- How do you see this going? Depends completely on the coach and GM.
- Tell me how you see this going? The Oilers are going to acquire Brent Seabrook this summer and sign Andrej Sekera. They’re going to have Darnell Nurse on the roster this fall. All of the tweeners are heading down to the AHL and the top 7D in Edmonton will be Seabrook, Sekera, Klefbom, Nurse, Fayne, Schultz and Ference.
- What about Nikitin? What ABOUT Nikitin?
- Where is he going? Trade or buy out for Nikitin. I can’t see any reasonable argument for him to return and if they had another option I’d say the same thing about Schultz. I like Chiarelli but suspect he’ll sign Schultz to a bridge deal, later regretting it.
- Huh. That’s a lot of new next fall. It’ll continue, in my opinion, I think we’ll see more change from Chiarelli during the year.
- Why this song? It’s about reaching for something you may never reach, but understanding, at least on some level, the journey is the thing. This isn’t about Brandon Davidson playing 500 NHL games, it’s about him trying to make it as an NHL player. Godspeed, Brandon Davidson. Fate gave you a wonky organization to swim in but God love you it’s never kept you down. Keep on rockin’, young man.