The Edmonton Oilers are adding players to the 50-man list at a rapid clip these days, we’re seeing the Bakersfield Condors’ roster come into view. A couple of Friday transactions have us closer to a full boat.
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- New Lowetide: Shopping Milan Lucic for another problem contract.
- New Tyler Dellow: The value of draft picks and reasonable trades Canadian teams can make
- Lowetide: The Oilers and the USHL.
- Jonathan Willis: How the Oilers can turn Bakersfield into a developmental powerhouse
- Sunaya Sapurji: Tyler Weiss is a guy you’re rooting for
- Lowetide: Trading a draft pick to ease cap pressure. Is it worth it?
- Lowetide: Oilers options at No. 10 overall
- Lowetide: Building the McDavid cluster.
- Corey Pronman: 2018 NHL draft board.
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: The Oilers and Russia: A draft tragedy.
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: The Oilers and the Republic of Finland
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: The Oilers and Sweden.
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: The Oilers and the QMJHL.
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: Oilers and the WHL.
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: Oilers draft history and the OHL
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: The Oilers and the NCAA.
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: The Oilers at the draft: Overagers.
- Lowetide: Draft 2018: Oilers scouting directors: A history.
TWO MORE CONDORS
Edmonton made two transactions Friday, adding a pair of wingers to the Bakersfield roster for the fall. Patrick Russell ranked No. 5 among Bakersfield forwards in points one year ago (68, 14-13-27, NHLE: 15.8), impressive due to lack of power-play (0-0-0 boxcars) time. He played a lot on the penalty kill (4-1-5 boxcars), tying for No. 3 in the AHL in shorthanded goals. Edmonton also made a minor trade, picking up Maine (NCAA) forward Nolan Vesey from Toronto for a future depth selection. Vesey is 23 (Jeff Veillette, who will appear on Saturday Sports Extra at 2:20 Edmonton time, wrote about him here) and has been signed to an entry-deal by Edmonton. He ranks No. 10 among forwards outside the NHL in equivalency:
The equivalencies (via Rob Vollman) tell us Kailer Yamamoto is the best prospect in the system offensively among forwards. We know by number and by age. Chiarelli often makes unusual bets that don’t run in lock step with math (this is a blog that appreciates math), but the Cooper Marody bet looks like a winner. The scouts should get credit for Yamamoto and for Kirill Maksimov who posted a strong season at age 18.
Vesey looks like what he is, a long shot. His offense is about the same as Graham McPhee’s, except McPhee is a much younger player. We can’t see Vesey as an NHL player via math, because that would be dishonest (you’d have to be a genuine lunkhead to make the case for him with this graph). The future bottom-six forwards on this list score at higher levels at age 19 (Tyler Pitlick was 26.2 NHLE in Medicine Hat, age 19). Tyler Benson is a candidate for the third line should he develop, he is both younger and better than Vesey.
That said, Peter Chiarelli has employed some shy offensive forwards over the years. Shawn Thornton arrived in Boston at age 30 and the club employed him for a decade. This is a different era, but the Chiarelli Oilers also employ shy offensive forwards.
- Leafs Chief Scout Dave Morrison on Vesey draft weekend: “Nolan certainly has a little bit of an edge to him. It’s never a bad thing, but he’s got the hands and he can produce. He’s another guy with offensive potential.” Source
The big free-agent pickup (pre-July 1) this year is Joel Persson, although we won’t see him this fall and winter. I’m excited to see how he shines a year from September. Funny how hockey extends these things, isn’t it? Who the hell knows where any of us will be October 2019 and yet my mind is cast all the way there by some distant bell.
- This roster needs a lot of help but there are slots available and if the team makes smart bets on players making low money, maybe they’ll uncover some gems.
- The LW depth chart needs 2006 Raffi Torres, the C depth chart needs turn of the century Todd Marchant, the RW depth chart needs 2010 Jordan Eberle.
- Darnell Nurse and Matt Benning added for less than $4.5 million to this group gives Edmonton a solid defensive depth chart.
- Mikko Koskinen is a wild card.
OILERS FA LIST
G Nick Ellis RFA. Oilers have a full boat, but could deal Montoya and sign Ellis.
- G Laurent Brossoit UFA. It’s a good bet he’s going to make like Lionel Richie and sail on down the line.
- LD Darnell Nurse RFA. A bridge deal likely part of the conversation.
- RD Matt Benning RFA. A shorter term seems likely, Benning has settled in as a solid defender.
- LD Yohann Auvitu UFA. Reportedly heading back to Europe, there’s an NHL player here.
- RD Mark Fayne UFA. He’s done with the Oilers, we’ll see if he catches on with another team.
LD Keegan Lowe UFA. I think he might return on a two-way deal.
- LD Dillon Simpson UFA. Same spot as Lowe, likely room for only one.
- LD Joey Laleggia UFA. He’ll sign with an NHL team that sees him as a defenseman. Maybe Vancouver.
- LD Ben Betker RFA. Likely part of a substantial “Leftorium” haircut this summer.
- RC Ryan Strome RFA. Several options for this player, including a trade.
- RC Kyle Platzer RFA. I don’t think he’s shown enough in his entry deal.
- LC Grayson Downing UFA. Quiet free agent signing.
- L Mike Cammalleri UFA. I liked his contribution but the Oilers need more speed.
- L Drake Caggiula RFA. Likely gets a short-term deal.
- L Braden Christoffer RFA. Unlikely to return.
- R Anton Slepyshev RFA. KHL rumors (and a trade) suggest he’s headed for the Motherland.
- R Iiro Pakarinen RFA. Also the subject of Russia rumors.
R Patrick Russell. RFA. I think there’s a chance he gets another deal.
- R Brian Ferlin UFA. Barely got on the ice.
Stauffer Saying Oilers core should be McDavid, Drai, RNH, Klefbom, Nurse and Larsson.
Keep them and believe in them, support them.
You know what? That works for me.
— SuperNova (@SuperNovs1) June 8, 2018
It’s telling that Jesse Puljujarvi isn’t on this list. He turned 20 one month ago, scored 12 goals as a teenager in the best league in the world, remains a mannish boy with a big world in front of him. I have no quarrel with the names included, but the omission of JP is a tell. In my opinion. Update: I have been informed Bob said that Puljujarvi, Kailer Yamamoto and the No. 10 overall pick have a shot to join this group but are not proven yet.
OILERS MOCK 2018
- First Round—No. 10 overall—LC Barrett Hayton, SSM Greyhounds (OHL). Steve Kournianos: Slick, two-way center who can beat you in a variety of ways. Whether you view Hayton as the beneficiary of a deep supporting cast, or a key cog in Sault Ste Marie’s attack, the truth is he very much is a very skilled, heady player. He has excellent vision and makes most defenders miss when he’s controlling the puck below the circles. Hayton’s a strong skater with excellent balance. He won’t blow past defenders immediately after his first or second step, but his straight-line speed when combined with the likelihood of a sudden change in direction keeps opponents guessing. Hayton is both shifty and crafty with the puck, plus he’s capable of making high-percentage plays on his backhand. He knows how to finish around the goal, but he’s also shown to favor his lethal wrist shot from anywhere near the circles. Again, this kid is very hard to prepare for — both before a game and right when he hops over the boards. He can be a relentless forechecker, especially on the penalty kill, and he will use his body effectively to protect the puck. He has top-line upside and should be expected to dominate the OHL next season when his role is expanded. Source
- Second Round—No. 40 overall—LC Jacob Olofsson, Timra (Allsvenskan). McKeens: Center playing both power play and penalty kill for the best team in Allsvenskan. Steps up in big situations and tries to create offense. Sometimes sloppy and needs to cover the puck better but a very interesting prospect. Source
- Third Round—No. 71 overall—LD Nicolas Beaudin, Drummondville (QMJHL).Impressive puck mover, only foot speed keeps him outside the top 31 overall.
- Fourth Round—No. 102 overall (Oilers acquired goaltender Al Montoya from the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for a conditional fourth-round pick in 2018. Montoya covered the condition).
- Fifth Round—No. 133 overall—L Jack Randl, Omaha Lancers (USHL). Impressive scorer. Zero buzz.
- Sixth Round—No. 164 overall—RD Ondrej Buchtela, Pirati Chomutov (Cze U20).Puck mover, good speed.
- Seventh Round—No. 195 overall—LD Marc Del Gaizo, Muskegon (USHL).Impressive skill defender.