Chantays’ Pipeline

by Lowetide

I chuckled yesterday at an online conversation re: Oilers drafting. Idea being the club cannot draft outside the first round. The facts are sadder than that: In the last decade, two of the best picks outside the first round (Tobias Rieder, Erik Gustafsson) didn’t sign with Edmonton and were developed elsewhere. Drafting is important development is key.

However, there are good signs for fans of the Edmonton Oilers. For the first time since the turn of the century, the pipeline appears to be pumping effectively.

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: Ken Holland’s measured summer leaves Oilers outside playoffs.
  • New Jonathan Willis: Can Mikko Koskinen be a quality starter for Oilers in 2019-20?
  • New Lowetide: The 2019-20 Oilers and value contracts: A period of transition
  • New Corey Pronman: Oilers No. 9 farm system.
  • New Jonathan Willis: Jesse Puljujarvi signs one-year deal in Finland, dashing hopes he would return to the Oilers
  • Lowetide: Jay Woodcroft joins Claude Julien and Todd Nelson as key coaches in Oilers prospect development
  • Lowetide: Is Riley Sheahan an ideal fit for the Oilers as their No. 3 centre?
  • Lowetide: Oilers coach Dave Tippett might have to take drastic action in order to find a second outscoring line in 2019-20
  • Lowetide: Oilers end summer still shy on first-shot scoring wingers
  • Lowetide: Connor McDavid and optimal line chemistry: The Oilers need to abandon enforcer fixation and add a skill winger
  • Lowetide: Jesse Puljujarvi’s biggest hurdles: Bad timing and the indifference of the Oilers.
  • Lowetide: Projecting the Oilers 2019-20 Opening Night Lineup
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Q&A: Dave Tippett on rounding out his coaching staff, fixing Oilers’ special teams and using Connor McDavid
  • 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
  • Lowetide: Oilers top 20 prospects summer 2019.

Signs

There are good signs in drafting and development for the Edmonton Oilers. A small one? Edmonton signed William Lagesson in the spring of 2017. He had been drafted during the time Craig MacTavish was general manager, but by 2017 the team was being run by Peter Chiarelli with Keith Gretzky and Bob Green as lieutenants. MacT passed on signing Gustafsson, who was chosen during the Tambellini era.

Another positive, and we rarely make this distinction (perhaps I should mention it more often) is that the prospects are in all sectors of development—surely a good sign for continued success.

Edmonton has Caleb Jones, William Lagesson, Ethan Bear, Cooper Marody and Tyler Benson pushing up from the AHL. The team also boasts new arrivals to pro Evan Bouchard, Dmitri Samorukov, Kailer Yamamoto, Kirill Maksimov and Ryan McLeod.

At the amateur level, Philip Broberg, Raphael Lavoie, Olivier Rodrigue, Michael Kesselring and Maxim Denezhkin are percolating. The Oilers have stayed the course through the last four drafts. If you add up the totals from the 2016-2019 drafts, the team has chosen 14 players inside the top 100 overall.

The Oilers are drafting, signing and developing (Woodcroft in Bakersfield delivered a stunning set of results in 2018-19) players who are on an NHL trajectory. Ken Holland has the depth to trade a defenseman right now, that’s how much improvement we’ve seen in the back half of this decade.

RECOGNITION

So. It is a fact the Edmonton Oilers haven’t developed players chosen outside the first round. The last five players to be drafted outside the first round, signed, developed in the system, and then found NHL success are Anton Lander, Tyler Pitlick, Martin Marincin, Brandon Davidson and Jujhar Khaira. The last home run? Jeff Petry in 2006.

So. Since 2014, Edmonton has drafted, signed and is developing William Lagesson, Caleb Jones, Ethan Bear, Tyler Benson, Dmitri Samorukov, Kirill Maksimov, Ryan McLeod and Olivier Rodrigue. Never count your chickens, but the team signed Woodcroft and he has some high end talent coming in this fall. Critics can say the Oilers haven’t developed any top flight players outside the first round since 2006, but that statement should be rendered untrue in the days to come.

TYLER WRIGHT

Edmonton has a new director of amateur scouting in Tyler Wright. His resume isn’t fabulous, although drafting Dylan Larkin was a helluva get in 2014. We’ll see how things progress, but my own opinion is that the scouting department was solid under Chiarelli. I hope Wright retains the current scouts and adds an analytics element. I’m not the guy who can do it, but I know someone.

LEON’S COMMENTS

They were fine. He could have said ‘let’s move on’ but in the moment they were fine. Guys, the die is cast. This movie is over, we’re just waiting for the trade.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE.

At 10 this morning, we have a helluva show for you. TSN1260, at 10:20 Corey Pronman from The Athletic pops in and will answer all of your questions (you can post them in the comments section if you wish). Danny Austin from the Calgary Sun/Herald will help us tee up the Labor Day Classic. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. Talk soon!

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LadiesloveSmid

I don’t know that the JP story is over.

If he develops in a tier-2 league in his 21YO season & EDM holds firm that it’s there or nowhere, he could be poised to breakout in his 22YO season. Have a good season then get dealt when you’re worth more than a pipe dream 3rd liner prospect.

Professor Q

Leon did say “let’s move on”, effectively. More than once. The reporters wouldn’t let him do so, however.

OriginalPouzar

“However, there are good signs for fans of the Edmonton Oilers. For the first time since the turn of the century, the pipeline appears to be pumping effectively.”

——————————————————–

The following are “real prospects” in that will be in the AHL this year that have legit shots at playing in the NHL this year:

Lagesson
Jones
Bear
Bouchard

Benson
Marody
Yamamoto
Joe G.

————————————————————-

There are also the following “real prospects” in the AHL this year:

Samorukov

Maksimov
McLeod

Safin
———————————————————

Not to mention, some real prospects overseas and still in junior:

Broberg
Konovalov
Lavoie
Rodrigue

Beglund
——————————————————

Many (most) won’t make it but my goodness that depth of “real prospects” is something this organization has not seen, maybe in their history.

A bit more patience and riding out the cap hell and things will turn around.

Value contracts, cap space, assets currency, etc.

OriginalPouzar

I have no idea how anyone could interpret Leon’s comments in a negative way.

LadiesloveSmid

OriginalPouzar:
I have no idea how anyone could interpret Leon’s comments in a negative way.

Ya what I basically got was “we’d welcome Jesse with open arms, unfortunately his time here hasn’t panned out & he seems to want to move on”

Decidedly Skeptical Fan

LadiesloveSmid:
I don’t know that the JP story is over.

If he develops in a tier-2 league in his 21YO season & EDM holds firm that it’s there or nowhere, he could be poised to breakout in his 22YO season. Have a good season then get dealt when you’re worth more than a pipe dream 3rd liner prospect.

It’s over.

Decidedly Skeptical Fan

OriginalPouzar:
I have no idea how anyone could interpret Leon’s comments in a negative way.

Why does this not surprise me?

v4ance

I liked Leon’s diplomatic comments. He showed disappointment at Jesse’s decision but he left the door open to Jesse’s return to the team. The reporter tried to badger Leon into saying something negative about JP but Leon didn’t take the bait. If there was any fire brewing, Drai did nothing to feed the flames.

I know this probably isn’t a popular opinion but I don’t think JP was given a fair shake in the top 6. Two factors I don’t think have been seriously taken into account.

First, JP never had consistent minutes with McDavid for a FULL game. McLellan would spot McDavid with Puli for 3 shifts or so but then blender up the lines. No matter if Jesse was doing well or badly, McLellan couldn’t leave them to develop any chemistry. I bet if ppl looked back at the game sheets, Jesse never got 10 minutes with McDavid but instead had lots of games where he got 4 mins with the captain during on the fly shifts. McLellan was a bit better letting Nuge be Puli’s centre for a full game but that only lasted for about 10 games or so.

Even when Hitchcock took over and the season was lost, he didn’t give JP consistent time with the top centres but JP’s injury could have played a role in that too.

Second, even when JP got onto Connor or Ryan’s wing, he usually had Lucic or Caggulia stapled on the other wing for the majority of the time. It would have been nice to have Jesse with two effective players to guide him instead of McD or RNH having to teach JP while also dragging another weaker winger around.

I place all the blame on the coaches for these missteps.

It actually reminds me of the movie Moneyball where the GM, Billy Beane, gives the Manager Art Howe flawed players that needed to be utilized in a certain manner and the manager didn’t use them in the right fashion.

***
There’s a quote from a military fiction book that escapes me right now that applied to this situation along the lines of …
” they may not have given me the best warriors for this fight so I’ll have to use what I do have with brilliance…”

Sadly there was no imagination or brilliance shown by the head coach for 3 years.

Bag of Pucks

I thought Leon handled the question fine, and as diplomatically as the media scrum would allow.

Most team oriented guys are going to look at this the same way. If you’re not wanting to be a part of the solution, then seeya-wouldn’t want to be ya.

It’s fairly obvious both Leon and Connor loathe press avails. It is a tired dance. The press is probing and the players are ducking and once in a million, they get a non-cliche answer and social media blows up.

Like Dave Chappelle said in his latest special, this is the worst time to be a celebrity. Not only are you under the microscope, but social justice warriors are constantly poised to pounce.

Material Elvis

v4ance,

I guess I’ll be the first person to disagree with your assessment. His numbers away from McDavid are not good. If that is the only way that he can make it in the league (McDavid’s winger) then he isn’t good enough. The coach’s job is to win hockey games, not babysit an enigmatic teenager who thinks he is better than he is.

Material Elvis

Bag of Pucks:
I thought Leon handled the question fine, and as diplomatically as the media scrum would allow.

Most team oriented guys are going to look at this the same way. If you’re not wanting to be a part of the solution, then seeya-wouldn’t want to be ya.

It’s fairly obvious both Leon and Connor loathe press avails. It is a tired dance. The press is probing and the players are ducking and once in a million, they get a non-cliche answer and social media blows up.

Like Dave Chappelle said in his latest special, this is the worst time to be a celebrity. Not only are you under the microscope, but social justice warriors are constantly poised to pounce.

Can’t wait for the next ‘breaking story’ from Toronto telling us how unhappy Leon looked and how he wants out of Edmonton.

defmn

Material Elvis:
v4ance,

I guess I’ll be the first person to disagree with your assessment.His numbers away from McDavid are not good.If that is the only way that he can make it in the league (McDavid’s winger) then he isn’t good enough.The coach’s job is to win hockey games, not babysit an enigmatic teenager who thinks he is better than he is.

Agreed. Not getting to play with who you want to play with is not a legitimate reason to refuse to play on a team. There may be a legitimate reason why Jesse has taken the stance he has but I have yet to hear it.

Bag of Pucks

v4ance,

My take is JP didn’t consistently do what the coaches asked him to, and it cost him mins and opps up the depth chart. MacLellan confirmed this was an issue after he was canned.

Was it the English barrier, player being too stubborn, or is Jesse just a racehorse that spits the bit?

I don’t know the root cause, but i do know that opportunity is earned not gifted.

powerploy

to me it seemed like Drai body language and his stumbling suggested he was highly uncomfortable with the question. I guess there could be several suggestions as to why.

Side

Professor Q:
Leon did say “let’s move on”, effectively. More than once. The reporters wouldn’t let him do so, however.

“Leon, so are you saying you are moving on from Jesse as a teammate?”

v4ance

Training camp is never about “winning a job” for rookies but it does allow the coaches to see who isn’t ready yet. So while you can’t truly win a job, you can definitely lose a spot on the opening roster. It’s not saying that initial phrase is wrong but that it’s the wrong perspective.

At the start of the season, the old school thinking is that the veterans get first crack at holding down the job. If they show that they can’t compete at the NHL level any more, then, yes, the rookie gets a chance.

That’s why I believe Russell will be in the top 6 and Benson and Marody will be in the AHL for the first game of the year. By December though, Russell should be the 7th or 8th D and one or both of Marody and Benson will be back on the roster for the rest of the year.

What the old school mentality gets wrong is that “good enough to still play in the NHL” isn’t the optimal solution because that usually means a “better younger” player has his opportunity delayed until the older player proves he’s definitely over the hill.

godot10

Pouzar:
Friedman on NHL Network RE: JP

“And I think Carolina is willing to give them one of their prospects, maybe a guy like Gauthier, but is not so interested in giving the pick. I think Tampa Bay, they’ve flirted with back and forth, they kinda know which Tampa prospect they might be able to get, but again I think it’s a combination of finding the two things that they want: pick + prospect”

https://twitter.com/NHLNetwork/status/1166909335097622528

Did Elliotte Friedman hang out with Joe Thornton and Brett Burns all summer?

Or was it a disguise to avoid getting the axe?

LadiesloveSmid

Pouzar:
Friedman on NHL Network RE: JP

“And I think Carolina is willing to give them one of their prospects, maybe a guy like Gauthier, but is not so interested in giving the pick. I think Tampa Bay, they’ve flirted with back and forth, they kinda know which Tampa prospect they might be able to get, but again I think it’s a combination of finding the two things that they want: pick + prospect”

https://twitter.com/NHLNetwork/status/1166909335097622528

Gauthier is a nothing prospect. If they get a dud + a 3rd, just hold on to JP.

texmex

LadiesloveSmid: Gauthier is a nothing prospect. If they get a dud + a 3rd, just hold on to JP.

That’s likely what Carolina is thinking about JP and why they are hesitant to throw in a 3rd.

GordieHoweHatTrick

My conspiracy theory.
JP/Agent “force” Chia into “burning off” the 1st year of ELC. Chia obliges because he doesn’t really have a development plan and he is executing his fire sale on wingers (that are easy to find). Very clear evidence of this agreement. JP met the game # requirements and done.
JP was not given consistent minutes in top 6 and PP in ELC years 2 and 3 because of fear of success and a significant raise that would be required in his second contract, which was really not an option in CAP-Strapped Chia wasteland.

They rolled the dice.
They lost.

Munny

LadiesloveSmid: Gauthier is a nothing prospect. If they get a dud + a 3rd, just hold on to JP.

A bit of hyperbole here, IMO.

Munny

I’m guessing Raddysh is the kid they want off Tampa.

v4ance

When you draft a player in the top 4 of a draft, YES you do gift him the opportunities. Otherwise, you’re wasting the value of your highest assets. It was an organizational failure to provide the language support to JP so he could understand his teammates and coaches so he could do the right things and play the right way.

Woodguy did a monologue on twitter a few months back comparing Rantanen’s development with Jesse’s. Rantanen was gifted MacKinnon and Landeskog for a full year of losing. Pulijujarvi was never given that length of opportunity. McLellan’s default was to always go back to trying to win the McDavid Drai minutes with a blender everywhere else.

Other examples? Laine was gifted a top 6 position and #1PP time. JP hasn’t even gotten consistent PP time. Pierre Luc Dubois was inserted into Columbus’ top 6 fairly quickly and fairly consistently..Hall and Ebs got Horcoff then RNH got Hall and Ebs.

When i think of players who struggled as badly as JP, I think of Olli Jokinen..He wasn’t gifted anything in LA or NYI before he got to the Panthers. He was onto his 3rd team and 6th year until he finally figured things out.

There’s lots of blame for the coaching staff and management who kept Jesse in the NHL when he really should have been in FInland or in the AHL. But if he was on the NHL roster, he should have been stapled to McDavid or Nuge for longer than 5 games.

Munny

LT said,

I chuckled yesterday at an online conversation re: Oilers drafting. Idea being the club cannot draft outside the first round. The facts are sadder than that: In the last decade, two of the best picks outside the first round (Tobias Rieder, Erik Gustafsson) didn’t sign with Edmonton and were developed elsewhere. Drafting is important development is key.

The facts are sadder yet… even a couple of the first rounders have failed to pan out.

blainer

I would do Geekie and Gauthier for JP. Not sure Carolina would though. Geekie is a big Rt shot C who had a great playoff run with the AHL champs.

JP is a very risky bet IMO just based on the fact he hasn’t put the work in to learn English alone. I bet we would have to add for that deal.

blainer

I do think though that if there is a team that JP can thrive with it’s Carolina. Being reunited with Aho would do him wonders and it would also help him big time with his communication problems.

Jethro Tull

Why do we insist that either a rookie or an under-performing, or both, player be given ‘significant minutes with McDavid’?

If your development as a player hinges on riding shotgun to the world’s best player, then maybe Jesse was drafted way too high.

I can see JP rotting where he is. Ken is a dinosaur, and a few here have lauded his alleged ability not to get fleeced in a deal.

I wonder if Ken would rather take nothing than take 10c on the $.

The best, most mature, advice for JP would have been to STFU, give new management a chance for one season, work with new management on conflict resolution in the locker room, if indeed that was EVER a problem, and apply himself to all the things that make a successful player in the NHL.

I’m also wondering if Ken hinted that JP might have been starting the year in the AHL in their hour long chat. Tough to take if you actually believe, contrary to all evidence, you should be top 6, 15mins+ a night playing with the piss-cutters.

Material Elvis

v4ance:
When you draft a player in the top 4 of a draft, YES you do gift him the opportunities.Otherwise, you’re wasting the value of your highest assets.It was an organizational failure to provide the language support to JP so he could understand his teammates and coaches so he could do the right things and play the right way.

Woodguy did a monologue on twitter a few months back comparing Rantanen’s development with Jesse’s.Rantanen was gifted MacKinnon and Landeskog for a full year of losing.Pulijujarvi was never given that length of opportunity.McLellan’s default was to always go back to trying to win the McDavid Drai minutes with a blender everywhere else.

Other examples?Laine was gifted a top 6 position and #1PP time.JP hasn’t even gotten consistent PP time.Pierre Luc Dubois was inserted into Columbus’ top 6 fairly quickly and fairly consistently..Hall and Ebs got Horcoff then RNH got Hall and Ebs.

When i think of players who struggled as badly as JP, I think of Olli Jokinen..He wasn’t gifted anything in LA or NYI before he got to the Panthers.He was onto his 3rd team and 6th year until he finally figured things out.

There’s lots of blame for the coaching staff and management who kept Jesse in the NHL when he really should have been in FInland or in the AHL.But if he was on the NHL roster, he should have been stapled to McDavid or Nuge for longer than 5 games.

Have you seen who his most common line mates were? That narrative does not hold water. As for your comparables, well they really are not comparables except for draft position. All of the guys you mentioned performed commensurately with their draft position and that is why they are successful; not because they were gifted anything. Hall (best player on the team starting year one), Laine (36 goals/64 points in his rookie season; JP has half of that after 3 seasons), Rantanen (20 goals in his rookie season; 84 points in his sophomore season). One of these is not like the other.

Material Elvis

blainer:
I do think though that if there is a team that JP can thrive with it’s Carolina. Being reunited with Aho would do him wonders and it would also help him big time with his communication problems.

I don’t know about that last sentence. I think it’s up to him to bridge the communication gap at this point.

texmex

Jethro Tull: I’m also wondering if Ken hinted that JP might have been starting the year in the AHL in their hour long chat.

Isn’t Jesse Waiver eligible? If he was placed on waivers for the purpose of assignment to Bakersfield, 30 teams would put in a claim.

defmn

Jethro Tull:

I’m also wondering if Ken hinted that JP might have been starting the year in the AHL in their hour long chat.Tough to take if you actually believe, contrary to all evidence, you should be top 6, 15mins+ a night playing with the piss-cutters.

Waiving him to the AHL would be equivalent to trading him for nothing since he would be grabbed off the wire.

HT Joe

Lowetide said… “[Leon’s Comments] were fine. He could have said ‘let’s move on’ but in the moment they were fine. Guys, the die is cast. This movie is over, we’re just waiting for the trade.”

Lowetide… as a light jab to OP, you should still continue to count Jesse towards the 50 man list 🙂

Jethro Tull

texmex,

defmn,

Thanks for the correction. Waiving him wouldn’t be optimal. But something stinks here. I know it’s been done to death, but this time I don’t think it’s the Oilers…

OriginalPouzar

Interesting verbal from Friedman last night.

Re-confirmed that Holland wants a prospect and a pick.

Says Tampa and Carolina are two of the teams with quite a bit of interest – Tampa is willing to do the prospect, someone like Gautier but the the pick is the hesitation.

GordieHoweHatTrick

Based on pedigree and results, who “deserves” or “had deserved” to play/have time on wing with McDavid?

YES
Drai
Nuge
Hall
Eberle
Others?

NO
Luc
Kass
Cags
Chiasson
etc etc

SO
Why was it so intolerable to put JP with McD when he had as good or better numbers with him than the vast majority of other possible wingers????

John Chambers

Evander Kane has been maligned at times during his career, but he makes a noteworthy point about casual racism in hockey culture.

Especially in Canada where the sport defines the nation so wholly, everyone should feel like the game belongs to them.

https://www.tsn.ca/sharks-evander-kane-time-to-notice-racism-in-hockey-1.1357435

HT Joe

GordieHoweHatTrick: Based on pedigree and results, who “deserves” or “had deserved” to play/have time on wing with McDavid?

YES
Drai
Nuge
Hall
Eberle
Others?

Yak deserved to play with McDavid, based on pedigree and results :\

HT Joe

Munny: The facts are sadder than that: In the last decade, two of the best picks outside the first round (Tobias Rieder, Erik Gustafsson) didn’t sign with Edmonton and were developed elsewhere.

It’s saddest when one considers that Reider played a full season for the Oilers and scored 0 goals… that’s one of the best picks outside the first round. Khaira is my current pick for best drafted outside of the first round in the last decade.

If we go back just few years earlier than the decade line in the sand, Petry is the best pick outside of the first round that I can think of (2006, 45th overall).

Jethro Tull

OriginalPouzar:
Interesting verbal from Friedman last night.

Re-confirmed that Holland wants a prospect and a pick.

Says Tampa and Carolina are two of the teams with quite a bit of interest – Tampa is willing to do the prospect, someone like Gautier but the the pick is the hesitation.

I’m going to say that based on the current situation and JP’s body of work, that is an over-ask by Ken.

Now, is it on purpose?

Munny

It’s funny that on one hand we have people who wish we slow played kids, not placing them in situations where they’re way above their head, and others who wish that teen-agers were facing The Vaunt night in and night out.

Damned if you do or just… damned.

Jethro Tull

Munny:
It’s funny that on one hand we have people who wish we slow played kids, not placing them in situations where they’re way above their head, and others who wish that teen-agers were facing The Vaunt night in and night out.

Damned if you do or just… damned.

I was just thinking the same thing.

“Those kids should be slow-played and left to ‘over-perculate’ (I believe the popular term is), but should also all be given 10+mins a night with McDavid (or ‘mentored’ by our best D by playing on a pairing with them).

defmn

Jethro Tull: I’m going to say that based on the current situation and JP’s body of work, that is an over-ask by Ken.

Now, is it on purpose?

I hope it is on purpose. There is no real downside for the Oilers to keeping Puljujarvi in Finland this year or even next year if the return is unlikely to develop into an impact NHL player.

Time heals a lot of problems all on its own so there is upside to waiting him out and no upside to giving him away.

In that situation you take your 10% chance of things improving by doing nothing over your 0% chance of improving by doing something.

EDIT: Trading Jesse for peanuts is just confirmation to him that the Oilers never really valued him in the 1st place.

blackadder

By the end of last season, not only had Puljujarvi not gotten better, but you could easily make the case that he had regressed significantly.

In his last few games with the Oilers he had no confidence with or without the puck, seemed hesitant most of the time leading to mistakes, and stopped shooting.

Ken Holland has repeatedly spoken about players brought up from the minors too early. They’ll sometimes have short term success but after four or five weeks would see their confidence shot, and the player that was inevitably returned to the minors was a shadow of the player who had left.

This, to me, is what happened with Puljujarvi. They couldn’t find a spot for him to succeed in the NHL and rather than moving him where he belonged, the AHL, they continued shunting him between lines and among teammates hoping that some sort of magical epiphany would arrive and he’d suddenly turn into the player almost all scouts predicted in 2016.

You can call Puljujarvi entitled if you want, call him spoiled too. Maybe he could’ve done more.

But this is, as far as I’m concerned, mostly on the Oilers, management and coaches.

Jethro Tull

defmn: I hope it is on purpose. There is no real downside for the Oilers to keeping Puljujarvi in Finland this year or even next year if the return is unlikely to develop into an impact NHL player.

Time heals a lot of problems all on its own so there is upside to waiting him out and no upside to giving him away.

In that situation you take your 10% chance of things improving by doing nothing over your 0% chance of improving by doing something.

All the rest of the league have to do is wait until Ken’s balls are *this* close to the bandsaw. Then we’ll see if he’s ‘respected’ (what other GM’s say about him just to be nice) or ‘respected’ (other GM’s are willing to deal fairly with him in regards to return for JP.)

Jethro Tull

blackadder: You can call Puljujarvi entitled if you want, call him spoiled too. Maybe he could’ve done more.

I would agree with that, only it doesn’t match Jesse’s, or his agent’s, verbal. He specified what he believed he is entitled to in the NHL. There are maybe a handful of players that can confidently expect to get whatever they want in the NHL. And he ain’t one of them. So it brings us round to; is he really that naive, or is his agent (who manages quite a few clients with little drama) feeding him to the fishes?

Reja

Munny:
I’m guessing Raddysh is the kid they want off Tampa.

How can you turn down a salted radish.

Reja

blainer:
I do think though that if there is a team that JP can thrive with it’s Carolina. Being reunited with Aho would do him wonders and it would also help him big time with his communication problems.

I know there will be less pressure on Jesse to turn out in Carolina being what they have to give up to obtain him. Saying that maybe Aho at 22 is quite happy where’s he’s at right now linemate and teammate wise and doesn’t want are need the extra pressure of Jesse turning out or the drama that seems to be following him around. I also think Kosh will be more at ease not being in the middle of this drama just because he’s Finnish

OriginalPouzar

DecidedlySkepticalFan: Why does this not surprise me?

I assume this mean you have an issue with his comments? Happy to chat about the Oilers related issue if you wish to post more than just a though on me as a person.

LadiesloveSmid

Reja: How can you turn down a salted radish.

Raddysh is the same age as JP & scores less in the AHL.

I know we’re at ‘better than nothing’ territory here seemingly, but Raddysh is making no impact this coming season. JP’s not taking 2 years in Finland, missing out on a couple million dollars, because he dislikes the organization so much. No bargaining power. Best case is finds confidence in a developmental league and comes back a refined player. Let him.

blackadder

Jethro Tull: I would agree with that, only it doesn’t match Jesse’s, or his agent’s, verbal.He specified what he believed he is entitled to in the NHL.There are maybe a handful of players that can confidently expect to get whatever they want in the NHL.And he ain’t one of them.So it brings us round to; is he really that naive, or is his agent (who manages quite a few clients with little drama) feeding him to the fishes?

Who knows what was behind that statement, or what the overall context was. Perhaps, after watching players with much less talent than him like Chiasson, Lucic, and Kassian get extended opportunities with McDavid he wondered why he hadn’t gotten the same (Puljujarvi did, admittedly, get opportunities with McDavid but more often than not he’d be moved away from McDavid mid-game). Perhaps he felt he should have been at that level at this point in his career. Perhaps there’s an issue in the translation from Finnish to English. Perhaps he’s just 21 and immature and will figure it out.

Neither you nor I nor anyone here is privy to every conversation, every facet of what Puljujarvi experienced as an Oiler. What’s clear is that he believes that he has a better opportunity to play top six minutes elsewhere than he will with the Oilers. Why he thinks that I have no idea.

The thing is, the Oilers failed the first lesson of player development 101 which is that, except for his rookie season when he played almost 40 games in the minors, they never put him in the best position from which he could succeed. It should have been obvious, especially last year when his play obviously regressed, that he did not belong in the NHL. So then they finally do the right thing, send him to the AHL, only to inexplicably recall him after four games because Hitchcock believed he was the guy to unlock Puljujarivi’s potential.

But the best guy to do that wasn’t Ken Hitchcock, clearly, it was Jay Woodcroft in Bakersfield.