by Lowetide

One of the ways we can evaluate a draft is by going back to see where the selected players were ranked by major sources. I highly value many different lists and post them in the weeks following the draft. What I haven’t done in the past is gather all of them in the same place. Allow me to correct that this year.


Bob McKenzie publishes the Bible every year just before the draft and this season the Oilers shot lights out. BM’s Top 93 + honorable mentions gave draft nuts 100 names to monitor. For many years this blog would rant and rave about walkabout picks, mentioning the McKenzie list by name and asking ‘why can’t the Oilers just use that as a guide?’. As it turns out, maybe they just needed to shuffle the scouting department.

  • No. 22 Kailer Yamamoto (BM No. 24)
  • No. 78 Stuart Skinner (BM No. 71)
  • No. 84 Dmitri Samorukov (BM No. 76)
  • No. 115 Ostap Safin (BM No. 51)
  • No. 146 Kirill Maksimov (BM Honorable Mention)
  • Source


  • No. 22 Kailer Yamamoto (CB No. 16)
  • No. 78 Stuart Skinner (CB No. 80)
  • No. 84 Dmitri Samorukov (CB No. 53)
  • No. 115 Ostap Safin (CB No. 82)
  • No. 146 Kirill Maksimov (CB No. 90)
  • Source

Button is probably my favorite list because it’s not consensus, he has things he looks for and values, and tells us about them. As someone who has always wanted to find out more about why scouts value certain things, Button is a fascinating follow each year. His list often rhymes with the Oilers picks, as is the case this year.


  • No. 22 Kailer Yamamoto (CP No. 14)
  • No. 78 Stuart Skinner (CP No. 8G)
  • No. 84 Dmitri Samorukov (CP No. 76)
  • No. 115 Ostap Safin (CP No. 77)
  • No. 146 Kirill Maksimov (CP HM)

Pronman liked the Oilers draft, gave them a good grade. He saw Yamamoto as the key, and you can see it because the club badly needs a skill player (or more) in the next year or so. I like the skill bets later too, for the same reason.


  • No. 22 Kailer Yamamoto (HP No. 32)
  • No. 78 Stuart Skinner (HP No. 64)
  • No. 84 Dmitri Samorukov (HP No. 65)
  • No. 115 Ostap Safin (HP No. 98)
  • No. 146 Kirill Maksimov (HP 149)

The Black Book is a divine scouting book, if you haven’t gotten one yet make sure you do. Fantastic and detailed, it also informs next year’s draft splendidly. HP ranked Yamamoto as an early second-round pick, but Skinner and Samorukov got some love and the two skill guys also found a place. Skyler Brind’Amour (Not ranked) and Phillip Kemp (No. 215) also got a mention.


  • No. 22 Kailer Yamamoto (DA No. 18)
  • No. 78 Stuart Skinner (DA No. 9G)
  • No. 84 Dmitri Samorukov (DA No. 65)
  • No. 115 Ostap Safin (DA No. 56)
  • No. 146 Kirill Maksimov (DA 178)

Kournianos rankings are in line with what you’d like to see if the club owned their own second-round selection. Yamamoto (Round 1), Safin (Round 2) and Samorukov (Round 3) give the team some nice quality and the added appeal of a goalie the organization likes a lot and a big scorer who was trending late. Skyler Brind’Amour (No. 146) and Phillip Kemp (No. 168) we ranked ahead of Maksimov by The Draft Analyst.

I’ve been adding profiles for each player over the past couple of weeks, will have more to come and I’ll dig deep on Brind’Amour and Kemp for you. Before you know it, we’ll be talking about these prospects as we approach Christmas!


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I just read your piece over at ON and laughed out loud. I can imagine that, as the only Oilers reporter who doesn’t ever take holidays, you are the target of many fans joys and angst. I don’t know why you do it, but I imagine even the Corsi fan appreciates it on some level.

Wise words to enjoy the process, because eventually it will be over and all we’ll have are those faded memories. Thanks.


Basically zero reach picks relative to any list. Amazing!

Now hoping some of these good bets turn out.


Green needs some love here. I’ve basically been happy to very excited about every draft he has ran since day one.


This is what I wish they would have drafted:
22 Conor Timmins (Kristian Vesalainen would have been my 2nd choice)
82 Nikita A. Popugayev
84 Matthew Strome
115 Ostap Safin
126 Parker Foo
146 Jordan Hollett
177 Skyler Brind’Amour
208 Will Reilly

Victoria Oil

Thanks for the post LT. I always thought that 90% of teams would be better off if they just picked the best available prospect based off the consensus rankings of sources like you have used here.

For each of the Oilers’ first 5 picks this year, I calculated their average consensus rankings (with a couple necessary adjustments/assumptions):

– Yamamoto: average consensus 21, actual pick 22, Oilers ‘outperformed’ the consensus by +1
– Skinner: average 72, actual 78, +6
– Samorukov: average 67, actual 84, +17
– Safin: average 73, actual 115, +42
– Maksimov: average 129, actual 146, +17

Overall, a good job by the Oilers, IMHO. The only little disappointment is that they had to give up a pick to grab Skinner who was only 6 spots ahead of the consensus. But fortunately, there were no walkabout picks like we had in the Lowe/McTavish/Tambellini eras.


I have said it before, but I don’t remember an Oilers draft I have liked so much across the board?

I woul love to try this for the next 5 years….an edict.

“No walk-about picks allowed!”


Steve Kournianos also said Maksimov could be a total home run pick. Just didnt know who the real player was.

Definitely looked good on the highlights from the Development Camp scrimmage – that scrimmage means next to nothing in the long run but a good start nonetheless.


Lowetide: I haven’t seen it, to be honest. Sometimes players fall due to the combine, either interviews or maybe testing that didn’t go well. I was once told by a scout that you can like a guy and still see him fall because every team is drafting off their lists and sometimes there’s a lot of ‘different shades of equal’ in a draft. That might be it too.


Seems like a very good bet – he was ranked in the 2nd round by a few


Steve Kournianos also said Maksimov could be a total home run pick. Just didnt know who the real player was.


What’s the consensus on why Safin fell to 115th?