One of the things that kind of irks me about Oiler fans when discussing the draft and procurement is that there’s no real attempt to compare one team to another. Oiler fans know about their prospects and Leafs fans their kids, but does anyone really know ALL of the draft picks well enough to give you an accurate idea about how well each team is doing at the draft table. Beyond that, we have to deal with the impact of development—how are these young men brought along.
With that in mind, today’s post is the first of several that will attempt to shed some light on a specific draft year, and to compare the Oilers to another team who took players at a similar point in the draft. Idea being: how well is a draft year developing compared to another team’s crop?
TAYLOR HALL VERSUS TYLER SEGUIN
Hall (201, 78-97-175 .870) is ahead of Seguin (235, 74-82-156 .663) and I have no hesitation whatsoever in naming Hall the superior player. Per 82gp, Hall is ahead in points 71-54 and that’s significant—even at this early date. I also understand those who say we should wait for a longer period—I feel that way about the entire 2010 draft—and am certainly willing to do so a year from now (at the 5 year anniversary of the 2010 entry draft). Decision: Edmonton
TYLER PITLICK VERSUS JARED KNIGHT
Pitlick (3, 1-0-1) has played in the NHL, Knight awaits his first time in the show. In the AHL, both have struggled to post offensive numbers (Pitlick: 116, 11-25-36 .310 and Knight 39, 4-14-18 .462) and I would suggest neither player is considered among each team’s top 10 prospects at this time. One of them may have a career, but it would be impossible to identify that player from here. Decision: tie
MARTIN MARINCIN VERSUS RYAN SPOONER
It’s funny, the gems of the draft (outside round 1) were taken 45-46 (Spooner going 45) in the middle of round two. Spooner (NHL: 11, 0-3-3) and Marincin (NHL: 2, 0-0-0) have already made it to the big leagues and could be regulars in a year or so for their respective teams. It is difficult to compare numbers for D to F, but Spooner is a point per game man in the AHL and Marincin has some nice boxcars (98, 10-28-38) too. I can’t really say with conviction that Spooner is superior as a prospect, but Corey Pronman has him as the #1 Bruin prospect and has ranked Marincin as the Oilers #3 prospect. Decision: Boston
THE REST: BOSTON
- Craig Cunningham has already played in the NHL (1, 0-0-0) and his AHL numbers (178, 54-42-96 .539) suggest he might have an NHL future in a checking role. He’s described as an undersized forward who lacks a physical dimension (Hockey News).
- Justin Florek (106, 18-26-44 .415) is down the depth chart but his boxcars aren’t terrible. 6.04, 194.
- Zane Gothberg has been between .917 and .920 since coming to NCAA. I’d guess a long shot but that’s a good number.
- Maxim Chudinov who is a KHL defenseman who is clearly a regular and posts some boxcars.
- Zach Trotman is a big AHL defenseman who looks like he has some skill.
THE REST: EDMONTON
- Curtis Hamilton has had a difficult minor league career so far. I don’t think he’s done enough to get a second contract.
- Ryan Martindale (70, 7-14-21 .300) has been injury prone and like Hamilton and Pitlick hasn’t been able to get the minutes in OKC.
- Tyler Bunz has been kicking it around in the minors since turning pro, there’s no real resume just a series of lines on a page.
- Brandon Davidson has progressed since turning pro and was called up earlier this year. Still a long shot.
- Kellen Jones is having a terrific season in the NCAA, nobody ever talks about him. Ever.
WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?
- BEST PLAYER: TAYLOR HALL
- SECOND BEST PLAYER: TYLER SEGUIN
- THIRD BEST PLAYER: RYAN SPOONER
Overall, I don’t think we can say one team has a clear cut edge. I’m certainly not convinced the trio of Seguin-Spooner-Knight is superior to Hall-Marincin-Pitlick. Unless Gothberg or Martindale emerge as useful players, or another of these kids makes a giant leap, that’s the contest right there (those 6 men) for the 2010 draft.
- BOSTON BOXCARS: 248, 74-85-159 (.641) from three players
- EDMONTON BOXCARS: 206, 79-97-176 (.854) from three players