Haas and Nygard

Gaetan Haas and Joakim Nygard have a few things in common, including strong European resumes and unusual names. Nygard drew interest from 20+ teams, while Haas had an audience of one (Ken Holland) from what we know. Oilers fans are uneasy about the roster over the summer, with No. 3 center (Haas) and fleet winger (Nygard) areas of possible improvement.

What can we tell about these two men and their NHL chances?

THE ATHLETIC!

The Athletic Edmonton features a fabulous cluster of stories (some linked below, some on the site). Great perspective from a ridiculous group of writers and analysts. Proud to be part of the group, here’s an incredible Offer!

  • New Lowetide: Jesse Puljujarvi’s biggest hurdles: Bad timing and the indifference of the Oilers.
  • Lowetide: Projecting the Oilers 2019-20 Opening Night Lineup
  • Lowetide: Revisiting the Oilers’ 2016 draft and the opportunities missed
  • Lowetide: Examining the potential waiver-wire opportunities at hand for the Oilers
  • Lowetide: Cooper Marody’s utility gives him an edge for an Oilers roster spot in 2019-20
  • Lowetide: Ken Holland’s roster construction options for the Oilers over the next seven months.
  • Lowetide: Kailer Yamamoto has the talent to win a job with the Oilers on merit, if he’s healthy.
  • Jonathan Willis: Jesse Puljujarvi still has upside and the Oilers’ patient approach is the right one
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Q&A: Dave Tippett on rounding out his coaching staff, fixing Oilers’ special teams and using Connor McDavid
  • Lowetide: Handicapping the Oilers’ young defencemen and their chances of replacing Andrej Sekera
  • Lowetide: Is Kirill Maksimov progressing as the Edmonton Oilers’ next great hope for a true homegrown sniper?
  • Jonathan Willis: Oilers ease pressure on crowded defensive pipeline by trading John Marino to the Penguins
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: What the 2021-22 Oilers might look like after their steady build toward contender status
  • Lowetide: Joel Persson is ideally situated to win an opening night roster spot with the Oilers
  • Jonathan Willis: Projecting the Oilers’ opening night lineup, line combinations and more.
  • Lowetide: Oilers’ acquisition of James Neal could add badly needed scoring to the top two lines.
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Ken Holland puts his stamp on the Oilers with first big move in Lucic-Neal trade
  • Jonathan Willis: Ken Holland ends an ugly situation for the Oilers by trading Milan Lucic for James Neal
  • Jonathan Willis: Which Oilers defencemen can make an outlet pass?
  • Lowetide: Looking ahead to Oilers training camp: 35 players for 23 jobs
  • Jonathan Willis: Josh Archibald won’t fix the Oilers’ biggest problems, but he’ll help with some key issues.
  • Lowetide: Oilers top 20 prospects summer 2019.

EUROPE

There are teams (San Jose Sharks) who can grab a European and coach him up within a year. Having a ‘plug and play’ supermarket is a big damned deal. Edmonton has had an uneven track record in procuring Europeans, but Holland has done well over many years.

The League Nygard plays in lets a bunch of air out of the tires of each player’s boxcar number. The tools I use punish the SHL at 58 percent of total. That’s the second best (KHL) league in captivity.

Haas plays in the NLA, where the NHLE punishes more than half (43 percent) and thus the Haas number is less impressive.

However, opportunity is a major item in the case of Haas and Nygard. Haas is a guy who Ken Holland liked, he is signed and the team is not exactly flush in RHC.

I’m finishing up my RE numbers now, and this little Euro battle is a fascinating inside the roster item. Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be left shot centers.

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88 Responses to "Haas and Nygard"

  1. OriginalPouzar says:

    Chiarelli preferred the college free agents and had some success – Benning, Caggiula (for all his wart, he was found money), Joe G, Logan Day, etc.

    Holland seems to prefer the even older Europen free agents – success is yet to be known.

    The only thing I am sure with these two is that they can skate at NHL levels – skating is something that will never fail to translate but I don’t know if any of their other skills will.

    When Haas was signed, I thought it was a pure AHL thing given league and production in that league. From the coach, he’s a front runner for 3C – I don’t get it but I’m hoping that I’m just missing something – Holland has coveted this player for a while.

    Nygard – well, we know he can burn and, from accounts, can kill penalties – I see some pencil him up the lineup, even 1LW – I am hopeful he earns a roster spot on merit and someone like Benson takes the next step to keep this player in the bottom 6.

    Right now he reminds me of Rieder – a guy that was miscast in the Oilers lineup from day 1 – I also posited he should be a third line guy but he got so much top 6 time, a position above his pay grade, that he never got traction (except for the 7 game heater when Chiasson shot 75% and Rieder aggregated assists).

    Nygard in the bottom 6 may have a chance to succeed – if he’s in the top 6, I fear the team will be losing off the start.

  2. OriginalPouzar says:

    Many have wondered what exactly Haas has over Marody other than skating and experience and the NHLe serves to propagate that point.

    Yup, skating is important but its not the only skill required for success.

    Come on Cooper, win a NHL C job on merit!

  3. tileguy says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    Does it matter who wins the job as long as it is based on merit?

  4. matt says:

    1. I like the theory: cheap, short term signing of specific skills (speed, PK) for specific, short term needs (3/4 line checking roles) while the team is handcuffed financially.

    2. I question the opportunity cost: JPJ, FA wingers who might have been available.

  5. jp says:

    matt:
    1. I like the theory: cheap, short term signing of specific skills (speed, PK) for specific, short term needs (3/4 line checking roles) while the team is handcuffed financially.

    2. I question the opportunity cost: JPJ, FA wingers who might have been available.

    On opportunity cost do you mean JP (by JPJ)? The Oilers still have enough $$ to sign JP if he’s willing.

    Similarly, Haas and Nygard both signed 2 way contracts for less than $1M. If they make the team they will be paid the same (or less) than anyone they replace on the roster. And they do not take up any additional cap relative to anyone who might play in those roster spots. Neither player in any way impacted the Oilers financial ability to sign other FA wingers who are or were available.

  6. Reja says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Chiarelli preferred the college free agents and had some success – Benning, Caggiula (for all his wart, he was found money), Joe G, Logan Day, etc.

    Holland seems to prefer the even older Europen free agents – success is yet to be known.

    The only thing I am sure with these two is that they can skate at NHL levels – skating is something that will never fail to translate but I don’t know if any of their other skills will.

    When Haas was signed, I thought it was a pure AHL thing given league and production in that league. From the coach, he’s a front runner for 3C – I don’t get it but I’m hoping that I’m just missing something – Holland has coveted this player for a while.

    Nygard – well, we know he can burn and, from accounts, can kill penalties – I see some pencil him up the lineup, even 1LW – I am hopeful he earns a roster spot on merit and someone like Benson takes the next step to keep this player in the bottom 6.

    Right now he reminds me of Rieder – a guy that was miscast in the Oilers lineup from day 1 – I also posited he should be a third line guy but he got so much top 6 time, a position above his pay grade, that he never got traction (except for the 7 game heater when Chiasson shot 75% and Rieder aggregated assists).

    Nygard in the bottom 6 may have a chance to succeed – if he’s in the top 6, I fear the team will be losing off the start.

    I like to think Nygard as a Paul Bryon type. With his minutes and flexibility up and down the line-up there is only one Rieder nobody in Oilers silks will ever duplicate his scoring output in 2018-2019 it’s not possible.

  7. barry.moore23 says:

    “there is only one Rieder nobody in Oilers silks will ever duplicate his scoring output in 2018-2019 it’s not possible.”

    I can match his scoring output in adult league so i never embarrass the team by wearing Oilers silks 🙂

  8. Reja says:

    barry.moore23:
    “there is only one Rieder nobody in Oilers silks will ever duplicate his scoring output in 2018-2019 it’s not possible.”

    I can match his scoring output in adult league so i never embarrass the team by wearing Oilers silks

    Don’t be so hard on yourself if you had Leon as a Centre and if you aren’t a yellow belly chicken liver scaredy-cat to go to the net you would have tapped in at least 10.

  9. Silver Streak says:

    I wonder if we all have somehow forgotten about Ryan McLeod for 3C. We already know him from his strong camp last year….he has great wheels, size, and knows his way around a 200 ft sheet of ice.
    He should have another layer of muscle and experience and might just surprise many so called expert opinions and make the big club after lighting it up in the Bake.

  10. Ribs says:

    Silver Streak:
    I wonder if we all have somehow forgotten about Ryan McLeod for 3C.We already know him from his strong camp last year….he has great wheels, size, and knows his way around a 200 ft sheet of ice.
    He should have another layer of muscle and experience and might just surprise many so called expert opinions and make the big club after lighting it up in the Bake.

    I think it’s hard to ask an unproven player to play the 3C role. Marody also looks like a good fit here but this is a job that usually requires a few years of NHL experience to be effective at.

  11. Professor Q says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    And then throw in Jurco and Archibald to the mix.

    Cave, Jurco, Khaira in a sense due to the flexibility and questionable lineup peak, Archibald, Marody, Haas, Nygård, Brodziak, Kassian, Benson, Granlund, Gagner, and Chiasson fighting for Bottom 6 to Bottom 9 roles. A few can head to the AHL and develop more though, so there is a placeholder availability of need be.

    It’ll be interesting at any rate! I’m excited. Are you all excited?!

  12. Kinger_Oil.redux says:

    – It’s really optimistic to believe either Haas or Nygard are anything other than “blockers” for some more time in the AHL for a Benson Marody kailer etc. They just aren’t very good

    – But of course I cheer for them and slot Nygard as the speedy winger for McD and Haas the 3 C. Even though I know better.

  13. Oilman99 says:

    Silver Streak:
    I wonder if we all have somehow forgotten about Ryan McLeod for 3C.We already know him from his strong camp last year….he has great wheels, size, and knows his way around a 200 ft sheet of ice.
    He should have another layer of muscle and experience and might just surprise many so called expert opinions and make the big club after lighting it up in the Bake.

    McLeod straight out of junior is not going to happen, specially when he really didn’t make any major strides in his last season in the OHL.

  14. Ryan says:

    Ribs: I think it’s hard to ask an unproven player to play the 3C role. Marody also looks like a good fit here but this is a job that usually requires a few years of NHL experience to be effective at.

    Not saying, but just saying… the Oilers made the playoffs with Caggiula planning 3c.

  15. Woogie63 says:

    The Oilers has 9 Players that are UFAs next year, why?

    We are going to see Bakersfield graduates in Edmonton through out the year.

    By year end these players will have spots on the NHL steam.
    – Benson
    – Marody
    – Yamamoto
    – Jones
    – Lagesson
    – Bear

    Because-
    Manning, Gagner, Smith, Brodizak, – aging vets who will be gone

    If Kassian has a good year he will be back otherwise …

    Archibald, Granlund, Haas, Jurco, Nygard, – are placeholder to allow the kids time to grow

  16. ArmchairGM says:

    Silver Streak:
    I wonder if we all have somehow forgotten about Ryan McLeod for 3C.We already know him from his strong camp last year….he has great wheels, size, and knows his way around a 200 ft sheet of ice.
    He should have another layer of muscle and experience and might just surprise many so called expert opinions and make the big club after lighting it up in the Bake.

    We need to see him be successful in the AHL before throwing his name into the ring I think. He hasn’t been exactly “lighting it up” in the OHL as an overager, so we’ll need to see a significant step forward before including him in 3C consideration.

    I hope he gets there, but it won’t be this year. He now has some fierce competition in Rafeal Lavoie, too.

  17. ArmchairGM says:

    Kinger_Oil.redux:
    – It’s really optimistic to believe either Haas or Nygard are anything other than “blockers” for some more time in the AHL for a Benson Marody kailer etc. They just aren’t very good

    – But of course I cheer for them and slot Nygard as the speedy winger for McD and Haas the 3 C. Even though I know better.

    Yeah, I don’t know of any precedent where a guy came out of Europe at that age after having posted middling results in lessor pro league for years, then became productive, outscoring NHLers. But maybe I just don’t know…

  18. ArmchairGM says:

    Woogie63:
    The Oilers has 9 Players that are UFAs next year, why?

    We are going to see Bakersfield graduates in Edmonton through out the year.

    By year end these players will have spots on the NHL steam.
    – Benson
    – Marody
    – Yamamoto
    – Jones
    – Lagesson
    – Bear

    Because-
    Manning, Gagner, Smith, Brodizak, – aging vets who will be gone

    If Kassian has a good year he will be back otherwise …

    Archibald, Granlund, Haas, Jurco, Nygard, – are placeholder to allow the kids time to grow

    I agree with this. But it’s completely at odds with Holland’s stated goal of making the playoffs this year. I guess he was lying through his teeth to appease the fanbase?

  19. barry.moore23 says:

    Reja: Don’t be so hard on yourself if you had Leon as a Centre and if you aren’t a yellow belly chicken liver scaredy-cat to go to the net you would have tapped in at least 10.

    Thanks man. You’re a good guy.

  20. Yeti says:

    ArmchairGM: I agree with this. But it’s completely at odds with Holland’s stated goal of making the playoffs this year. I guess he was lying through his teeth to appease the fanbase?

    It would be impossible for him not to say that the aim is making the playoffs this year. He has to say that even if – in reality – he thinks there’s only the smallest chance.

  21. jp says:

    ArmchairGM: Yeah, I don’t know of any precedent where a guy came out of Europe at that age after having posted middling results in lessor pro league for years, then became productive, outscoring NHLers. But maybe I just don’t know…

    I was thinking the same thing and I can’t think of any examples either. If I have time I’ll check later to try to prove myself wrong.

    IMO both of these guys would be considered major successes if they can contribute as 3rd line players. Anything more would be almost unheard of.

  22. Scungilli Slushy says:

    What if Haas and Marody both make the team and the oilers have 2 RC? Haas as the defensive line C and marody as the easy minutes C that hopefully has a line that outscores.

    Awesome. I hope they are both working on faceoffs.

  23. Professor Q says:

    Scungilli Slushy:
    What if Haas and Marody both make the team and the oilers have 2 RC? Haas as the defensive line C and marody as the easy minutes C that hopefully has a line that outscores.

    Awesome. I hope they are both working on faceoffs.

    Well, 3 RC with Gagner. Although Haas and Gagner play mostly wing.

  24. jp says:

    jp: I was thinking the same thing and I can’t think of any examples either. If I have time I’ll check later to try to prove myself wrong.

    IMO both of these guys would be considered major successes if they can contribute as 3rd line players. Anything more would be almost unheard of.

    Alright, I’ll eat my words. There are some examples.

    Just looking at players born in Sweden I found Johan Franzen, Magnus Arvedson and Carl Soderberg as fair comparables who did achieve NHL success. Presumably there are examples from other European leagues as well.

    Franzen arrived in the NHL at age 26 after seasons of 6, 8, 30 and 14 points in the SHL. He scored 370 points in 602 career games, had 4 X 25 goal seasons and topped 50 points 3X.

    Arvedson also debuted in the NHL at 26 following seasons of 14, 7, 24 and 24 points in the SHL. He proceeded to score 225 points in 434 NHL games and had 4 seasons >0.5 PPG.

    Soderberg broke out in Sweden at age 27 (60 point in 54 games). He scored 35 points at age 26 in the SHL but was in the lower tier leagues prior to that (so very much a late bloomer). He’s at 245 points in 482 NHL games and counting and has scored 40+ points 4X.

    Obviously these kinds of outcomes remain very unlikely for Nygard and Haas but there definitely is some precedence. I’m very slightly more optimistic about their upsides than I was 30 minutes ago 🙂

  25. GMB3 says:

    Reja: Don’t be so hard on yourself if you had Leon as a Centre and if you aren’t a yellow belly chicken liver scaredy-cat to go to the net you would have tapped in at least 10.

    I’m pretty sure yellow belly is a racist term. Probably best not to use that

  26. Pescador says:

    Ryan: Not saying, but just saying… the Oilers made the playoffs with Caggiula planning 3c.

    True,
    Now all we need is for one of Smith or Koskinen(*wipes away tear from laughing*) to post the same all world Sv% that Talbot was rocking that season.
    Boom playoffs!

  27. Ribs says:

    Ryan: Not saying, but just saying… the Oilers made the playoffs with Caggiula planning 3c.

    Letestu and Nuge were carrying that load, I believe. Cagguila also had three years of college hockey under his belt as well.

  28. jtblack says:

    Silver Streak:
    I wonder if we all have somehow forgotten about Ryan McLeod for 3C.We already know him from his strong camp last year….he has great wheels, size, and knows his way around a 200 ft sheet of ice.
    He should have another layer of muscle and experience and might just surprise many so called expert opinions and make the big club after lighting it up in the Bake.

    Maybe Skyler BrindAmour will be the 3C after Lighting it up in the Bake. Just as probable.

  29. Pescador says:

    Ribs: I think it’s hard to ask an unproven player to play the 3C role. Marody also looks like a good fit here but this is a job that usually requires a few years of NHL experience to be effective at.

    Yes & because of that I would place Khaira ahead of Marody as of today.
    Which isn’t great if you’re booking holidays based on the Oilers making the playoffs.
    JJ is a perfect 4C

  30. Death By Misadventure says:

    ArmchairGM: I agree with this. But it’s completely at odds with Holland’s stated goal of making the playoffs this year. I guess he was lying through his teeth to appease the fanbase?

    He may have been honest as to playoffs being the goal while at the same time assinging a say 10% chance of playoff goal being achieved.

    Once they drafted Broberg, for me it was a signal that the quality forward pick comes next year when the draft is expected to be stronger and the Oilers have another top 10 pick.

  31. jp says:

    Ribs: Letestu and Nuge were carrying that load, I believe. Cagguila also had three years of college hockey under his belt as well.

    Caggiula was also only used at C for a couple of months.

  32. jp says:

    Pescador: True,
    Now all we need is for one of Smith or Koskinen(*wipes away tear from laughing*) to post the same all world Sv% that Talbot was rocking that season.
    Boom playoffs!

    Talbot posted a .919 that year. I guess Koskinen’s .906 is a fair distance from there but Smith was .916 in 17-18. Never say never.

  33. Death By Misadventure says:

    barry.moore23,

    Yeti: It would be impossible for him not to say that the aim is making the playoffs this year. He has to say that even if – in reality – he thinks there’s only the smallest chance.

    Agreed. Don’t see how offseason moves to date have done anything other than allow the Oilers to pick top 10 in next year’s draft.

  34. OriginalPouzar says:

    Brock Otten’s top 25 prospects who played in the OHL last year is up. Bouchard is #1 and ahead of a few guys draft ahead of him including teammate Adam Boquist:

    http://ohlprospects.blogspot.com/

    1. Evan Bouchard – Defense – London Knights (Edmonton Oilers)
    You could make a case for any of the guys in my top 5 to be the top prospect from the OHL currently. And on a different day, I might give you a different answer. In fact, I think I changed the order of the top 5 multiple times before settling on this. So here’s why I have Bouchard first: I think his vision, poise, and overall play with the puck should translate well to the NHL level. While he’ll never be a truly dynamic defender like an Erik Karlsson, nor will he be the league’s best in his own end, I do think that he’ll grow in those areas over his career and become a very solid top 4 defender and number one powerplay QB for the Oilers.
    NHL Comparison: Larry Murphy

  35. jp says:

    Death By Misadventure: He may have been honest as to playoffs being the goal while at the same time assinging a say 10%chance of playoff goal being achieved.

    IIRC (from the DNB interview) Holland was asked what would constitute a successful season. His answer was something to the effect of “staying competitive for a playoff spot through the end of the season”. It was most definitely not an expectation or guarantee that the team WOULD make the playoffs.

  36. ArmchairGM says:

    jp: Alright, I’ll eat my words. There are some examples.

    Just looking at players born in Sweden I found Johan Franzen, Magnus Arvedson and Carl Soderberg as fair comparables who did achieve NHL success. Presumably there are examples from other European leagues as well.

    Franzen arrived in the NHL at age 26 after seasons of 6, 8, 30 and 14 points in the SHL. He scored 370 points in 602 career games, had 4 X 25 goal seasons and topped 50 points 3X.

    Arvedson also debuted in the NHL at 26 following seasons of 14, 7, 24 and 24 points in the SHL. He proceeded to score 225 points in 434 NHL games and had 4 seasons >0.5 PPG.

    Soderberg broke out in Sweden at age 27 (60 point in 54 games). He scored 35 points at age 26 in the SHL but was in the lower tier leagues prior to that (so very much a late bloomer). He’s at 245 points in 482 NHL games and counting and has scored 40+ points 4X.

    Obviously these kinds of outcomes remain very unlikely for Nygard and Haas but there definitely is some precedence. I’m very slightly more optimistic about their upsides than I was 30 minutes ago

    Nice! That’s very interesting.

  37. ArmchairGM says:

    Death By Misadventure:
    barry.moore23,

    Agreed. Don’t see how offseason moves to date have done anything other than allow the Oilers to pick top 10 in next year’s draft.

    I can agree with that statement. I’m just disappointed that he didn’t make improvements when the opportunities appeared to be there.

  38. ArmchairGM says:

    jp: IIRC (from the DNB interview) Holland was asked what would constitute a successful season. His answer was something to the effect of “staying competitive for a playoff spot through the end of the season”. It was most definitely not an expectation or guarantee that the team WOULD make the playoffs.

    The trouble is that he’s made no obvious improvements to a roster that was out of contention not long after Christmas.

  39. Bos8 says:

    The trouble with pontificating is you don’t have enough information. McLeod is competing on D not Offense. So, you rate him on offense, not D and he’s a failure.

    The Gainey lesson goes out the window, Larsson doesn’t score and so on. I remember reading that he controlled the game in the third period, etc. Don’t count, eh?

  40. OriginalPouzar says:

    tileguy:
    OriginalPouzar,

    Does it matter who wins the job as long as it is based on merit?

    In my opinion, yes:

    1) looking forward, things look much better if a real prospect with a future like Marody takes the next step and proves to be a 3C with skill

    2) having a player with skill like Marody win the spot is better for the current team than if a less-skilled player wins it

    The “merit” point is important, in my opinion – hopefully the “winner” is there because he’s actually earned it and not the best of a bunch that aren’t ready.

  41. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    GMB3,

    As defined by Google:

    yel·low-bel·ly
    /ˈyelō ˌbelē/
    nounINFORMAL
    1.
    a coward.
    “I was serious about my stand against the war and was not just a yellow-belly”
    2.
    any of various animals with yellow underparts.

  42. OriginalPouzar says:

    jp: On opportunity cost do you mean JP (by JPJ)? The Oilers still have enough $$ to sign JP if he’s willing.

    Similarly, Haas and Nygard both signed 2 way contracts for less than $1M. If they make the team they will be paid the same (or less) than anyone they replace on the roster. And they do not take up any additional cap relative to anyone who might play in those roster spots. Neither player in any way impacted the Oilers financial ability to sign other FA wingers who are or were available.

    They are both on two-way deals for less than $1M because they were subject to the Entry Level Contract parameters. I only bring this up because I believe the coach and manager have every expectation they are on the NHL team – I really hope they earn it.

    Your point does stand, if re-assigned, they come off the cap completely.

  43. OriginalPouzar says:

    SilverStreak:
    I wonder if we all have somehow forgotten about Ryan McLeod for 3C.We already know him from his strong camp last year….he has great wheels, size, and knows his way around a 200 ft sheet of ice.
    He should have another layer of muscle and experience and might just surprise many so called expert opinions and make the big club after lighting it up in the Bake.

    McLeod’s strong camp last year is a perfect example of how little training camp and exhibition season mean for the higher end draft – draft plus 3 crowd.

    These players are high skill/talent and consistently look good throughout camp – as they should given the level of skill that is on the ice right up and till the end (even at the end, the veterans are there for timing, conditioning, etc.).

    McLeod had an up and down season last year in the OHL and struggled quite a bit after he was traded and in to the playoffs.

    I look forward to him turning pro and season how he does with the Condors but I don’t anticipate he’ll be an NHL option this season barring a very pleasant surprise. May even be a few years.

    Love his size and speed.

  44. OriginalPouzar says:

    ProfessorQ:
    OriginalPouzar,

    And then throw in Jurco and Archibald to the mix.

    Cave, Jurco, Khaira in a sense due to the flexibility and questionable lineup peak, Archibald, Marody, Haas, Nygård, Brodziak, Kassian, Benson, Granlund, Gagner, and Chiasson fighting for Bottom 6 to Bottom 9 roles. A few can head to the AHL and develop more though, so there is a placeholder availability of need be.

    It’ll be interesting at any rate! I’m excited. Are you all excited?!

    I can’t wait.

    I always struggle with “can’t wait until it starts” because it wishes away the summer but summer never came this year.

    3.5 weeks until the rookies I think.

  45. OriginalPouzar says:

    Ryan: Not saying, but just saying… the Oilers made the playoffs with Caggiula planning 3c.

    Did the Oilers improvement in record over the 2nd half of the season have anything to do with Caggiula being shifted away from center?

  46. OriginalPouzar says:

    ArmchairGM: We need to see him be successful in the AHL before throwing his name into the ring I think. He hasn’t been exactly “lighting it up” in the OHL as an overager, so we’ll need to see a significant step forward before including him in 3C consideration.

    I hope he gets there, but it won’t be this year. He now has some fierce competition in Rafeal Lavoie, too.

    Your premise is right (in my opinion) but McLeod was NOT an overager – he was in his 19 year old season, standard junior season.

  47. jp says:

    ArmchairGM: The trouble is that he’s made no obvious improvements to a roster that was out of contention not long after Christmas.

    Well, that’s not at odds with what he said though.

    Just because you or I don’t agree with what Holland moves or lack thereof, that doesn’t mean he hasn’t been internally consistent in what he’s said and done.

  48. OriginalPouzar says:

    ArmchairGM: I agree with this. But it’s completely at odds with Holland’s stated goal of making the playoffs this year. I guess he was lying through his teeth to appease the fanbase?

    How is that plan against trying to win?

    When the prospects pass the veterans, they get called up and replace the veterans – when Marody proves to be better than Kassian, he will replace Kassian in the lineup for example – that may be on October 2, December 15 or never.

    Holland has stuck to his stated plan fully – making improvements to improve this year but not doing anything that could potentially hinder the primary goal of turning this team in to a legit consistent contender in 2-4 years and doing things to help set up more material improvements during that time

  49. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    I’d be thrilled if Bouch was even just shades of Larry Murphy. Liking his development post draft, and bet he has a fine year under Manson and Woodcroft.

    Nice to see a number of top OHL prospects in the Oilers pipeline.

    11. Dmitri Samorukov – Defense – Guelph Storm (Edmonton Oilers)
    Few prospects on the planet have seen their star rise the way that Samorukov has this past season. What he did in the second half of the season and in the OHL playoffs was just, flat out, a treat to watch. He dominated at both ends of the ice with his mobility, skill, and tenaciousness. Is this the real Samorukov or was it just a hot streak? Remains to be seen. He’ll have to prove himself at the pro level, but I am a believer in what I saw. He’s always possessed that kind of potential, and the light bulb finally went off.
    NHL Comparison: Niklas Kronwall

    and in the honourable mentions:

    Kirill Maksimov – Forward – Niagara IceDogs (Edmonton Oilers)
    Was a little disappointed by Maksimov’s development this year and a knee injury kept him from contributing in the playoffs. But this power forward is a goal scorer. He just needs to be separated from some bad habits.
    NHL Comparison: James Neal

    Ryan McLeod – Forward – Saginaw Spirit (Edmonton Oilers)
    McLeod checks a lot of boxes. He skates well. He has size. He has a good stick in all three zones. He can keep the puck on a string. But his lack of offensive production at the OHL level concerns me. He still lacks that killer instinct on the ice.
    NHL Comparison: J.T. Miller

    Bakersfield is going to be fun to follow this season. The AHL feed is tempting.

  50. OriginalPouzar says:

    ScungilliSlushy:
    What if Haas and Marody both make the team and the oilers have 2 RC? Haas as the defensive line C and marody as the easy minutes C that hopefully has a line that outscores.

    Awesome. I hope they are both working on faceoffs.

    From his own mouth, Haas has worked on his faceoffs for years and has got better – from listening, it was pretty obvious to me that, while he’s improved, they are still not a strong point. Given age, I don’t anticipate much improvement and I don’t think Haas is going to be a go-to guy on the faceoff – my hope is he’s not at the Nuge level.

  51. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar: They are both on two-way deals for less than $1M because they were subject to the Entry Level Contract parameters. I only bring this up because I believe the coach and manager have every expectation they are on the NHL team – I really hope they earn it.

    Your point does stand, if re-assigned, they come off the cap completely.

    Yes, if Holland has incorrectly evaluated these players and they’re gifted a spot they don’t deserve then obviously their presence affects the team and other players negatively.

    I’m just trying to push back against the apparently widespread belief that these depth signings have eaten up all the Oilers cap since that’s not the case.

    As you well know signing Haas, Nygard, Archibald and Jurco is not in any way related to Holland’s inability to add a scoring winger this offseason.

  52. OriginalPouzar says:

    jtblack: Maybe Skyler BrindAmour will be the 3C after Lighting it up in the Bake. Just as probable.

    I’d put it as a smidgen less probably given he does not have an NHL contract and will be playing college hockey at Quinnipiac Univ.

    I posit they see the same amount of NHL games this year.

  53. russ99 says:

    jp,

    This is questionable on a few levels.

    1. Subdividing players who are “skilled” and who aren’t and assuming those who aren’t can’t contribute at the NHL level has no bearing in which NHL players contribute and those that don’t. There are ways to contribute without making beautiful stretch passes or flying in on the rush to score.

    2. We still have no idea if Marody will get to that 100 NHL game mark. His skating is suspect, which has more bearing on if he gets there than his perceived skill level.

    It’s a preference that he does but if someone else gets there, in the end it makes the team better.

  54. Ancient Oilers Fan says:

    jp: Alright, I’ll eat my words. There are some examples.

    Just looking at players born in Sweden I found Johan Franzen, Magnus Arvedson and Carl Soderberg as fair comparables who did achieve NHL success. Presumably there are examples from other European leagues as well.

    Franzen arrived in the NHL at age 26 after seasons of 6, 8, 30 and 14 points in the SHL. He scored 370 points in 602 career games, had 4 X 25 goal seasons and topped 50 points 3X.

    Arvedson also debuted in the NHL at 26 following seasons of 14, 7, 24 and 24 points in the SHL. He proceeded to score 225 points in 434 NHL games and had 4 seasons >0.5 PPG.

    Soderberg broke out in Sweden at age 27 (60 point in 54 games). He scored 35 points at age 26 in the SHL but was in the lower tier leagues prior to that (so very much a late bloomer). He’s at 245 points in 482 NHL games and counting and has scored 40+ points 4X.

    Obviously these kinds of outcomes remain very unlikely for Nygard and Haas but there definitely is some precedence. I’m very slightly more optimistic about their upsides than I was 30 minutes ago

    Nygard played in the SHL with not bad results:

    18/19 52gp 21-14-35 Second in the league for goals and tied for 14th in points
    17/18 52gp 17-17-34 Tied for 13th in goals and tied for 15th in points
    16/17 52gp 16-13-29 Tied for 10th in goals and tied for 33rd in points

    Nygard shines in comparison to your comparables. The only blip is Soderberg at age 27 although he had the same 35 points at age 26 that Nygard had at age 25.

    Nygard did not miss a game in those 3 years.

    So in the SHL an upper level “mediocre league” Nygard shows better than mediocre being second in goals last year and no worse than 13th in goals in the last three years and being in the top 15 in points for the last 2 years.

    I think he has a chance.

  55. Side says:

    BornInAGretzkyJersey:
    GMB3,

    As defined by Google:

    yel·low-bel·ly
    /ˈyelō ˌbelē/
    nounINFORMAL
    1.
    a coward.
    “I was serious about my stand against the war and was not just a yellow-belly”
    2.
    any of various animals with yellow underparts.

    Additionally:

    “This word originally applied to birds that literally have a yellow belly, like the yellow-bellied sapsucker. From there, it came to mean an insult for cowards. If you’re afraid to ask someone on a date, you’re yellow-bellied. If you’re easily frightened or spooked, you’re yellow-bellied. This is often used as an insult or challenge, like “What are you, yellow-bellied?!””

    https://www.vocabulary.com/dictionary/yellow-bellied

  56. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    Nygard shows well in highlights… good edges and top speed, doesn’t mind driving through defenders en route to the middle of the ice, good on the boards.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=enKWoaLrTME

  57. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    Haas looks like he plays a fair amount on his off wing, which is more common for Euros. Isn’t shy ripping it from the top of the circles, or crashing the net for that matter. Will be interesting to see how this pans out.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44aZJAN-Gw4

  58. jp says:

    russ99:
    jp,

    This is questionable on a few levels.

    1. Subdividing players who are “skilled” and who aren’t and assuming those who aren’t can’t contribute at the NHL level has no bearing in which NHL players contribute and those that don’t. There are ways to contribute without making beautiful stretch passes or flying in on the rush to score.

    2. We still have no idea if Marody will get to that 100 NHL game mark. His skating is suspect, which has more bearing on if he gets there than his perceived skill level.

    It’s a preference that he does but if someone else gets there, in the end it makes the team better.

    Are you meaning to reply to OP here? I haven’t talked about skill or Marody at all today.

  59. Reja says:

    GMB3: I’m pretty sure yellow belly is a racist term. Probably best not to use that

    “ I smells carrots a-cookin’… and where there’s carrots there’s rabbit”

  60. Bling says:

    Great work on those comps!

    I’m bullish on both Nygard and Haas being contributors next season — Haas as 4C, and Nygard in the top 9.

    Nygard would fit in quite well next to Drai/McDavid.

  61. jp says:

    Ancient Oilers Fan: Nygard played in the SHL with not bad results:

    18/1952gp21-14-35 Second in the league for goals and tied for 14th in points
    17/1852gp17-17-34 Tied for 13th in goals and tied for 15th in points
    16/1752gp16-13-29Tied for 10th in goals and tied for 33rd in points

    Nygard shines in comparison to your comparables.The only blip is Soderberg at age 27 although he had the same 35 points at age 26 that Nygard had at age 25.

    Nygard did not miss a game in those 3 years.

    So in the SHL an upper level “mediocreleague” Nygard shows better than mediocre being second in goals last year and no worse than 13th in goals in the last three years and being in the top 15 in points for the last 2 years.

    I think he has a chance.

    Well he certainly has a chance to be an NHLer.

    But remember that these are the few extremely rare examples of mature, non-elite SHL scorers who managed top 6 success in the NHL.

    There are hundreds (thousands?) of 25-30 year-olds who scored 35+ points in the SHL but fell short of these examples.

  62. OriginalPouzar says:

    Pescador: Yes and because of that I would place Khaira ahead of Marody as of today.
    Which isn’t great if you’re booking holidays based on the Oilers making the playoffs.
    JJ is a perfect 4C

    I would agree that his skillset would lend him to being a great 4C but he hasn’t showed to be able to succeed in the role at all, let alone be perfect.

    Of course, his placement there has been uneven, never given a chance to get used to the role and, of course, over the last number of years, the linemates on the 4th line would be, well, lets say, less than optimal.

    Hopefully that 2nd part changes starting this season.

  63. OriginalPouzar says:

    DeathByMisadventure: He may have been honest as to playoffs being the goal while at the same time assinging a say 10%chance of playoff goal being achieved.

    Once they drafted Broberg, for me it was a signal that the quality forward pick comes next year when the draft is expected to be stronger and the Oilers have another top 10 pick.

    After the first round was completed and even moreso after they picked Lavoie, I think Holland read the draft perfectly – he knew (or was confident) there was going to be a run on d-men and a draft already deep in skilled forwards was going to leak some legit 1st round, even legit mid-1st round, forward talent to the 2nd. Of course, Zegras is a “better prospect” with a higher probability of making it and becoming a star but Lavoie has very high potential as well – more bust potential but high ceiling.

    Any forward drafted was not going to impact the NHL team this year so I don’t agree with the premise above that the Broberg pick signaled anything about Holland’s goals for this year’s team.

  64. OriginalPouzar says:

    Jim Benning extended in Vancouver – 3 years I believe.

  65. OriginalPouzar says:

    ArmchairGM: I can agree with that statement. I’m just disappointed that he didn’t make improvements when the opportunities appeared to be there.

    I can understand that for sure. There were contracts signed that seem reasonable that would likely make the team better. At the same time, they were for “marginal” top 6 talent/player and would have eaten cap dollars that Holland wants to use over the next few years.

    In particular, Holland spoke to teams taking advantage of others with cap issues and pointed to teams that needed to sell assets for pennies on the dollar in the name of cap compliance. He spoke to the Oilers being in position to take advantage in the future and I think he’s keeping his currency available for that situation.

    That would be a great way to build – Substantial UFAs generally need an overpay and often decline during the term. Straight up “hockey trades” are good but taking advantage of teams that need to sell for compliance – that could be some great shopping.

  66. Dee Dee says:

    GMB3: Reja: Don’t be so hard on yourself if you had Leon as a Centre and if you aren’t a yellow belly chicken liver scaredy-cat to go to the net you would have tapped in at least 10.

    I’m pretty sure yellow belly is a racist term. Probably best not to use that

    The Woodpecker in my yard, a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker must be doubly racist then 🙂

    I’m all for cheap signings. Sign three cheap guys and let them fight over a spot. Gives you more depth too, the Rookies have to beat all three of them to make the Show rather than just getting it handed to them on a silver platter.

    Past Management regimes went all out in signing players and usually baited the hook with guaranteed playing time on specific lines and all it ended up doing was Pooching the player.

  67. OriginalPouzar says:

    Bos:
    The trouble with pontificating is you don’t have enough information.McLeod is competing on D not Offense.So, you rate him on offense,not D and he’s a failure.

    The Gainey lesson goes out the window, Larsson doesn’t score and so on.I remember reading that he controlled the game in the third period, etc.Don’t count, eh?

    He is definitely a 2-way player and not reliant totally on offence to be successful. Its much easier to quantify offensive performance but, from accounts, he was inconsistent in his entire game through the year, in particular the 2nd half and playoffs.

    Also, to your points, its a player’s offensive game that generally translates to the NHL earlier. It would be interesting to have a 20 year old like this be ready for the NHL based off of defensive acumen and hope his offence comes.

  68. pts2pndr says:

    ArmchairGM: We need to see him be successful in the AHL before throwing his name into the ring I think. He hasn’t been exactly “lighting it up” in the OHL as an overager, so we’ll need to see a significant step forward before including him in 3C consideration.

    I hope he gets there, but it won’t be this year. He now has some fierce competition in Rafeal Lavoie, too.

    His defence and face-off work could earn him a job. His size and skating are NHL calibre. OHL points are dependant on his deployment. He could be one of those players that has better results at the NHL level. Having said that I would not be adverse to him getting a year in the AHL gaining experience playing pro hockey.

  69. OriginalPouzar says:

    BornInAGretzkyJersey:
    OriginalPouzar,

    11. Dmitri Samorukov – Defense – Guelph Storm (Edmonton Oilers)
    Few prospects on the planet have seen their star rise the way that Samorukov has this past season. What he did in the second half of the season and in the OHL playoffs was just, flat out, a treat to watch. He dominated at both ends of the ice with his mobility, skill, and tenaciousness. Is this the real Samorukov or was it just a hot streak? Remains to be seen. He’ll have to prove himself at the pro level, but I am a believer in what I saw. He’s always possessed that kind of potential, and the light bulb finally went off.
    NHL Comparison: Niklas Kronwall

    I watched a decent amount of Guelph games last year and two things that I really really liked about his game:

    1) How aggressively he defends the blue line and the gap – he’s like the anti-Russell in that regard – he broke up so rushes and stretch passes consistently. In fact, it may have been a bit too much as he’ll need to learn to pick his spots better at the pro level.

    2) His defensive zone board battle – he seemed to come away with the puck a massive amount of the time.

    These are translatable skill and show defensive IQ.

    I live this prospect and have been mentioning him since half way through his draft plus 1 when he worked his way up the Russian depth chart at the WJC in his first go at it.

  70. OriginalPouzar says:

    jp: Yes, if Holland has incorrectly evaluated these players and they’re gifted a spot they don’t deserve then obviously their presence affects the team and other players negatively.

    I’m just trying to push back against the apparently widespread belief that these depth signings have eaten up all the Oilers cap since that’s not the case.

    As you well know signing Haas, Nygard, Archibald and Jurco is not in any way related to Holland’s inability to add a scoring winger this offseason.

    I agree 100% and have been beating the same drum

  71. defmn says:

    GMB3: I’m pretty sure yellow belly is a racist term. Probably best not to use that

    The term ‘yellow-belly’ is an archetypal American term, but began life in England in the late 18th century as a mildly derogatory nick-name. Grose’s A provincial glossary; with a collection of local proverbs etc, 1787, lists it:

    “Yellow bellies. This is an appellation given to persons born in the Fens, who, it is jocularly said, have yellow bellies, like their eels.”

    https://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/yellow-belly.html

  72. Scungilli Slushy says:

    I see Holland’s tenure so far as the best we’ve seen an Oiler GM have since Lowe traded his way to the 06 run.

    Given the cap and contract situation, he has brought in speed and skill, moved a boat anchor for at least a player type that suits needs far better- a scoring winger.

    IMO there are very few players that can outthink a lack of a NHL toolbox. Without exceptional skill to me possessing Mediocre skating is a killer, a lack of enjoying the rougher aspects of the game can be a killer (perimeter), being too small can be a killer.

    Holland has done far better in acquiring players that have don’t have obvious massive hurdles to overcome to be helpful, and it’s been a long time since that was the case and 99% of us called the expected failure of acquisitions.

    Fast players with skill and a track record saying they have some jam are much harder to write off as a forgone conclusion.

    This ties into McLeod to me. He lacks the bite to use an impressive skill set and size. However well developed and coached he could gain the confidence to be an impactful player. Not an elite player perhaps, but the kind of secondary player that championship teams have to have.

    For years the secondary players have been slow unskilled brought in for past accolades or for being tough some combination of those things.

    I see things as much different than that currently.

    Smith does fall into the category I mentioned, but given the history with the coach and what he can do when hot, it is a far more reasonable bet than Koskinen was.

    I remain hopeful the team will be far more competitive on a nightly basis.

  73. Bos8 says:

    As I get older I’m more and more impressed with a do’ee. A consistent body of work. Your rating in the patch.

    Our main man checks all the boxes. I entrust to him my delicate sensibilities.

    Take the man’ s dollar, do the man a job.

    There is a multiprong plan in place, I like an idea of a plan. No danger of room iq and Skype. Still a low life event. A builder puts up structures, not spends nights sabotaging the neighbors.

  74. pts2pndr says:

    ArmchairGM: I can agree with that statement. I’m just disappointed that he didn’t make improvements when the opportunities appeared to be there.

    I personally haven’t seen any of the players that Holland has brought in. They have the reputation of being very good skaters with defensive awareness. Some come with PK acumen. Given that the team lacked overall team speed and abysmal PK, I do not understand your total assuredness of doom and gloom. I can comprehend having some doubt but to proclaim that the sky is falling is to my prospective premature. I trust that given the crow you have prepared you are ready to enjoy the dish when it is served to you.

  75. OriginalPouzar says:

    JP and Ancient Oiler Fan – that is just fantastic work on Nygard and some comparables.

    Very helpful and informative.

    Invaluable.

    Thank you.

    P.S. I have pasted both your posts on to another forum with full credit to your usernames and where you posted it – I hope I did not over step and, if I did, please, let me know.

  76. OriginalPouzar says:

    BornInAGretzkyJersey:
    Haas looks like he plays a fair amount on his off wing, which is more common for Euros.Isn’t shy ripping it from the top of the circles, or crashing the net for that matter.Will be interesting to see how this pans out.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44aZJAN-Gw4

    Ripping it from outside the circles as a positive play or Puljujarvi style?

  77. OriginalPouzar says:

    Bling:

    Nygard would fit in quite well next to Drai/McDavid.

    Potentially but that depends on his offensive hockey IQ and not on his speed.

    I personally don’t think that speed is a pre-req to play with Connor but that success with McDavid is more dependent on things such as timing – knowing when to arrive – that is what Maroon excelled at – arriving at the front of the net at the right time. Knowing how to create space for McDavid and, importantly how to get him the puck with space and speed.

    I have no idea if Nygard has that type of hockey IQ. If most of his offensive success comes from his wheels, I don’t think McDavid is the right linemate.

    Sounds weird, I know.

  78. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    More goals than crest muffins from what I saw in that highlight package.

  79. Decidedly Skeptical Fan says:

    GMB3: I’m pretty sure yellow belly is a racist term. Probably best not to use that

    I’m even more than pretty sure that it is not a racist term, unless of course, cowards can somehow be considered a race. In this age of CONTINUOUSLY viewing EVERYTHING through a PC lens, perhaps cowards are now considered a race. Probably best to ignore the PC bullshit and feel free to use the term with abandon.

  80. Lowetide says:

    For The Athletic: Connor McDavid and optimal line chemistry: The Oilers need to abandon enforcer fixation and add a skill winger

    https://theathletic.com/1142866/2019/08/16/connor-mcdavid-and-optimal-line-chemistry-the-oilers-need-to-abandon-enforcer-fixation-and-add-a-skill-winger/

  81. Pescador says:

    OriginalPouzar: I would agree that his skillset would lend him to being a great 4C but he hasn’t showed to be able to succeed in the role at all, let alone be perfect.

    Of course, his placement there has been uneven, never given a chance to get used to the role and, of course, over the last number of years, the linemates on the 4th line would be, well, lets say, less than optimal.

    Hopefully that 2nd part changes starting this season.

    I have no memory of JJ playing st 4C.
    Ya hos development curve has not been a straight line, I’ll concede that.
    The premise of my post was that Khaira is a better option today than Haas, Marody, Gagner & Brodziak
    Do you disagree?

  82. OriginalPouzar says:

    Yes, Khaira has played some center in the NHL with limited success.

    For the most part I don’t disagree with your statement but I also don’t agree.

    I don’t know if Haas or Marody are better options as they haven’t been given the opportunity. Perhaps Marody centers Khaira and Jurco and the three of them provide a 4th line that keeps momentum and wins the battle?

  83. Reja says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Yes, Khaira has played some center in the NHL with limited success.

    For the most part I don’t disagree with your statement but I also don’t agree.

    I don’t know if Haas or Marody are better options as they haven’t been given the opportunity. Perhaps Marody centers Khaira and Jurco and the three of them provide a 4th line that keeps momentum and wins the battle?

    JP plus for a reliable 3rd line centre that can actually win a face off when it counts.

  84. Revolved says:

    I think we too often dismiss European players as non-NHL options. We see team Canada and USA lose to the Swiss, Finns and Swedes every year at the Worlds. This is not just due to the big ice and coaching; these guys are professional hockey players.

    The premium on skating ability is only increasing year on year and is probably the most important trait for a player to avoid looking out of place in the NHL, particularly at centre. This is why Marody v Khaira v Haas will probably go to Haas. I also think that if a prospect has not established themselves at centre by 24, I think they’re unlikely to stick, though I am open to contradictory examples. Thus, if Drai is going to be an NHL centre, he should probably learn to do that soon.

    I agree with Mr.Slush that we are seeing the most competent GMing in over a decade, now let’s just hope Tippett is up to his challenge.

  85. OriginalPouzar says:

    Sweden and Finland are top tier hockey nations right up there with Canada, Russia and the US.

    Switzerland is not in the same tier and are always at a talent deficiency vis-a-vis Canada and their ability to compete within a game is highly dependent on international ice and coaching strategies that push the puck to the outside, much farther from the net and stifle offence – the great equalizer.

    This is not to say they don’t have good or even great players, they do, but their depth cannot match.

  86. Reja says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Sweden and Finland are top tier hockey nations right up there with Canada, Russia and the US.

    Switzerland is not in the same tier and are always at a talent deficiency vis-a-vis Canada and their ability to compete within a game is highly dependent on international ice and coaching strategies that push the puck to the outside, much farther from the net and stifle offence – the great equalizer.

    This is not to say they don’t have good or even great players, they do, but their depth cannot match.

    Ex Oilers playing in Swiss League’s Mark Arcobello and Taylor Chorney also draft pick Toni Rajala.

  87. BlueNoteNorth says:

    NHLE does not factor in skating speed which has become an important factor in determining success in today’s NHL.

    Example:
    SHL scoring + speed = Nygard
    AHL scoring + slow boots = Rob Schremp

    Not sure to what degree this applies to Marody but
    Thinking Nygard has the better chance for success

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