June 16 2016 05:00AM
At 15th in the Nation Network draft rankings we have one of the most interesting prospects of the 2016 class, Logan Brown.
Brown's upside is obvious: he's a 6'6 centre who put up 74 points in 59 games in the OHL this season. On paper, he sounds like a certain top-ten pick. But he has been dogged by questions of consistency, effort, and play away from the puck. Some of those issues were addressed over the course of the season, and Brown shot upwards in many draft rankings as a result.
The possibility of drafting a big number one centre outside of the top five won't be taken lightly by teams. But will GM's be eager to use valuable early first-round picks on a player with Brown's question marks? He might have the most uncertainty of any first-rounder in this draft -- he could feasibly be drafted anywhere between the number 6 and number 20 slots.
June 15 2016 10:00PM
Though Julien Gauthier entered this season hot off the heels of a point-plus-per-game rookie season in the QMJHL and a presumptive spot in the top ten of this year's entry draft, his star has fallen to the middle of the first-round by most accounts. The Nation Network's consensus aligns closely with that assessment, as Gauthier checks in at 16th by our reckoning.
Part of the trepidation is production related. Though Gauthier had shown proficiency as a playmaker in his two QMJHL seasons prior, he was infamously dubbed this year's Cy Young winner for his lofty imbalance of goals to assists, with his 41 goals met by a paltry 16 helpers. Given that Gauthier posted a 38 goal, 35 assist season the year prior, that represents a sizeable step back no matter the context.
Gauthier's physical toolkit is rivalled by few in this class, though, and that's what's kept him in the conversation as a high first-round selection. His combination of size, speed, power and offensive instincts make him a handful for defenders -- more often than not they're left in his wake or bowled over entirely. We'll try to make sense of the disconnect between his tools and production as we break down Gauthier and his long-term prospects of developing into a bona fide NHL forward.
June 15 2016 03:38PM
The Edmonton Oilers have a pretty obvious need for a third-line centre. They also have a need throughout the lineup for right-shooting skaters, and up front it would be best if those players could also provide enough offence to play a role on the power play.
There aren’t a lot of players in free agency who can check off those boxes, but former Oiler Sam Gagner is one of the few who might. In this week’s edition of What Would You Do Wednesday, we ask readers whether they would entertain the notion of bringing Gagner back to Edmonton.
June 15 2016 11:12AM
The Edmonton Oilers would make the playoffs for the third straight season in 1998-99, but that seemed like a sidebar after an off-season of drama and upheaval that saw the team change hands as the Edmonton Investors Group took over ownership of the team from Peter Pocklington.
June 15 2016 07:00AM
You've seen him on billboards and you've invited his sweet siren song into your ear holes, and today you will learn about the time that I had a sit down with Ryder from Hot 107. Here's part of our conversation.