by Lowetide

For a long time, Russia was a no fly zone for Edmonton Oilers scouts, and despite recent promise, it is still badly represented compared to value available.

Between 1979 and 1999, Edmonton drafted 7 men, the best being Anatoli Semenov (1989, 362 NHL games).

In the first decade of the 2000’s, the Oilers picked five men including Alexei Mikhnov (2000, two games) who was chosen in the first round, a breakthrough of sorts for Edmonton. It would have been a better story if the big man had succeeded.

Between 2010 and 2019, five more. Nail Yakupov (2012, 350 NHL games) is often counted but he was an OHL player at the time of his draft. Craig MacTavish used two fairly early picks on Russians in 2013, delivering Bodgan Yakimov (one NHL game) and Anton Slepyshev (102 NHL games). The others (Ziyat Paigin, Ilya Konovalov and Maxim Denezhkin) are still active players and a couple of them are still under Edmonton’s control.

In the two drafts since Ken Holland arrived, there have been three men (Konovalov, Denezhkin and Maxim Berezhkin) drafted by Edmonton. That’s 18 Russians from Russia in 40 years, three since Holland arrived. Maybe things are looking up!


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.


  1. LD Daniil Chayka, CSKA Moscow. Two-way defender with size. Intriguing.
  2. RW Nikita Chibrikov, St. Petersburg. Small skill winger can stickhandle in a phone booth.
  3. LW Fyodor Svechkov, Lada Tagliatti. Smart two-way winger who can push the river.
  4. LW Alexander Kisakov, Moscow Dynamo. Just 5.10, 141, terrific skill.
  5. G Alekesi Kolosov, Minsk. KHL goalie, .911 SP and still a teenager.
  6. RW Prokhor Poltapov, Moscow. Skilled winger plays NA style. 25 goals in 61 games.
  7. LD Artyom Grushnikov, Moscow. Big shutdown blue, mobile, great passer.
  8. LW Matvei Petrov, Moscow. Big winger (6.02, 178) can score, great shot.
  9. LD Vladislav Lukashevich, Yaroslavl. Another shutdown blue, he’s a good skater, good shot.
  10. LW Nikita Buruyanov, St. Petersburg. Small winger, terrific speed and aggressive play.


  1. RW Dylan Guenther, Edmonton Oil Kings. (U18)
  2. LW William Eklund, Djurgardens.
  3. LC Mason McTavish Peterborough Petes. (U18)
  4. RD Brandt Clarke Barrie Colts. (U18)
  5. LW Matthew Beniers, Michigan Wolverines.
  6. LW Kent Johnson, Michigan Wolverines
  7. LD Owen Power, Michigan Wolverines.
  8. LD Simon Edvinsson, Vasteras IK (U18)
  9. LC Zachary Bolduc, Rimouski Oceanic.
  10. LD Luke Hughes, U.S. National Development Team
  11. LW Zachary L’Heureux, Halifax Mooseheads
  12. RC Xavier Bourgault, Shawinigan Cataractes
  13. LC Francesco Pinelli, Kitchener Rangers (U18)
  14. RW Chaz Lucius, U.S. National Development Team (U18)
  15. RC Logan Stankoven, Kamloops Blazers
  16. G Sebastian Cossa, Edmonton Oil Kings.
  17. G Jesper Wallstedt, Lulea.
  18. RW Nikita Chibrikov, St. Petersburg (U18)
  19. LW Eric Alarie, Moose Jaw Warriors
  20. LW Matt Coronato, Chicago Steel
  21. RW Fabian Lysell, Lulea. (U18)
  22. RW Oliver Nadeau, Shawinigan Cataractes
  23. LD Daniil Chayka, CSKA Moscow
  24. LW Brennan Othmann, Flint Firebirds (U18)
  25. LW Fedor Svechkov, Ladia Togliatti. (U18)
  26. LC Aatu Raty, Karpat
  27. RC Ryder Korczak, Moose Jaw Warriors
  28. LC Brett Harrison, Oshawa Generals (U18)
  29. LW Oskar Olausson, HV 71. 
  30. LW Ayrton Martino, Omaha Lancers
  31. LW Conner Roulette, Seattle Thunderbirds (U18)
  32. LD Carson Lambos, Winnipeg Ice
  33. RW Chase Stillman, Sudbury Wolves (U18)
  34. RW Isak Rosen, Leksands. (U18)
  35. LD Olen Zellweger, Everett Silvertips (U18)
  36. RW Simon Robertsson, Skelleftea. (U18)
  37. LC Cole Sillinger, Sioux Falls Stampede
  38. LD Evan Nause, Quebec Remparts
  39. RC Connor Lockhart, Erie Otters.
  40. RD Corson Ceulmans, Brooks Bandits. (U18)
  41. LW Alexander Kisakov, Moscow Dynamo
  42. LW Sasha Pastujov, USNDTP (U18)
  43. LW William Stromgren, MoDo
  44. LC Oliver Kapanen JYP (U18)
  45. LC Wyatt Johnson, Windsor Spitfires (U18)
  46. RC Justin Robidas, Val d’Or Foreurs. 
  47. G Alekesi Kolosov, Minsk.
  48. RW Samu Tuomaala, Karpat (U18)
  49. RW Prokhor Poltapov, Moscow. (U18)
  50. LD Ethan Dal Mastro, Mississauga Steelheads (U18)

I rushed through this a little to get to a list of 50 because the U18s start this week and this year the tournament should be a bonanza. About one half of my list will be at the tournament, and I’m looking forward to seeing what McTavish and others bring.

There are also a bunch of players at the tournament not on my list and it’ll be fun to see who emerges with some draft buzz. Here are three names who aren’t on my list but are worth following this week:

  • LC Dylan Duke, USNDTP. My list is heavily reliant on numbers and Duke (26 games, 10-7-17) doesn’t dominate the US National Team’s offense. Still, Scott Wheeler at The Athletic likes him as a first-round option so I’m curious.
  • LD Anton Olsson, Malmo. He plays in the SHL and is a two-way defender with more offense than his SHL numbers (39, 0-4-4) imply. I don’t have him in the top 50 but he’s close.
  • LD Stanislav Svozil, Brno. His scouting reports suggest a lock for the first round but the numbers don’t pop so this will be an opportunity to see him.


  • No. 20 overall: LW Zachary L’Heureux, Halifax Moosheads (QMJHL). It’s a strong year for the QMJHL, there’s a good chance Edmonton picks a scoring forward from the league in 2021. L’Heureux is a May 2003, scored 19 goals in 33 games. Good speed, good hands, good shot, hard to play against despite being 5.11, 196.
  • No. 116 overall: LC Andre Gasseau, USDTP (USHL). I picked him in homage to Caleb Jones, who was also an under the radar player for the US development team in his draft year. Big center (6.04, 203), a July 2003, he scored well for the development team but didn’t play much in the USHL. He’s from California.
  • No. 168 overall: LD Atte Lehikoinen, Kalpa (U20 Fin). There isn’t much on him but he’s a July 2003, has size (6.02, 176) and posts some offense. I do know he is a fine skater and can transition the puck (Dobber).
  • No. 173 overall: G Brett Brochu, London Knights (OHL). Under the radar goalie who delivered a .919 SP as a rookie last season, late this winter he spent time working out with the Pittsburgh Penguins AHL club. As the Pens owe the Oilers one for John Marino, and this is the compensatory pick, it would seem to be just to grab young Brochu.
  • No. 200 overall: RC Josh Pillar, Kamloops Blazers (WHL). Fast player, point a game this year I had him No. 107 a year ago.

Final list June 1, as always.


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5v5 PRIMARY ASSIST #2! To the moon!


Anyone else see that linesman thrust out his pelvis, pout his lips and screech: “Hey! You! Get off of McLeod!”??

Bank Shot

The knock on Debrusk from what I have heard from Bruins fans is that if he isn’t scoring, he isn’t doing anything.

Those types of players don’t ever seem to fair well in Edmonton if they are scoring 0.5 ppg or less.


Yeah I’m not interested in him at ALL


I hope (and expect) that Bouch gets a couple games down the stretch but they also have a roster/activation issue.  

I assume they are willing to use one of their two remaining non-emergency call-up spots on Bouch (Nygard was #1 and McLeod will be #2 —— Neal was emergency).

Even so, they have a roster issue – because they are carrying 3 goalies on the active roster and 8D, they only have 12 forwards.  In order to activate Bouchard they’d need to remove someone from the roster (assigned or IR) and none of the d-men will be exposed to waivers (neither Jones nor Lagesson and Rusty has a NMC so they’d need his consent). 

The team doesn’t even have the cap space to put Kass (or Khaira) on IR and activate Bouchard.

This is exactly why I thought they should have waived Koskinen a while ago when Stalock was activated. Not in the name of getting rid of Mikko but solely to be able to move him to the taxi squad for games he’s not starting (Stalock could back-up).

There is no chance Mikko would be claimed at $4.5M for next season and it would provide the required roster flexibility.


Why you think Bouchard getting games all of a sudden when he’s been riding pine this entire stretch.
We have 3 weeks to get everyone back in game form after 2 long breaks in the last two weeks.
Tippetts made his bed. He should have rotated Bouchard in all along.


If a RHD goes down in the playoffs I have my money down on Russell playing his off side


That’s an option for Tip/Playfair – one they are expressly loathed to use and I am far from convinced it would be the case.


They have 4 games in 6 days this week.

They have 4 games in 6 days next week.

Getting back in form will be accomplished prior to getting back to Edmonton from out east. Rest will be priority before the week is over and heading in to the playoffs.


Actually, I misspoke, they can have a roster of greater than 23, they currently have a 25 man roster…… technically they don’t need to remove someone from the active roster in order to activate Bouch but, due to lack of cap space, they do.

They don’t have room to activate another player – they have less than $300K of cap space.


Kassian to LTIR? Not ideal, but…


That is a possibility, if he’s going to miss “weeks”, he’s likely done for the remainder of the regular season anyways – he would just make the cut-off for allowable LTIR placement.


Lots of positive vibes around Taylor Hall and how he’s settling in great as a Bruin and re-establishing his value – 0.75P/G as a Bruin.

Nuge’s lack of production a big concern and prohiting the contract he seeks – 0.71 P/G this season as an Oiler.


So what do you think the Bruins offer Hall this off season?


I don’t have an answer to that question – it depends on his play for longer than 8 games and in the playoffs and, honestly, I don’t know enough about the Bruins cap situation off the top of my head – space and structure – to formulate an informed opinion.


I believe the concerns are with RNH’s 5v5 scoring.


Yes, exactly, the concerns are 5 on 5 scoring which is one piece of a big puzzle.

The game is more than 5 on 5 scoring.

Nuge is more than 5 on 5 scoring.


Yep OP you need to take the blinders off on this one, I have very recently and I’ve been a big RNH supporter since his start.


Nope, no blinders – not saying that Nuge is having a great offensive year or that Hall isn’t the more dynamic offensive player.

Just pointing out the fact that this great resurgence by Hall that I keep reading and hearing about has produced 0.75 P/60. Its a big spike in his pre-trade production but its not like he’s producing at Sam Bennett levels or anything.


Sure, but Taylor Hall is still the better player. Not really up for debate honestly. He’s good at 5v5 which is a pretty big piece of a big puzzle. Also the primary play driver on pretty much every line he’s been on.


Taylor Hall has not unpacked his suitcase yet and already has
5 points with Boston.

RNH has been playing with ….well, everyone knows- and has 11 points.

Taylor Hall May catch up to RNH in two weeks here.

Last edited 20 days ago by McSorley33

Maybe Hall with explode even more offensively after he unpacks that suitcase – of course, players often start out hot with a new team and then settle in a bit after that suitcase is unpacked.

Either way, seems noteworthy that this positive verbal re: Hall as a Bruin is a recovery in production to barely more than what Nuge has produced this year.

I think Hall’s linemates in Boston have been just fine.


Take Hallsy back in a heartbeat over RNH and wanted him back at deadline. He’d have made magic with say Hall Connor JP


One is playing with Craig Smith and David Krejci and on the second pp unit
The other is with the best player in hockey and on the top pp unit
So equal I guess?

But we all know Hall kicked your dog or stole your morning paper one day


No other team has CMD, but JP is a WIP. Meanwhile, Smith and Krejci are top-6 forwards. Hall isn’t hurting over there.

Hall is definitely a tier above RNH in terms of career numbers. No argument there. Now he gets to play meaningful games on a contending team, one on which he’s not the #1 (or #2, or #3?, or #4??) guy. It’ll be interesting to see if he can make a difference.


Yeah the second he joined Boston he was lost to us I believe. Now let’s just hope if we walk RNH which might be the wise decision rn unless we can sign him at say 5mil a season. Otherwise might really be better to walk him and use that money on a solid top 6 sniper that will work with Connor and Drai

Last edited 19 days ago by Oilerguy

Yeah or even Hall Drai Yamo been deadly!

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

This is a DSF level “comparison”.

Nuge plays with the league’s best 5v5 scorer and yet Nuge cannot piss a drop 5v5. That is the issue.


I’m not saying Nuge has been productive this season (and he has had excellent linemates), just noting that this resurgence of Hall is production in line with what Nuge has produced this season – all game states matter.


Of course all game states matter but so does context. If the roles were reversed (linemates, pp usage) I’d be shocked if Hall wasn’t substantially ahead.

It’s not an apples to apples comparison.


Can’t disagree with any of that.

At the same time, the dichotomy between the verbal on Hall (big resurgence, re-establishing value, fitting in so well) at 0.75 P/G vs. the verbal on Nuge (horrid production, can’t sign for term, no way he deserves a raise, etc.) at 0.71 P/G is interesting to note.

Yup, Nuge has played a lot with McDavid and can’t piss a drop. Hall couldn’t piss a drop with Eichel before he got hurt (in 150 minutes, etc) and played with Reinhart who is over 20 goals this year, etc.


This is where I don’t get it with you OP, you can be so smart with some things and be blinded by stuff I’d think you’d no better. I also take zero faith in the short sample size of Connor and Hall that season.

Last edited 19 days ago by Oilerguy

Buffalo was poo poo and I think it started with Eichle he doesn’t want to be there. He’s done with the losing don’t blame the guy. He’s there top player and when he’s checked out it spells nothing but trouble for rest of team. I don’t forsee Eichle spending much more time there. Let’s just say the sooner they trade him the sooner they can get the never ending rebuild closer to done.


Yeah he’d have been a 50-60 point player I believe on this team this year.


Completely agree!


Best ever Russian player the Oilers drafted is hands down Comrade Horcoff.




Yep that caught me too lol


My OCD lol like the 100s that couldn’t spell Gagner


Kyle Turris has a even strength GF% under 30 pkGA/60 of almost 13
i don’t think it’s a question of is McLeod better


The real question is how far down the Bakersfield depth chart you’d have to go to get these level results


Yep he is!!! No question

Scungilli Slushy

Replying to Brogan Rafferty’s Uncle Steve

Why not just play Benson?

2 years younger, same size, similar meh offense. Also free.

I am tired of the Oilers pursuing undersized players, non elite, average or worse skaters and limited 2 way players. It never works out because the above challenges severely limits players with those bios. There are a couple in the entire league. Maybe, and they may all be on the Oilers roster now.

The Oilers do not need much more skill. A better 3C, and better 1LW when Drai isn’t there.

They need normal sized good skating defensively conscious wingers that can shoot better than CHL players. Ennis and Turris were maybe once that other than size.

Really it’s only Drai. JP and Yama have a lot of potential, JP is currently scoring, but still not a ‘finisher’. Archie covers his bet in the bottom 6.

Nuge is looking over the edge of the hole Ennis and Turris fell into. I fear that the increasing speed of the game is leaving him behind. Great edges, mediocre acceleration, means he can’t create space as he once sort of did.

It also means he’s becoming weaker on the boards, he used to have enough craft to get by. Haven’t seen enough in a while. It’s really why his 5v5 has always been weak. Not strong in his body, lacking an explosive first step, no shot.

Barring that nice run last season, but it’s blocker side muffins again. Last one was almost saved. By the way his stick is too short to have a good shot with his strength. Probably why he sucks at face offs as well.

I don’t dislike Nuge, but really is that not what he is? A PP witch on a team that doesn’t need that help, and average at best at anything else?

Playmaking wingers, especially non physical and smaller without a first step – covered. Shooters with wheels and a two way game – one. When he plays wing.


Optimistically, if the Oilers win the next handful of games and cement their playoff position in 2nd to 3rd do we see Tippett rest McDavid, Draisaitl, Nurse etc through those unnecessary Canucks games? It’s common in other major sports (basketball in particular, they’ve rules about it now). I’d like to see it. Our schedule near years end is worryingly dense.


I don’t think we’ll see any of them held out of any of the games (maybe the last game of the season) but I could see their minutes drastically cut and the coaches rolling lines and pairings no matter how the game is going.


Given our long break with very few games we only have 3 weeks to get the guys in a rhythm again


Taylor Hall looking fantastic in Boston!! What a surprise

Victoria Oil

Boston is no longer a one line team as Hall has given them a legit second line. Krejci has started picking up points since Hall joined. Steal of a trade.

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

I am happy for Hall. I hope the Bruins go deep.

I do not watch a lot of the Bruins, do you think DeBrusk would be a good fit/good value for the Oilers?


I am much happier for Sam Bennett than I am for Taylor Hall.

I feel great job as a result of Bennett’s post-trade success.


And we’re all shocked


So how much do you think Boston is willing to pay for a very good 30 year old 2nd line LW with a significant injury history? 😉

I doubt they would go over what Marchand is making.

Last edited 20 days ago by defmn
Scungilli Slushy

Why not just play Benson?

2 years younger, same size, similar meh offense. Also free.


DeBrusk has 3 years of reasonable offensive numbers on his NHL resume.

Benson has yet to prove he can do that.

I understand the concern over his current season but as OP says, if he comes at not too high a cost I would take that chance. Is Kassian a Bruins kind of player? 😉

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

I agree, the Oilers ought to call up Benson.

I was simply asking LT what he thought of the player as he mentioned Debrusk as an option. I do not know the player.


DeBrusk would be a solid “buy low” target, acquisition cost wise, and I would love to add him to the stable of talented young forwards.

The issue would Louie’s kid is his contract as, after next season, he’ll require a $4.85M qualifying offer or become a UFA.

There is absolutely a chance, with a full season as an Oiler, he could re-establish his value and be worth that – if that happened it would be a fantastic transaction and boon for the team.

Of course, there is no recent indication that he will re-establish value in that area – he could be it would be a massive risk.


Not with Debrusk’s contract. It would be a one and done considering what his qualifying offer would be. The Oilers wasted real assets on a similar contract with Athanasiou.

If Boston gives him for nothing as a cap dump, sure.

Plus, if you can’t be effective in Boston, playing with a good right shot centre, where exactly are you going to be effective.

Scungilli Slushy

If we have to have a small LW might as well keep Nuge is another thought, for 1.5 or whatever the diff would be.

Turning Tikkanese

I want us to draft Riley Kidney, Cameron Whynot and Conner Roulette… just for giggles.

Kind of like like when I wanted us to draft Nando Eggenberger because I was feeling hungry at the time and his name sounded like a future McDonalds breakfast special. Note to self – don’t draft on an a]empty stomach…

God I love funny hockey names!


Great names! I have time for Logan Stankoven too


Really excited to see McLeod play…..I was very vocal here he was already better than Turris.

Again, there is going to be a learning curve here in the NHL so we have to be patient.

He needs at bats here and has earned them.

Sets the table for next year.

McLeod, plus maybe Holloway + 2 *quality* free agent forwards.

If you squint, you can see the balance photo in the distance.

Last edited 20 days ago by McSorley33

There is one thing I can guarantee from watching all the Condors and Oilers games, McLeod will be faster than Turris.

I anticipate he’ll be “better” in the defensive zone, positionally and recognition-wise, but really, I need to see that at the NHL level.

The Benson/McLeod/Marody line was so dominant, shift to shift, they barely spent any time in the defensive zone – I don’t really know how he is defensively at 5 on 5 as a center.


RNH is a career .73 Pts/GP player. This season, he’s at .71 Pts/GP.

He’s a career 1.70 5v5 P60 player. This season, he’s at 1.14 5v5 P60.

Overall, RNH’s scoring is what it’s been throughout his career. The points are just landing in different places this season.

He’s tallied 11 5v5 points so far. Low. Yet, for him to be at his career mark, he’d have to have scored 6 more 5v5 points than he has over the 41 games he’s played. That’s it. Not a big difference. When you carve up a forward’s total scoring into smaller pieces, the difference between good and bad in those smaller pieces isn’t that much.

Last year, with Drai, RNH was scoring 3.63 5v5 P60. That’s better than the league leader, Panarin, is scoring this year. Is RNH a better offensive player than Panarin? Probably not. Is he a worse offensive player than Riley Sheahan (1.25 5v5 P60 this year)? Also probably not.

5v5 P60 is a very noisy measure of a forward’s offensive ability.

If RNH-Drai-KY have the same chemistry as they had last year and assuming Tippett keeps them together for the rest of the season, RNH will finish just a little off his career pace for 5v5 P60.

It’s weird RNH hasn’t picked up more points with CMD. But it’s happened to other players who’ve played with CMD. Usually, the answer is to switch things up, try other combinations. But the Oilers have been winning. Tippett has stuck with CMD-RNH for the majority of the season despite the offensive results not being there for RNH or for JP. (CMD somehow has done OK with the two of them. Man, how many points have Nurse and Barrie picked up?)

When he’s broken CMD and RNH up, he’s played CMD with Drai. As we all know, there’s just not enough offense in the rest of the lineup to create a consistent scoring line once CMD and Drai are taken out of consideration.

One other thing to remember is that if RNH is scoring below average at 5v5, he must be scoring quite well on the PP (because he’s pretty close to his career average Pts/GP). And he is. His 17 PP points puts him in a tie for 17th in the league.

RNH is still scoring. The 5v5 crisis isn’t a crisis until he can’t score with Drai and KY. And, even then, because he’ll still be a high minutes all situations forward next season, he’s a good bet to recover at 5v5 next year, whichever team he’s playing for.


Nice post. I know you are not a fan of 5v5.


Barrie has Nugent-Hopkins points. Nugent-Hopkins plays D for McDavid and Barrie! -).


Nuge’s 3.2 GA/60 (or something like that) shows he’s not doing a very good job at playing defence…….

Said in jest.


So Barrie & Nuge have similar value and their listed positions are simply misleading? 😉


Of course, his PP points don’t count – they are like Barrie secondary assists – only a function of being on the ice with McDavid and Drai…… or so I’ve been told.


If you look at the numbers for this year and last, you’ll see that McDavid is just as effective at 5v4 with or without Nugent-Hopkins. He probably deserves to be part of the first powerplay unit but he doesn’t really move the needle there either

Honestly I think a McDavid – Draisaitl – Yamamoto – Puljujarvi would be just as good.




Granted the sample size is small but McDavid on the PP without Leon skyrockets to close the 17G/60 over those two seasons.


RNH is a career .73 Pts/GP player. This season, he’s at .71 Pts/GP.

He’s a career 1.70 5v5 P60 player. This season, he’s at 1.14 5v5 P60.

Overall, RNH’s scoring is what it’s been throughout his career. The points are just landing in different places this season.

The extremes of the RNH discussion seem to be span from “RNH can’t score at evens, has never been able to push the river, no way the Oilers should re-sign him” to “Nuge is scoring exactly like he always has overall, nothing to see here”.

You seem to be arguing in the vicinity of the latter. I fall much more in the middle because I think context (who he’s playing with, and how much) matters quite a lot.

While I agree with your take that overall points/game captures a players offense better than 5v5 p/60, and I also see value in looking at Nuge’s scoring over his whole career, his more recent P/GP show’s he is off his (new) ‘normal’ scoring pace.

Overall P/GP
15-16 0.62
16-17 0.52
17-18 0.77
18-19 0.84
19-20 0.94
20-21 0.71

Over the 3 seasons prior to this one Nuge has scored 0.85 P/GP (0.88 over the prior 2), vs 0.71 this year (and also considerably higher than his career 0.67 P/GP prior to 17-18).

IMO that recent spike in production is important because there are reasons for it. The improved scoring coincided with Nuge 1) playing more with McDavid or Draisaitl at 5v5, and 2) playing more on the PP generally, as well as more on PP1 with McDavid and Draisaitl.

‘PP TOI/G’ and ‘% TOI with McDavid’
15-16 2:40 10%
16-17 1:54 15%
17-18 1:57 41%
18-19 3:14 94%
19-20 3:48 87%
20-21 4:45 96%

% of 5v5 TOI with one or both of McDavid/Draisaitl
15-16 14%
16-17 8%
17-18 32%
18-19 39%
19-20 55%
20-21 78%

So this season, with almost a minute more PP time/game than ever before in his career, and with a huge jump in McDavid(/Draisaitl) 5v5 minutes, Nuge has seen his scoring drop notably. I definitely don’t think he SHOULD be scoring at a shade below his career rates given the minutes and linemates he’s gotten.

Anyway, we agree that Nuge should recover his 5v5 scoring going forward. I also think he should recover his overall scoring to recent rates, if he remains with the Oilers and continues to be used in similar situations. But I don’t agree that his scoring rates this season aren’t at all noteworthy, even using overall P/GP as the measure.


He’s having the best PP year of his career so he’s been good for the extra PP time.

As for his recent rates, he had a career year last year. As much as I’m impressed with the performance of the Drai-RNH-KY combination, I’d be loco to call .94 Pts/GP RNH’s new normal. That’s rare air given he was at .71 Pts/GP leading into the previous two seasons. If a player hits an unusually high Pts/GP number (like .94 against a career mark of .73 Pts/GP heading into 19-20), the prudent thing to do is to fade his next year expectation; he’ll regress to his mean.

RNH has played 41 games this season. His G/GP is near where it was last season. But he’s scoring .2 fewer A/GP. That works out to about 8 assists given RNH’s 41 games played. Notable? I guess. Depends on what you’re expecting. I don’t agree with an RNH expectation that’s in the .9s (Backstrom and Marchand territory) and I’m nervous even about the .8s (Bergeron and Barzal territory). Scoring has a lot of randomness. There’s expectation (based on talent, track record, and usage) and then there’s variance.

You can expect CMD to convert guys like Kassian and Maroon and Chiasson into top-6 players. It may happen for a time but it doesn’t seem to last. KY was almost a point a game player last season without PP1 time. He’s been playing with Drai and CMD this season as well but he’s dropped below .5 Pts/GP. Points aren’t automatic.

Playing with CMD isn’t always a bonanza. It sometimes works out, it sometimes doesn’t. RNH has one primary assist at 5v5 this year. That’s just weird. He’s apparently not setting up anything. He’s even missing out on the give the puck to CMD and have him beat the whole other team assists. It happens, apparently. Maybe he isn’t committing to offense when he plays with CMD and JP like godot suggests. Maybe Barrie is drinking his milkshake. Who knows?

It comes down to can you trust the number? Is RNH a 1.14 5v5 P60 player? Or is he a .71 Pts/GP player? Which number can you trust? If you take even a half-hearted look under the 5v5 P60 cover, you’ll see you can’t trust that number, especially when it gives a different signal to Pts/GP.

RNH has to score a little above a point a game pace in the remaining 11 games to reach .8 Pts/GP for the year. We’ll see if Drai-RNH-KY still has the magic. Much more fun ahead hopefully. Looking forward to the trio scoring like gangbusters and proving my conservative estimates of RNH and KY’s offensive ceilings wrong.


He’s having the best PP year of his career so he’s been good for the extra PP time.

That’s a bit of a sticky wicket though. His PP P/60 rates are a shade lower than the last years and only the 4th best of his career. The extra production is due to the extra minute per game (almost) over ever before in his career.

I generally agree with your take that adding PP minutes/production to the equation helps the picture, but I don’t think we can argue in this case that Nuge earned a year over year bump in PP minutes with anything he did on the ice.

As for his recent rates, he had a career year last year. 

I hadn’t been thinking of it that way, but that’s probably fair.

At the same time, his recent 3 seasons have seen a bump, not just the one year. And the bump has correlated with a change in usage, suggesting it could be sustainable (maybe much like Marchand actually).

Anyway, ya, he’s not the player he was on Draisaitl’s wing for those 30 games. No argument there.

It comes down to can you trust the number? Is RNH a 1.14 5v5 P60 player? Or is he a .71 Pts/GP player? Which number can you trust?

Yeah, I’ll definitely agree the .71 P/GP is more representative. Still, IMO something in the .8’s or .9’s (previous 3 season average .84) is a reasonable expectation considering being stapled to one or the other elite C at 5v5 and getting play almost 5 minutes a game with both of them on the PP. We’ll see I guess.

And I’ve said before, I think/hope the season he’s had will drive the price on his next contract down a bit. I would love to see him stay an Oiler beyond this season.


Not sure why my last post is waiting for approval.


Extremely small nitpick, on the Oilers mock the league of play for Atte Lehikoinen is not correct. Sarja in itself basically means league, at least in this context, and the finnish junior leagues are named (as far as I know) by telling who is playing and on what level. Atte Lehikoinen appears to be playing in U20 SM-sarja (SM stands for Finnish championship).

Gamma Cassiopeiae

If the Oilers Draft Mr. L’Heureux would we be allowed to call him Johnny LaRue?


Only if he can host a segment called “Street Beef”.

Gamma Cassiopeiae

Hopefully by that time the Mellonville Mudhens will be our AHL affiliate.


I was thinking, hopefully he turns out nothing like former Oilers 1st rounder Francois Leroux.


Per Rishaug:

Tippett says Smith is fine and good to go. Kulikov expected to play Monday. Puljujarvi has been out for a few days for precautionary reasons, but they expect him to play. McLeod may play, Tippett still needs to chat with him after skate today. Projects him as a centre.

Per Nugent Bowman:

“If you’re a young guy, you want to get thrown into the fire, so you might as well embrace it.” — Dave Tippett on Ryan McLeod getting into games during a playoff race.


Personally, I really love the fact that they are likely to play him at center to start. He was a center in junior, he projects to be a center for his NHL career and, frankly, he’s performed much better in the AHL as a center than as a winger.

He is a center and, even though its a “tougher position”, its great they likely start him there – in my opinion.


Ryan Rishaug
Tippett says Smith is fine and good to go. Kulikov expected to play Monday. Puljujarvi has been out for a few days for precautionary reasons, but they expect him to play. McLeod may play, Tippett still needs to chat with him after skate today. Projects him as a centre.


Of note.

There will be no playoffs for the Vancouver Canucks this year.


2021/22 is in jeopardy too

Harpers Hair

Vancouver has sent Michael Depietro to Utica to play out the rest of the season as he hasn’t played in a game for well over a year.

Of note, there will be no playoffs in that division of the AHL.


The Kings have designated Daniel Brickley for assignment to the Taxi Squad.

Last edited 20 days ago by geowal

Per Gazolla:

Mike Smith put in a solid 20 minutes at practice. Gave Stalock a fist bump then went off the ice. TD Forss followed him, likely to check in to see how he’s doing. McLeod skating. No Puljujarvi (hearing he’s under the weather – not Covid) & Nygard not skating.

Of note, Jesse wasn’t on the ice yesterday either – hopefully he’s recovered from his illness soon and is able to go tomorrow night


Just to add to his tweet.

Khaira, Lagesson & Koekkoek also taking part in practice.


Nuge 7th in ES scoring on the team. One more point than Khaira.

Bob Stauffer
Oilers Even-Strength Scoring:

McDavid: 17-32-49
Draisaitl: 11-26-37
Nurse: 12-11-23
Barrie: 3-17-20
Yamamoto: 7-10-17
Puljujarvi: 10-5-15
Nugent-Hopkins: 6-6-12
Khaira: 3-8-11
Kahun: 6-4-10


Please then why is there a worry he is going to leave the team with 6 million in cap space, yet that is a terrible thing?

Sather would lose this leftover from “Oil Change” fast. Can’t play 3rd line centre on a team that needs one, with the 2 best centre duo in the NHL on the top 6.

Sather wanted winners, not excuses lol

Last edited 20 days ago by hunter1909

We don’t know who will be available, of course, but there is a reason no contract has been signed to date.


Nuge gets little to no respect from the numbers crowd. I am of the belief you will need two players to replace what he does! He is the ultimate Swiss Army knife! If an or when he’s gone people will realize what we had!


Nuge gets little to no respect from the numbers crowd.

Is this stuff coming (primarily) from the ‘numbers crowd’? I’m not sure that’s fair.


Nuge is a tremendous player. A capped league means that how much is paid for how long is a legitimate part of any discussion regarding a player’s worth.


100% agree.

I hope Nuge stays, but Holland needs to let him walk if he wants more than a nominal raise.


I’d say the numbers crowd is a fan of his underlying impacts and thinks he’s likely to rebound to more production at even strength


If Holloway and McLeod emerge as legit options within two seasons, Nuge is a second line LW. A very good one, provided there is no further decline in his play.

Benson and Lavoie are also waiting in the wings. Savoie as well.

You will also need to pay Puljujarvi and KY at some point.

Holland has been smart to not sign anything yet.


With the flat cap G.M’s are sitting more in the drivers seat than years past when it comes to resigning players on affordable contracts.


Nuge 7th in ES scoring on the team. One more point than Khaira.

Tough, tough year for him. Remarkable really.

20-21 41GP 6-6-12 (7th)
19-20 65GP 15-22-37 (3rd)
18-19 82GP 19-21-40 (3rd)
17-18 62GP 18-18-36 (3rd)
16-17 82GP 13-19-32 (5th) (Eberle, Maroon)

This season is not what Nuge is.

Last edited 20 days ago by jp

7th in P/60
3rd among forwards in actual points and points/game

All game states matter!

PK matters too.


Of course all game states matter. You will recall, however, that it is constantly stated on this blog that players are best evaluated based upon their 5 on 5 play.

As for PK play mattering that is really not relevant. You can sign PK’ers for far less than what Nuge makes.

PP specialists as well, for that matter.

Last edited 20 days ago by defmn

You don’t think my post is being negative about Nuge do you?

I’m saying he will be better. But his even strength production (WITH McDavid!) really is atrocious this season. And his overall points/game is well off his own recent history also.

There’s no need to deny he’s having an off year. He is, by many measures.

Many things also point to him being better than this going forward. IMO this shoot Nuge into the sun stuff we’re hearing from a few is batshit crazy. He will almost certainly rebound from here.

Still, we can acknowledge that this is not the Nuge we’re used to, and that he does have some limitations as a player.

Last edited 20 days ago by jp

No, I didn’t think your post was negative and my post wasn’t really in direct response to yours – just responding to the general premise of valuing Nuge and his next contract primarily off of 5 on 5 P/60 (and a one year massive regression in the area).

Nuge has struggled at 5 on 5 this season, and he’s never been an elite 5 on 5 producer in any event. At the same time, Nuge has important positive effects on various game states and just posting 5 on 5 P/60 isn’t entirely reflective of his game or value.


Cool. And agreed on what you’ve said. Nuge has significant value beyond his 5v5 scoring, AND his 5v5 scoring is all but assured to rebound.



i just don’t think Nuge can get 6 million from us.

And I don’t think Nuge or his agent are thinking pa cut.

Do I think another team will give him 6 or more?

Yes, yes I do.


My hope is the Oilers select G Jesper Wallstedt, Lulea.


Oilers would take him if he was available. Unlikely he will be around when oilers pick


Unlike the other leagues, so many of the Oilers perceived Russian issues involve both cultural (with everyone but the other players), and more importantly, KHL flight risk. So despite being OHL from a scouting point of view, for many he will always be a “Russian pick”


Team is starting with special teams practice and PP2 (for what it’s worth):

Nurse, Bear, Kahun, Yamamoto and McLeod.

Per Nugent Bowman


I really like the idea of giving McLeod some offensive touches on the second PP unit. Fantastic work by Tippett.


Smith on ice for practice.


Was he hurt?


Left practice early yesterday.


I would take the same approach to drafting Russian players as I would for goalies.
If BPA falls to you in late in the first or second round, then okay maybe.
Otherwise, 3rd rounders only please.
That & trade for the kids that have made it to the NHL or buy them in free agency

Harpers Hair

TML stars are kicking in to help their AHL players pay the bills.


I believe it is written somewhere that one shouldn’t let one’s left hand know what one’s right hand is doing. Performative virtue signalling is not really charity. It is public relations. Our society has confused the two.

Last edited 20 days ago by godot10

Who cares why they’re doing it, the people who need help are getting help


I didn’t mention the Maple Leafs at all or criticize them. I made a general statement about performative virtue signalling, whether it be a wealthy person making a large donation to a university in return for a name on a building, a sports teams “charitable” foundation, or telling a news reporter about a good deed one has done.

It was a nice public relations exercise. Satisfied?

Harpers Hair

Most likely the information was passed to a reporter by one of the Marlies who got help.


I totally agree with you on the naming of buildings thing. That has always seemed strange to me.

Leafs helping out their AHL brethren is different and much better, IMO.


This is an ignorant post by one of our most consistently ignorant posters who never misses an opportunity to make miscast moral judgements.

That it has 16 plus votes speaks volumes about this pace.

Harpers Hair

Very cynical.


Says King DB


We have just had a massive fraud exposed in the “charity” sector in Canada that was based on performative virtue signalling, and not charity, that ensnared politicians, governments, businesses, and the artistic community. It was allowed to come into our schools. Our children were allowed to take time off from school to go to their events.

It has done immense collateral damage to the real charity sector.

It is time for the distinction between performative virtue signalling and actual charity to be pointed out whenever it occurs. Performative virtue signalling is public relations, not charity.


Which fraud are you referencing?


WE Charity.


I haven’t been following is there a good link to read about this charity fraud.


I actually agree with part of this.  Greenpeace has 2,200 employees and a $350 mill budget. There will always be an environmental crisis because it’s very existence depends on it. Same can be said for WE. Starts off with great vision and intentions. And after years in the corporate charity sector, these ideals are damaged basically to the point that it can’t  be repaired. This is NOT who the TML players are. It’s a group of guys reaching out to others. 


Yup. Foreign Aid is even more corrupt.

Last edited 20 days ago by defmn
90s fan

Can I know more about this? Got any articles I can read?


I’ll link to a Toronto Star article to avoid a rabbit hole discussion about selective media coverage.

LT’s very hospitable salon is no place for this distraction, in my view.

New Improved Darkness

Performative virtue signalling is public relations, not charity.

If what we’re talking about here is chaste and virginal charity, then you’re entirely right.

However, back in the real world, we’re talking about “I’ll scratch your back, while I also scratch my own itch at the same time”. Or, the ever-popular robber-baron cynical extreme of same: “I’ll scratch your back with your fingers, while I also scratch my own itch with your fingers at the same time”.

-1 virginality pure as snow
+1 whose fingers? aka I’ll huff and I’ll puff and I’ll snow job your downy fleece

Last edited 20 days ago by New Improved Darkness

So the elite get to disguise their public relations expenses as charitable donations?

Branding and brand association is a for profit business. The market value for brand association in these public relations ventures can be easily calculated.

They are not charitable donations. They are public relations expenses disguised as charitable donations.

Just a tax avoidance scheme where the wealthy are allowed to play by different rules.


like you’re in any position to judge lol…


This brings cynicism to a whole new level.

Scungilli Slushy

I am hoping Holland goes after Hyman or Blake Coleman in free agency. Coleman should cost less, maybe if it’s doable that’s the play.

I’m not sure Coleman could play top 6 regularly. But they really need an experienced physical two way battle winning player left wing. Add Holloway and things are looking a lot better LW.

Khaira (hoping his wobbles aren’t becoming career threatening) and McLeod bottom 6 C works for me.

Still need that RC to win a few faceoffs, or a winger or two figuring it out.


Same. Hyman is ruthless on the puck,

Quite frankly, Zach Hyman is real impressive.

i want 2 quality forwards added in the summer and 3 if things don’t work out with Nuge.

I want Hayman and Hall.

Danault subbed for Nuge,

This team needs 2 – quality- forwards minimum to be added.

Scungilli Slushy

If Danault wants to play 2C I’m all over that. Let him have Holloway and Yama, make a defensive line for the coach so this line can run a bit and not get crushed.

Coleman Khaira Archie or something.

Scungilli Slushy

Thinking about the expansion draft, my list is one player off the TSN list, I’m protecting Khaira over Kassian:
7 Forwards
McD, Drai, JP, Yama, Nuge, Archibald, Khaira,

3 D
Nurse, Bear, Jones


I only found 6 forwards I would protect so I added Nuge. Which is a depth problem, it remains.

I wouldn’t protect if Nuge there were more than 7 I wanted to protect, because if they have a deal that both like, for the team and the player to sign after the draft makes sense as it keeps the team as deep as possible. Better chance to progress.

I would also sign Larsson after the E draft.

So not the way the Oilers have run, but why not game the league for once? Get a leg up.

Maybe Koski should be protected and traded to return an asset, lose a lesser player. I am not sure given the number of UFA goalies coming that he is that easily traded.

If Holland thinks there is a market I would protect him. Ken needs more draft bullets and walking around money.


TSN is protecting Kassian? The mainstream media manages to be both stupid and lazy at the same time.

Kassian has one of the worst contracts in the league.

The protection list for the forwards doesn’t matter that much, since if a forward gets taken in means you get to keep Caleb Jones.

We like to think that we can re-sign our free agents after the expansion draft but that might be easier said than done.

If the Oilers don’t re-sign RNH, there are only four forwards you really care about and you can go 4 and 4.

If they do re-sign RNH then you have to go 7 and 3, which means you are protecting guys like Benson and Archibald and you lose Jones.


Kassian has one of the worst contracts in the league?

That seems like a stretch to me.

Certainly not a desirable contract but there are some real doozies out there


It’s not even the worst on this team.


Unless one of the free agents signs, and depending on the medical report on Klefbom.

McDavid, Draisaitl, Puljujarvi, Yamamoto
Nurse, Klefbom, Bear, Jones.

If Klefbom is coming back, he is worth protecting over any of the next three forwards.


In your case Jones doesn’t have the value to warrant going 4-4 and 1. A player that is not a legitimate top four D should never cause the the team to protect only 8 players.Your logic on this escapes me. Had Jones proven a capable top four D this season I would accept your logic but somewhat questioning, given LD youth is a team strength. In my opinion, had Samorukov not been injured he would have already eaten Jone’s lunch.


I think Sammy would have been AHL bound once CSKA was finished with a real chance to impact the NHL roster in October.

As far as Jones, the book on his season isn’t closed yet. Nope, it hasn’t been a straight arrow up but there have been plus moments, games and stretches and, at this point, he seems to have earned enough trust from the coach to play ahead of Larsson.

A strong stretch drive and playoffs from Jones could be a big factor in where he plays next season.

He’s dirt cheap next year, and that counts for something.


In your case Jones doesn’t have the value to warrant going 4-4 and 1. A player that is not a legitimate top four D should never cause the the team to protect only 8 players.Your logic on this escapes me.

I think you’re missing an element of the logic here: Seattle can only select 1 player from the Oilers.

So while the team can protect ‘more’ players by going 7-3 vs 4-4, it only affects whether the 1 player Seattle selects is a F or D.

Basically the choice is whether to expose the 5th best forward or the 4th best defenseman. 7-3 exposes Jones OR Klefbom. 4-4 instead allows Seattle to select Archibald OR Khaira OR Kassian OR Benson.

You may still value one or more of those forwards over Jones/Klefbom, but it’s far from an obviously bad choice for the Oilers to go 4-4 (IMO).

And again, protecting 10 skaters vs 8 skaters is irrelevant, in reality the choice is your #5 forward vs your #4 dman.

Last edited 20 days ago by jp
Crazy Pedestrian

“I only found 6 forwards I would protect so I added Nuge. Which is a depth problem, it remains.”

If you dont want to protect Nuge as the 7th forward, why not Benson?
Although not sure why you wouldn’t as Seattle will almost assuring select Nuge if not protected. Unless you’re thinking the Oilers don’t resign him and find someone else who has all the toolset as Nuge for a better price?

Last edited 20 days ago by Crazy Pedestrian

Seattle would have to agree to terms with Nugent-Hopkins on a contract in order for them to select him. They are not going to select a UFA.

Harpers Hair

It’s a pretty good bet that Seattle already knows what Nuge’s agent is thinking.


Nuge’s agent is thinking his client would like to go back to being lead dog on a shit team to finish out his career?

I have my doubts.

Harpers Hair

Interesting you’ve already decided that the Kraken will be a “shit team” before they fill out their roster.

While I’m pretty sure other teams will be more wary than they were in the Vegas draft, the conditions Seattle faces in this expansion draft are actually more favorable in a flat cap environment since Seattle will have a ton of cap space to work with and there are a couple dozen teams that need cap relief.

Francis put a cutting edge analytics department in place as his first priority to identify opportunities and, when Seattle makes its final expansion fee payment next week, Francis can start making deals.

I would guess his first stop will be Tampa Bay where he will offer “help” to the Lightning…for a price.


Could be wrong.

but I’m guessing they aren’t in the playoffs next year.


Interesting you’ve already decided that the Kraken will be a “shit team” before they fill out their roster.

So you’re basically calling it now that the Kracken will finish ahead of the Canucks next season? Bold.

Harpers Hair

I have no idea…will be sure to advise when I see their roster.


By your logic and posts the Canucks were going to be a force this year.

90s fan

Not sure entirely what HH meant, but. Would seattle (and Edmonton) already know where Nuge is at? (Assuming Nuge himself knows).

I assume there is a tampering rule, but also assume its impossible to enforce. Are these conversations already happening?


If they don’t they are incompetent. And, yeah, tampering is not easy to enforce.



Agents will tell players to sign for 7 million not 6 million so long as they are on percentaers(which they are).


And players can fire their agents by Skype if they feel like it.

New Improved Darkness

In a highly connected world, an agent can hard-cash out on incentive misalignment only once in the lucrative Austin league. That you of all people pretend to misunderstand protracted, iterative engagement severely boggles the mind.


Agreed. And I would think the same is true for Holland.

Every GM in the league should have a pretty good handle on any UFA and RFA they are interested in at this point with a short off season.


I don’t imagine Ron Francis or his team has reached out to Nuge or Rick Valete.

A wild speculative statement that is most likely incorrect.


Never said he had reached out to Nuge. That is what agents are for. It is pretty easy to indicate interest without ever mentioning a player by name.

Last edited 20 days ago by defmn
Harpers Hair

Are you really that naive?

Do you think the free agent contracts that are announced as soon as free agency opens were negotiated in 60 seconds?


I 100% don’t think that Francis and his team have had direct correspondence with Nugent-Hopkins and his team at this point. They will legally be able to speak with Nuge in advance of the expansion draft, if Nuge is not re-signed by then

I also don’t equate “hiring a top notch analytics team” to building a successful NHL team – See NJ Devils and the famous Tyler Dellow.

Its also interesting that, on one hand, the team is going to have high end analytics experts at their disposal but the team is also going to over pay Nugent-Hopkins on AAV and term. DIdn’t know Nuge was such an analytics darling.


If there was even a shadow of what you say tampering would come into play and the penalty would be steep. Typical Troll statement!


How many cases of tampering have been prosecuted by the league?

How many contracts have been signed and sent to the league for approval within minutes of the opening of FA season?

The math doesn’t line up, does it.

Sorry, but thinking that agents & GM’s follow the rules just because they are rules doesn’t line up with my view of human nature.

Or, to quote an oldie but a goodie.

If you aren’t cheating you aren’t trying.

HH is correct on this. I can write a dozen conversations between agents & GM’s that never mention a players name and get all the information I want or need to know if that player might be interested in my team, how much term and what the cap hit will be. Not difficult at all.

If people never broke the rules there would be no need for lawyers. Because they do is why the profession exists. 😉


The courting period, AKA, legal tampering.

I have little doubt there is more rule-bending in the few weeks post-season leading up to free agency but to state that Francis knows exactly what Nugent-Hopkins is thinking and planning months in advance, while he’s still playing hockey under contract, is an aggressive position.


Due diligence. And, again, I didn’t say he knew what Nuge is thinking. I said that is what agents are for. Not sure why this is so difficult for you to believe.

Knowledge is the currency that makes the world work.


I’m responding to the direct statement that “Seattle knows what Nuge is thinking” and the implication that there has been direct contact between the Kraken and Nugent-Hopkins, or his agent regarding Nugent-Hopkins.

I don’t believe this to be the case 3 months prior to free agency while Nugent Hopkins continues to play hockey contracted for another team.


Yeah, I know what you think. You are definitely consistent in this because you say pretty much the same thing every year when the subject of communication between agents and GM’s pop up on this blog.

I just think you’re wrong & I base that on how I have seen business conducted in both the private sector & in politics.

That’s all OP. We just have different opinions or different experiences.


Re-read the thread. Still looking for where I said “Seattle knows what Nuge is thinking.” Pretty sure Nuge is focused on playing hockey and leaves things like this to his highly paid agent during the season.

Last edited 20 days ago by defmn

It wasn’t you that said it. I responded to another poster that said that in this thread and you interjected (which is fine – except you keep getting defensive defending a point I was making to something another poster said).

Also, when you say “That’s all OP. We just have different opinions” – that doesn’t line up with your previous response to me along the lines of “I don’t understand why you can’t see that” – that implies you think you are right and I am wrong, not allowing for different opinions.

I’m not trying to be adversarial here, I’m really just speaking to that initial point (which wasn’t yours).


Yeah, sure OP. You seem to be having a bad day. I’m out.


I’m having a fantastic day.

I have no idea what your are on about or what is triggering you so I think that’s a solid idea.

Have a nice rest of your evening.


Excellent passive-aggressive response.


He is having a bad day?


oh we all know what happens with your bets right Mr HH ?


I 100% leave Kassian exposed. Healthy and “good” Kassian can help this team but that Kassian doesn’t show all the time (or even a majority of the time recently) and the contract is a vast overpay – the contract is value if “good Kassian” plays nightly, that is not the case.

I can’t imagine Koskinen can be trade for an asset – its only one year left but $4.5M provides negative value. If the Oilers retain half of that, they can probably dispose of the $2.25M contract and maybe get a depth asset as a return.


Condors lost 2-0, Lavoie with team-high 5 shots and 1 off the crossbar.

The boy can shoot, no doubts there.


He sure can – his shot is already NHL level.

He has quite a bit of work to do in his conditioning from my eye and his skating (that might be a function of strength and conditioning).

Here is hoping that, once he gets stronger and some man-strength, he uses that big frame of his a little more as he’s somewhat a “perimeter player” – not great on the boards and not in the battle very much – mostly looking for soft areas.


Hey LT, why is Chayka ahead of Chibrikov on your Russian ranking, but behind him on your Top 50?

Harpers Hair

Curious why you have ranked Owen Power so low?

Almost all lists I’ve seen have him #1 and project him as a top pairing D.


You didn’t have Dahlin at #1?


Thanks for the great explanation!


LT, is this the lowest the top Russian has ranked in your top 50? Just curious


Ryan McLeod – get out of that hotel room and welcome to the world – well, later this afternoon you’ll, again, be confined to hotel rooms for a bit but, before that, you have a practice with an NHL hockey team during its season and we look for you to center Archie and Shore tomorrow night!


with JJ and Kass in the infirmary, some size, speed and skill is just what the doctor ordered.
Knock knock


I don’t understand why JJ is even skating. He obviously has an issue when he gets knocked wobbly so soon after a concussion. Shut him down for at least the regular season.


I don’t mind him skating in a no-contact setting if he’s up for it, but I agree he needs to stay away from games for a while. I’d hate to see him ruin his career/health for nothing.


Please don’t shoot the messenger:

JJ knows he is a somewhat marginal, 4th line player.

These types of players don’t live in the RNH 6 million penthouse. They lead a close to 1970’s NHLer career path lifestyle, where getting hurt isn’t much of an option.


All athletes in their twenties think that they are bulletproof. It’s the team’s responsibility to be extra cautious when it comes to head injuries.


Yes, JJ is a fourth line NHL player that is playing for his next contract. He’s already earned his next contract and, if one thinks about it reasonably, it would be beneficial from him to be even further careful in this situation so that there isn’t a third incident prior to the off-season. Rushing back is not in the best interests of his career and next contract.

In any event, its not Khaira making this decision – its the doctors that cleared him to skate.


The team employs medical doctors, experts in the area, that have determined, after a swath of tests, over days, that he is OK to skate.

I’m quite confident these doctors are not rushing to clear the player.

I personally don’t think there is value in any of us playing arm-chair doctor, diagnosing the player and setting timelines.


He’s eligible to play tomorrow? I’m thinking Archie and Ennis or Archie and Haas would be a great look with him. Hopefully he can hit the ground running. It also will be fun to see how much Kulikov can help to steady things in the defensive zone.


I look next week for Konovalov to sign an NHL ELC.


LT, speaking of Russia, I have something Russian for you I’ve been meaning to send your way-long overdue, my apologies. If I send it to the station will it eventually get into your hands?

(Nothing illicit or inappropriate, honest.)


Matryoshka Doll or Vodka, what is your druthers?