The 2010 Entry Draft is struggling. Once heralded by many (well, me) as a possible Oilers watershed, the 2010 edition of "Dollar Sign on the Muscle" has given the Oilers 1 NHL player. How about the rest of the league? 

There were 210 players chosen in the 2010 entry draft, 44 of those have played at least one NHL game. That’s 21% success rate after 3 seasons have elapsed, and the average for each player is 46, 8-11-19. Here are the 2010 draftees who are above 100 NHL games so far:

  1. Tyler Seguin 206, 58-68-126
  2. Cam Fowler 199, 16-65-81
  3. Alexander Burmistrov 194, 23-35-58
  4. Jeff Skinner 193, 65-72-137
  5. Taylor Hall 175, 66-82-148
  6. Ryan Johansen 110, 14-20-34
  7. Justin Faulk 109, 13-28-41
  8. Erik Gudbranson 109, 2-10-12

That doesn’t strike me as a terrifying list so far, although Hall, Seguin, Skinner and Falk are top drawer young NHL players. How does the 2010 Entry draft compare to recent seasons?


  1. 2007: 89 players, averaging 101 NHL GP
  2. 2008: 96 players, averaging 87 NHL GP
  3. 2009: 79 players, averaging 66 NHL GP
  4. 2010: 44 players, averaging 46 NHL GP
  5. 2011: 27 players, averaging 35 NHL GP

Among the 2009 picks, only Jamie Devane and Michael Latta have made their NHL debut this year, meaning that 77 picks from 2009 played in the NHL during the period 09-10 through 12-13. The 2010 draft is flagging, especially considering that Michael Bournival, Joakim Nordstrom and Jesper Fest have debuted this season and are included in the totals above. It’s a long way from being decided, but by eye the 2007 and 2010 drafts seem to be subpar using this metric. 


Oilers 2010 draft:

  • #1 Taylor Hall: Home run. 
  • #31 Tyler Pitlick: No NHL games yet, some spark of promise late last season married to a strong camp and first Oklahoma weekend have us hopeful but not blind. A long way to go. 
  • #46 Martin Marincin: On track as a legit NHL prospect, he should be considered good value for the price and I suspect we’ll see him in the NHL this or early next year. 
  • #48 Curtis Hamilton: Injuries have derailed his career and time is running out. This season will be a strong test for him, opportunity is there but results matter. 
  • #61 Ryan Martindale: Played well in weekend one (source: Eric Rodgers, Tend the Farm) and like Pitlick there’s a little more buzz than one year ago. 
  • #91 Jeremie Blain: Oilers did not sign him, he’s played in the ECHL and AHL since turning pro.
  • #121 Tyler Bunz: Chaotic first year pro in 2012-13, he’ll need to be much better to get back on track. 
  • #162 Brandon Davidson: The big surprise from the bottom of the draft, Davidson got a recall before any on the list but Hall. Still some distance to go, but the organization likes him and he’s progressing. 
  • #166 Drew Czerwonka: Lost any hope of a pro career to injuries. 
  • #181 Kristians Pelss: A sad story we’re still recovering from. 
  • #202 Kellen Jones: Continuing his NCAA career, we don’t hear much about him. 

From the group outside the NHL, I would put Marincin in a group of very promising players yet to play in the NHL (this would include names like Jack Campbell, Brandon Gormley, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Derek Forbort and Jon Merrill, among others). The rest are in a pile of young men trying to cobble together some momentum and move up the depth chart–Pitlick has some traction, Hamilton none at all. 


Even taking into consideration that the 2010 draft was not a strong year, the Oilers at this point appear to have missed on three of their four higher picks (Pitlick, Hamilton, Martindale) with Hall (#1 overall) and Marincin to show for the big part of the draft. 

No watershed here, and this fall Dallas Eakins didn’t choose any of them for his hockey team. Jobs that went to Gazdic, Acton, Arcobello and Ryan Hamilton were won easily over the men taken high in the 2010 draft. 

This is their time, and we hear crickets. A year from now, we won’t bother to ask. 

  • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

    I still think that if Marincin and one of Pitlick or Davidson become players then we will have done alright. Maybe not as well as we would have liked but considering the rest of the league’s results from that year, not too bad. I thought that draft was going to be a strong one league wide but it doesn’t look that way right now. Sometimes a respective draft class’ strength can be hard to assess.

    • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

      When you say “become players”…..what do you mean? Was Hartikannen a player? Is Lander a player? Arcobello ? Larsen? Etc

      Is the threshold playing 100 games in the NHL? 100 games seems like a very low threshold for me.

      Is having an NHL career the threshold? Cam Barker had an NHL carreer.

      If being a GOOD NHL player for 5 or more seasons is the threshold, we’ d be lucky if one of the three players you mention makes the threshold. IMO

      • Romulus' Apotheosis

        I think you have to put this into the context that mid-to-late rounders rarely carve out pro careers. To even establish oneself as a career AHLer out of a late round is an accomplishment on the individual level (i.e., for the player).

        Playing 100 games is a pretty high bar for a lot of tweeners to cover. That said, LT and others typically use 200 gps for forwards as a rough line in the sand for the moniker: “nhl player”

        That doesn’t mean that player was amazing. It just means they managed to play in the world’s best league for a considerable time.

        (NB: all the caveats apply, ie., playing on a bad team is easier; even some good teams will have a weak spot on their depth charts; some players get elevated for longish periods for “intangibles” etc.

        the point of the line in the sand is to give a general indication not a particular assessment).

        • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

          Yeah…I get you Rom, but I think that when the average fan/person hears the term “becomes a player”…..where the term has a positive connotation, they are thinking of a player who plays more than 100 games or perhaps more than two hundred games, and has some impact while doing so.

          In the questions above, I was just trying to understand Dog Trains view / definition of “becoming a player”

          I get that “success” is relative term, relative to draft position etc.

          But I just think its a reach for the average fan to consider a player a success if he doesn’t have some kind of NHL career that extends beyond 2 seasons.

          I for one, and it’s just my way of looking at things (it’s neither right or wrong), don’t place much value on players that wash out after a season or two. As a result, I don’t think I get as excited about some of these prospects as others do. So to me it appears that they tend to get over-hyped, which can lead to a somewhat skewed perception of the prospect pipeline….and a lot of let downs.

          Whereas first and second rounders seem to turn out in high enough percentages to make following them, and making predictions regarding the arc of their careers, more meaningful/interesting.

  • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

    LT. What do you think of Arcobello. He seems to be taking advantage of his opportunity. May be earning himself a spot in the NHL…if not with us then perhaps some other team?

    • Lowetide

      Well he’s done well with the opportunity and I wonder if the club keeps him around even after Gagner returns. Joanne Ireland is reporting that the Oilers told Acton to find a place in Edmonton so he’s home and dry.

      I’m not sure what that means for Arcobello, but it’s bad news for Lander–at least this season.

      • John Chambers

        If Ireland is reporting Acton is to get a place, that is pretty sad. No ill will towards Acton, but a 6 minute a night guy should not have job security. He’s basically the Oilers Petrell this year. 🙁 for the Oilers faithful.

  • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

    Anyone noticed how well guys like Brad Boyes and Mason Raymond have played this season. Discounted quality players, but we have Gadzik and Brown. Tom Gilbert has been solid in Florida, played 21 minutes last night. Wonder what Schultz would look like if we played him 21 minutes. Stupid trade.

    Lots of quality free agents with low tickets playing well in other places, while Jones is toiling in OKC for 1.5, and Grebeshkov should hopefully stay there too. Great off season by our rookie GM.

    • Stud Muffin

      I don’t understand. You listed boyes and Raymond. Yes they have cheap contracts, but what makes u think they wanna come to edmonton, given there is no room in the top 6 for them? Both plays LW, although they listed boyes as RW as well. Do u expect him to play behind ebs, hemsky and yak on the 4th line? On the left hand side, we have hall and Perron, sure we can put them as 3lw, but do they wanna play there? Boyes getting second line mins now.

      • Stud Muffin

        At the time Hemsky was not suppose to be here, so your argument is correct and so is mine. He could of played 2/3rd line. Granted Boyes in FLorida pays a lot less tax, we could of we would of had to pay more. Raymond plays on a deeper team then Edmonton for 1 million. Guy is from Alberta if I am not mistaken. This non-signing stings. Way better player then Jones.

        Really my point is better players were out there for less money, when you miss or ignore one, so what. We missed like 6-7 players. I don’t feel like going through cap geek to substantiate my point. I’d rather take skill players on my bottom lines cause knuckledraggers sending a message is a debatable argument. Having a useless fourth line and the general lack of veteran depth in the bottom six was a problem last year, and is starting to rear its ugly head again.

  • John Chambers

    Still some excellent talent that will mature from the 2010 draft.

    Tarasenko should put up 50 pts this year, while Granlund had great numbers in all leagues until he arrived at the pro’s last season. Kuznetsov may be the best player outside the NHL.

    But man was ever worth it for Hemsky to get hurt that year to allow us to tank. We’d be a sore and miserable lot of we had Brett Connolly and not Taylor Hall as our top pick from that draft.

  • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

    Won “easily” over Pitlick? Not sure that’s a true statement. Win they did, however. At least at this particular junction.

    Gazdic hits and fights. Pitlick doesn’t fight.

    Acton plays center. Pitlick hasn’t played the position much recently aside from one game there last weekend where he scored a nice goal on the pk. A center (two if you’re counting) were/is needed.

    Arcobello is another center and, yes, he has more offensive upside. He does hit, but his hits are nowhere near as effective as Pitlick’s. Ganger stays healthy and Arco likely starts down on the farm.

    The argument is still out as to whether Arco is built to play bottom six minutes.

    Hamilton? He brings better AHL totals but I didn’t see anything that would suggest he won “easily” over Pitlick. In fact, I would wonder if his familiarity to the coach helped his cause. He’s also a lower cap hit. They all are…

    Pitlick is playing third line minutes right now. Not sure that’s the best position for him to be in, but he seems to be playing well regardless. This weekend if he pushes it he could change his fortune.

    IMO Pitlick is more of an NHL player then all of the above, but that’s just what I see.

    Eventually he’ll make it hard on the brass to not call him up. If he hasn’t already.

  • Stud Muffin

    A better metric would have been to compare each years status at the the three year point. I don’t know if the data exists to calculate that metric, however.

  • Admiral Ackbar

    I certainly get the idea that the Oilers management and fanbase has delusioned themselves into thinking that the only way to think of the draft is with ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ picks.

    Truly the Oil have been drafting promising talent for years but have failed to nurture and develop these players into NHL journeymen/stars. I still believe that the culprit is organization. The scouting staff is suspect but sooner or later after drafting for so long and only producing a handful of NHL players has to make one wonder.

    I hope that our youth develops a little faster than what we’ve seen. Calgary’s undefeated record is going to give me an aneurysm besides Montreal’s jump to a division title last year.

  • D


    From a purely business perspective, would you agree that having the number 1 pick in a bad draft year (when your pick is a home run and competitors’ picks are a bust) is preferable to having the number 1 pick in a deep draft year?

    I’m happy we have Taylor Hall from 2010 rather than, say, MA Fleury from 2004.