With Anton Slepyshev signing his ELC, Bogdan Yakimov already
having a year in the AHL under his belt, and Darnell Nurse looking everything
like the stud the team believed him to be on the day they selected him, the 2013 Draft is
looking like a success story. Everything is breaking their way.
Everything except Marco Roy.
Marco Roy was a second round pick in the 2013 draft.
The 56th overall pick was the compensation the Oilers received in return
for developing Andrew Cogliano on behalf of Anaheim. Remember Cogliano? He’s the guy currently playing 16.5
minutes a night of hockey for the Anaheim Ducks in the playoffs.
Playoffs! Remember those? Nope, me neither. Moving on.
At 56 Marco Roy was picked ahead of his placement on a few
lists. For example, NHL Central Scouting had him listed as the 54th
best North American skater (meaning on the combined list he would be lower than 54). He was taken ahead of a few players like Adam
Tambellini (yes, I know) and Jan Kostalek who CC had rated ahead of him. That
said, Derek Zona made a consensus list for the 2013 Draft before it unfolded
and Marco Roy was rated 59th so taken at 56 might not have been
considered a great stretch after all.
As Bob Stauffer has repeated on his radio show Oilers Now a few times, there is some belief that analytics (via DarkHorse Analytics) played a part in the Oilers targetting Roy. Now, there is very little open and available statistical information that the QMJHL provides. The league has even made other sites that tried to provide what was possible to track based on gamesheet data cease and desist their operations. So whatever was used to make Roy a target will remain a Black Box secret for now.
Does that mean we shouldn’t trust analytics in scouting? Well maybe, but only if you think “normal” scouting never gets anything wrong. But we all know the old eye test has a pretty spotty track record at the draft table too. Things happen. It’s inevitable when we’re talking about kids.
The facts were that in his draft year Roy went 65GP,
29-38-67 then added 15GP, 6-13-19 in the playoffs. He was producing 1.075
points per game, had OK size, and impressed enough people to be rated close to
his eventual draft number.
As far as second Round picks go, the Oilers had made
worse bets before.
He came to camp and looked OK but when he got back to the
QMJHL he didn’t play. It came out later that he sustained an elbow injury at
Oilers camp and it cost him significant time. He returned to action from that only to
then sustain a severe concussion that sidelined him again for an extended period of
When all was said and done in his draft+1 season he had just
39GP, 14-21-35 then 20GP 4-8-12 in the playoffs. Producing just 0.80 points per
game as a 19 year old (Early November Birthday) wasn’t promising but he had the
injury trouble so at least there was an excuse.
He went back again this year to the QMJHL for his 20 year
old season without a contract in hand from the Oilers. They wanted to see more.
He needed to show more. This time he went to a Quebec Remparts team that was
getting loaded up to host the Memorial Cup. They lost to Rimouski in Game 7 of
the QMJHL final but only after a couple OT periods were needed. They are a good
team. And Roy does play a part in that.
The issue is that while he’s clearly able to help, the rate
at which he’s scoring is still low relative to his draft year. This past season
he produced 59GP, 26-24-50 with 14GP, 3-8-11 in the playoffs, or 0.84 points
Better than his injury plagued year. Still well below what
he did as (mostly) an 18 year old. Worse still, as a 20 year old skilled player he should be dominating, or close to it.
He’s helping the Remparts but he was ranked eighth
on their squad in terms of points per game. It’s very concerning and the fact
that the Oilers haven’t signed him is telling. They have just a few more days, until June 1st, to get him inked to a deal before he re-enters
I think it’s safe to say that if the Oil wanted him signed
they would have done so already. Considering both the fact that he has failed to stand
out at the CHL level and Edmonton’s glut of depth on the wing, signing Marco
Roy seems incredibly unlikely.
He should re-renter the draft this June where someone else is
free to take a gamble on him. However, I don’t believe this is a case where the
prospect or club didn’t feel there was a good fit. It looks more like the
Oilers simply aren’t convinced Roy has progressed enough to the point where an
ELC makes sense.
Now if the draft goes on and Roy goes unselected then it
might not shock me if the Oilers gave him a pro tryout in Bakersfield and maybe
even an AHL deal. But that’s not a guarantee and if they don’t we shouldn’t be
I don’t think Roy was a bad pick, not the way I feel like
Moroz was a bad pick. And good for the Oilers to recognize this isn’t trending the right way. Trying to force it by giving him an ELC for the heck of it may be a waste of resources. This scenario just
reinforces the simple fact that sometimes you can make a pretty good bet on a kid at
the draft and things just don’t work out.
A few injuries, one being a severe concussion, and the wind
can be taken right out of the sails on an otherwise promising prospect.
So the Marco Roy pick has turned out to be the only real
black mark on MacTavish’s 2013 draft to date. It’s a shame that the Oilers will
have nothing to show for developing Andrew Cogliano for the benefit of the Anaheim
Ducks, but that’s a lesson on the relative value of magic beans.
At the end of the day, draft picks are just lottery
tickets. Sometimes you scratch to find you won the Jackpot. Sometimes you
scratch to find you have to Try Again. Well, perhaps I should say most of the time you scratch to find you have to Try Again.