THE 2014 DRAFT (OILERS)

draisaitl draft board

The Edmonton Oilers flew in to PHL with a small list of needs and one target. Result: They covered all bases. Big franchise center? Check. Goalies of the future? Check. A bunch of men who they don’t need to sign in two years? Check and mate.

draisaitl page tsn

I expect we’ll hear that Leon Draisaitl has been signed by the Oilers any day now. The timing of his selection (Friday) and Sam Gagner’s trade (Sunday) combined with the crickets we’ve heard since suggests the die was cast by the time Craig MacTavish hit the main stage at the draft.

Red Line: Huge German centre is tenacious in puck
pursuit with his relentless forecheck often creating chances for
linemates. Dominates the game down low with outstanding puck protection.
Constantly outthinks the opposition and knows where his outlets are at
all times. Has learned to use his size to carve out space for himself
and effectively separate opponents from the puck. Strong hockey sense in
all three zones leads to good positioning. Traditional playmaking
centre finds ‘mates with crisp, accurate passes. Intelligent, two-way,
classically schooled centre. Outshone Reinhart in head-to-head action
against Kootenay.

I’d bet the Oilers’ scouting database has dozens of reports on Draisaitl, maybe as many as they had on the Nuge. Offensively, NHL equivalencies suggests the big German is on par with the Boy from Burnaby, and I believe we’ll get a long look at Leon this fall in Edmonton. Jason Gregor reported this week he’s at 215 pounds, which makes him Arnott the great.

arnott2

Our man Leon is something else. Already.

lagesson

The “flow” has a nice story to tell and a range of skills. I don’t think we’re looking at a puck moving expert here, but he can handle himself offensively and defensively.

International Scouting Services

  • Lagesson shows traits of a good two-way defender with some intrigue in
    the offensive zone as he displayed flashes of a big shot. Good mobility,
    foot speed and overall skating ability for a defenseman of his size.
    Good presence on the offensive  point, great shot that he is able to get
    through traffic and keeps it fairly low to the ground. Good release,
    doesn’t need a full wind-up to get pucks off. Physicality should be a
    bigger facet to his game to give him that defensive upside and promise
    that he shows on the puck. William shows a good basis for the two-way
    game with a good shot and mobility when running the offensive point.
    Upside remains at the raw stage, project type.
  • ISS Scout S.Cocker: “Strong two-way defender who does everything well. Competes in his own zone and shows good battle and a strong stick”.

  • ISS Scout O.Lahdesmaki: “Bit slow with the puck at
    times, while challenged under pressure. Smart and effective defensively.
    Not flashy, but has enough frame, hockey sense, which make him
    mid-rounds talent for the NHL Draft”.

  • At the Ivan Hlinka Memorial tournament in 2013, Lagesson had two points (1-1-2) in four games for the Sweden Under-18 team.

pronman lagesson

nagelvoort player card

  • The Hockey Writers:
    Nagelvoort adds some size to Oilers future goaltending hopefuls with a
    6’2 190lbs frame. He had a great season for Michigan where he held a
    2.20GAA and 0.929SV%. But the most impressive stat might be a 63-save
    performance in March against Penn State
    that holds as the new record for most saves by a Wolverines goaltender.
    He’s been passed over in two drafts already and was in his last year of
    eligibility which may have more to do with a lack of exposure having
    spent the last three seasons prior in the NAHL. Nagelvoort is a project
    like Lagesson and the Oilers may get exposed for reaching with this
    pick. They’ve been off the mark alot on goaltenders in recent drafts and
    it’s still early to see what they have in the 20-year-old. He projects
    to stay in college for another season or two before turning pro.
  • Nagelvoort on how he found out the Oilers drafted him: “I actually got a text from my Mom.”
  • Nagelvoort on being drafted by Edmonton: “I’m ecstatic. Obviously, it’s a dream come true.
    Edmonton is one of the teams that I had spoken with and I thought there
    was a possibility that they’d be calling my name. I’m really excited to
    be part of their organization.”

I’ve learned over the years that first blush on a draft day can sometimes lead us to crazy conclusions. A strange name and a lack of draft pedigree might lead us to believe Nagelvoort is a wasted pick. However, that .929 save percentage is something else. No guarantees, but this is an interesting player.

  • Kirk Luedeke, 2013: Simply put, we love this kid (Liam Coughlin)
    who is unranked by Central. In fact, we think his name should come up a
    whole lot more in draft discussions given his 6-foot-3 frame and scoring
    touch. As it stands, we wouldn’t be shocked to see an NHL team with an
    entrenched New England presence grab him in the final rounds. Coughlin
    is a winner; the USHL’s Clark Cup champion Dubuque Fighting Saints
    agree, taking him 30th overall in that league’s draft.”
  • Trevor Timmons (Habs scouting director) had him on the radar in 2013 (article here). “He’s my sleeper. He’s a strong, aggressive player. He’s
    been playing a lower level, but our Boston scout (Bill Berglund)
    recommended him.”

vesel2

  • Stu MacGregor: “He’s a scorer. He had a tremendous year and he’ll be
    going to Nebraska-Omaha where Dean Blais is a competitive coach who
    develops players.”
  • Vesel on being drafted by the Oilers: “It feels good to be drafted by Edmonton. They have a lot
    of young, skilled forwards. I’m very excited for my future.”
  • Bruce McCurdy, Cult of Hockey:To summarize: not big, not fast, not gritty, not young. But he can
    score; three straight seasons of 70+ points in 50-ish games clearly
    indicate the guy has more than a clue of what to do around the net. Low
    penalty minutes totals, sounds like he’s the Jordan Eberle Of The USHL.
    How that might translate to higher leagues is very much an open
    question.

Source.

bouchard player card

  • Stu MacGregor: “It’s always difficult with
    goaltenders when they don’t play a lot but we had an eye on him from the
    previous year and I happened to be at a game this season where he did
    play and had a period at the Memorial Cup. He’s a guy with potential.
    He’s very fit and strong and he’s willing to put in the work. Freddie
    Chabot and Sylvain Rodrique (goalie coaches) know him really well and
    have worked with him.”
  • More MacGregor: We had a bit of an eye on him from the previous year, and I just
    happened to be at a game that he did play, and he did get a period at
    the Memorial Cup that I was there at. He’s a guy with potential … he’s
    very fit, he’s very strong, so he’s willing to put in the work to get
    better. Freddy Chabot and Sylvain Rodrigue know him really well, so that
    helps. They’ve been involved with him, and they used that experience to
    [advise] that he’d be a prospect.
  • Sorensenator

    LT, what are your thoughts on us filling the power forward role? Given…

    Vancouver – Virtanen

    Anaheim – Ritchie

    Phoenix – Perlinni

    Minnesota – Tuch

    Even Calgary tried to compensate with Smith in second round.

    Here’s hoping we don’t get a trend in the West of big nasty teams winning regularly.

    • Lowetide

      Virtanen—Love him. Physical, great shot, I think he’s an outstanding prospect.

      Ritchie—Huge player, I don’t see him being an offensive stalwart, more of a complementary player.

      Perlini—His even-strength scoring isn’t top flight, I think he’s more of a two-way winger than a scorer.

      Tuch—Power forward, his offense will tell us where he plays.

    • HardBoiledOil 1.0

      and the Oilers took big Leon Draisaitl, so we all got our big players, so it evens out. Calgary not only took big Hunter Smith as well, but also large Austin Carroll from the Victoria Royals who had 34 goals and 114 PM’s. (i wish we could have snagged him first!). the Flames also have tough Emile Portier in the system from last year’s draft….has size and a scoring touch to go with his toughness. and San Jose also took pest-like Swiss player Noah Rod as well as big and tough Alex Schoenborn.

      it certainly seems like the Western Conference teams continue to load up with some size, but let’s not forget the Oilers have plenty of size coming down the pipeline shortly in Moroz, Khaira, John McCarron, Yakimov and Chase up front as well as big d-men like Nurse, Musil, Gernat, Klefbom and Davidson so i’m not overly concerned about whether or not we have enough size in the system to keep up with other teams in our conference.

      • HardBoiledOil 1.0

        Draisaitl is puck protection, not grit in top six.

        Oil are a further step behind with this draft measuring on the grit scale. Grit isn’t everything, unless you are too far behind.

        Yes, we at least have some bigger bodies in system with possible edge but no signs of a top six.

        Poirier and Chase are middleweights.

  • Sorensenator

    Lets hope Draisaitl can be what we hoped Arnott would do HERE. Different types of players but I bet Drizzy puts up similar point totals throughout his career..all hopefully with tbe Oil.
    I do wonder though what Arnold the Great is up to these days…would probably be a good fit somewhere in the org

  • Sorensenator

    The Oilers went into the draft with lots of needs.

    The Oilers prospect pool:

    Weaknesses: The Oilers’ wing position is lacking depth and the forward group as a whole needs higher end talent.

    Edmonton’s goaltending prospects have improved with the addition of Laurent Brossoit but still need more starting caliber talent.

    The Oilers also lack defensive prospects of note on the right side.

    I am not sure how good a job they did filling needs. The draft should be to fill the prospect pool, not the NHL roster. Adding Leon adds a high quality centre to the mix, but the forward pool is still very weak. They still have no right shot defenders. They added two goalies of random abilities, so one could argue they made some progress there.

    • Joy S. Lee

      Arnott was still young when he was run out of town by the local fans. Your recollection of the player is different from mine as I recall him as one of those big,strong centers that we would kill for sometime this decade.

      As a side note – one of the hockey ops guys that I knew who had been with the team during those years thought that it was a crying shame that the fans (with help from the media) had run him out of town.

      He thought he was a good hockey player and an even better person. He also said that Arnott was very gracious and respectful to everyone from the towel boys on up.

      Same fellow wondered aloud why the fans and media had such a hate on for a kid like Arnott yet a guy like Bucky was universally adored around here.

      • Sorensenator

        I thought he became a good player later in his career, whether that was going to happen in Edmonton who knows, but as an Oiler fan back then I was glad he was traded.

      • Joy S. Lee

        I remember something else, and I think it was the last (playoff?) run before Arnott was dealt.

        Arnott absolutely, unequivocally, purposefully… quit, when the team needed him most. Quit trying, quit playing. He forced the Oilers to trade him. There are many factors that play into things, but I hated him for that.

  • The Last Big Bear

    The fans ran Arnott out of town because they believed in their management at the time. Now us fans are trying to run Lowe and company out of town with no luck with last place finishes on a year out basis. This organization to me has turned its back on the fans.

  • Sorensenator

    The fans ran Arnott out of town because they believed in their management at the time. Now us fans are trying to run Lowe and company out of town with no luck with last place finishes on a year out basis. This organization to me has turned its back on the fans.

  • Sorensenator

    The fans ran Arnott out of town because they believed in their management at the time. Now us fans are trying to run Lowe and company out of town with no luck with last place finishes on a year out basis. This organization to me has turned its back on the fans.

    • Sorensenator

      Explain how the organization has turned their back on the fans. Do you not think Mac T has legitimately tried to improve the team?

      Shea Weber isn’t coming to save the day, in fact no teams are giving up their top pairing defensemen, even for Taylor Hall.

      Kevin Lowe is just a scapegoat, nothing more. If he were to get hit by a bus tomorrow, Mac T would continue in the same direction which is improving this team.

      • The Last Big Bear

        I personally don’t want Lowe removed because I think it will help going forward. I want Lowe removed because we were in the position to have to rebuild in the first place. The way the rebuild has turned out is just all the more reason to remove him.

      • HardBoiledOil 1.0

        fans need to give MacT some credit here. he’s a smart man and he has a very good grasp on the fans opinions and judging by the moves he’s made, seems to agree with some of the moves the fans have been crying for (such as improving goaltending as an example). maybe he was given the job without due process (and we still don’t really know this to be an actual fact), but i like the moves he has made so far and i’m willing to give him a chance to try to build a winner!

  • The Last Big Bear

    Lowetide.

    Are u drunk? Beside #3 we got nothing.

    Oh I know fans will write blah blah blah… Hold out the hope.

    Until Lowe and Mac T gone we got nothing

  • The Last Big Bear

    “Freddy Chabot and Sylvain Rodrigue know him really well, so that helps. They’ve been involved with him, and they used that experience to [advise] that he’d be a prospect.”I hope he’s a dud so Chabot can get canned. He never developed a goalie. Feel sorry for Scrivvens and Fasth who’s play is going to dip, another long year coming.

  • Rdubb

    Lowetide, and all other analysts, writers & reporters MUST start learning the meaning of “PEDIGREE”, which is: “the history of the family members in a person’s or animal’s past especially when it is good or impressive”. This is straight from the thesaurus….
    it is someone’s “bloodline”, not what they did this past season or that past season or where they played hockey, it has to do with what their parents, grandparents did, and maybe they can do the same because they have their blood in their system….
    Or maybe I’m wrong?
    I don’t think so, so please, start using the word PEDIGREE properly…

  • Positive Ray of Sunshine

    People forget – the fans and media ran Arnott out of town because he was an objectionable kid who had trouble “getting into it” on game nights. He grew out of that in Jersey, but I don’t know that he ever would have playing in the fishbowl. I think the trade was a gift to him and we got back Bill Guerin. Win-win in my book.

    None of that has anything to do with our big German. He’ll be fine as long as we keep Terry Jones away from him.

  • Rdubb

    With Gagner gone it puts a lot of pressure on Draisaitl to emerge this season . Gagner did little to help top 2 lines last season and Arco and Landers will do the same or worse . Progression of our young core incumbent upon a big upswing in our top two lines essentially . We need a top 1-2 center this season more than a top 1-2 defenseman as it currently stands , or all the work MacT. has done will be minimalized . Emergence of Nurse might help defence .