Jari Kurri, Karma, and the 2020 Draft

Jari Kurri was a fantastic player, brilliant in all important areas of the game. He could pass the puck with a deft touch, had a quick, accurate release and was both tireless and deadly effective as a checker. On any other team of his playing lifetime, Kurri would have been more famous, won awards. He landed with the Oilers, who were blessed with his enormous talent and exceptional attention to detail.

Jari Kurri set a high bar for Finland in this town, and damned if that little European party nation delivered time and again. In 2016, the Oilers drafted Jesse Puljujarvi and handled him badly. Since then, the Oilers Finnish karma has taken a powder. Time to get back on the right track at the 2020 draft? Voi olla.

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 Athletic, check it out here.

A 2019 trade involving Washington is an excellent comparable for the AA deal, click and read about the value of the trade and how the acquisition impacts the offseason.

FINLAND’S BEST FOR 2020

  1. LC Anton Lundell. A nice range of skills and is showing nice growth in his second Liiga season.
  2. RW Kasper Simontaival. Unusual skating style but he’s quick and has high-end skill.
  3. LC Roni Hirvonen. Undersized two-way forward, scored four times in three games at the Hlinka. 
  4. LW Veeti Miettinen. Not a great skater, but he fills the net with pucks.
  5. RD Topi Niemela. Niemela skates well but has some chaos.
  6. LW Roby Jarventie. Size, speed and a good shot. 
  7. LD Eemil Viro. Small, fast offensive defender.
  8. RW Wiljami Myllylä. Gaudy scoring numbers for several years.
  9. G Joel Blomquist. Strong numbers (.929), confident goaltender, good glove.
  10. LC Juuso Mäenpää. Small, skilled playmaker.
  11. LD Sami Niku. Undersized blue with skill and speed. I like the numbers.

I’m not sure about most of these names, I have only Lundell in my top 50 overall. It’s unlikely he is available (more on that in a minute) at No. 20 overall.

FINLAND 2019

  1. R Kaapo Kakko. He’s 6.02, 190, Scouts rave about his advanced two-way game.
  2. LD Ville Heinola. Two-way talent with good speed and calm feet. Excellent passer.
  3. RD Anttoni Honka. Draft Analyst: Swift skating puck rusher.
  4. L Patrik Puistola. High skill, consistent scorer who also plays a responsible game.
  5. L Antti Saarela. ISS: Smart and gifted, quality stick skills. Noticeable on PP and PK.
  6. R Leevi Aaltonen. ISS: “Slick offensive play-maker, undersized but highly skilled.”
  7. LD Mikko Kokkonen. Two-way defender who adjusted quickly in Finland’s best league.
  8. R Tuukka Tieksola. Small skill winger, great passer and skating.
  9. R Wiljami Myllylä, HIFK (Jr Sm-Liiga). Speed demon.
  10. RD Antti Tuomisto. Puck moving blue, good skater and has an excellent shot.
  11. R Aku Raty, Karpat (Jr Sm-Liiga). Skill winger who also provides solid play without the puck.

Myllylä didn’t get drafted last summer but I’ve got him on this year’s list. You think that’s stubborn? I wrote about Veini Vehvilainen for three draft years in a row. I’m crazy, man!

TOP 20 MOCK, 2020 DRAFT

  1. Detroit: L Alexis Lafreniere, QMJHL
  2. Ottawa: LC Quinton Byfield, OHL
  3. Ottawa: LC Tim Stuetzle, DEL
  4. Los Angeles: LC Marco Rossi, OHL
  5. Anaheim: LC Cole Perfetti, OHL
  6. New Jersey: RHD Jamie Drysdale, OHL
  7. Buffalo: LW Lucas Raymond, SHL
  8. Montreal: LD Jake Sanderson, USHL
  9. Chicago: RW Alexander Holtz, SHL
  10. New Jersey: RW Jack Quinn OHL
  11. Minnesota: LW Dylan Holloway, Big 10
  12. Winnipeg: RW Seth Jarvis, WHL
  13. NY Rangers:  LC Anton Lundell, Liiga
  14. Florida: LD Kaiden Guhle, WHL
  15. Columbus: LC Hendrix Lapierre, QMJHL
  16. Calgary: LC Connor Zary, WHL
  17. New Jersey: RW Dawson Mercer, QMJHL
  18. Nashville: RW Noel Gunler, SHL
  19. Carolina: LC Jan Mysak, OHL
  20. Edmonton: RC Mavrik Bourque, QMJHL.

I think the Oilers will have at least one quality forward prospect still on the board at No. 20. The question for Ken Holland at that point might involve trading down. My list has several good forwards after this lot is gone (Jacob Perreault, Lukas Reichel, Tyson Foerster, Rodion Amirov). Maybe trading out is a better plan.

NHLE

Lundell’s NHLE (31.1) and range of skills make him an ideal target, Kasper Simontaival would be an interesting target with the third-round selection. Mavrik Bourque, who I see as McDavid’s eventual right winger, has an NHLE of 33.7. Bourque averaged 4.12 shots per game, 2.45 of those judged to be dangerous shots. Oilers are going to get a good player. I don’t know that they’ll get two. Need a second round pick.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

At 10 this morning, TSN 1260. Sunny days, baseball on the way and perhaps some news today on the NHL draft. At 10:20 Jonathan Willis from The Athletic will join us to talk NHL return, shakeup in LA and are we all burned out on the games from the past? Ryan Rishaug from TSN pops in at 11 to chat about Edmonton as a hub city for the NHL’s return, the draft’s status and how the league will handle a compressed offseason. Randy Hansch, Buffalo Sabres amateur scout, will drop by at 11:25 to talk about the 2014 Edmonton Oil Kings (he was GM of that team) and the run to the Memorial Cup. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. Talk soon!

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70 Responses to "Jari Kurri, Karma, and the 2020 Draft"

  1. geowal says:

    This seems like an unusually week year for Finland at the draft, no? Or were some previous years just unusually strong?

  2. Brantford Boy says:

    LT, dumb question alert… is Jesse’s NHLE based on his last season in Finland or his final season in North America?

    For years, I often thought of trading down with some of our picks. Sadly (in hindsight) we had so many top 10 picks that you just couldn’t warrant giving up that swing at the draft table. Certainly not for any 2010-2015 first rounders. I think until Bouchard fell to us I would’ve considered it in 2018. But 2019, I thought they might have, but the Broberg pick was telegraphed for weeks to all of us. This year, for the first time in many, I say keep the pick, especially since the player you mocked today is my hope in selection… strong runner up goes to Seth Jarvis.

    Cheers!

  3. Yeti says:

    Carolina took about half of those names on your 2019 list! Every time I thought they were Finnished they’d pick another one. I really wanted Puistola to end up with the Oil.

  4. jp says:

    Puljujarvi’s path so far smarts for sure but Finland has been more than kind to the Oilers on the whole.

    Current Oilers (in the system) from Finland.

    Mikko Koskinen. G. Turns 32 July 18th.
    Seems like he may be legitimate starter quality. Quietly posted .917 SV% this season, 12th among 45 goalies with 30+ appearances (6th if you look at 35+ appearances). Solid.

    Markus Granlund. LW/C. Turned 27 in April.
    Seemingly slipping out of the league, though his SF% and GF% with the Oilers was A-OK. Does he get to be part of the Oilers taxi squad this summer? Can’t imagine him returning to the Oilers next season.

    Jesse Puljujarvi. RW. Turned 22 last week.
    4th in Liiga scoring. 3rd in +/-. Does he give the Oilers another chance? What kind of NHLer will he end up being (if one at all)?

    Markus Niemelainen. D. Turns 22 in June.
    Promising 6’6″ draft pick who’s offense evaporated (27 points his draft year, 9 in draft +1, 15 in 3 yrs since his return to Liiga). Took a step in Liiga this year and is headed to Bakersfield once next season starts. Long shot for the NHL but who knows.

    Aapeli Rasanen. C/W. Turns 22 in June.
    2-way rep. Strong performances for Finland internationally. Underwhelming offense in the USHL/NCAA (IMO). Headed to Liiga rather than Sr. year in college. A Lander type career would be a success I’d think.

    Patrik Siikanen. LW/C. Turned 20 in April.
    Speed, but I don’t see skill in his boxcars. Failed to make team Finland for the Jrs this year. 28-0-2-2 this season in his first step into Liiga.

    Still a decent Finnish representation, and Koskinen has been a better goalie than many give credit for. Maybe Jesse or someone else contributes to the Oilers going forward.

  5. OriginalPouzar says:

    Interesting spot with Gully on Oilers Now yesterday – went in to quite a bit of detail on the PP and the strategies and the differences between having Neal vs. Chiasson out there (the different options they give you – Neal helps with the down low play on Connor’s normal side and Chiasson helps with some options on the far side). Also went on to say that the big shot from the point

    Talks about how when he first got here all the talk was the need for a rightie that can shoot but then went on to rave about Klef’s job this year and how under-rated he is on the PP and how the big bomb from the point isn’t a helpful as people think – among other things, people don’t want to screen as much, the rebounds don’t come to scoring areas, etc.

    Good spot!

  6. OriginalPouzar says:

    Oilers surely did handle Puljujarvi badly but I would posit that Jesse and Jesse’s agent also handled Puljujarvi badly.

    I generally don’t “buy into” talk about GM’s promising roster spots and playing times to players to sign but I think that may be the case with Jesse and to get him over to North America in draft plus 1.

    I mean, he was sent to the AHL right after he crossed the 40 games on the roster threshold which vested a year toward UFA status. Is it possible that was a coincidence?

    Not to mention his 10 games as an 18 year old took his waiver exempt status from 5 years down to 3 – that actually hurts his trade value as teams can’t really acquire him with a view to potentially developing him.

    As an aside, the organization wanting to bring Jesse over in draft plus 1 looks to be a mistake. On the other hand, his production in the AHL as an 18 year old, the youngest player in North American professional hockey at the time (I believe) was actually VERY good. It didn’t get enough ink.

  7. Bruce McCurdy says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Oilers surely did handle Puljujarvi badly but I would posit that Jesse and Jesse’s agent also handled Puljujarvi badly.

    I generally don’t “buy into” talk about GM’s promising roster spots and playing times to players to sign but I think that may be the case with Jesse and to get him over to North America in draft plus 1.

    I mean, he was sent to the AHL right after he crossed the 40 games on the roster threshold which vested a year toward UFA status. Is it possible that was a coincidence?

    Not to mention his 10 games as an 18 year old took his waiver exempt status from 5 years down to 3 – that actually hurts his trade value as teams can’t really acquire him with a view to potentially developing him.

    As an aside, the organization wanting to bring Jesse over in draft plus 1 looks to be a mistake.On the other hand, his production in the AHL as an 18 year old, the youngest player in North American professional hockey at the time (I believe) was actually VERY good. It didn’t get enough ink.

    zero point zero zero percent chance that the timing of JP’s demotion was an accident. The situation was a virtual repeat of L’Affaire Draisaitl two years before, with the important distinction that Leon was sent out the afternoon of Game 40, Yesse the morning after. Occam’s Razor tells us it was a (verbal) commitment made by Chiarelli to JP’s camp in convincing him to sign an NHL deal that season.

    I believe you were among those saying he’d be better off left in Finland, & that seems pretty obvious in retrospect. All the hype about the Big Three (Matthews, Laine, Puljujarvi) all being NHL-ready became gospel but there turned out to be solid reasons that JP slid to a consensus #3 of the 3, & in fact fell one spot further at the actual draft.

    One of the many Big Mistakes of the Chiarelli era.

  8. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    I remember the last time the Oilers traded down in the first round of a historically deep draft, and it’s not a fond memory.

    Keep the pick. Obtain more. Build the pipeline.

  9. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    LT, curious why you’ve had OTT selecting two forwards a couple times in your mock drafts?

    Wouldn’t Drysdale solidify their weak back end and compliment Chabot nicely, either alongside or forming a formidable 1-2 punch? Almost too nicely…

  10. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar: I generally don’t “buy into” talk about GM’s promising roster spots and playing times to players to sign but I think that may be the case with Jesse and to get him over to North America in draft plus 1.
    I mean, he was sent to the AHL right after he crossed the 40 games on the roster threshold which vested a year toward UFA status. Is it possible that was a coincidence?

    Bruce McCurdy: zero point zero zero percent chance that the timing of JP’s demotion was an accident.

    It’s somewhat ironic that Puljujarvi refusing to play for the Oilers this year gave back the year his agent seemingly negotiated. The same will happen next year if he stays in Europe.

    As it is now the Oilers own his rights for 4 more NHL seasons (or until he’s 27, which is 5 years away). Holland definitely has the hammer.

  11. defmn says:

    LT,

    Mercer and Bourque have dropped significantly in your mock at 17 and 20 from where you rated them in your last top 100 list at 10 & 11 overall. I realize mocks are completely different than lists based upon an assessment of where you think they should go but is the drop because they are both from the ‘Q’ and you think there is still some bias against players from that league or is there another reason?

  12. Lowetide says:

    Brantford Boy:
    LT, dumb question alert… is Jesse’s NHLE based on his last season in Finland or his final season in North America?

    JP’s NHLE (and all listed) are based on the season just ended.

  13. Lowetide says:

    Bohologo:
    1. Jari Kurri has always been my favourite Oiler-sisu hockey.

    2. Sisu is one of those words that every language seems to have that reflects a core value, in this case I guess it means tenacity or determination, maybe not unlike the Japanese頑張る which exhorts perseverance and doing one’s best in the face of adversity.

    3. In a shocking display of casual empiricism for this math nerd crowd (that’s right, you are, all of you, even that one in the corner with the Ramones shirt), as previously reported, I saw Anton Lundell play one game last fall in Helsinki and saw him good. Big kid who skates well and made some nice plays.

    4. Speaking of tenacity and perseverance, after the game I went with my long-time Edmonton buddy and his two Finnish friends back to one of their homes.Put a KHL game on the television, had a beer, and checked the stove for the long simmering pot of moose (which one of the locals had slain in a non-remarkable show of sisu), turns out it was just about ready, so Jyrki says “Okay, first we go in the sauna,” which of course is right in the apartment, so he immediately takes off his clothes in the middle of the living room and heads in.

    5. So, I have been to other places where getting naked with near-strangers is a thing (Japan again says 今日は) but I grew up in Edmonton where this is less common which means this is definitely a time for me to exercise some sisu myself.

    6. As it turns out, the Canadian core value of not wanting to be rude kicked in and so I went into the sauna where we talked hockey some more.

    This is a sisu tweet

  14. Lowetide says:

    BornInAGretzkyJersey:
    LT, curious why you’ve had OTT selecting two forwards a couple times in your mock drafts?

    Wouldn’t Drysdale solidify their weak back end and compliment Chabot nicely, either alongside or forming a formidable 1-2 punch?Almost too nicely…

    Drysdale is not a universally loved prospect. Ottawa could do that, or take a pair of material forwards. I’m not certain what they’ll do, so this is a guess

  15. OriginalPouzar says:

    Scott Howson coming up shortly on Oilers Now – Will be interested to hear his take on the AHL for next season (hopefully) and I wonder if he’s got any last time intel on Oilers’ prospects.

  16. Lowetide says:

    defmn:
    LT,

    Mercer and Bourque have dropped significantly in your mock at 17 and 20 from where you rated them in your last top 100 list at 10 & 11 overall. I realize mocks are completely different than lists based upon an assessment of where you think they should go but is the drop because they are both from the ‘Q’ and you think there is still some bias against players from that league or is there another reason?

    I’m just changing things up to keep the viewer interested in a long, long series of draft posts. My final list will be out June 1, and there is some movement, but both Mercer and Bourque willl land in spots that you’ll recognize based on my previous lists.

  17. OriginalPouzar says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Scott Howson coming up shortly on Oilers Now – Will be interested to hear his take on the AHL for next season (hopefully) and I wonder if he’s got any last time intel on Oilers’ prospects.

    Saravelli with a piece on the potential ramifications and options if the AHL can’t start up next season when the NHL does.

    Wonder if Howson will get in to any details.

    https://www.tsn.ca/nhl-teams-watching-closely-as-ahl-develops-contingency-plans-for-next-season-1.1474950

  18. OriginalPouzar says:

    Scott Howson:

    Planning to start on October 9 – will have a schedule starting them.

    With that said, have to be flexible and will prepare models for different start dates with different amount of games played.

    19 teams (soon to be 20) owned by NHL teams and 12 independent owners. They all have different interests.

    Can’t really maintain playing without fans. No TV contract.

    Prior to COVID they were thinking of balancing the schedule but that’s really not a priority now.

    Will be a challenge but they will be ready.

    Hope, if medical/healthy authorities are on board, that there will be a season.

    —————————

    Thoughts on Oiler players:

    Lavoie: Intriguing prospect. Got an NHL ability to score goals. A one-shot scorer. Got some size. Will have to get stronger and develop more power. Will need to “round out game”. Killed penalties. Impressed with him a WJC – was not in a “scoring role” but found a way to contribute

    Niemeläinen – over the last 2-3 years he got better and better. Lanky guy that moves extremely well – will have no problem getting around the ice.

  19. N64 says:

    OriginalPouzar: Can’t really maintain playing without fans. No TV contract.

    Best of luck Scott. They might as well operate next year wherever NHL teams are as a G league/taxi squad.

  20. leadfarmer says:

    Without AHL Brogdan gafferty will have to go back to college

  21. jp says:

    leadfarmer:
    Without AHL Brogdan gafferty will have to go back to college

    I heard there’s talk of pro-rating his career. Straight to the HHOF.

  22. OriginalPouzar says:

    Interesting from Rishaug (and I imagine there is all but zero chance he’d play a game):

    Ryan Rishaug
    @TSNRyanRishaug
    ·
    13m
    Oilers would love to have Philip Broberg part of any expanded 30 man roster in a return to play scenario. Will wait to see if he’d be available and eligible if and when things are decided.
    Broberg as part of an expanded 30 man roster likely wouldn’t see game action unless they ended up with a number of blue-line injuries. But having him with the team gaining the experience would be viewed as valuable for his development.

  23. Ben says:

    It’s 2016. You know everything about JP that you know today. At what spot would you draft him?

  24. €√¥£€^$ says:

    Lundell is really interesting. He might really drop, I doubt he drops further than 15, but he could turn out to be a Barkov or a Lander, based on every opinion out there, mainly due to concerns with his skating. I look forward to seeing who takes a chance on him and what his NHL career ends up actually being.

    My favourite prospects from Finlandia are:

    1. Veeti Mientinen – he can flat out score goals. I’ve heard conflicting takes on his skating, some reports say he has slow boots, others say it is a strength. All I know is he has 149 goals in 229 games (286 pts) in his Junior career (all levels with his club teams). He is headed to St. Cloud in the Fall, so won’t be in the NHL for at least 2 more years.

    2. Roby Jarventie – Big body, big shot, a fast train. Lots of talent, but can he put it all together consistently. An intriguing package.

    3. Joel Blomquist – he could end up having the best NHL career of all Goaltending prospects in this Draft. Let’s check back in 20 years….

  25. Ribs says:

    2020 – The year Connor McDavid and the Bakersfield Condors won the Stanley Cup.

  26. jp says:

    “In 2016, the Oilers drafted Jesse Puljujarvi and handled him badly. Since then, the Oilers Finnish karma has taken a powder. Time to get back on the right track at the 2020 draft? Voi olla.”

    Just thinking about Finland and the Oilers and karma. I think it might be fair to say the karma departed long before Puljujarvi came along.

    Jari Kurri left the Oilers after the 1990 cup.
    Esa Tikkanen was traded for Doug Weight in 1993 (tough to call that bad karma).

    After that, the most notable Finnish Oilers have been Janne Niinimaa, Jussi Markkanan, Lennart Petrell, Iiro Pakarinen, Jesse Puljujarvi and Mikko Koskinen (that’s everyone over 80 GP since Tikkanen left)

    Smaller contributions from the likes of Rita, Pitkanen, Joensuu, Hartikainen, Korpikoski and Granlund (that’s everyone else who played 20 games for the Oilers).

    Here are the Draft picks since 1990. Not pretty:
    1990 122nd Keijo Sailynoja F 0GP
    1990 248th Sami Nuutinen D 0GP
    1991 254th Juha Riihijarvi F 0GP
    1992 205th Marko Tuomainen F 79GP (4 for the Oilers)
    1994 95th Jussi Tarvainen F 0GP
    1998 112th Kristian Antila G 0GP
    1999 13th Jani Rita F 66GP (36 for the Oilers)
    1999 41st Tony Salmelainen F 70GP (13 for the Oilers)
    2001 113th Jussi Markkanen G 133GP (102 for the Oilers)
    2001 248th Kari Haakana D 13GP
    2002 15th Jesse Niinimaki F 0GP
    2002 181st Mikko Luoma D 3GP
    2008 163rd Teemu Hartikainen F 52GP
    2009 101st Toni Rajala F 0GP
    2011 62nd Samu Perhonen G 0GP
    2011 182nd Frans Tuohimaa G 0GP
    2016 4th Jesse Puljujarvi F 139GP
    2016 63rd Markus Niemelainen D 0GP
    2016 153rd Aapeli Rasanen F 0GP
    2018 195th Patrik Siikanen 0GP

    I think that’s all of them. 20 picks over 30 year. 3 in the top 15. And 2 guys (Markkanen and Puljujarvi) have made it to 100GP. Granted 9 of the picks were also after #150, but that’s not good karma. Hopefully Kenny Holland can get the Oilers back on track here.

  27. jp says:

    Browsing Holland’s draft history for Finns (there aren’t a lot) and noticed/remembered the Wings 1989 draft (that was Holland’s 2nd year as scouting director).

    11th Mike Sillinger 1049GP
    32nd Bob Boughner 630GP
    53rd Nick Lidstrom 1534 GP
    74th Sergei Fedorov 1248GP
    116th Dallas Drake 1009GP
    221st Vladimir Konstantinov 446GP

    Lordy.

  28. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Interesting from Rishaug (and I imagine there is all but zero chance he’d play a game):

    Ryan Rishaug
    @TSNRyanRishaug
    ·
    13m
    Oilers would love to have Philip Broberg part of any expanded 30 man roster in a return to play scenario.Will wait to see if he’d be available and eligible if and when things are decided.
    Broberg as part of an expanded 30 man roster likely wouldn’t see game action unless they ended up with a number of blue-line injuries. But having him with the team gaining the experience would be viewed as valuable for his development.

    That’s really interesting.

    I’d also be a little surprised if it were to happen, there’s actually not many soft spots on an Oilers 30 man list. I tried to make 28-player list a few days back and came up with 30 names.

    I’m not sure who would come off to make room for someone like Broberg (you’d make room I guess, but the players listed have all played in the NHL this season save Bouchard and the 3rd G). Interesting tweet all the same.

    Athanasiou-McDavid-Kassian
    Nuge-Draisaitl-Yamamoto
    Ennis-Sheahan-Archibald
    Neal-Khaira-Chiasson
    Nygard-Haas-Russell
    Benson-Granlund

    Nurse-Bear
    Klefbom-Larsson
    Jones-Green
    Russell-Benning
    Lagesson-Bouchard

    Koskinen-Smith
    Skinner

  29. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    Lowetide,

    Interesting, thanks. Quite likely that I have see-him-good-itis from his play in the spring of last year with Team Canada. While I was mostly tuning in to scout players like Dach and Krebs, Newhook and Drysdale consistently drew my attention. I was wowed by Jamie’s mobility, and his IQ that often turned defensive possession into an offensive sortie. He looked good in elite company, while being younger than most of his peers.

  30. jtblack says:

    Ben:
    It’s 2016. You know everything about JP that you know today. At what spot would you draft him?

    probably around 15th – 20th ..

    Matthews
    laine
    Tkachuk
    debrincat
    keller
    sergachev
    PLD
    bratt
    McAvoy
    girard
    fabbro
    chycrun
    jost
    kunin
    fox

    to name some of the best from that draft

  31. John Chambers says:

    Ryan Johansen is disappointed with his performance this past season. Hopefully Ryan Kesler finds a way to troll him on Twitter over it.

    I didn’t realize that Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has exactly ONE more point over his NHL career than Johansen, in 56 fewer games. RNH has outscored the other Ryan by 25 goals as well.

    Johansen has a size advantage for sure, and has been line-matched against the other teams’ best, but given how hockey circles seemed to laud RyJo and criticize RNH over the past several years, I find it interesting that 93 has provided superior offensive production, even while carrying linemates like Lucic, Puljujarvi, and the likes of Chiasson and Khaira.

  32. Munny says:

    jp,

    Especially when you consider Konstantinov likely would have at least doubled his GP number.

  33. jp says:

    Ben:
    It’s 2016. You know everything about JP that you know today. At what spot would you draft him?

    jtblack: probably around 15th – 20th ..

    Looking just now. I counted 13 players that were clearly ahead of Puljujarvi. And a rather large group that could be considered in the same ball park.

    He’s 17th in actual scoring from 2016. And Carter Hart. I’d guess something in the 20s.

  34. jp says:

    Munny,

    Yup, that was a tough one.

  35. jp says:

    John Chambers:
    Ryan Johansen is disappointed with his performance this past season. Hopefully Ryan Kesler finds a way to troll him on Twitter over it.

    I didn’t realize that Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has exactly ONE more point over his NHL career than Johansen, in 56 fewer games. RNH has outscored the other Ryan by 25 goals as well.

    Johansen has a size advantage for sure, and has been line-matched against the other teams’ best, but given how hockey circles seemed to laud RyJo and criticize RNH over the past several years, I find it interesting that 93 has provided superior offensive production, even while carrying linemates like Lucic, Puljujarvi, and the likes of Chiasson and Khaira.

    It almost seems unfair. Or biased.

    To be more fair to the RNH critics though, Johansen had some good years early (33G/63PTS in 13-14 and 26G/74PTS in 14-15) while RNH hadn’t cracked 60 yet (50 according to some). Johansen hasn’t scored 20G since while RNH has had his best 2 years in the last 2 (his first 2 times scoring 60PTS). Easy to see how the ‘edge Johansen’ idea got rolling.

    It’s definitely overblown at this point though.

  36. GordieHoweHatTrick says:

    jp:
    Browsing Holland’s draft history for Finns (there aren’t a lot) and noticed/remembered the Wings 1989 draft (that was Holland’s 2nd year as scouting director).

    11th Mike Sillinger 1049GP
    32nd Bob Boughner 630GP
    53rd Nick Lidstrom 1534 GP
    74th Sergei Fedorov 1248GP
    116th Dallas Drake 1009GP
    221st Vladimir Konstantinov 446GP

    Lordy.

    That may very well be one of the best draft years for any team in NHL history. Close to 6000 GP.

  37. leadfarmer says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Interesting from Rishaug (and I imagine there is all but zero chance he’d play a game):

    Ryan Rishaug
    @TSNRyanRishaug
    ·
    13m
    Oilers would love to have Philip Broberg part of any expanded 30 man roster in a return to play scenario.Will wait to see if he’d be available and eligible if and when things are decided.
    Broberg as part of an expanded 30 man roster likely wouldn’t see game action unless they ended up with a number of blue-line injuries. But having him with the team gaining the experience would be viewed as valuable for his development.

    But why?
    Why wouldnt you just leave him at home for another year.

    Also if you are a prospect in AHL this gives you the opportunity of playing in Europe without worrying that you will piss off your team

  38. Munny says:

    leadfarmer,

    This is just for the summer holidays, so to speak. Not next season.

    (or at least that’s my understanding)

  39. Harpers Hair says:

    The Portland Winterhawks have declared bankruptcy.

    I expect more than a few other junior hockey teams to follow.

  40. OriginalPouzar says:

    jp:
    Puljujarvi’s path so far smarts for sure but Finland has been more than kind to the Oilers on the whole.

    Current Oilers (in the system) from Finland.

    Mikko Koskinen. G. Turns 32 July 18th.
    Seems like he may be legitimate starter quality. Quietly posted .917 SV% this season, 12th among 45 goalies with 30+ appearances (6th if you look at 35+ appearances). Solid.

    Markus Granlund. LW/C. Turned 27 in April.
    Seemingly slipping out of the league, though his SF% and GF% with the Oilers was A-OK. Does he get to be part of the Oilers taxi squad this summer? Can’t imagine him returning to the Oilers next season.

    Jesse Puljujarvi. RW. Turned 22 last week.
    4th in Liiga scoring. 3rd in +/-. Does he give the Oilers another chance? What kind of NHLer will he end up being (if one at all)?

    Markus Niemelainen. D. Turns 22 in June.
    Promising 6’6″ draft pick who’s offense evaporated (27 points his draft year, 9 in draft +1, 15 in 3 yrs since his return to Liiga). Took a step in Liiga this year and is headed to Bakersfield once next season starts. Long shot for the NHL but who knows.

    Aapeli Rasanen. C/W. Turns 22 in June.
    2-way rep. Strong performances for Finland internationally. Underwhelming offense in the USHL/NCAA (IMO). Headed to Liiga rather than Sr. year in college. A Lander type career would be a success I’d think.

    Patrik Siikanen. LW/C. Turned 20 in April.
    Speed, but I don’t see skill in his boxcars. Failed to make team Finland for the Jrs this year. 28-0-2-2 this season in his first step into Liiga.

    Still a decent Finnish representation, and Koskinen has been a better goalie than many give credit for. Maybe Jesse or someone else contributes to the Oilers going forward.

    Man, .917 – that does look good. If he can keep that up over 50 games started per season (and do it somewhat consistently like he did this year, that would be great for a few more years).

    100% Granlund will be on an expanded roster for the rest of this year, can’t imagine he wouldn’t be. Oh, he be gone. I think he’s already agreed to a contract in the KHL (obviously can’t be official until his NHL deal expires – date uncertain).

    Niemelainen – his lack of puck skill likely make him a pretty big long shot to ever be an NHL regular but you never know – big guys that can skate well and have shown marked year over year improvement (as per Howson)……

    Rasanen – similar thoughts as he’s a long shot to ever be an NHL regular but, if he can develop those skills that made him so useful for Finland, you never know – all tools guy.

  41. OriginalPouzar says:

    Bruce McCurdy: zero point zero zero percent chance that the timing of JP’s demotion was an accident. The situation was a virtual repeat of L’Affaire Draisaitl two years before, with the important distinction that Leon was sent out the afternoon of Game 40, Yesse the morning after.Occam’s Razor tells us it was a (verbal) commitment made by Chiarelli to JP’s camp in convincing him to sign an NHL deal that season.

    I believe you were among those saying he’d be better off left in Finland, & that seems pretty obvious in retrospect. All the hype about the Big Three (Matthews, Laine, Puljujarvi) all being NHL-ready became gospel but there turned out to be solid reasons that JP slid to a consensus #3 of the 3, & in fact fell one spot further at the actual draft.

    One of the many Big Mistakes of the Chiarelli era.

    Yup, we agree it seems.

    With that said, I think coming over could have worked out much better if they simply would have started him and left him in California for his rookie season and a solid part of his draft plus 2 season.

    I mean, 28 points in 39 games in the AHL as an 18 year old……. that’s spectacular

  42. OriginalPouzar says:

    jtblack: probably around 15th – 20th ..

    Matthews
    laine
    Tkachuk
    debrincat
    keller
    sergachev
    PLD
    bratt
    McAvoy
    girard
    fabbro
    chycrun
    jost
    kunin
    fox

    to name some of the best from that draft

    Where would JP be on that list if he played his draft plus 1 year in Europe and started his draft plus 2 year in the AHL?

    Or even if he played his draft plus 1 year full in the AHL and started his draft plus 2 year there?

    I know I said it a few minutes ago but 28 points in 39 games as an 18 year old in the AHL…..

  43. OriginalPouzar says:

    leadfarmer: But why?
    Why wouldnt you just leave him at home for another year.

    Also if you are a prospect in AHL this gives you the opportunity of playing in Europe without worrying that you will piss off your team

    This doesn’t alter the “plan” for 2020/21 which is for him to stay in Skellfeta for another year.

    This is simply to be with the Oilers, on an expanded roster, for the remainder of the season and playoffs, if they are played.

    Its just to gain experience, familiarity, practice time (presumably), etc.

    There is essentially zero chance that he’d play a game.

    He’d still be heading back to the SHL for his draft plus 2.

  44. pts2pndr says:

    N64: Best of luck Scott. They might as well operate next year wherever NHL teams are as a G league/taxi squad.

    Those that don’t learn from history are bound to repeat it! If you recall what happened during the strike and it leaving Edmonton without an AHL franchise for a number of years. The sharing of the Bulldogs with Montreal was in my opinion an epic fail fo Edmonton’s drafted player’s development. The current situation in California seems almost ideal. Less travel and fewer games played allows the coaches more time for practice and skill development.

  45. Harpers Hair says:

    pts2pndr: Those that don’t learn from history are bound to repeat it! If you recall what happened during the strike and it leaving Edmonton without an AHL franchise for a number of years. The sharing of the Bulldogs with Montreal was in my opinion an epic fail fo Edmonton’s drafted player’s development. The current situation in California seems almost ideal. Less travel and fewer games played allows the coaches more time for practice and skill development.

    California has one of the strictest lockdowns in the country.

    Today, the state college system announced there will only be online classes until 2021.

  46. pts2pndr says:

    Harpers Hair: California has one of the strictest lockdowns in the country.

    Today, the state college system announced there will only be online classes until 2021.

    That is only 7 months away and may be the closest to what may transpire. The west coast league may because of limited states involved be one of the first AHL leagues to resume. It would be interesting to know what penalties if any would result if the Oilers move the team. The number one concern should be for the players safety.

  47. Harpers Hair says:

    pts2pndr: That is only 7 months away and may be the closest to what may transpire. The west coast league may because of limited states involved be one of the first AHL leagues to resume. It would be interesting to know what penalties if any would result if the Oilers move the team. The number one concern should be for the players safety.

    I’m thinking it’s possible you will see Bakersfield, Stockton and Utica move home to Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver and play in a division with Manitoba and possibly Toronto, Belleville and Laval.

    There will be fallout in the US but it’s difficult to say where although the Hurricanes severed ties with the Charlotte Checkers already this week.

    I also wonder if TSN would become a broadcast partner for the “Canadian Division” since they won’t have the CFL to broadcast for at least a year and maybe never.

  48. Munny says:

    Harpers Hair,

    I wonder if they would do better showing CHL games or AHL.

  49. Harpers Hair says:

    Munny:
    Harpers Hair,

    I wonder if they would do better showing CHL games or AHL.

    The problem that I see with broadcasting CHL games is that they are too local.

    Can’t imagine someone in Vancouver tuning in to see a game between Saskatoon and Regina.

    Also, I think there will be a huge cull of CHL teams in the near future. Most are mom and pop operations who won’t survive without fans in the seats.

  50. OriginalPouzar says:

    LeBrun with an interview with Daly after the Return to Play Committee met today.

    https://theathletic.com/1810693/2020/05/12/lebrun-bill-daly-provides-update-on-nhls-progress-toward-resuming-season/?source=twittered

    Nothing really all that informative said but there seems to be positive momentum.

    Hope is for phase 2 to start sometime in the next month.

    Nothing is cemented as far as format but LeBrun thinks that the 24-team playoff is the front-runner right now – he spoke with one league exec for a bottom feeding team who made it sound like his team likely wouldn’t be coming back.

    Early draft is still on the table but there is some time given actual play won’t be for a while still – they are discussing with teams. Should have something official later this week or next.

  51. Suntory Hanzo says:

    I think what bothered me the most about all the talk about Pulju’s development is how much focus people were putting on how the Oilers should have supplied him with more English tutors/classes and such.

    1)It’s not like English training is difficult to find in European schools.

    2) At how young of an age was he designated as a quality player that might likely make it to an elite league that would require English?

    3) How much was he being paid that he couldn’t have thrown some student $20 an hour to help him out. Let alone a personal teacher if needed.

    Yes, he could have assistance, but him being drafted to (Surprise) an English speaking nation was a shock to about zero people.

    That portion of the argument I lay solely on him. He came unprepared. Like not being able to do a chin up at a combine. But this was worse and had huge implications.

  52. Harpers Hair says:

    Arizona prepared to host games without fans in the stands next week.

    https://m.washingtontimes.com/news/2020/may/12/doug-ducey-arizona-governor-pro-sports-can-resume-/

  53. Munny says:

    Say what you want about Donuts Koharski and his alleged hate-on for the Oilers, but he gave us two 5-on-3s in the first period of this here Game 2 of the 88 Finals.

    Lookin at you, McCurdy! lol

  54. JimmyV1965 says:

    John Chambers:
    Ryan Johansen is disappointed with his performance this past season. Hopefully Ryan Kesler finds a way to troll him on Twitter over it.

    I didn’t realize that Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has exactly ONE more point over his NHL career than Johansen, in 56 fewer games. RNH has outscored the other Ryan by 25 goals as well.

    Johansen has a size advantage for sure, and has been line-matched against the other teams’ best, but given how hockey circles seemed to laud RyJo and criticize RNH over the past several years, I find it interesting that 93 has provided superior offensive production, even while carrying linemates like Lucic, Puljujarvi, and the likes of Chiasson and Khaira.

    Funny how things turn out. The Preds would have been better off trading for RNH, if only for his PP skills. Their PP has been mediocre at best over the last few years. Would be interesting to see how other hockey fans view the two players.

  55. innercitysmytty says:

    Harpers Hair,

    So no different than all their other games.

  56. innercitysmytty says:

    Munny,

    And another in the second period!

  57. OriginalPouzar says:

    Munny:
    Say what you want about Donuts Koharski and his alleged hate-on for the Oilers, but he gave us two 5-on-3s in the first period of this here Game 2 of the 88 Finals.

    Lookin at you, McCurdy!lol

    Wife and i watched about 10-15 minutes (real time, not game time) and, my goodness, that team couldn’t make a pass. Gretz, Messier, Anderson, Kurri, Smith on a terrible PP.

    Messier was awful in the few minutes we watched, awful.

  58. JimmyV1965 says:

    Suntory Hanzo:
    I think what bothered me the most about all the talk about Pulju’s development is how much focus people were putting on how the Oilers should have supplied him with more English tutors/classes and such.

    1)It’s not like English training is difficult to find in European schools.

    2) At how young of an age was he designated as a quality player that might likely make it to an elite league that would require English?

    3) How much was he being paid that he couldn’t have thrown some student $20 an hour to help him out. Let alone a personal teacher if needed.

    Yes, he could have assistance, but him being drafted to (Surprise) an English speaking nation was a shock to about zero people.

    That portion of the argument I lay solely on him.He came unprepared. Like not being able to do a chin up at a combine.But this was worse and had huge implications.

    Some people have a more difficult time learning languages than others. It may have also been something that he simply dreaded doing. I’ve never liked the idea though that the Oilers were somehow responsible for his failure to learn English.

  59. pts2pndr says:

    Harpers Hair: I’m thinking it’s possible you will see Bakersfield, Stockton and Utica move home to Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver and play in a division with Manitoba and possibly Toronto, Belleville and Laval.

    There will be fallout in the US but it’s difficult to say where although the Hurricanes severed ties with the Charlotte Checkers already this week.

    I also wonder if TSN would become a broadcast partner for the “Canadian Division” since they won’t have the CFL to broadcast for at least a year and maybe never.

    I think your idea has merit. I am not sure that moving forward that it might do irreparable damage to major junior hockey

  60. Harpers Hair says:

    innercitysmytty:
    Harpers Hair,

    So no different than all their other games.

    The Cardinals and Diamondbacks do just fine.

  61. Harpers Hair says:

    pts2pndr: I think your idea has merit. I am not sure that moving forward that it might do irreparable damage to major junior hockey

    Some junior hockey teams like Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, Montreal are owned by NHL teams and should be okay.

    I worry about teams like Swift Current, Brandon etc.

  62. Munny says:

    innercitysmytty:
    Munny,

    And another in the second period!

    I know! You’d think after we’d scored on the first two (five straight including the DET series), they woulda stopped that shit.

    But the bastards from Beantown killed the 3rd one.

  63. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    Suntory Hanzo,

    JimmyV1965,

    This is an angle that’s mentioned in MSM reporting or on the periphery of the Oilogosphere.

    Some things that I’ve also read include teammates saying that he could “order pizza just fine” or that it’s not uncommon for coaching staffs in Finland and Sweden to speak English on the benches during games. The implication that he understood the language fine even if he wasn’t fully comfortable speaking. Which is understandable. A teenager speaking to the media is one thing, and to his coworkers is another.

    I’ve further read that the team didn’t really provide him with a teacher in the first year, just an informal tutor of sorts and only in the second year onward did they employ a teacher.

    So I don’t know what to make of it other than it’s probably in actuality less of a significant factor than many assume.

    What I ascribe more importance on is reports that TMac would spend hours in one on one sessions with JP on ice and with video explaining what was expected, only to have him do it once or twice then revert back to what he’d always done beforehand. One year of experience, three years running.

    I hope that his stint away stokes his competitive spirit and brings him back with fire in his belly ready to prove his doubters wrong, and more importantly… himself correct. I believe he can play, and even be an impact player. But he needs to put those million dollar tools into a similar quality toolbox instead of the dollar store version he’s been relying on up to now.

  64. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    It could prove invaluable to have Broberg join the taxi squad in order to gain experience of being an NHL pro and also build personal and professional relationships.

    On the other hand, who comes out of the roster so he can join the team while never expecting to play a game? Is it Lagesson or Bouchard? Both of whom have played NHL games. What about Samorukov, who’s actually got a season of AHL play under his belt? What kind of signal does that send to the guys who’ve put in time and paid their dues learning the Oilers team systems?

    Certainly, Broberg is the 1B defensive prospect in the system. But is him joining the taxi squad worth the risk of alienating the rest of the prospects who’ve come before him and had success on their own merits?

  65. Harpers Hair says:

    BornInAGretzkyJersey:
    OriginalPouzar,

    It could prove invaluable to have Broberg join the taxi squad in order to gain experience of being an NHL pro and also build personal and professional relationships.

    On the other hand, who comes out of the roster so he can join the team while never expecting to play a game?Is it Lagesson or Bouchard?Both of whom have played NHL games.What about Samorukov, who’s actually got a season of AHL play under his belt?What kind of signal does that send to the guys who’ve put in time and paid their dues learning the Oilers team systems?

    Certainly, Broberg is the 1B defensive prospect in the system.But is him joining the taxi squad worth the risk of alienating the rest of the prospects who’ve come before him and had success on their own merits?

    Much more likely the Swedish League starts before the NHL given Sweden’s approach to Covid.

  66. ArmchairGM says:

    BornInAGretzkyJersey: On the other hand, who comes out of the roster so he can join the team while never expecting to play a game? Is it Lagesson or Bouchard? Both of whom have played NHL games. What about Samorukov, who’s actually got a season of AHL play under his belt? What kind of signal does that send to the guys who’ve put in time and paid their dues learning the Oilers team systems?

    Why does it have to be a defenseman? With a 30-man roster there’d be room for some flexibility, don’t you think?

  67. jp says:

    BornInAGretzkyJersey,

    ArmchairGM: Why does it have to be a defenseman? With a 30-man roster there’d be room for some flexibility, don’t you think?

    I attempted a 30-player roster above. It doesn’t have to be a D but it would need to be someone like Benson, Granlund, Lagesson or Bouchard. There isn’t room for Samorukov even without Broberg.

  68. OriginalPouzar says:

    BornInAGretzkyJersey:
    OriginalPouzar,

    It could prove invaluable to have Broberg join the taxi squad in order to gain experience of being an NHL pro and also build personal and professional relationships.

    On the other hand, who comes out of the roster so he can join the team while never expecting to play a game?Is it Lagesson or Bouchard?Both of whom have played NHL games.What about Samorukov, who’s actually got a season of AHL play under his belt?What kind of signal does that send to the guys who’ve put in time and paid their dues learning the Oilers team systems?

    Certainly, Broberg is the 1B defensive prospect in the system.But is him joining the taxi squad worth the risk of alienating the rest of the prospects who’ve come before him and had success on their own merits?

    I don’t know the answer to that question but Samorukov is essentially not an option for NHL games just like Broberg isn’t.

    I wouldn’t think Bouchard would play any NHL games (although he would be a real option if injuries did pile up – he’s NHL ready or damn close thereto).

    At this point, I would hope they would not get Bouch 10 games (reg plus playoffs) to burn that first year of his ELC.

  69. OriginalPouzar says:

    Harpers Hair: Much more likely the Swedish League starts before the NHL given Sweden’s approach to Covid.

    I’m not sure that’s necessarily true.

    I could be wrong but I believe the SHL has officially cancelled this season so they aren’t starting up until the fall. Resumption of the current NHL season could be late summer/early fall.

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