The Oilers have an actual talent pipeline now, the Bakersfield Condors are sending good men north in the fall to help with the puck harvest. In order to keep that going, more hires are required every year. Did the Oilers graduate enough men this year?
I’m proud to be writing for The Athletic, and pleased to be part of a great team with Daniel Nugent-Bowman and Jonathan Willis. Here is our recent work.
- New Lowetide: As Oilers exit the system, the situation is fluid
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: What’s in a name? For NHL players, deciding on pronunciation can be a challenge
- Lowetide: Reconsidering Oilers’ offseason in light of Oscar Klefbom injury news
- Jonathan Willis: Buyer beware: Trade partners for Oliver Ekman-Larsson have to hope he ages well
- Lowetide: Ken Holland’s work week: Get good players, keep good players
- Lowetide: Who will be available if the Oilers pick at No. 14?
- Lowetide: Oilers’ defence prospects are pushing, and changes are coming
- Lowetide: A reasonable trade price for the Oilers to pay in pursuit of OEL
- Jonathan Willis: Could it make sense for the Oilers to trade Oscar Klefbom?
- Lowetide: Why Oilers’ Leon Draisaitl won the Hart Trophy and Ted Lindsay Award
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Breaking down my ballot for the 2019-20 NHL awards
- Lowetide: Rising talent, acquiring picks key to Oilers’ success at draft
- Lowetide: European leagues are open, and Oilers prospects are everywhere
- Lowetide: Ken Holland and Dave Tippett’s past players: Can any help the Oilers?
- Lowetide: Roster projections for Oilers, including trade and free agent targets
- Jonathan Willis: Why the Oilers should buy out James Neal
- Lowetide: Oilers approach 2020 draft with increased depth in important positions
- Lowetide: Stock Watch: Hot starts and safe landings for Oilers prospects
- Jonathan Willis: There are no good shortcuts for the Oilers with Jesse Puljujarvi
- Lowetide: Potential trades and partners for the Oilers’ offseason
- Lowetide: The Oilers could find a world-class agitator in the draft
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Should the Oilers select goalie Yaroslav Askarov 14th at the NHL Draft?
- Lowetide: A bold draft strategy for the Oilers in 2020
- Jonathan Willis: Oilers third-line centre search should include other teams’ cap casualties
- Lowetide: Dealing a defenceman? Taking stock of Oilers’ blueline assets
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Q&A: Oilers GM Ken Holland on improving internally, the flat cap and goaltending
- Jonathan Willis: Can the Oilers find value picks among the 2020 NHL Draft’s impressive Russians?
- Lowetide: 10 free agent targets for the Oilers this offseason
- Lowetide: What if the Oilers went scorched earth in front of 2020 free agency?
- Lowetide: Oilers Top 20 Prospects, Summer 2020
- Jonathan Willis: Unqualified RFAs could be top offseason targets for the Oilers
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Who stays? Who goes? The most likely players to stay with and l
BAKERSFIELD ROOKIES 2017-18 (4)
This was Gerry Fleming’s last season, the rookie defensemen were Ethan Bear (37 games, 6-12-18), Caleb Jones (58 games, 2-15-17) and Ryan Mantha (41 games, 3-7-10). And we’ve been down this road together, and know that when three men arrive in pro hockey together, chances are one makes it. In Edmonton’s case, looks like two. The only forward of note in 2017-18 was college man Joe Gambardella (50 games, 13-6-19), who was 23.
BAKERSFIELD ROOKIES 2018-19 (6)
This was a good season for new forwards in pro, Jay Woodcroft and Dave Manson and J-F Houle coaching the team. LW Tyler Benson (68, 15-51-66) had a terrific rookie season, RC Cooper Marody (58, 19-45-64) drove results on the line Benson flourished in 2018-19. W Cameron Hebig (64, 11-18-29) started the campaign like a house on fire but hasn’t scored much since. RW Kailer Yamamoto (27, 10-8-18) was a buzzsaw in the AHL but had some injury issues. RC Tyler Vesel (61, 5-13-18) was a college player arrived in Bakersfield and landed a support role on a (mostly) checking line. G Shane Starrett (42, 2.33 .918) had an outstanding debut.
BAKERSFIELD ROOKIES 2019-20 (5)
RD Evan Bouchard (54 games, 7-29-36) delivered solid offense and improved markedly on the defensive side. He could be a Calder candidate if the Oilers play him. LD Dmitri Samorukov (47 games, 2-8-10) struggled as a rookie pro but survived and has two entry seasons to go in development. LC Ryan McLeod (56 games, 5-18-23) impressed with his foot speed and two-way acumen. RW Kirill Maksimov (53 games, 5-8-13) brought an unusual skill set (great shot, power play) to a difficult season but he has first-shot scorer talent. G Stuart Skinner (41 games, 3.31 .892) played a larger role than expected and struggled. The organization remains convinced of his future.
BAKERSFIELD CONDORS 2020-21 (3)
RC Raphael Lavoie would be the feature player up front, he would be expected to emerge at some point in the year as a top-six forward. LD Philip Broberg would be a story as well, although the possibility that he’d be in the SHL no matter makes this an unlikely scenario. G Olivier Rodrigue might spend some time in the ECHL.
DRAFT 2020 IMMEDIATE HELP
One thing the Oilers might do this week is draft players who are 20, who could be fast tracked. There are many.
LW Pavel Gogolev (OHL) 63, 45-51-96. Red Line loves him, says all he does is score goals.
RW Yegor Sokolov (QMJHL) 52, 46-46-92. Big, not a great skater but he can score goals like ringing a bell.
LW Maxim Golod (OHL) 63, 25-53-78. Spiked offensively, he’s a good skater.
LD Peetro Seppälä (Liiga) 41, 2-10-12. He was a regular in the Liiga a year ago and is back with KooKoo again this season. Has size and some skill, easy to get lost in the flood of Finnish blue.
LD Adam Wilsby (Allsvenskan) 41, 3-27-30. He is a fine skater and showed real growth a year ago in the Allsvenskan. He fits the speed/passing/retrieval definition of a modern defenseman.
RW Linus Öberg (SHL) 37, 4-4-8. Good size, great shot, not a great skater.
RD Axel Rindell (Liiga) 47, 6-16-22. He’s a good skater, shoots from anywhere and has played wing.
Ken Holland will speak to the media at 11 this morning, we’ll carry the avail. He will no doubt have news on the RFA’s who are being qualified (Ethan Bear for sure) and perhaps give us an overview of his draft and free agency thoughts. It would be fab if he had a trade to talk about, but Holland has the patience of Job in these matters and no press conference will dictate his timeline.
LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE
At 10 this morning we kick-start a massive week of activity. Dom Cosentino from The Score will talk Week 4 NFL (and what a weekend it was!) and the Covid-19 concerns that could become a crisis. Guy Flaming from The Pipeline Show will pop in at 10:40 to talk about the 2020 NHL draft, best interviews among draft eligibles and who he impressed him at Rogers while watching last year. Ken Holland’s avail will be followed immediately by Jason Gregor and a review of what the general manager passed along. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!