The Edmonton Oilers had a very poor 2014 Entry draft—after choosing wisely in the first (Leon Draisaitl) and four (William Lagesson). One of the players drafted that weekend in 2014—Keven Bouchard—will re-enter the draft if he goes unsigned by June 1.
This sort of thing happens a lot with all NHL teams—Edmonton chose not to sign Marco Roy and Jackson Houck in 2013—but it does point out a missed opportunity. Early picks, like Roy who was a late second rounder, indicate a clear miss—an entry-level deal is a fairly low bar for a bona fide prospect.
The following is a list of players from the 2014 Draft class who's clubs will lose them on June 1st if not signed. pic.twitter.com/Rr7Eb8wcq4
— CapFriendly (@CapFriendly) May 26, 2016
- No. 23 overall Connor Bleackley. Drafted by the Colorado Avalanche, since traded to the Arizona Coyotes. Playing in the Memorial Cup and looking good, he is a 1996 birthday so would re-enter the draft.
- No. 71 overall Connor Chatham. A physical winger who has battled some injuries during his junior career. He is 6.02, 225 and did not explode offensively in any season after he was drafted. He is a 1995 birthday, believe he becomes a free agent.
- No. 75 overall Alex Peters. Highly-regarded two-way defender suffered a knee injury during his junior career and has not posted the kind of numbers that suggest progress.
- No. 76 overall Elvis Merzlikins. Goalie with impressive numbers (.922SP this past season with Lugano of the Swiss League). He would be a free agent.
- No. 85 overall Keegan Iverson. A big winger with some skill. Physical player. He would be a player I think Edmonton would value. Draft re-entry.
- No. 93 overall Nick Magyar. A bigger winger who scored well in his draft season but who has not developed, partly due to injury. Re-entry.
- No. 96 overall Josh Wesley. This is Glen’s boy, defensive defender. He is 6.03, 201 and a righty. Re-entry.
- No. 101 overall Nelson Nogier. Big, mobile stay at home defender. He is 6.03, 209 a righty. Re-entry.
- No. 102 overall Alexis Vanier. Weird skill set. Massive guy. Skilled. He is a free agent (I believe). 6.05, 227.
- No. 104 overall Ryan Mantha. Huge defender who can handle the puck. Good bloodlines.He is RH, 6.05, 225 and he might hold some promise. Re-entry.
- No. 107 overall Julien Pelletier. Skill forward, good hands. Looked like a tweener on draft day, but scored 27 goals this year. Re-entry.
- No. 114 overall Alexis Pepin. Enormous two-way winger with some skill. I thought the Oilers might be on him draft day. Re-entry.
- No. 115 overall Brent Moran. Goalie did not improve by the numbers after being selected. Draft re-entry.
- No. 112 overall Richard Nejezchelb. Big winger who did not sign with the Rangers turned pro by signing with Hartford and will play with Litvinov HC of the Czech league this season.
- No. 124 overall Jaedon Descheneau. Small and brilliant forward scored 81 points in 2014-15 but missed the 2015-16 season due to a shoulder injury. Free agent.
- No. 131 overall Ryan Rehill. Genuinely surprised he is not yet signed and suspect something happens this weekend. Huge two-way D, free agent.
- No. 139 overall Tanner Faith. Big defensive defender. Free agent.
- No. 150 overall Alec Dillon. Giant goalie, played for the Oil Kings this year. Re-entry.
- No. 154 overall Aaron Haydon. A big defensive defender, some injuries over his junior career. Re-entry.
- No. 156 overall Kyle Pettit. A big two-way center who appears to be shy offensively. Re-entry.
- No. 157 overall Jake Marchment. An impressive checking center, righty has been associated with the Oilers in trade rumors. Free agent.
- No. 161 overall Brandon Baddock. Big forward who played for the Oil Kings, bet money Bob Green likes him. Free agent. Future Condor?
- No. 162 overall Aaron Irving. Two-way defenseman, saw him good and had him No. 70 on draft day. You need scouts. Re-entry.
- No. 169 overall Reid Duke. A skill center, had an uneven Memorial Cup but he can post offense. Re-entry.
- No. 170 overall Cristiano DiGiacinto. Agitating forward, throwback winger. Some offense. Re-entry.
- No. 172 overall Chandler Yakimowicz. He would be a power forward if he could gather some offense. Re-entry.
- No. 173 overall Jaden Lindo. Interesting player, rugged with some skill. Re-entry.
- No. 179 overall Ivan Nalimov. He is a good goalie, in KHL now and had a .908 save percentage last season. Free agent.
- No. 180 overall Matthew Mistele. Surprised he is not signed, some impressive offense and good size. Free agent.
- No. 183 overall Keven Bouchard. Shy in his junior career.
- No. 187 overall Kyle Jenkins. Two-way D appears to have no dominant skill. Re-entry.
- No. 193 overall Edgars Kulda. The third unsigned Oil King, something of a local legend and now in the KHL.
- No. 195 overall Patrick Sanvido. Giant stay-at-home D, re-entry.
- No. 197 overall Olivier Leblanc. Skill defenseman, quite small, re-entry.
- No. 200 overall Lukas Sutter. Played in the ECHL this past season. Free agent
- No. 201 overall Alexander Kadeykin. Huge winger, KHL currently. Free agent.
- No. 210 overall Jacob Middleton. A nice range of skills, surprised he didn’t sign. Re-entry.
My goodness a lot of kids didn’t get contracts. That suggests it was a poor draft year in 2014. My thanks to Brock Otten, OHL Prospects blog, WHL From Above and Elite Prospects for clarity and reference information.