LEON

leon11

The Edmonton Oilers may have a decision to make after all at this year’s entry draft. Aaron Ekblad may still be their choice, but a big German center who plays for Prince Albert is going to make the decision difficult.

matty twitter

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Earlier in the month, Jim Matheson posted this on twitter, and I’ve been wondering about it ever since. Matheson is a connected newspaper guy and those connections run deep. So, let’s assume that the tweet comes from somewhere credible and there’s a chance Edmonton takes Draisaitl in front of Reinhart.

Is there a reason we can find? Why would Reinhart be behind the other two prospects, or Sam Bennett for that matter?

SCORING BY DISCIPLINE: EVENS

top 3f at evens

We’ll take a look at Ekblad (and compare him to last year’s blue) in an upcoming post. For now, let’s have a look at the three center’s at the top of this year’s draft. This is very close, and each of these players posted strong seasons in the season leading up to their draft. 

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SIZE

The Oilers (according to Matty) value Draisaitl more than Reinhart and Bennett. From the scouting reports, we know the following about these players:

  • Reinhart is 6.01, 183 according to the WHL website
  • Bennett is 6.0, 181 according to the OHL website.
  • Draisaitl is 6.01, 209 according to the WHL website.

So, if we’re looking for things that make Draisaitl stand out the extra 25 pounds stands out. Fair?

SCORING BY DISCIPLINE: POWER PLAY

TOP 3F ON PP

With the man advantage, Reinhart and Draisaitl appear to be very close. The two teams are similar offensively, so without knowing time on ice I’d have to assume the two men are equal offensive talents. Bennett doesn’t have the kind of boxcars Reinhart and Draisaitl do, but opportunity may have a lot to do with it.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

good grief

The smart money is on Edmonton taking Aaron Ekblad. With the emergence of Leon Draisaitl as a viable option, I think there’s a chance the Oilers choose the big center instead. MacT would have to get a veteran center to bridge the time between Leon’s draft and NHL debut, but ‘building up the middle’ can be satisfied by selecting the Deutschland Dangler.

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  • TayLordBalls

    The last few games have been for player evaluations.

    The Oilers took their number 1 draft pick (Hall) and leading scorer the season before, then tried to turn him into a centre. That was a poor decision and the start of all the kaos to follow.

    Well nows the time to try something different.

    Coach:

    If Yak would agree, why not let him try centre? He has the smarts, abilities, drive, weight and size.

    That test would tell the team what they need further into the draft.

  • The Real Scuba Steve

    Still think they should it trade with a player for some NHL talent to fill the holes on the team. Drafting another young kid makings me think we will have another season like this next year.

  • Would Anaheim trade their 7th overall pick for Sam Gagner?

    They’ll go hard after Kesler this off season but I believe the Nucks trade Kesler to Toronto this off season.

    Nucks have shown an unwillingness to trade within the division.

    Anaheim will have the 7th and probably the 27th pick overall this year. They have Etem and DPS waiting in the wings.

  • I should ad that the Oilers reputedly took Yak because of Katz meddling.

    If that phenomenon still exists I don’t see how the Oilers pass on Sammy….. he’s just so damn cute. ;)) and that schooling of the Hitmen…. good grief.

  • Big Cap

    firstly, the Professional is a fantastic movie. like really good.

    second, can you not write a similar focused post next year on draft picks, please. much appreciated. i’d rather not know anything about the top 3.

    IF they keep the pick, Ekblad.

  • The Last Big Bear

    A pick is always worth more than the player you choose with that pick (at least for the year or two after the draft).

    The Oilers need a #1 defenceman.

    They need to start calling up crappy teams, and offering them REAL assets (ie 1st rounders, “untouchable” forwards) for their best defencemen.

    Winnipeg has Byfuglien, Calgary has Giordano (but you can’t have him), I can think of anyone in Nashville that Oilers fans would be interested in … … but you get the point.

    Find a crappy team who has a good defenceman and needs young assets to rebuild.

    “They” say that the team that gets the best player wins the trade, but that’s bogus. If your team gets better, you won the trade.

    Back in the day, the Flames traded Brett freakin Hull (in the middle of his breakout season), to get a backup goalie and shore up on defence. That trade won them the Stanley Cup. Because they needed a backup and a good defenceman more than they needed another 50-goal kid.

    The Oilers get better now, and for next 5-7 years, by adding a 28-30 year old stud defenceman, even if it costs them Hall and/or a top-3 pick.

    Picking a centreman who will start contributing 5 years from now is just silly at this point in time. But who are we kidding? Whoever the Oilers draft will be thrown into hard minutes in the NHL by the time they’re 19, ready or not.

  • HardBoiledOil 1.0

    the Oilers are really in a good position here. likely to draft in the top 3, if they don’t trade the pick, having Draisaitl, Reinhart or Ekblad there for the taking is a real gift, after the Sabres likely pick *fist* overall. personally, for the Oilers needs, i’d rank them 1.Ekblad, 2.Draisaitl, 3.Reinhart.