Saturday, 25 June 2016

2016 NHL Entry Draft - In The Books

So it's done.  The picks:

__4 .. Jesse Puljujarvi _ (18) May 7 _ RW
_32 .. Tyler Benson _ (18) Mar 15 _ LW
_63 .. Marcus Niemelainen _ (18) Jun 8_ LD / can sub RD
_84 .. Matt Cairns _ (18) Apr 27_ LD
_91 .. Filip Berglund _ (19) May 10 _ RD
123 .. Dylan Wells _ (18) Jan 3 _ G
149 .. Graham McPhee _ (17) Jul 24 _ LW
153 .. Aapeli Rasanen _ (18) Jun 1 _ C/RW
183 .. Vincent Desharnais _ (20) May 29 _ RD

Picks I really like:


Elite RW fits BPA and need.


Beats his rankings handily so is well in the range for a BPA.  Multi-role, right-handed center with decent size also fits need.  Great pick.  Reminds me of the Tobias Rieder pick of way back when.

Picks I like:


Beats his rankings so BPA isn't really a question.  Huge defenseman who can really skate.  LD who can also play RD so mitigates a need (rather than meeting a need).  Not a banger but also not a wallflower.  Played through some challenging situations and kept his head up.  Real potential here.


Beats his rankings so BPA isn't really a question.  RD who has decent puck control skills and seems to 'get' the transition game so he fits a need.  Big guy with some skating issues.  Also wonder if his big year is an outlier.  May be issues with how well he controls his space (i.e. not a physical guy).  While I don't like the number of red flags that are attached to this guy I like the pick number more.

Picks I am okay with:


Within the range for his rankings so in the range for BPA (i.e. not that big a deal).  LD with a really long development road ahead (by virtue of his career path - not by virtue of him being a bad player) so should overcome issues in his game.  Does not fit a need but the time factor means that 'need' isn't really an issue.

Picks I do not like:


I don't like using 2nd round picks on lotto tickets.  Also do not like not using this pick to fill holes in the active line-up or even to move up or move back.  Liked the Arizona trade for DeAngelo.  So unless this guy pans out in a great way it was a wasted opportunity in my mind.

Ugh.  Just.... ugh.


Way too early to pick this guy imo.  Goalies are voodoo at the best of times.  What I REALLY don't like however is that they passed on Sambrook (who went to Detroit at #137).  This will bug me for a long time.


This guy will not play in the NHL.  Would it have been too hard to use this pick and the #183 to move up to take Sambrook?


Not his fault.  Chiarelli did someone a favour.


Overall I like the draft.  Puljujarvi alone makes it a winner.  Rasanen is a winner.  If I could switch out DeAngelo and Sambrook for Benson and Wells then this draft would mark a huge win for the Oilers in my mind.

Where I could be really wrong: Benson

Where I think Chiarelli outright whiffed it: not taking Sambrook

We'll see.

Sunday, 19 June 2016

The RHD Conundrum

I remain convinced that the path to success for the Oilers is to remain patient.  It appears RHD have become the new 'must have' for all GM's everywhere.

The obvious gets remain Demers (UFA) and Savard (CBJ cap-hell).

Outside of that I see a couple of paths forward using Yakupov as the trade piece (pick one):

To Montreal:

Juulsen and Minnesota 2016 2nd (#45) FOR Yakupov and Pittsburgh 2016 3rd (#91)

To Buffalo:

Pysyk and Minnesota 2016 3rd (#76) FOR Yakupov

Savard-Fayne-Pysyk is light-years ahead of last years RHD group if that is the line-up out of training camp.

I also think they should sign Clendening; guy will come in at less than a $1 million a yr for 2 or 3 and at that price the depth is more than worth it - especially since you can bury him in the minors to alleviate (the vast majority) of the cap hurt if you need to.

Here is the big question - what do you add to Nurse to get Ristolainen?