Oilers Depth Chart 2010

Lowetide
July 11 2010 06:36AM

With the draft over and the first blush of free agency in the rear-view, this is an excellent time to have a look at the Oilers depth chart. It is striking to see just how much work is left to be done; I wonder if the Oilers want to address some of the obvious problems (G, veteran presence up front) this summer. A lottery pick becomes a distant bell with an improved lineup. It might be better to run with the kids.

Here is the depth chart (my list, your slotting may be different) but it gives us a general idea about where this team is heading. Strong roster options (based on management comments and logic) in italics.

 

GOAL

  1. Nikolai Khabibulin
  2. Jeff Drouin Deslauriers (RFA, filed for arbitration)
  3. Devan Dubnyk (RFA)
  4. Bryan Pitton

This is a mess for a couple of reasons. Khabibulin's trial makes moving one of the kids less likely, meaning the Oilers may be forced to go with the three-headed goalie system for a time this fall. NK's injury last season casts further doubt on the position, but if you're the Oilers playing the two kids 60% of the time might be a way to "Denver boot" the 10-11 season.

 

DEFENSE

  1. Ryan Whitney
  2. Tom Gilbert
  3. Sheldon Souray (outcast)
  4. Ladislav Smid
  5. Kurtis Foster
  6. Jim Vandermeer
  7. Jason Strudwick
  8. Theo Peckham
  9. Alex Plante
  10. Jeff Petry
  11. Taylor Chorney
  12. Richard Petiot
  13. Johan Motin
  14. Jake Taylor
  15. Jordan Bendfeld

The Souray return will impact the depth chart, as Theo Peckham will need to clear waivers this fall. Should the club acquire a defenseman, that might spell the end of Jason Strudwick's NHL career. I like the top pairing (Whitney-Gilbert) and if Smid-Foster can work together this team has a decent top 4D (much better than 2006 summer, as an example). If the team deals Souray for a defenseman, I'd prefer a "wide range of skills" type as opposed to a puck mover or a stay-at-home type.

 

CENTER

  1. Shawn Horcoff
  2. Sam Gagner
  3. Gilbert Brule
  4. Colin Fraser
  5. Andrew Cogliano
  6. Brad Moran
  7. Ryan O'Marra
  8. Chris Vande Velde
  9. Milan Kytnar

There's a lot of good future here and this is a big season for the kids. If Gagner can take over some of the tougher minutes (and begin to relieve Shawn Horcoff of the heavy lifting) this position will be much better a year from now. Brule is a developing talent coming off a solid offensive season, but there's not much evidence available to suggest he should play the tough minutes. Just so we're clear, I have Brule listed as the #3C but would not want him near a checking-style line. Soft minutes and PP time are the ticket for him. Colin Fraser could help a wayward PK, and we should be watching Vande Velde with interest (Horcoff didn't take much AHL time to be NHL ready).

 

LEFT WING

  1. Dustin Penner
  2. Magnus Pääjärvi
  3. Taylor Hall
  4. Steve MaCintyre
  5. Linus Omark
  6. JF Jacques
  7. Teemu Hartikainen
  8. Philippe Cornet
  9. Matt Marquardt

Not a veteran checker in the bunch, but some sublime talent. Penner is the Oilers best player based on last season's results, and the two kids have the fanbase acting (with good reason) like the kids who saw the Beatles at Shea in 1965. This depth chart went from Penner and crap to something very special in a very short period of time. We can only hope for the same timeline in goal.

 

RIGHT WING

  1. Ales Hemsky
  2. Jordan Eberle
  3. Ryan Jones
  4. Zack Stortini
  5. Alexandre Giroux
  6. Liam Reddox
  7. Ben Ondrus
  8. Colin McDonald

Hemsky is a ridiculous talent and a healthy season from this player means the Oilers win more hockey games than a year ago. Eberle is establishing himself as a strong option, although kids listed at C and LW (Brule, Cogliano, Omark) might grab top 6 minutes. Jones and Stortini look like they'll fight it out for 3line minutes unless the club addresses the issue (there are rumors--from Rishaug again--that Asham is a player of interest) in the next few weeks.

I usually miss a player or two, please pass along and I'll fix later. Either way, this is a way better hockey club than a year ago if they can stay reasonably healthy. If they took the time to address #1 G, RH 2-way C and a veteran RW this team could make the playoffs.

Seriously.

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Lowetide has been one of the Oilogosphere's shining lights for over a century. You can check him out here at OilersNation and at lowetide.ca. He is also the host of Lowdown with Lowetide weekday mornings 10-noon on Team 1260.
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#201 Crash
July 11 2010, 06:57PM
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Nate Full of Hate wrote:

Has anyone watched much of Ryan Nugent Hopkins live?

Sean Couturier is already 4" & 25 pounds heavier.

I've seen him a few times here in Red Deer...he's got great hockey sense and is very skilled offensively...

Red Deer hasn't been a very good team the last few years but last year they showed a marked improvement and Nugent-Hopkins played a big role in that.

He's not a fluid skater but is strong on his feet and moves well...

Obviously this year will go a long way towards showing us how good he is going to be...I believe he will have a big year in the Dub..

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#202 Oil_Loc8or
July 11 2010, 06:59PM
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Word wrote:

I'd like to hear what one of the 376 guys named "Ogden" has to say...

What ever happened to those guys anyway?

They were mentioned in a article awhile back. They are BIG TIME now!!!!!!

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#203 Chris.
July 11 2010, 08:53PM
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Crash wrote:

Result based evidence?...cmon Chris...5 games is hardly result based...this is what I was talking about....you think giving a guy 5 games to gell with linemates is enough to have a definitive result? This is what I was trying to get across before....some of these younger skill guys need the opportunity to also make some mistakes and not have a demotion hanging over their heads.

And you can go back and check any article and you won't find me calling down players in a derogative manner such as hatecoff or any of those other things...in fact I think I remember that game you are talking about and if you check the blogs I believe I even wrote a statement questioning those that would crap on Horcoff after the game he played.

But you can't really defend Horcoff too much on the season he had last year. I will continue to disagree with you...NO Horcoff is not the best option to play with Hemsky and if one of the kids is given an actual opportunity to play in that spot this will show to be true. You can't just keep going back to same ole same ole.

The 2 separate coaching staffs have both been let go which must mean that the Oilers feel another direction is needed. I don't think that either of MacT or Quinn is the type of coach who are onboard with the proper use of multiple youth in the lineup and thus another change. I suspect if we continue to see more of Horcoff as the #1C you'll soon see another new coach in the very near future.

The time has come for this team to show that we are getting better, not remaining the same...

Gagner wasn't ready. It was obvious. The Gagner, Hemsky, Penner line was terrible and the Oilers were still around .500. How many games should the coaching staff have given? What if keeping the line together too long hurt Sam's confidence?

I'm sure Gagner will probably be given another opportunity to play with Hemsky this season... But if the chemistry isn't there, the Oilers don't owe it to Sam to burn thirty games trying to find something that just isn't there yet, and may never be there. Let's face it: not all players play well together.

Renny will assemble his lines to the best of his ability trying to give our team the best possible chance of winning. He is not going to intentionally aim for a lottery pick. He is not going to trade wins just to give Sam a chance to gell with Hemsky. If a bunch of young guys make the team out of camp Renny will do his best to shelter them. Vetrans like Horcoff and Hemsky will draw tougher minutes, and they may draw them together. It's not the same old, same old... It's an orderly progression.

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#204 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
July 11 2010, 09:43PM
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Word wrote:

I'd like to hear what one of the 376 guys named "Ogden" has to say...

What ever happened to those guys anyway?

Present

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#205 RossCreekNation
July 11 2010, 10:19PM
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Jeff Halpern (34) would be a pretty decent signing, imo. He's a former captain in Washington. Is a diligent worker. Plays a solid defensive game and excels on the penalty kill. Possesses solid leadership qualities and the ability to play both center and wing... versatile checking forward. (The Hockey News)

Arron Asham would be a good signing, too. I like him. And I'd bring Comrie back as well.

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#206 RossCreekNation
July 11 2010, 10:22PM
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What's the word on the coaching staff/Asst. GM? Are Don Hay and/or Scott Bonner coming in?

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#207 madjam
July 11 2010, 10:24PM
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If we go with youth , the older veterans Penner , Horcoff , Hemsky and Stortini might all be separated and be veteran presence on each line . Makes for some interesting line combo's going that route .

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#208 Quicksilver ballet
July 11 2010, 11:40PM
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Nate, while we're on topic here, is there still cap room for offers to legends John Druce and Chris Kontos?

The mule in Detroit won't be available for another few years but these two studly playoff performers should put us back into the top third of the league again....eh?

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#209 DK
July 12 2010, 12:33AM
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@Crackenbury

I just can't stand him... I think he is a waste of a roster space. Yes i agree he has improved, but i think smac fills his role quiet well.

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#210 TigerUnderGlass
July 12 2010, 12:34AM
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Nate Full of Hate wrote:

Try Ryan Getzlaf

Seriously. Why does anyone bother.

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#211 Nate Full of Hate
July 12 2010, 04:21AM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

Nate, while we're on topic here, is there still cap room for offers to legends John Druce and Chris Kontos?

The mule in Detroit won't be available for another few years but these two studly playoff performers should put us back into the top third of the league again....eh?

No love for Fernando or Claude?

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#212 Max Powers - Team HME Evans
July 12 2010, 04:28AM
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Here's what I got from the article: LT's depth chart, and a bold prediction that the Oil might not suck if the cards fall right.

Here's what I got from reading all the comments the last 1.5 hours (good thing i got paid to do it): Nate will argue anything even if he doesn't truly believe it but will defend anything he writes (obvious troll), Oil loc8or just wants attention, and someone pissed Archaeologuy off. Oh that and the word Horcoff was mentioned 472 times.

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#213 Nate Full of Hate
July 12 2010, 04:38AM
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Max Powers - Team HME Evans wrote:

Here's what I got from the article: LT's depth chart, and a bold prediction that the Oil might not suck if the cards fall right.

Here's what I got from reading all the comments the last 1.5 hours (good thing i got paid to do it): Nate will argue anything even if he doesn't truly believe it but will defend anything he writes (obvious troll), Oil loc8or just wants attention, and someone pissed Archaeologuy off. Oh that and the word Horcoff was mentioned 472 times.

In fairness I did concede to Archaeologuy that Getzlaf wasn't the #1 center during the regular season...

AND said I was wrong about Stortini making the NHL...

I'll admit when I'm wrong even though I rarely am.

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#214 Max Powers - Team HME Evans
July 12 2010, 05:39AM
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@Nate Full of Hate

Haha, I suppose I'll let you have that one. Even if I could almost feel the reluctance to do so. Especially after you called all of us hacks.

For the most part the only hacks on here are the guys who feed you. There's tons of really good posters here.

Edit: Maybe not tons.

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#215 Woodguy
July 12 2010, 07:18AM
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RossCreekNation wrote:

What's the word on the coaching staff/Asst. GM? Are Don Hay and/or Scott Bonner coming in?

Asst. Coaches announced this week.

It seemed like Bonner was a slam dunk, but something derailed it.

I know ST was saying he wanted the AGM in charge of OKC to live there, perhaps that's a sticking point for Bonner.

Rumblings that Bucky going down to coach as he's staying with the team, but Renney doesn't want him on his staff.

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#216 Crackenbury
July 12 2010, 08:02AM
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@Woodguy

It was noted previously that Buchberger was a Katz inspired signing. I hope it's not true. Owner's meddling in hockey based decisions are never a good thing.

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#217 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
July 12 2010, 10:20AM
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RossCreekNation wrote:

What's the word on the coaching staff/Asst. GM? Are Don Hay and/or Scott Bonner coming in?

that bonner, nobody can ever tell if he is coming or going. never reliable, always seems to let you down at the worst possible time

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