Jay Versus the Volcano

During his first trip to Bakersfield to meet the media and the Condors organization, Jay Woodcroft said his AHL team would be based on pace, puck possession and one that will play a connected brand of hockey in all three zones. Music! It’s a long way from the streets of Bakersfield to an NHL career, but one thing will be true about this year’s Condors: They have some talented forwards who the organization believes in. No pressure, Mr. Woodcroft.

THE ATHLETIC!

Give The Athletic as a gift or get it yourself and join the fun! Offer is here, less than $4 a month! I find myself reading both the hockey (Willis, Dellow, Pronman, et cetera) and the baseball coverage a lot, it’s a pure pleasure to visit. We’ll sell you the whole seat, but you’ll only need the edge.

  1. Were you surprised Gerry Fleming left? No. Fleming was assistant and then head coach in Oklahoma City, meaning he was hired before the move to Bakersfield and (more importantly) before Peter Chiarelli arrived on the scene. Managers like their own people in important spots, I don’t think that’s a negative.
  2. Name the players Fleming helped get to the NHL. Under Fleming’s watch, Jujhar Khaira, Jordan Oesterle, Laurent Brossoit, Ethan Bear all got to the NHL and may grab long-term employment.
  3. Is there one player Fleming failed? That’s too strong a word. I would say that the organization seemed to slow play Jesse Puljujarvi (his center was Josh Currie often, he didn’t get a power-play push) and that may have been a factor in his leaving. Wildly speculative, they don’t count time on ice so there’s no actual factual here. I do think coaches would do well to push the player who the general manager selected No. 4 overall though.
  4. What about time on ice? Always a bone of contention. Prospect-stats.com estimates Puljujarvi’s even-strength ice time at 12:44 per game, No. 5 among Bakersfield forwards. Our friend Eric Rodgers estimated JP’s ice time overall at 17:14, No. 6 among forwards on the club. So, I think we’re safe in suggesting Puljujarvi wasn’t a feature player overall.
  5. What are Jay Woodcroft’s strengths? He is an experienced assistant coach in the NHL, having worked for the Detroit Red Wings, San Jose Sharks and now the Oilers. He would be familiar with Todd McLellan’s style and should be able to produce farmhands who can adjust seamlessly on recall.
  6. Anything else? He’s 41 and has 13 years NHL coaching experience. That’s a rather impressive resume for such a young man.
  7. Will Woodcroft have a good roster? Yes. He will have the best Condors roster, especially if all of the new pro’s (Kailer Yamamoto, Cooper Marody, Tyler Benson, Cameron Hebig, William Lagesson, Tyler Vesel) head to California. The boost in forwards alone will change the weather.
  8. And the defense? Some nice AHL veterans like Keegan Lowe and Ryan Stanton added in to second year pros like Ethan Bear, Caleb Jones and (hopefully) Ryan Mantha.
  9. Goal? Honestly it’s a completely open scenario. Al Montoya might start if he clears waivers, Shane Starrett has pro experience, plus the two graduating juniors Stuart Skinner and Dylan Wells. My money long term is on Skinner but goaltending prospects are such a difficult bet. Montoya has played 168 NHL games, a smart bet would be none of the other three will exceed that number. That’s how goaltending bets go.
  10. The Condors haven’t won 35 games in a season yet. Will they do it this year? I think the team will be better, mostly because the goals for should increase. By season, the team has averaged (per game) 3.12, 2.94 and 2.76 goals per game. That should correct.
  11. How many players in Bakersfield do you project to play 250+ NHL games? It doesn’t work like that. You can’t project three full seasons as a regular for Tyler Benson, he has to have success in the AHL and build toward it. Same with all these kids.
  12. Okay, are there any players who you believe will have NHL careers? Kailer Yamamoto is the one Condor I would bet on, to the point where he might make the big team out of the box.
  13. No sure things? No. Ethan Bear did some nice things but the club drafts Evan Bouchard and now things change a little. You never know. Best to wait and see how things turn out.
  14. How many players do the Oilers produce? It all depends on your ‘line in the sand’ for qualifying. If you take a five-year period (say, the OKC Barons) and use players who were in 40+ AHL games, and then played 200 NHL games, it isn’t a big list.
  15. How many qualify using that criteria? Jeff Petry (527), Magnus Paajarvi (387), Chris VandeVelde (278), Oscar Klefbom (255), Anton Lander (215).
  16. Is that good? They developed two fine defensemen, no doubt about it. The forwards were less successful, you’d want some productive forwards (maybe not Dan Cleary, Jason Chimera but someone who could fill a role).
  17. How does that compare to other organizations? The Worcester Sharks were San Jose’s AHL affiliate from 2006-15. That’s nine years instead of five, but we’re smart we can do the math.
  18. Using AHL 40+ and NHL 200+, how many Sharks? Jamie McGinn (598), Logan Couture (582), Jason Demers (573), Justin Braun (529), Tommy Wingels (448), Andrew Desjardins (408), Matt Irwin (279), Brad Staubitz (230), Thomas Greiss (208). That’s nine.
  19. One a year, just like the Oilers! Yes. In fact, the Oilers have two fine blue (Petry, Klefbom) and so do the Sharks (Demers, Braun). I think we can give credit to the Oilers here in regard to developing those rearguards. It’s the gap in quality forwards that stands out here.
  20. Where are the forwards Edmonton developed? I will tell you, but you won’t like it.
  21. Where are they? Tyler Pitlick is in Dallas, Teemu Hartikainen is a quality regular in the KHL (20 goals this past season, 24 goals NHLE), Linus Omark posted his fourth straight quality season in the KHL, Jujhar Khaira is in Edmonton and playing well, he just hasn’t hit 200 games yet.
  22. Please explain. The Oilers were developing useful forwards but coaching and managerial changes conspired against the prospects. The team sent away Teemu Hartikainen and brought in Jesse Joensuu as a replacement. Hartikainen was the better player then, he’s a better player now. Craig MacTavish sent away the kid Edmonton drafted and gifted Dallas Eakins a lesser player. This isn’t good.
  23. What’s the most important thing for Woodcroft to do? Play the hell out of the kids in their entry deals. Not just PK or fourth-line minutes, real time with good mentors who know the league. Play Yamamoto, but that’s easy. If they send Jesse Puljujarvi down play the hell out of him. Same thing Tyler Benson and they’ll want him on a skill line. If the Oilers can get Woodcroft a veteran skill center with AHL experience, putting him between the two kids is a good idea. Or maybe Benson-Marody on the second line. The key is minutes.
  24. They’re sending Puljujarvi down?????? I don’t think so but if you’re Woodcroft you sure as hell should be ready for it and have a plan. Woodcroft and the Finn are in a similar spot, the bloom is maybe a little off the rose but there’s the recognition of talent. If Woodcroft spends two or three years in Bakersfield, and the kids he sends north flourish, he might end up as a strong candidate for head coach (here or elsewhere) in the NHL.
  25. Do you think the Oilers will produce enough players in Bakersfield to sustain the McDavid years? It’s vital. Jesse Puljujarvi can’t fail, the organization needed to be very aware of his usage in Bakersfield. This is important stuff. Instead, Taylor Beck got the cherry minutes. No disrespect, but that’s a poor use of assets.
  26. Do you think the Oilers will produce enough players in Bakersfield to sustain the McDavid years? The drafting is better, that’s a big piece. It won’t come down to Yamamoto, his development will be expected. The question is ‘can Woodcroft turn out Tyler Benson and Cooper Marody?’ and we are about to find out.
  27. Will Woodcroft’s methods of coaching change? I imagine he’ll be relying on his assistants for in-game instruction. That may help Woodcroft, his most prominent skill in Edmonton seemed to be talking to players in the milliseconds after returning to the bench.
  28. Based on body language, it wasn’t welcome. I think we read too much into a losing season, but he did seem to be a dog with a bone in that he did it all the time.
  29. Can this work? He’s clearly a smart guy. It’s a bit late for him to be the head coach, but he has plenty of ideas based on the video and he does have some talented men heading to Bakersfield.
  30. What does success look like? The 2020-21 opening night lineup in Edmonton including Kailer Yamamoto, Tyler Benson, Cooper Marody, Ethan Bear, William Lagesson and Stuart Skinner. That’s the job.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

At 10 this morning, TSN1260. We’re going to cover a lot of subjects, scheduled to appear:

  • Bruce McCurdy, Cult of Hockey. When was the last time Edmonton had a flourishing minor league system? Plus, how many rookies in Edmonton this year?
  • Derek van Diest, Post Media. Alphonso Davies is an overnight sensation for most sports fans, DVD has been on the story for many months.
  • Cameron Wolfe, ESPN. Our trip around NFL camps lands in Tennessee and we’ll talk Titans.

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. 90 minutes to the show!

written by

The author didn‘t add any Information to his profile yet.
Related Posts

95 Responses to "Jay Versus the Volcano"

  1. OriginalPouzar says:

    Finally the Condors will have a team that is flush with “real prospects”. No, there won’t be any real high end or “can’t miss” prospects this year (save Kailer Yamamoto) but numerous players that have a real shot at the NHL in the next couple months to couple of years.

    I think this is great timing to have Woodcroft take over.

    We all know about the presumed disconnect over the years between the NHL team and the AHL team – veteran “non-prospects” were favored in order to “win” over developing the real prospects – what makes this even more egregious is that they didn’t develop or win.

    Woodcroft and McLellan are obviously close and I would assume any disconnect will now be officially gone.

    Its going to be a fun year to keep appraised of the Condors.

  2. jtblack says:

    I drove by Bakersfield. Seems a little dumpy. Just saying.

  3. geowal says:

    I think it’s great that the best prospects, except perhaps Yamamoto, are likely to spend the majority of their season in Bakersfield, with just short trips to NHL. That’s where we might get to see real youth culture develop down there, where the youth is served. I don’t think 10 games of Nurse or Draisaitl does much for this, as their presence is little more than an interruption, and probably results in veterans taking over when they leave. Sustained skilled youth in AHL please!

  4. geowal says:

    jtblack:
    I drove by Bakersfield. Seems a little dumpy.Just saying.

    I always pictured a Grande Prairie of California….

  5. Silver Streak says:

    Bakersfield was an Oil town……I had a very cool experience one day as a 14 yr old in the time of dinosaurs. We were on our drive back to Edmonton from Disneyland….my parents had friends who lived in Bakersfield and dropped in for a visit….Turns out these friends of my parents also had 2 or 3, 16 year old GIRLS !! California Girls !! One had a boyfriend who drove a hotrod….and with the temperature around 100 offered to take me with them for a midnight swim…..we drive through the moonlit desert to a 200 year old abandoned Spanish hacienda….with a huge water fountain in the courtyard….amazing several hours for a Canadian Prairie boy. I still love Bakersfield.

  6. stephen sheps says:

    Of note – and maybe this was brought up in an earlier thread, is Dave Manson joining Woodcroft’s coaching staff after spending the last 6 seasons as the associate coach in Prince Albert. Seems like they’re keeping the Saskatchewan coaching connections alive and well in Bakersfield to go along with the trio of Sask-raised coaches behind the Oilers bench.

    I always liked Manson.

  7. godot10 says:

    In perhaps the most critical job in the organization at the moment, the Oilers install a rookie, a guy who has never coached a professional game in his life.

    It may work. But it is a high risk appointment. If it fails, it buggers up another few McDavid years.

    For a guy who has never road the buses as a coach in the minors, he is now the head coach riding the buses. I’m really, really confident that this will go well.

  8. Westchester Oil says:

    Seeing Brad Malone listed as 3C in Bakersfield – instead of 5C in Edmomton – might make one poster happy. 🙂

  9. blainer says:

    Holiday here today… tough holiday to manage a business though as it goes by the weather… If it’s a nice day we are a go.. the call was made at six this morning.. it’s on.. Which meant I had to shut down for the day. If it was a shitty day I was opening..

    We sure like to be different here on the rock !!

    It’s the 200th anniversary of the Royal St. John’s Regatta.. ‘ The Oldest sporting event in North America”.

    Never did row in the event but sure played a fair bit of hockey on the lake as a kid..

    Now back to to hockey.. I am really high on Marody and Mcleod. These two players could really surprise us and soon IMO.

    Anyway heading off shortly to watch the races and some cotton candy.. errrr mostly a few beers !!

  10. Paddyh says:

    blainer:
    Holiday here today… tough holiday to manage a business though as it goes by the weather. If it’s a nice day we are a go.. the call was made at six this morning it’s on..

    The 200th anniversary of the Royal St. John’s Regatta.. ‘ The Oldest sporting event in North America”.

    Never did row in the event but sure played a fair bit of hockey on the lake as a kid..

    Now back to to hockey.. I am really high on Marody and Mcleod. These two players could really surprise us and soon IMO.

    Any heading off shortly to watch the races and some cotton candy.. errrr mostly a few beers !!

    So you’re a Townie hey Blainer? lol

    I just got back from a 3 week trip home to St. John’s and regret not staying longer for the regatta and a night or two at the George Street Festival.

    Enjoy!

  11. Munny says:

    stephen sheps: I always liked Manson.

    Well until he needs to yell across the ice at a rookie, lol.

    Always felt horrible for him, every post-game interview.

  12. blainer says:

    Paddyh: So you’re a Townie hey Blainer? lol

    I just got back from a 3 week trip home to St. John’s and regret not staying longer for the regatta and a night or two at the George Street Festival.

    Enjoy!

    Couldn’t be more of a townie ..lol..grew up close to downtown.. However I did spend much of my youth and now older years in the bay.. Too bad ya missed the regatta today.. 29 degrees though for us is very hot… thank gord for cold beer !!

  13. Paddyh says:

    blainer,

    Sounds Sticky down there lol.

    Do you watch many Oil games with the time difference? I don’t know too many Oilers fans from NL. Its usually all Habs and Leafs for the most part.

  14. blainer says:

    Paddyh:
    blainer,

    Sounds Sticky down there lol.

    Do you watch many Oil games with the time difference? I don’t know too many Oilers fans from NL. Its usually all Habs and Leafs for the most part.

    I do although I spend my winters in Florida now so the game time is not near as bad. But when I’m home I do watch them and often don’t get to sleep til two in the morning. Sucks to stay up and watch them lose in the final two minutes which happened so much over the last few years.

  15. RISTOOOOO SILTANEN!!!! says:

    Anny thoughts/projections on the Bakersfield powerplay? Given that the sentiment around the issues with the Oil’s power play were centered around Woodcroft, I’m curious how that unfolds for both teams this year and what might be inferred around coaching decisions.

  16. Paddyh says:

    blainer,

    Yeah last year was a piss off. I had trouble watching a full game for the most part. I was a season ticket holder for the first two years of the new building opening but didn’t renew my seats this year.

    There were several games toward the end of the year I was just waiting for the 50/50 draw to be announced so I could beat the crowd/traffic and get home.

  17. Side says:

    godot10:
    In perhaps the most critical job in the organization at the moment, the Oilers install a rookie, a guy who has never coached a professional game in his life.

    It may work.But it is a high risk appointment.If it fails, it buggers up another few McDavid years.

    For a guy who has never road the buses as a coach in the minors, he is now the head coach riding the buses.I’m really, really confident that this will go well.

    You don’t consider assistant coaching for over a decade to be relatable experience? You don’t include the games that Jay coached in Todd’s absence as experience either?

    What valuable experience does one gain from riding a bus with minor league players, that flying around with NHL players for over a decade does not give?

  18. Melvis says:

    Side: What valuable experience does one gain from riding a bus with minor league players, that flying around with NHL players for over a decade does not give?

    Perspective.

    I’m not picking on you. I’m generalizing. Taking a van on a cross country tour with the Sheepdogs bears very little resemblance with taking a Gulfstream V across the country with… I dunno – Madonna.

    A steady diet of he latter experience can be quite corrosive – simply because nobody, and I mean nobody within that environment is immune from self-deception and attendant hubris. Regardless of the game being played.

    This comment also has something to do with my experience of Bakersfield. High heat, a brown sky, unbreathable air, and Buck Owens and Merle Haggard.

  19. Side says:

    Melvis: Perspective.

    I’m not picking on you. I’m generalizing. Taking a van on a cross country tour with the Sheepdogs bears very little resemblance with taking a Gulfstream V across the country with… I dunno – Madonna.

    A steady diet of he latter experience can be quite corrosive – simply because nobody, and I mean nobody within that environment is immune from self-deception and attendant hubris. Regardless of the game being played.

    This comment also has something to do with my experience of Bakersfield. High heat, a brown sky, unbreathable air, and Buck Owens and Merle Haggard.

    I totally get it from that perspective.

    I just can’t buy that someone’s 10+ years of experience in an assistant coaching capacity should be discredited because he did not take a bus with minor league players with the title of head coach.

  20. Bag of Pucks says:

    ‘Jesse can’t fail’ Put those words to the tune of ‘Rudy can’t fail’ and you’ve got yourself a local hit.

    With Puljujarvi, the biggest red flag for me has always been that he was passed over by his countryman, GM Jarmo Kekäläinen, in the draft. What did Jarmo see that convinced him to rate draft climber PL Dubois over the young Finn? So far btw, he’s been right with that call.

    No one disputes that JP has all the tools. He’s the mythical 5 tool man. So the question that comes up in my mind is ‘coachability’ and more specifically: is his lack of fluency with English a serious impediment for this coaching staff.

    Old timey fans will remember how reliant Tikkanen was on Kurri for translations and how comical this was in the faceoff circle – Gretz relaying instructions to Kurri who in turned passed on these instructions to Tikkanen.

    I believe part of the thought process behind bringing in Jokinen last season was to provide some of that much needed translation and mentorship. Unfortunately JJ was done as a productive NHLer so it’s debatable how much impact the mentorship had.

    Have there been any reports on JP’s english skills? He’s those rarest of players where you’re not worried about the physical gifts at all. Whether or not Puljujarvi makes it will almost solely hinge on the development steps he takes with cultural assimilation. As a longtime expat myself, this is NOT easy, and not everyone is capable of learning a second language nor should they be expected to.

    I’m pulling for Jesse but Jarmo passing on him concerns me. I sincerely hope he just wanted the big C more.

  21. Munny says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    He wasn’t his “countryman” during Jesse’s last junior years. So if it something beyond Big C, then it much more likely would’ve been something he heard. Not seen. And no reason why Euro scouts wouldn’t have heard the same things.

    And we don’t know if Kekäläinen wouldn’t have picked Pujo with Dubois and Laine off the board. I suspect he would have, but I am of course, speculating.

  22. Melvis says:

    Side,

    Let’s pretend we’re just having a chat over a beer and some nachos in a sportsbar. Which I wouldn’t mind. It’s friendly.

    So I’m gonna move the goal post, and in fact, the entire playing field over a bit. The following comments are correlative.

    I’m not going to discredit the dude. I’m going to suggest Gzowski’s book, The Boys On the Bus has enhanced…Capitalized…has enhanced our experience and the inner sanctum of the game. There it is…the inner snactum of the game.

    My Bus includes taking in a pile of minor league games over the course of a season. As Stephen has mentioned Manson, I’m going to suggest Drai and Morrissey stood out like sore thumbs among their peers on the Raiders. I suspect this holds true practically anywhere.

    In my estimation, it’s where the rubber meets the road. It’s where the eyeballs and the analytics and maybe, the prenup, marry up.

  23. GMB3 says:

    jtblack:
    I drove by Bakersfield. Seems a little dumpy.Just saying.

    I
    I believed voted as the worst place to play in the milb, by the players, unofficially

  24. Bag of Pucks says:

    Staying with the 5 tool theme for a second, I’m hugely of the opinion that NHL scouts can take a page from MLB scouts when ranking players at the very top of the draft (i.e. the Top 5).

    IMO, if you’re drafting a player at that slot there should be an emphasis on what LT calls ‘a wide range of skills.’ In baseball, the 5 tools are as follows:

    Speed
    Arm Strength
    Fielding Ability
    Hitting for Average
    Hitting for Power

    I think hockey should adopt the same approach and if they did, you wouldn’t see prospects like Nail Yakupov, ranked at the very top of the draft when he arguably had only one exceptional tool – his shot. I’m positive scouts are already measuring all these tools, but the question remains, how does a one trick pony like Yak then rise to the very top of the rankings? Are scouts overrating boxcars to the detriment of the total skills package?

    If we assume that scouts are looking at 5 tools along the lines of this:

    1. Skating
    2. Shot accuracy & velocity
    3. Tactical awareness (this would include things like positioning, gap control, system play, playmaking anticipation, etc.)
    4. Passing
    5. Physicality (size, hitting, forechecking, backchecking, willingness to go to the ‘hard areas’ etc.)

    Who would you actually rate at the top of that 2012 draft? I would suggest it would be Forsberg as the top rated F and Lindholm as the top rated D because they are the 2 players with the most diverse and exceptional skills package from the 5 attributes above. Further, I think it’s fair to suggest if a redraft were to occur for that graduating class this year, Forsberg would likely be the consensus number one.

    It’s important to emphasize that Forsberg was in fact the number one rated European prospect pre-draft, so it’s quite conceivable that the scouts are taking this approach in their assessments but unfortunately many GMs are not which is why Forsberg ends up sliding to #11.

    Finally, I think it’s important to emphasize that this ‘complete package’ evaluation mindset is most applicable to the very cream of the draft crop. You can rationalize picking a Yamamoto later in the first round despite his lack of size because at that point all the 5 tool players should be theoretically gone and now you’re left to choose which skills you can live without.

  25. Wilde says:

    Bag of Pucks: So far btw, he’s been right with that call.

    I’ve talked about this narrative before, as Jesse’s main cheerleader here I’ll do it again.

    Hard, hard disagree that there’s any meaningful separation at this time between these two players, and if there is, it’s in the Finn’s favour.

    Jesse Puljujarvi with 29 or 97 is better than PLD with Panarin, and Jesse Puljujarvi without 29 or 97 is better than PLD without Artemi Panarin.

    PLD got 29 5v5 points last year, 25 with Panarin.

    19 primary points, 16 with Panarin.

    He has 1.00/60 5v5 primary points on the year, to Jesse’s 1.18/60.

    For reference, 8/17 of Puljujarvi’s 5v5 points came with McDavid.

    Artemi Panarin is a ridiculous talent, one that the centre over winger paradigm is waived for. He’s Taylor Hall, Mark Stone, Blake Wheeler, Alex Ovechkin level. Inner circle elite playdriver.

    Any evaluation of the centre on his line has to have this disclaimer in big, bold print.

  26. Bag of Pucks says:

    Wilde,

    Dubois has established himself as a regular in the NHL. Jesse has not. That’s the biggest factor differentiating them at this time imo

  27. Munny says:

    Wilde: Artemi Panarin is a ridiculous talent,

    Agreed. I can watch this man play the hockey all day long.

  28. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Wilde,

    Panarin wasn’t on CBJ for Wennberg’s breakout season, but otherwise I agree. Jesse with a full season with 97/29 should trump Dubois stapled to Panarin IMO

  29. Wilde says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    Wilde,

    Dubois has established himself as a regular in the NHL. Jesse had not. That’s the biggest factor differentiating them at this time imo

    And that’s completely separate from their merit of their endeavours.

    From where we stand now, we cannot at all say Columbus drafted the more valuable player, and that’s why we can’t say JK made the correct choice or not.

    I would also contend that Jesse isn’t yet established if PLD is. That seems completely arbitrary. If Jesse isn’t now, neither was Matt Tkachuk after last year. Or Jake Debrusk this year, Christian Fischer, Pavel Zacha, Arturri Lehkonen, Nolan Patrick… This is the neighbourhood Jesse’s in, by objective measures.

  30. Wilde says:

    LadiesloveSmid,

    I’m in a time-warp, edited.

  31. Bag of Pucks says:

    Wilde

    I would also contend that Jesse isn’t yet established if PLD is. That seems completely arbitrary.

    Imagine you have a part-time job with a company you really want to work full-time with, but they refuse to commit. If you’re in that position, it likely doesn’t feel terribly ‘arbitrary.’

  32. OriginalPouzar says:

    The US has made 13 cuts – Kemp remains with the team.

  33. LadiesloveSmid says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    The US has made 13 cuts – Kemp remains with the team.

    2017 3rd round picks David Farrance & Max Gildon among those cut on the back end. Big plus for Kemp there

  34. Wilde says:

    Bag of Pucks: Imagine you have a part-time job with a company you really want to work full-time with, but they refuse to commit. If you’re in that position, it likely doesn’t feel terribly ‘arbitrary.’

    I didn’t mean it’s of trivial consequence, I mean the line being drawn between 98 and a lot of other young players who played 800-950 minutes in the league this year seems arbitrary.

  35. Paddy Morans Jockstrap says:

    For the first time in forever this team has real depth in goal. Montoya is likely finishing up his career as a legit #3 NHL goalie in the system and veteran mentor in Bakersfield. But you don’t waste him mentoring a guy like Starrett who is a low potential prospect that did nothing in the ECHL to deserve the backup seat in the AHL (.912SP / 3.01GAA). Starrett and Wells in the ECHL is how this will likely play out and let them fight for a backup job in the AHL next year.

    I would suggest that Skinner might be the most important prospect in the system right now. If he is “the goods” and shows well in training camp, having him backup Montoya this year is a perfect setup in Bakersfield. He could potentially take over the starting job in the AHL next year and then be a backup in the NHL in year 3 if everything goes well. But of course he has to win the job in training camp. He’s emerged as a fantastic goalie prospect (best in the system since Dubnyk) who is worth following closely.

  36. Bag of Pucks says:

    Wilde: I didn’t mean it’s of trivial consequence, I mean the line being drawn between 98 and a lot of other young players who played 800-950 minutes in the league this year seems arbitrary.

    Agreed. The metrics to quantify when prospects pass critical development milestones are lacking.

    For example, one of the key metrics LT references is GP by prospects. But that artificially rewards teams with poor depth that have to fast track their youth into the bigs. By that measure alone, Sam Gagner and Nail Yakupov looked like solid draft picks early in their career. It was only when they started falling down the depth charts in other orgs that the truth was revealed.

    Btw, should emphasize I’m not throwing LT under the bus here. Obviously he uses other metrics as well to lend the GP bullet additional context.

  37. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Paddy Morans Jockstrap,

    Skinner’s numbers don’t really jump off the page. You’ve got to be a pretty elite goalie prospect to be full time in the NHL by 22/23

  38. Revolved says:

    geowal:
    I think it’s great that the best prospects, except perhaps Yamamoto, are likely to spend the majority of their season in Bakersfield, with just short trips to NHL. That’s where we might get to see real youth culture develop down there, where the youth is served. I don’t think 10 games of Nurse or Draisaitl does much for this, as their presence is little more than an interruption, and probably results in veterans taking over when they leave. Sustained skilled youth in AHL please!

    I agree that stability throughout the organization will help a lot. This has to start from the top, with the Oiler’s lines set from the start of the season, but would also help the prospects to learn their roles and how to execute them.

  39. Paddy Morans Jockstrap says:

    LadiesloveSmid:
    Paddy Morans Jockstrap,

    Skinner’s numbers don’t really jump off the page. You’ve got to be a pretty elite goalie prospect to be full time in the NHL by 22/23

    He was arguably the best under 20 goalie in the world the 2nd half of last season and his toolkit (physical and just as importantly mental) is very solid. Junior numbers provide limited support for evaluating young goalies. It’s not “voodoo” as people who only look at basic stats suggest. Goaltending places a outsized importance on technique and has a huge qualitative element (focus, concentration, mental strength, discipline) which most fans ignore or don’t understand. Even NHL scouts who have never played goal don’t fully appreciate it.

    Skinner has a very strong physical, technical and mental toolkit. He’s the goods and is a very important prospect.

  40. godot10 says:

    Side: You don’t consider assistant coaching for over a decade to be relatable experience? You don’t include the games that Jay coached in Todd’s absence as experience either?

    What valuable experience does one gain from riding a bus with minor league players, that flying around with NHL players for over a decade does not give?

    How much credibility does Jay Woodcroft have after choosing to ride Todd McLellan’s coattails for over a decade, flying first class in charters, and staying in 5-start hotels, and being gifted an AHL job when the going gets tough in Bakersfield? He has no direct experience of where his players are coming from in junior or college.

    Maybe everything will be fine. Some people are prodigies and don’t need 10000 hours or experience.

    But like with the Hall trade and the Reinhart trade, Chiarelli and McLellan had better be right. You cannot make a move like that and be wrong.

  41. Side says:

    godot10: How much credibility does Jay Woodcroft have after choosing to ride Todd McLellan’s coattails for over a decade, flying first class in charters, and staying in 5-start hotels, and being gifted an AHL job when the going gets tough in Bakersfield? He has no direct experience of where his players are coming from in junior or college.

    Maybe everything will be fine.Some people are prodigies and don’t need 10000 hours or experience.

    But like with the Hall trade and the Reinhart trade, Chiarelli and McLellan had better be right.You cannot make a move like that and be wrong.

    “He has no direct experience of where his players are coming from in junior or college.”

    EDIT: I misread your quote about not understanding where junior/college players are coming from. But, Jay was once a player in juniors himself, wasn’t he? He would know what it’s like, considering he has been there himself.

    Your post reads like you think Jay doesn’t actually do any coaching work, and simply reaps the benefits of being an employee with an NHL organization.

    You also have not acknowledged the fact that he has coached professional games before at the NHL level and the world did not end. Was this an oversight or do you not consider that to be related experience, either?

  42. Bag of Pucks says:

    Paddy Morans Jockstrap: He was arguably the best under 20 goalie in the world the 2nd half of last season and his toolkit (physical and just as importantly mental) is very solid. Junior numbers provide limited support for evaluating young goalies. It’s not “voodoo” as people who only look at basic stats suggest. Goaltending places a outsized importance on technique and has a huge qualitative element (focus, concentration, mental strength, discipline) which most fans ignore or don’t understand. Even NHL scouts who have never played goal don’t fully appreciate it.

    Skinner has a very strong physical, technical and mental toolkit. He’s the goods and is a very important prospect.

    Thanks for these posts today. Love insights on the G position. Stocking this part of the pipeline has traditionally been a Chiarelli strength. Great to hear that Skinner is legit.

  43. OriginalPouzar says:

    godot10:
    In perhaps the most critical job in the organization at the moment, the Oilers install a rookie, a guy who has never coached a professional game in his life.

    It may work.But it is a high risk appointment.If it fails, it buggers up another few McDavid years.

    For a guy who has never road the buses as a coach in the minors, he is now the head coach riding the buses.I’m really, really confident that this will go well.

    I have zero issue with Woodcroft being coach of the Condors – he has 13 years of coaching experience in the National Hockey League, the best league in the world. I’m fine with the fact that he’s never “rode the buses” – I don’t think that’s a requirement to work with and teach young players or implement systems or run a bench, etc. He’s been behind an NHL bench for 13 years, I’m confident he’s learned enough to be a head coach in the AHL.

    This should close any disconnect between the NHL and the AHL team and provide the clear focus on development of the real prospects.

  44. OriginalPouzar says:

    Westchester Oil:
    Seeing Brad Malone listed as 3C in Bakersfield – instead of 5C in Edmomton – might make one poster happy.

    Bah – i would expect he receives a call-up before Marody or Currie if injuries hit. Currie isn’t a real NHL option and Marody has played 3 pro games – he should get some development time.

  45. Westchester Oil says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    The US has made 13 cuts – Kemp remains with the team.

    I saw Kemp in one game last year with Yale. From this limited sample set, I thought he was a bit better than a typical 7th rounder, but that he lacked the offensive skills to make the NHL. I’m a bit surprised he’s getting this much consideration for the U.S. team. Maybe they’re impressed with his sound positional play.

    In any case, I will continue to follow and cheer for him.

  46. OriginalPouzar says:

    Munny: Well until he needs to yell across the ice at a rookie, lol.

    Always felt horrible for him, every post-game interview.

    He never ever did get any voice recovery, did he?

  47. OriginalPouzar says:

    LadiesloveSmid: 2017 3rd round picks David Farrance & Max Gildon among those cut on the back end. Big plus for Kemp there

    He’s trending towards an NHL contract in a few years but, even if he doesn’t, I would posit he’s already outperformed his draft position.

  48. Bag of Pucks says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    Staying with the 5 tool theme for a second, I’m hugely of the opinion that NHL scouts can take a page from MLB scouts when ranking players at the very top of the draft (i.e. the Top 5).

    IMO, if you’re drafting a player at that slot there should be an emphasis on what LT calls ‘a wide range of skills.’ In baseball, the 5 tools are as follows:

    Speed
    Arm Strength
    Fielding Ability
    Hitting for Average
    Hitting for Power

    I think hockey should adopt the same approach and if they did, you wouldn’t see prospects like Nail Yakupov, ranked at the very top of the draft when he arguably had only one exceptional tool – his shot. I’m positive scouts are already measuring all these tools, but the question remains, how does a one trick pony like Yak then rise to the very top of the rankings? Are scouts overrating boxcars to the detriment of the total skills package?

    If we assume that scouts are looking at 5 tools along the lines of this:

    1. Skating
    2. Shot accuracy & velocity
    3. Tactical awareness (this would include things like positioning, gap control, system play, playmaking anticipation, etc.)
    4. Passing
    5. Physicality (size, hitting, forechecking, backchecking, willingness to go to the ‘hard areas’ etc.)

    Who would you actually rate at the top of that 2012 draft? I would suggest it would be Forsberg as the top rated F and Lindholm as the top rated D because they are the 2 players with the most diverse and exceptional skills package from the 5 attributes above. Further, I think it’s fair to suggest if a redraft were to occur for that graduating class this year, Forsberg would likely be the consensus number one.

    It’s important to emphasize that Forsberg was in fact the number one rated European prospect pre-draft, so it’s quite conceivable that the scouts are taking this approach in their assessments but unfortunately many GMs are not which is why Forsberg ends up sliding to #11.

    Finally, I think it’s important to emphasize that this ‘complete package’ evaluation mindset is most applicable to the very cream of the draft crop. You can rationalize picking a Yamamoto later in the first round despite his lack of size because at that point all the 5 tool players should be theoretically gone and now you’re left to choose which skills you can live without.

    Taking this approach to a retroactive look at the 2011 draft would be interesting as well. By my eye, both Scheifele and Couturier would be closer to the description of a legtimate 5 tool player than RNH (lacks physicality and a plus shot), Landeskog (lacks elite passing & playmaking skills), or Huberdeau (lacks physicality).

    Again, in a redraft, I suspect Scheifele and Couturier go much higher.

  49. dustrock says:

    Westchester Oil: I saw Kemp in one game last year with Yale. From this limited sample set, I thought he was a bit better than a typical 7th rounder, but that he lacked the offensive skills to make the NHL. I’m a bit surprised he’s getting this much consideration for the U.S. team. Maybe they’re impressed with his sound positional play.

    In any case, I will continue to follow and cheer for him.

    I think you’ve got it in one.

    Good size, good reach, good stick. High floor, low ceiling, he’s a grinder. Definitely a great pick.

    Ha speaking of late picks I keep meaning to mention whenever Kesselring’s name gets mentioned, HFB had a “best underrated picks in the draft” thread, and one guy was super pumped about the Kesselring pick, saying he has miles to go but he has some tools and it could be one of those home run picks every team gets once in a while.

  50. Bruce McCurdy says:

    blainer:
    Holiday here today… tough holiday to manage a business though as it goes by the weather… If it’s a nice day we are a go.. the call was made at six this morning.. it’s on.. Which meant I had to shut down for the day. If it was a shitty day I was opening..

    We sure like to be different here on the rock !!

    It’s the 200th anniversary of the Royal St. John’s Regatta.. ‘ The Oldest sporting event in North America”.

    Never did row in the event but sure played a fair bit of hockey on the lake as a kid..

    Now back to to hockey.. I am really high on Marody and Mcleod. These two players could really surprise us and soon IMO.

    Anyway heading off shortly to watch the races and some cotton candy.. errrr mostly a few beers !!

    Thanks for this, Blainer. Just sorry I didn’t see your post before my spot on the Lowdown this morning, I would have mentioned it for sure. We did chat about the Regatta 2 years ago at the 198th anniversary, but obviously this is a big one.

    Attended the Regatta every year from age 9 to 14, always a fun time.

  51. leadfarmer says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    Yeah I agree. He has been around with the org for a while and has job stability and will not sacrifice player development in hopes of wins because he thinks he’s the next big thing in coaching.
    Let the kids play and surround them with a few veterans that they don’t get their teeth kicked in on a regular basis and they play the same way as the big club so when they get called up they know their roles

  52. pts2pndr says:

    Side: You don’t consider assistant coaching for over a decade to be relatable experience? You don’t include the games that Jay coached in Todd’s absence as experience either?

    What valuable experience does one gain from riding a bus with minor league players, that flying around with NHL players for over a decade does not give?

    Those that are or feel entitled never understand how those not so fortunate live!

  53. pts2pndr says:

    Melvis: Perspective.

    I’m not picking on you. I’m generalizing. Taking a van on a cross country tour with the Sheepdogs bears very little resemblance with taking a Gulfstream V across the country with… I dunno – Madonna.

    A steady diet of he latter experience can be quite corrosive – simply because nobody, and I mean nobody within that environment is immune from self-deception and attendant hubris. Regardless of the game being played.

    This comment also has something to do with my experience of Bakersfield. High heat, a brown sky, unbreathable air, and Buck Owens and Merle Haggard.

    Thank You!

  54. pts2pndr says:

    Side: I totally get it from that perspective.

    I just can’t buy that someone’s 10+ years of experience in an assistant coaching capacity should be discredited because he did not take a bus with minor league players with the title of head coach.

    If the head coaching talent was there one might question the ten years as an assistant especially under a head coach who had not won a championship! That is somewhat cold but valid given a results driven business.

  55. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Munny: Well until he needs to yell across the ice at a rookie, lol.

    Always felt horrible for him, every post-game interview.

    A close friend of mine used to be a minor official with the Oilers. He happened to be working in the penalty box the night Sergio “Slo Mo” Momesso punched Dave Manson in the throat. My buddy is absolutely convinced that Manson did irreparable damage to his freshly-busted windpipe by screaming incessantly at Momesso while they sat out their majors. I remember him talking about it right at the time.

  56. Rebillled says:

    Mark Stone wants $9 MILLION FOR 20 GOALS LAST YEAR.

    He must really want out of Ottawa.

  57. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Bag of Pucks: Old timey fans will remember how reliant Tikkanen was on Kurri for translations and how comical this was in the faceoff circle – Gretz relaying instructions to Kurri who in turned passed on these instructions to Tikkanen.

    Haha, Esa spoke his own language, variously described as Tikkish or Tikkanese. I still laugh when I think of that time some reporter asked Kurri what Tikkanen was saying out on the ice. Jari’s reply, deadpan as always: “I have no idea either!”

  58. OriginalPouzar says:

    Rebillled:
    Mark Stone wants $9 MILLION FOR 20 GOALS LAST YEAR.

    He must really want out of Ottawa.

    Most Sens fans thinks he’s worth closer to the $9M in his filings than the $5M (I think) in the team’s filings.

    Also, the filings are not indicative of what the player actually thinks he should/will be awarded and are very likely higher than what the player would sign for outside the arbitration process – just a technique.

  59. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Paddy Morans Jockstrap:
    For the first time in forever this team has real depth in goal. Montoya is likely finishing up his career as a legit #3 NHL goalie in the system and veteran mentor in Bakersfield. But you don’t waste him mentoring a guy like Starrett who is a low potential prospect that did nothing in the ECHL to deserve the backup seat in the AHL (.912SP / 3.01GAA). Starrett and Wells in the ECHL is how this will likely play out and let them fight for a backup job in the AHL next year.

    I would suggest that Skinner might be the most important prospect in the system right now. If he is “the goods” and shows well in training camp, having him backup Montoya this year is a perfect setup in Bakersfield. He could potentially take over the starting job in the AHL next year and then be a backup in the NHL in year 3 if everything goes well. But of course he has to win the job in training camp. He’s emerged as a fantastic goalie prospect (best in the system since Dubnyk) who is worth following closely.

    Interesting take, but would you rather have your top goalie prospect spend his rookie season backing up in Bako or starting in Wichita? Oilers have followed the latter course with quite a few rookie stoppers in recent years, your man Dubnyk being one of them.

    If they do keep him in the AHL I hope it’s with a 50/50 split in starts.

  60. Bruce McCurdy says:

    dustrock: I think you’ve got it in one.

    Good size, good reach, good stick.High floor, low ceiling, he’s a grinder.Definitely a great pick.

    Ha speaking of late picks I keep meaning to mention whenever Kesselring’s name gets mentioned, HFB had a “best underrated picks in the draft” thread, and one guy was super pumped about the Kesselring pick, saying he has miles to go but he has some tools and it could be one of those home run picks ALMOST every team gets once in a while.

    ftfy

  61. Bruce McCurdy says:

    pts2pndr: If the head coachingtalent was there one might question the ten years as an assistant especially under a head coach who had not won a championship! That is somewhat cold but valid given a results driven business.

    From the Oilers press release when Woodcroft was reassigned:

    “Over his NHL coaching career, Woodcroft has been part of 511 regular season wins, five Western Conference titles, six Division titles, three Presidents Trophies and a Stanley Cup championship.”

    That’s quite a resume for a “rookie” AHL coach. And as I said to LT on the Lowdown this morning, if there’s one guy they could have hired who should know what Todd McLellan expects from a call-up, it’s him.

    Godot’s cautionary words notwithstanding, this observer is more than prepared to give Woodcroft a shot in the new post. A move definitely had to be made to shuffle the deck, and was.

    I wrote this post about him two months ago, & it will be interesting to revisit at the end of the upcoming season.

  62. Wilde says:

    New post up, with some actual meat on the bones, with another coming tonight:

    https://petropraxis.blogspot.com/

  63. Rebillled says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    I should have read more and realized the tactical part of asking for more.

    Here’s a funny salary thing.

    Connor McDavid $12.5 million
    Ty Rattie $0.8 million

    That’s his winger! Because Oilers. Go Rattie!

  64. jtblack says:

    Rebillled:
    Mark Stone wants $9 MILLION FOR 20 GOALS LAST YEAR.

    He must really want out of Ottawa.

    Frame it how you want.

    Stone had 62 Points in 58 Games. Over 1 ppg is in ELITE territory.

    Less than 20 players averaged over 1 ppg

  65. JimmyV1965 says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    The US has made 13 cuts – Kemp remains with the team.

    He was paired with Hughes. I don’t think he’s getting cut. Nice.

  66. jtblack says:

    LadiesloveSmid:
    Paddy Morans Jockstrap,

    Skinner’s numbers don’t really jump off the page. You’ve got to be a pretty elite goalie prospect to be full time in the NHL by 22/23

    I belive you are correct as far as Elite goalie prospects.
    Once Skinner was traded, he said Manny (SC Head coach) changed not only his hockey attitude, but his whole Life.

    Skinners numbers with SC were Elite from thebTrade Deadline thru the Playoffs. I know the sample size is small (50 games?), but that is how long Skinner had Manny as his coach.

    Manny will be a huge plus for the Oilers this season. And Maybe he can guide Skinner all the way to the Big Club!

  67. blainer says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Thanks for this, Blainer. Just sorry I didn’t see your post before my spot on the Lowdown this morning, I would have mentioned it for sure. We did chat about the Regatta 2 years ago at the 198th anniversary, but obviously this is a big one.

    Attended the Regatta every year from age 9 to 14, always a fun time.

    It was a great regatta again this year.. M5 won the women’s and also had a record breaking time .. Outer Cove won the men’s .. congrats to both winners in a very special regatta today.

    Now all we need is the Oil to win the cup and all is good !!

  68. Kinger_Oil.redux says:

    Silver Streak,

    -awesome story! 14 year old with cali girls. You had me there!

  69. Melvis says:

    Wilde,

    Thanks for that. I’ve got it book marked. Fascinating.

  70. OriginalPouzar says:

    Rebillled:
    OriginalPouzar,

    I should have read more and realized the tactical part of asking for more.

    Here’s a funny salary thing.

    Connor McDavid $12.5 million
    Ty Rattie $0.8 million

    That’s his winger! Because Oilers. Go Rattie!

    I predict he won’t be his winger for all that long (and I’m unsure if Rattie’s got enough game to stay in the NHL playing with anyone else – time will tell – I hope he does).

  71. OriginalPouzar says:

    JimmyV1965: He was paired with Hughes. I don’t think he’s getting cut. Nice.

    and stood up for Hughes and protected him when things go a bit rough (credit: Matt Moeswich):

    Another solid game from Kemp. Like the day previous, Kemp looked good in his own zone, his positioning and attention to detail are evident every time he hits the ice.
    1 reply 1 retweet 2 likes
    Reply 1 Retweet 1 Like 2 Direct message

    Matt Mosewich

    @EDMFutureWatch
    3h3 hours ago
    More
    He was partially at fault on the Canadian’s 3rd goal. He was the in the correct position, but lost the attackers stick on a backdoor pass.
    1 reply 1 retweet 2 likes
    Reply 1 Retweet 1 Like 2 Direct message

    Matt Mosewich

    @EDMFutureWatch
    3h3 hours ago
    More
    Kemp once again showed his leadership in this game. He was the first American player to step up and defend Quinn Hughes after he got in a mixup with multiple Canadian players. This turned into a near line brawl. (Picture attached).

  72. Scungilli Slushy says:

    Wilde:
    New post up, with some actual meat on the bones, with another coming tonight:

    https://petropraxis.blogspot.com/

    Another beauty Oscar.

  73. Melvis says:

    Scungilli Slushy: Another beauty Oscar.

    And both know the value of active verbs. Double the fun.

  74. digger50 says:

    Wait

    Woodcroft was part of the coaching debacle last year. He was let go due to underperforming, particularly with special teams. So he was the problem and he’s not a good coach right?

    Then he is hired as head coach in Bakersfield – so he is good?

    Then what was the problem with the coaching of the Oilers last year?? I don’t get it.

  75. OriginalPouzar says:

    If Woodcroft is to take the blame for the 2017/18 PP then he should also receive credit for the 5th places 2016/17 PP.

  76. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    If Woodcroft is to take the blame for the 2017/18 PP then he should also receive credit for the 5th places 2016/17 PP.

    I think it all just became clear.

    –> thoroughly mediocre coach.

  77. VanIsleOil says:

    Very interesting look at Chayka- inside the 2018 draft.

    https://www.nhl.com/coyotes/video/inside-the-2018-nhl-draft/t-277437086/c-60818503

  78. Paddy Morans Jockstrap says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Paddy Morans

    Hi Bruce – he’s a very “toolsy” goalie and mature for his years. If he proves to be the best of the three young guys in training camp (and I think he will do that easily) then I’d plan to give him half the starts with Montoya in Bakersfield. We have a real resource in Montoya and for the first time in forever we actually have someone who can mentor a young guy down there. Montoya is a solid team guy and I’m pretty sure he understands his career is winding down. Might even be an opportunity for him to informally break into coaching if that’s a direction he wants to go. But for Skinner, if he can handle AHL shooters, then half a season in the AHL with Montoya is better than 10 more games in a much lesser league alongside another young guy who will be no help at all.

  79. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    Re: Currie. He’s 24, was Bakersfield’s leading scorer and they just gave him an NHL deal.

    Agreed Malone is the first call-up (at C anyway), but I wouldn’t be at all shocked to see Currie get some NHL games.

  80. OriginalPouzar says:

    Currie turns 26 a couple weeks in to the season – to me, he is past the point of being a prospect and isn’t really an NHL option, or at least shouldn’t be. If he is the 2nd call-up option, behind Malone and ahead of the “actual prospects”, to me, that’s a problem and prime example of why I believe one more cheap depth forward needs to be added to bump these guys down a spot.

  81. Wilde says:

    Melvis,

    Scungilli Slushy,

    Thanks fellas, grouping two games together for tomorrow’s instead of splitting one tonight

  82. Professor Q says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Currie turns 26 a couple weeks in to the season – to me, he is past the point of being a prospect and isn’t really an NHL option, or at least shouldn’t be.If he is the 2nd call-up option, behind Malone and ahead of the “actual prospects”, to me, that’s a problem and prime example of why I believe one more cheap depth forward needs to be added to bump these guys down a spot.

    We can’t have our cake and eat it, too.

    Either block and develop the prospects, or have veteran 1-2 call up stop-gaps (and hey, at least they are now younger than ususal).

  83. leadfarmer says:

    Rebillled:
    Mark Stone wants $9 MILLION FOR 20 GOALS LAST YEAR.

    He must really want out of Ottawa.

    That’s actually not too bad of an ask. Usually they overshoot the ask by quite a bit. I would have no problems giving Stone Draisatls contract

  84. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Paddy Morans Jockstrap: Hi Bruce – he’s a very “toolsy” goalie and mature for his years. If he proves to be the best of the three young guys in training camp (and I think he will do that easily) then I’d plan to give him half the starts with Montoya in Bakersfield. We have a real resource in Montoya and for the first time in forever we actually have someone who can mentor a young guy down there. Montoya is a solid team guy and I’m pretty sure he understands his career is winding down. Might even be an opportunity for him to informally break into coaching if that’s a direction he wants to go. But for Skinner, if he can handle AHL shooters, then half a season in the AHL with Montoya is better than 10 more games in a much lesser league alongside another young guy who will be no help at all.

    No argument, I talked myself into a similar place by the end of my earlier comment. As for having a “real” #3, it’s a nice luxury. We had a nice run of them in OKC with Martin Gerber, Yann Danis, and Richard Bachman, all of them solid mentors and very reasonable fallback options when injuries hit the big team. Nice to have Montoya potentially in that role this year, beats the crap out of Eddie Pasquale & his 0 NHL GP.

  85. Ribs says:

    VanIsleOil,

    Just watched this as well. Cool stuff.

  86. Ribs says:

    Paddy Morans Jockstrap: Hi Bruce – he’s a very “toolsy” goalie and mature for his years. If he proves to be the best of the three young guys in training camp (and I think he will do that easily) then I’d plan to give him half the starts with Montoya in Bakersfield. We have a real resource in Montoya and for the first time in forever we actually have someone who can mentor a young guy down there. Montoya is a solid team guy and I’m pretty sure he understands his career is winding down. Might even be an opportunity for him to informally break into coaching if that’s a direction he wants to go. But for Skinner, if he can handle AHL shooters, then half a season in the AHL with Montoya is better than 10 more games in a much lesser league alongside another young guy who will be no help at all.

    Is this something that happens? A guy goes from junior to starting half a season of AHL games? I have no idea if this is commonplace. How do they usually end up doing with that workload? It sounds great, but I fear it’s a tall ask.

  87. Ribs says:

    Just scanning around and it looks like it does happen fairly often. The leap to the NHL usually takes 2-4 AHL seasons, though.

    Boy, would it be nice if Skinner turns out to be the real deal. Here’s hopin’!

  88. Paddy Morans Jockstrap says:

    Bruce McCurdy: No argument, I talked myself into a similar place by the end of my earlier comment. As for having a “real” #3, it’s a nice luxury. We had a nice run of them in OKC with Martin Gerber, Yann Danis, and Richard Bachman, all of them solid mentors and very reasonable fallback options when injuries hit the big team. Nice to have Montoya potentially in that role this year, beats the crap out of Eddie Pasquale & his 0 NHL GP.

    Some people hated picking up Montoya but it’s great having a legit NHL #3 ready in case of injury and mentor for a young AHL goalie. Plus the salary is fully buried in the AHL and Montoya seems like a guy who could be a good mentor. Starrett seems like a low ceiling guy we cut loose next summer when his contract is up. Wells had a bad year and needs the ECHL to get on track again. As for Skinner I have not been this excited about a goalie prospect in our system since Dubnyk. He’s got the physical tools and the mindset in my opinion. Our system which has been one of the worst in the NHL for goalie development has come a very long way.

  89. OriginalPouzar says:

    Professor Q: We can’t have our cake and eat it, too.

    Either block and develop the prospects, or have veteran 1-2 call up stop-gaps (and hey, at least they are now younger than ususal).

    Developing the prospects is of high importance and another body would be great to hedge against the risk of management needing to decide between calling up Josh Currie (a 16 year old with no NHL experience or future) and Marody or Benson in November because Brodziak has gone on the IR.

    I would prefer Currie in that situation (as the development of prospects is of primary importance) but that is also not a very good result.

    I just don’t see the negative in adding an established NHL player via cheap signing or waiver wire acquisition.

  90. Paddy Morans Jockstrap says:

    Ribs:
    Just scanning around and it looks like it does happen fairly often. The leap to the NHL usually takes 2-4 AHL seasons, though.

    Boy, would it be nice if Skinner turns out to be the real deal. Here’s hopin’!

    Was going to say the same thing. It’s not uncommon for solid prospects to be in the AHL at 20 or in the top men’s leagues in Europe. It more rare for good NHLers to spend any length of time in the ECHL. Dubnyk’s case was unusual as we were sharing an AHL team with Pittsburgh when he turned pro and had limited goalie slots. Man was that a bad idea.

    Skinner needs 2 years in the AHL minimum, and if he develops well, you can probably take a short look at the NHL level at the end of year 2 to see if he could handle backup duties at some point in year 3.

    Montoya/Skinner AHL
    Wells/Starrett ECHL
    Hawkey NCAA
    Rodrigue CHL

    System look pretty decent for the first time in forever. We made good moves to trade up and get Skinner and Rodrigue who is not huge (about the same size as Fluery though) but is lightening quick post to post.

  91. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Currie turns 26 a couple weeks in to the season – to me, he is past the point of being a prospect and isn’t really an NHL option, or at least shouldn’t be.If he is the 2nd call-up option, behind Malone and ahead of the “actual prospects”, to me, that’s a problem and prime example of why I believe one more cheap depth forward needs to be added to bump these guys down a spot.

    My mistake on his age, that couple of years does make a difference.

    I’m not suggesting he is, or should be, the second call up option. Just that it’s conceivable he does get some games this year, especially if others falter. Benson and Marody might come along quickly, or they might never push for a call up. He also scored in range with the “veteran call ups” (Malone and Rattie) the Oilers brought in last year (though Currie is 6 months older than Rattie). This is a good player at the AHL level.

    All that said, I completely agree with adding another depth NHLer ahead of Malone, Currie and the others.

  92. OriginalPouzar says:

    I guess it is conceivable that he does get some NHL games which, to my point, leads to the need for another NHL depth forward to be acquired – either by signing or via the waiver wire.

    No offence to Currie, but I’d be more comfortable with Nick Shore or even Jason Chimera or Joe Colborne as they are at least NHL players.

    The org must allow guys like Marody and Benson to develop and I don’t want them rushed to the NHL due to a lack of depth or the likes of Josh Currie in the lineup to allow them to develop.

    If we are honest with ourselves, if Josh Currie is playing for the Oilers, chances are the season is not going well.

    As an aside, LT has suggests Janik Hansen – reports are he is headed to the KHL.

  93. Lowetide says:

    For The Athletic: No. 15 prospect William Lagesson, a throwback defenceman with a chance to make it in the modern NHL

    https://theathletic.com/453426/2018/08/02/william-lagesson-a-throwback-defenceman-with-a-chance-to-make-it-in-the-modern-nhl/

  94. OriginalPouzar says:

    Lowetide:
    For The Athletic: No. 15 prospect William Lagesson, a throwback defenceman with a chance to make it in the modern NHL

    https://theathletic.com/453426/2018/08/02/william-lagesson-a-throwback-defenceman-with-a-chance-to-make-it-in-the-modern-nhl/

    I’ve got WIllie as a dark-horse for NHL games this year.

    He’s coming over from the SHL with pro experience against men but has also spend much of his development in North America so shouldn’t take much time to adjust to the North American ice and game.

    I was impressed with his skating and ability to transition the puck in Penticton this past year – didn’t really expect that from a mainly defensive d-man.

    A defensive d-man that can skate and transition the puck – that’s a nice skill set.

  95. Professor Q says:

    Lowetide:
    For The Athletic: No. 15 prospect William Lagesson, a throwback defenceman with a chance to make it in the modern NHL

    https://theathletic.com/453426/2018/08/02/william-lagesson-a-throwback-defenceman-with-a-chance-to-make-it-in-the-modern-nhl/

    You even got the *hot read* indicator today! Congratulations. I’ll give it a go once I get to Starbucks.

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!
© Copyright - Lowetide.ca