FTHM VII: RYAN NUGENT-HOPKINS

Robin Brownlee
May 09 2011 07:43AM

When it comes to making the first overall pick at the NHL Entry Draft in Minnesota June 24-25, Edmonton Oilers chief scout Stu MacGregor said last week that he has his guy. I believe MacGregor's guy is Ryan Nugent-Hopkins of the Red Deer Rebels.

I don't know that to be the case because, in a series titled "From The Horse's Mouth," MacGregor did not come out and say the Oilers will follow up last June's selection of Taylor Hall by picking Nugent-Hopkins. I haven't polled each and every member of MacGregor's scouting staff and been told he's the guy.

Likewise, neither GM Steve Tambellini nor president of hockey operations Kevin Lowe has slipped me a piece of paper with the name "Nugent-Hopkins" on it. Still, my gut and my ears spell tell me it's the skilled kid who plays just an hour or so down the road, right here in Oil Country.

With Red Deer eliminated from the WHL playoffs since being beaten by Medicine Hat, Nugent-Hopkins won't have the opportunity to further separate himself from the rest of the pack the way Hall did with the Windsor Spitfires a year ago, when he left Tyler Seguin in the dust. Still, what I read between the lines is there's no need. He's the guy.

"With the first pick in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, the Edmonton Oilers are proud to select, from the Red Deer Rebels, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins . . ."

THE SKINNY FROM CSS

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins

North American Skater

Red Deer, WHL

Final Rank: 1 Midterm Rank: 3

Position: Center Shoots: Left

Height: 6' 0" Weight: 164

Born: April 12, 1993 Hometown: Burnaby, BC

Born in: Burnaby, BC, CAN

NHL Central Scouting’s B.J. MacDonald

"(Nugent-Hopkins) has very good puck-handling capabilities. His on-ice awareness is very good. He's one of those guys that knows where everyone is and where they should be and where the puck should go . . . He can dish both right or left, either on his backhand or forehand with that kind of vision. But not just the vision, but the fact he can lay that puck between the skate boot and the skate blade -- that's hard to find."

-- In 2010-11, Nugent-Hopkins led the WHL in assists (75), finished fourth overall in points (106) and was named an Eastern Conference First-Team All-Star after helping the Red Deer Rebels to a first place finish in the Central Division.

-- He served as an assistant captain with Canada’s Under-18 team at the 2010 Ivan Hlinka Memorial in the Czech Republic, where he won gold and scored the game-winning goal, beating the U.S. 1-0.

MACGREGOR'S TAKE

Scouting Report: "He's got high-end skills, vision and hockey sense."

Projection: "A first-line centre."

Best Case Scenario: "Very good first-line centre."

Concerns: "I don't think it's size. It's physical strength."

Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.

Aceb4a1816f5fa09879a023b07d1a9b4
A sports writer since 1983, including stints at The Edmonton Journal and The Sun 1989-2007, I happily co-host the Jason Gregor Show on TSN 1260 twice a week and write when so inclined. Have the best damn lawn on the internet. Most important, I am Sam's dad. Follow me on Twitter at Robin_Brownlee. Or don't.
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#1 Sheldon "Oilers Fan for Life!!!"
May 09 2011, 04:53PM
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As I sit here and read all of your musings I am so proud to be a fan of the Oilers Not because of the way the team is run.(It defies my understanding.) or because we are such a great hockey team.(I do believe our time will come again.) But because you truly are great fans and being a fan surrounded by much more knowledgeable fans such as your self's just makes even suffering better than the alternative. Being a fan of any other team in the League. So to all you on all these Oiler Blogs the writers and responders etc thank-you for making an other wise unbearable situation actually Fun and enjoyable far more often than logic says it should be. Keep writing, Hating spewing forth humor and venom I love it all I may even make it to Fall.

PS any other team would kill to have three pages of comments when they are in last place 2years running.

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Cooper wrote:

Great, so with RNH, both Cogs and Gags have to be moved in 2-3 years depending on what RNH timeline is to the NHL (see Kyle Turris).

Tambi needs to move Gags and his 31st to move into a top 6 and grab Dougie Hamilton

OR

Gags and the 19th Pick and move into a top 4 position to grab Larsson.

Why does that have to be done now? What happens if RNH is no better than Gagner? Moving yet another proven player for a draft pick is just going to get us another lottery pick.

Sure some want that lottery pick, but how long are Hall, MPS, Eberle and others going to want to lose?

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#3 Truth
May 09 2011, 08:46AM
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Projection: "A first-line centre."

Best Case Scenario: "Very good first-line centre."

Very nice, although I was hoping for:

Best Case Scenario: "Second coming of Christ"

because thats what the Oilers need.

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#4 @Oilanderp
May 09 2011, 10:58AM
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Westcoastoil wrote:

I don't get the concern about size for a 17 year old kid who is 6'0 and 164. He is 17, for farts sake! If he was 5'9" then go ahead and fuss. Raise your hand if you didn't put on 20 pounds of beef between 17 and 21.

I'd take Sakic over Joe Thornton all day long

I don't know about that but I put on 50 lbs between 29 and 35! Does that count?

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#5 Archaeologuy
May 09 2011, 03:52PM
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@Crash

I get why people keep saying they should trade for Bogosian or Gudbranson (who wouldnt want malcontent underachievers?) or sign capable veterans, but there is such a disconnect between some people's fantasies and the reality of the situation that it all becomes pointless.

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#6 Sheldon "Oilers Fan for Life!!!"
May 09 2011, 08:10AM
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When the Canucks loose in game 7 the twins should have to wear women's underwear in the team picture.

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#7 Mark-LW
May 09 2011, 09:21AM
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DBO wrote:

I wonder if trading down would work. We need a bunch of players to get us to playoff calibre. What about trading the first overall for Bogosian and Atlanta's 7th overall pick. We would have a shot at either Couturier, Strome or Huberdeau. Solves two problems right away, especially if there is no clear cut first pick. Atlanta (Winnipeg) needs a splash, and 1st overall is a good start, and Bogosian is now a bottom pairing dman who is due a raise. Helps both teams.

If scouting firmly believes RNH will be a legit first line centre then you never never trade away that pick. We all know just how easy it is to find one of those right?

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#8 Archaeologuy
May 09 2011, 10:03AM
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If all goes well then one day soon (NOT by next season) the Oilers depth chart at C will look like this:

1) RNH 2) Gagner 3) Horcoff 4) Lander/Cogliano/???

I'm hoping to hell that RNH is that 1C the Oil have been dreaming of since Weight left town. Hopefully the future line of Hall-RNH-Eberle will dominate the league in real life as they do in my imagination.

I can already tell that my obligatory "Oilers Fan Summer of Hope and High Expectation" has begun.

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#9 @Oilanderp
May 09 2011, 10:13AM
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Landeskog
----------
Scouting Report: "He's a powerful guy who is strong on the boards . . . he's a very straight-ahead kind of player . . . he's good off the cycle to the net and strong in front of the net . . . he can kill penalties as well and he's got good hockey sense."
Projection: "He's going to be a third-line player who could be a good second-line player."
Best Case Scenario: "A second-line player who plays in all key situations for you."
Concerns: "He's got to become a better skater."

Larsson
---------
Scouting Report: "A great two-way defenseman with good offensive puck-moving ability. He's strong and he competes hard on the boards in and around the net."
Projection: "A one or a two. Probably a two."
Best Case Scenario: "His most potential? Possibly a one."
Concerns: "He's a good skater but he's not a great skater. His offence is only OK at this point."

Huberdeau
----------
Scouting Report: "He's got hockey sense, skill and vision."
Projection: "A very solid second-line player. It depends where he plays. He plays wing now, but he played centre when he first came into the league. What will he be in the NHL? He could be a centre."
Best Case Scenario: "He could be a first-line player."
Concerns: "He's only 170 pounds. He needs to get stronger to be able to take his game forward and be able to play in the areas that he likes to play in, which is in and around the net."

Couturier
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Scouting Report: "He's got great vision, hockey sense and puck control. He's real big and strong and he'll get more powerful as he develops physically."
Projection: "I think he could be a first-line centre."
Best Case Scenario: "A good first-line centre."
Concerns: "He has to get quicker, speed-wise."

Nugent-Hopkins
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Scouting Report: "He's got high-end skills, vision and hockey sense."
Projection: "A first-line centre."
Best Case Scenario: "Very good first-line centre."
Concerns: "I don't think it's size. It's physical strength."

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#10 Crash
May 09 2011, 03:42PM
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Archaeologuy wrote:

They've only been actively rebuilding for about a year and a half. I wouldnt call that "Infinite". And something tells me that trading current roster players and picks for young and talented players that can help the Oilers for years to come is NOT 10 minutes of work. If acquiring top 5 picks was easy then the Red Wings would have figured out how to do it long before you have. I'm inclined to believe that it is much more difficult than you have suggested.

Exactly, I've tried to get this point across before...especially when it comes to the Oilers surrounding what's here with veteran help.

What people can't seem to grasp is the Oilers are at a distinct disadvantage at attracting good veteran help to sign on. First off they are in the small city that is near last as an attractive destination for free agents and secondly, they are a 30th place team.

IMO it's this realization by Oiler management that good vets won't sign here to play for a team scraping every year to make the playoffs that has prompted the rebuild. Start from the ground up with youth, hopefully get them on board with staying together as a group and become a top end team for years to come rather than this continuous add pieces to compete for the bottom playoff spots every year. Once the youth pulls the team up out of the ashes, then, and only then will the better vets sign on to play here.

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#11 mayorpoop
May 09 2011, 08:33AM
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MBS seemed to say less about RNH than the other players discussed which, to me, would seem to say more.

gotta be RNH.

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#12 lowetide
May 09 2011, 08:49AM
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I'm supposed to be working right now! Thanks for this, Robin. Excellent stuff.

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#13 shau_co
May 09 2011, 09:50AM
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@Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

I just don't see this happening.

If Colorado wants Larsson, I can almost garauntee they already know Edmonton is drafting RNH. Why would they give up anything more than a late pick (which aren't worth that much). Take the best player and don't bother risking losing him - it's not wroth it!

Plus, how good would RNH feel that Edmonton traded down instead of jsut calling his name. Giving RNH the bonus of being a 1st overall pick and saying we want you really badly to everyone is worth more than a late draft pick.

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#14 9 Inches Uncut
May 09 2011, 09:58AM
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Agree with Robin. Based on those projections by Stu. RNH is their man.

Strome made a surge this year but I think the Oilers play it safer. (Much like last year) and take the guy that was always in the conversation for first overall.

I believe they give him a long look at camp and possibly even break with the Oilers for a few games but he's best served with one more season in junior hockey to grow a bit, get stronger, and work on some of the things the Oilers will want him to do.

People might counter with the the fact that first overall guys always make their teams but RNH only has two full seasons of junior hockey. Taylor Hall played three seasons. Eberle played four. No reason RNH can't be extended a similar courtesy.

on edit* I also think it will be a good thing for RNH to play for his country in the World Juniors. He'd be the man on that team.

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#15 Mantastic
May 09 2011, 10:25AM
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@DBO

did you even read this post? when 6/10 scouts have RNH as their #1 guy, isn't that clear enough?

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#16 Westcoastoil
May 09 2011, 10:41AM
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I don't get the concern about size for a 17 year old kid who is 6'0 and 164. He is 17, for farts sake! If he was 5'9" then go ahead and fuss. Raise your hand if you didn't put on 20 pounds of beef between 17 and 21.

I'd take Sakic over Joe Thornton all day long

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#17 Team Centerman
May 09 2011, 10:48AM
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Great stuff again Robin, you're bringing the high heat lately. This is must read material for all Oiler fans. I agree with your assessment that Stu wants RNH, you can tell from the language. I'm pretty happy with that. The thing that helps me sleep at night is the phrase, "straw that stirs the drink". In other words, this is not Sam Gagner or Marc Pouliot hitching a ride on a superstars back. This guy was flat out responsible for getting Red Deer to #1. The fact that Red Deer was eliminated so quickly is actually an advantage in this case. It proves they were a one-threat team. When RNH was neutralized, the team failed. That's a good thing, it proves that the Nuge is their best player, and the real deal. I'm happy, even though I was a Couturier man, I have to yield to his excellency, Stu the Magnificent.

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#18 Dman09
May 09 2011, 12:00PM
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Sorry but there is too many cases throughout the NHL to justify size not being an issue. That would be like saying St. Louis, Kane, Datsyuk,Ennis, Cammalleri,Briere, Giroux are not very good players because they are smaller.

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#19 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
May 09 2011, 01:09PM
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The Other John wrote:

OB1 Team RNH - F.S.T.N.F

Ironically enough, maybe they should turn over 35% of their roster with real live NHL bodies because ver the last 5 years the Oiler record is the worst in the league

DEAD LAST

Thanks for the ground breaking news, John.

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#20 Archaeologuy
May 09 2011, 01:27PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

Can't help but feel with an agressive summer this rebuild for the most part can be in the rear veiw mirror. Move up and grab Couturier and start adding support players. Sitting and doing nothing like you suggest is surely making playoff hockey in Edmonton a fantasy the next three years.

Keeping established talent and taking 3 players in the first 31 selections is the surefire way to miss the playoffs for 3 years?

I dont follow.

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#21 DieHard
May 09 2011, 03:15PM
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Unbeknownst to Oiler management, they have actually been rebuilding since they drafted Gagner.

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#22 Archaeologuy
May 09 2011, 04:44PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

Well then lets just sit in this dark musty corner and take whats thrown in our general direction, take what's due to the Oilers. Heaven forbid someone gets off their arse and does something to better the clubs success next season. To sit idly by and accept what you're currently being fed is just pathetic. No ambition and no pride has us where we are today. Screw you guys.

Success next season isnt even the Goal. Success for a Decade is the Goal. Winning the Stanley Cup is the goal. That isnt going to be done without a solid base of talent. The Oilers havent been able to build a talented enough team to Win the Cup through any other means than through the draft in their entire history.

I just finished watching them try to trade for former lotto pick D-Men and make astute moves to get vets. It didnt work. I watched the Oil make RFA Offer sheets, trade for Norris trophy winning D-Men, trade for future 90+ point centres. In the end the Oil never had enough home grown talent to compete. Not in the Weight Era, the Pronger/Peca experiment, or the Nilsson years.

What I'm being fed now is a promise that all that crap is behind me and that the Oilers arent going to look for the quick fix bandaid solution.

I like what I'm being fed now, and what you're suggesting looks a lot like what I was being fed for the last 20 years prior.

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#23 Wax Man Riley
May 09 2011, 05:13PM
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@Archaeologuy

Thank you for being the voice of reason. It's like you went into my head, mined all of my thoughts and put them together better than I could hope to.

The quick fix gets you chasing Penner, Vanek, and Heatly. We have seen that movie. We know how it ends.

They are restocking the cupboards right now because of choices like those. Choices like those have led us to the discussion on this website now.

Trading picks now and current players for higher picks is not the right thing to do. Higher picks aren't going to come in and make immediate impacts on this team. The picks this year will help the team in 2+ years, just as the picks 2+ years ago are helping the team today (or this coming season).

I don't totally disagree with what Quicksliver is saying though. We need some capable veterans to come in and help this team win so that these young players don't get used to losing. It just isn't as easy as "package Gagner and a 19th pick for Bogosian." If it was that easy, every team would do it.

If you were Atlanta would you do it? "Well just throw in Brule to sweeten it." What?? Brule makes the deal WORSE for Atlanta. This isn't NHL'08, where the more players you put in, the little bar goes up a bit more to even the deal out.

"Just sign some good free agents!" Well, sure, but that free agent has to want to sign on a 30th place club that is a frozen wonderland for most of the season. It is hard to find. Which is why we end up with Foster, who is trying to re-start his career, or Steve MacIntyre, who can't sign anywhere else.

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#24 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
May 10 2011, 12:48PM
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madjam wrote:

MacGregors take sounds like Horcoff type of assessment . Yet many don't consider Horcoff a first liner . Will Hopkins be another Horcoff ?

Might be the dumbest thing you've said yet. (and that's high praise)

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Edit: I'm not that kind of guy.

So going by your articles this would seem to be the #1 right now. Question is whether or not the Oil take RNH or if they trade down.

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#26 hark
May 09 2011, 08:17AM
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thanks Robin, great reading material

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#27 kristian
May 09 2011, 09:12AM
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Some want to compare gagner to RNH because of size. The big difference that I see is gagner played on a stacked London team. Gagner wasn't the best player on that team. RNH is the best player for red deer. He's also a player that makes his marginally good team mates look good. I've also read that he has all the tools to help make him a very good player in the NHL. Speed, smarts, skill, and vision. They say if you have two of those you'll be an NHL player and so on.

I agree that we need to get better this off season. We need a couple impact vet players. A faceoff winning centre and another solid dman would help dramatically. If we were a better faceoff team a lot of our deficiencies would be corrected.

One last note on size is todays game is well suited for the smaller player.

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#28 Ca$h-Money!
May 09 2011, 09:57AM
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I don't understand why people (madjam above, but lots of other people) are so keen on Landeskog. Don't get me wrong, I think he'll be good, but I also don't think he has top end talent, instead he has good talent with top end intagibles. He probably won't score as many points as Gagner over the course of his career, but he brings grit and leadership. I'd love to have him on my team, but if you take him before RNH you are crazy. RNH is getting comparables to Sakic and more recently Datsyuk, that is good stuff.

Also, Hall will be the leader of this team, he already shows the kind of fire we need in a captain, so I'm not sure another guy as a future captain is necessary. Lander also projects as a third line guy that will wear a letter on his jersey, so that's two of the three letters locked in. If Whitney is healthy and we keep him long term, he's the guy on the back end wearing an A aswell, so what do we get w/ Landeskog?

MY POINT: Landeskog is good, someone will be quite happy with him, but his UPSIDE is as a 60 point guy who kills penalty's and throws good clean checks. He isn't a first overall selection kind of guy.

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#29 KB
May 09 2011, 10:24AM
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I think this article confirms what many have suspected for a while now, that RNH is the Oilers' guy at #1. I really hope that they don't trade the #1 pick. Do what you can with your other assets to try to move up, but keep the #1 pick...

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#30 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
May 09 2011, 10:25AM
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madjam wrote:

The other 3 i feel , as many do, that they have a more in depth all around game than Hopkins does now . I like Hopkins , but i feel other 3 give us more of what we need at this peticular time . Thus i rank him 4th for Oilers purposes . Hopkins has more red flags around him than the others at this time , and thus a riskier pick . In traffic areas in NHL i have my doubts about whether he can or will be able to handle it at a high level . The others should do well in high traffic areas . Those observations can be readily made without use of figures .

Mind boggling that you still get that you don't draft 18 year olds based on your needs *today*.

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#31 Ducey
May 09 2011, 10:38AM
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Robin,

Is this feeling you have about RNH more or less strong than your feeling that the Oilers were going to take Seguin last year? :-)

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#32 @Oilanderp
May 09 2011, 10:54AM
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First let me say that I believe that the Oil will take RNH first overall and will NOT be packaging picks/players to move up and grab another high end pick. However, I have a strong suspicion that the combine and the interviews that come with it will go a long way to determining how much of the future Tamby and his staff are willing to give up in order to move up and grab another high end pick in addition to RNH. Stu himself thinks Couturier, for example, will be a first line C. If Couturier exhibits that fierce 'compete', that 'god damnit I want to win a Cup more than anything in the world and nothing is going to stop me you bastards' attitude.... I wonder if this will be enough to shake the Oil brass out of their 'slow and steady wins the race' method of rebuilding? I have accepted and am happy the Oilers will draft RNH. As you can see, however, I can't seem to accept letting Couturier slip through our fingers. How much is too much to give up in order to get him too? The combine and interviews will be the deciding factor I think.

P.S. Lowetide has been saying for a while that the combine is important to watch as the Oil drafted 7(?) guys who were invited to it last year. This is not my idea, I'm just thinking it will be the scale-tipping solidification of value and worth at the upcoming draft. If Couturier has the compete, my god we have to get him too don't we?

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#33 Team Hoppy
May 09 2011, 10:55AM
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Think of the marketing possibilities of picking RNH, you turn all of Red Deer into Oil Country, from those godless flames. Alberta beef. Alberta Crude. Red Deer is now Oil Country. Plus, you have a guy who probably wants to stick around this area for life. These are not bad side benefits of the pick. Still picking the bpa, but it has a nice spinoff.

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#34 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
May 09 2011, 11:23AM
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madjam wrote:

And what do you end up with if you don't address your needs today , the 30th place Oilers with even more voids to fill ! Has the last 5 years of not filling voids promply and adequately taught you nothing to date ? Then again maybe we should draft and trade for all players under 6 ft. as some of wise people seem to want to do . I'm sure that will make us more competitive ( tongue in cheek ) ! Not filling all those voids has put where we are at , and keeping us non competitive . If we keep making same mistakes and not filling our voids , we'll still be noncompetitive a decade from now ! Can you imagine Oilers being competitive without even realizing they could/might be bypassing up on the next Messier by passing on some of these bigger talented players ? Give us a Messier type power forward to move forward with , or even a very good dman would be a nice start to .

We don't draft to address our needs *today* because their isnt a single player that is going to come in and fix one of those needs next year... and probably not for another 1-2 years after that.

The needs of this team will likely be very different 3 - 5 years from now, which is when you will likely see the top end game coming out of the guys picked at the top of this years draft class.

Finding size is easy, their will be a pile of big players available this summer via trade/free agency. Finding elite skill is difficult, when you think you have it, you grab it

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#35 fuzzy muppet
May 09 2011, 11:38AM
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Off the top of my head, from what I can remember, not one scouting service had RNH at #1 at the beginning of the year. Mid-term, I think one or two scouting services had him #1. He climbed up the chart based on ONE MONTH of production.

He scored nearly half his goals in that one month. It's not like this has been the #1 runaway guy all year. In a draft that every scout admits lacks a franchise player, you can draft a safer player that fills multiple needs.

#1 OV going to a PP specialist. Yikes.

He was LAST in EV scoring among the lottery guys.

I went back and looked some stuff up. RNH scored 13 of 31 goals(42%) of his goals in the last 18 games. Even more HE SCORED OVER 51% OF HIS GoaLS IN 7 games of the year. 16 goals in seven games. Over half his goal scoring in 7 of 72 games.

SCouts as much as anyone fall into the "seen him good" category.

He scares the SH&T out of me. History states goals are what matter when translating to NHL success. I'm staying clear, but i dont make the picks. I hope he prove me wrong, because if he doesn't, this is a franchise killer.

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#36 hoil
May 09 2011, 11:56AM
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fuzzy muppet wrote:

Off the top of my head, from what I can remember, not one scouting service had RNH at #1 at the beginning of the year. Mid-term, I think one or two scouting services had him #1. He climbed up the chart based on ONE MONTH of production.

He scored nearly half his goals in that one month. It's not like this has been the #1 runaway guy all year. In a draft that every scout admits lacks a franchise player, you can draft a safer player that fills multiple needs.

#1 OV going to a PP specialist. Yikes.

He was LAST in EV scoring among the lottery guys.

I went back and looked some stuff up. RNH scored 13 of 31 goals(42%) of his goals in the last 18 games. Even more HE SCORED OVER 51% OF HIS GoaLS IN 7 games of the year. 16 goals in seven games. Over half his goal scoring in 7 of 72 games.

SCouts as much as anyone fall into the "seen him good" category.

He scares the SH&T out of me. History states goals are what matter when translating to NHL success. I'm staying clear, but i dont make the picks. I hope he prove me wrong, because if he doesn't, this is a franchise killer.

RNH was ranked in the top 3 by pretty much every scouting service before the season started. He was the #1 pick in the WHL bantam draft, so people have been watching the kid for a long time.

He started climbing the rankings well before he blew everyone's doors off in March. His hot finish definitely helped his case, but he didn't appear out of thin air.

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#37 Mantastic
May 09 2011, 12:00PM
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@@Oilanderp

there could be other players with that drive as well, maybe not with couturier's skill set but a drive to be the best. my hope is we get someone like a marc mcneil with the LA pick, he seems to be a kesler type, and could be a stellar addition.

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#38 Mantastic
May 09 2011, 12:17PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

I think this is the only way he can remain an Oiler.

There's two hurdles he has to overcome this summer, that's the Oilers efforts to move up from that 19th spot which will cost something i'm sure, or, for help on the back end, some Bogosian kinda deal. If the Eskimos can turn over 35% of their roster, why can't the Oilers?

because the NHL isn't a 2nd tier league like the CFL?

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#39 Lochenzo
May 09 2011, 12:38PM
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The good news to me is that they know what they want to do with the 1st pick early. They also have the 18th and 31st picks, 2 3rds and the rest of their own picks to worry about. I believe that whom they pick first will affect who they take with the other 1st round pick ie. 1 centre, 1 defence. There need to be a few contingencies revolving around possible trades that may happen on draft day. If anything, the 2nd-1st round pick may be more complex than the 1st overall.

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#40 René Guerra
May 09 2011, 01:18PM
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I may be bucking the trend, but I don't see much value in Brownlee's series. The Magnificent Bastard reveals little (surprise!), and we, the uninformed, are left to speculate creatively. It beats the work day office grind, but lay draft talk is otherwise useless.

No matter who the Oilers draft, a more pressing issue is building a roster that can actually compete. There's a miserably long way to go: http://www.coppernblue.com/2011/5/9/2161930/number-that-may-interest-only-me-oilers-roster-edition-3. Speaking to this seems to me a better waste of our time!

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#41 Wax Man Riley
May 09 2011, 01:46PM
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Team Stu wrote:

Every year the Oilers say they would like to trade up into the top 5, and every year they don't. This year could be different, but if you're a team drafting 5th and staring at Sean Couturier, do you flip that pick away for 19 overall? I doubt it. Will still be a huge draft, with the Oilers having 2 picks in the top 20. They might be able to move up to 10, but I doubt any higher than that.

If "asleep at the wheel" means standing pat on the #1 pick unless an amazing, can't say no deal comes along. Then sleep away dithers, sleep away...

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#42 Archaeologuy
May 09 2011, 02:23PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

If we sit tight like you suggest, the first selection is one year away, correct? The 19th and the 31st are both 2 or 3 yrs away as well,correct?

If the Oilers are going to put success squarely on the shoulders of Hall,Eberle and Paajarvi etc they will certainly fail. The remained of those forwards certainly can't be counted on the provide something that resembles an 70 games season. Staying this course you suggested insures another lottery type season.

Liduidate the 19th,31st as well as available roster players and add another center and get these kids some Ryan Smyth type veteran help. Next time you see one of the last 2 Oil Change episodes, look for Taylor Hall seated on the Oilers bench and tell me you can't see this losing is starting to wear on him already.

Sweet Gawd, man! I am having real trouble following your logic. Although I too am questioning RNH's chance of making the Oil without puting on more weight, we have no idea if he will or not be an Oiler in 2011/12. That he wont make the Oil isnt written in stone.

The Oilers need organizational depth if they want to compete for the Cup perennially. That isnt accomplished by liquidating picks in the top portion of the draft for a few "now" players and veterans.

I'm glad losing is wearing on Hall, maybe he'll step it up even more and carry the team on his back to a few more wins.

Your plan is to panic now and give up the only assets we have that will help us be better in the future in order to acquire players that other GMs deem less valuable than what we're offering.

Another lottery is most certainly a possibility. That shouldnt be shocking. What is shocking though, is how quickly you think the rebuild can be finished.

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#43 Dman09
May 09 2011, 02:31PM
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@Archaeologuy

Actually it is written in stone or DNA as it were. No matter what as you grow older muscle and bone matter continues to grown and become more dense. So he will put on wieght no matter what as everyone does. There are exceptions, malnutruition and some genetic disorders that can prevent it.

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#44 Archaeologuy
May 09 2011, 03:00PM
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@Quicksilver ballet

They've only been actively rebuilding for about a year and a half. I wouldnt call that "Infinite". And something tells me that trading current roster players and picks for young and talented players that can help the Oilers for years to come is NOT 10 minutes of work. If acquiring top 5 picks was easy then the Red Wings would have figured out how to do it long before you have. I'm inclined to believe that it is much more difficult than you have suggested.

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#45 Quicksilver ballet
May 09 2011, 04:55PM
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@Archaeologuy

I didn't say we needed to win the cup next yr, is it too much to ask to finish within a dozen points of a playoff spot next year.....you certainly are passionate.

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#46 Archaeologuy
May 09 2011, 05:00PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

I didn't say we needed to win the cup next yr, is it too much to ask to finish within a dozen points of a playoff spot next year.....you certainly are passionate.

Why thank you for sinking low enough to name-call. I feel as if my day isnt complete until someone's argument is so thoroughly crushed that they resort to calling me names.

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#47 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
May 09 2011, 07:07PM
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I don't know why any talk of improving the team next year is always met with so much venom around here.

Their has to be a happy medium met somewhere in here "sucking really bad and hoping like hell we draft a superstar" isn't going to build championship teams.

I know everyone likes to run and point to a handful of teams with the "look look!! They drafted high and won the Cup!!" looking a little closer then just the top 2-3 players will quickly show you their was alot more to those teams then simply 2-3 lottery picks.

The time is now to look to add a couple high end support pieces, the team ins't going to be able to flick a switch and go from 30th to cup in 2-3 years, we're going to need to make baby steps... lets start making them now.

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#48 Cooper
May 09 2011, 07:56AM
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Great, so with RNH, both Cogs and Gags have to be moved in 2-3 years depending on what RNH timeline is to the NHL (see Kyle Turris).

Tambi needs to move Gags and his 31st to move into a top 6 and grab Dougie Hamilton

OR

Gags and the 19th Pick and move into a top 4 position to grab Larsson.

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#49 fuck off
May 09 2011, 08:04AM
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@Cooper

You're almost right: they move up to grab Couturier, not Larsson. Top 3 are going to be RNH, Larrson and Landeskog. Couturier could slide a little but not much beyound 4th-6th.

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#50 Sheldon "Oilers Fan for Life!!!"
May 09 2011, 08:05AM
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I have no Question in my mind that they have to take this guy. If he blossoms in to someone able to dish a pass OR score he will indeed drive the other teams nuts. #99 was always a double threat and that is what made him so dangerous if RNH puts up half the Numbers #99 did we would be so thrilled. Then to have Hall and Eberle as well all I can say is look out in 2-3 years. Yes there are many other holes but we will find those guys. I really hope we fill some holes in free agent land this summer. I don't need a super star but some good solid players. I really agree with "Grapes on HNIC" when he told the Oilers not to let these guys get used to loosing. HOPE may be important but it will only work if they all have hope, real hope.

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