HOW GREEN WAS MY LEVEILLE

Among the players confirmed for invites to Oilers camp this fall (well,
late summer) is Loik Leveille. He’s a fascinating player—shoots the puck
A LOT—and he was a blast to observe at the recent Oilers orientation
camp. Now, let’s not get too excited (last year the Oilers gave a lot of
playing time to a player who was in the same position as Leveille but
didn’t sign him) but the idea of ‘free prospect for only a contract’
does have appeal if he’s the right player. So. Is he?

CONFIRMATION

Leveille first impressed Oilers fans (and the Oilers obviously) at the Orientation Camp after the draft. Later in the summer came word he would be part of the rookie camp next weekend in Penticton.

Source

  • Leveille: “To improve my chances, I have to work on my speed and power”

Although he wasn’t drafted, International Scouting Services had him among the 210 best players available for 2015 (No. 182). 

  • ISS: Leveille is an offensive
    minded defender who was used in all situations and was counted on by
    the Screaming Eagles to contribute offense from the back end. The green
    light suited his game; he loves to jump in and carry the puck and has
    above average puck skills, but commits to the rush way too often. He is a
    decent straightline skater and shows good bursts of speed through the
    neutral zone, but first couple steps need work. On the defensive side,
    he has just average backwards skating ability; feet look a little heavy,
    pivots and crossover need work. He does play with intensity, takes the
    body, but a lot of his decisions are a little high risk/reward type. He
    has a heavy shot that needs to find the net more often. A chance to be
    an NHL Prospect but will need to improve mobility and decisions.

Looks like the player and the scouting report match. So, we’re looking at a good skater with some mobility issues but there’s some nice things going on. In some areas, math loves him.

AND THEN THERE’S MATH!

What really stands out for me from the stats run for Leveille is his SOG total: 189. That’s a lot for a defenseman, No. 1 among QMJHL defenders last season. Source.

Among Q defenders, his 2014-15 season tied him for No. 8 in NHL equivalency (18 points projected), tied for No. 5 in Age-adjusted points-per-game (CHL Stats is a gold mine) and tied for No. 12 in Dangerous Shots (the QMJHL is several miles ahead of the other two leagues in their tracking).

HOW GOOD IS HE?

I think Leveille offers enough skill to be considered the frontrunner (or possibly the only) among the group of players Edmonton will invite to camp. What does that mean? Well, they’ve followed all the rules (that was an issue last year with Tkachev, the Oilers didn’t read the lawyer parts) this time and Leveille is eligible to sign with Edmonton. As was the case with Joe Hicketts of the Detroit Red Wings, he would sign, become a sliderule (not part of 50-man during season) player and return to the QMJHL for the season. It’s a wonderful arrangement and I do think he’s got an edge over a player like Tyler Soy, whose speed may be a concern.

WILL IT HAPPEN?

No idea. It’s another interesting story to follow during training camp and pre-season. More to come.

    • wiseguy

      It’s September 1. Let’s get an article about possible lineups. Maybe suggest Hall play with McDavid or something. Oh wait! How about which dmen may make the team ? Should they send Reinhard and Nurse to the AHL? How about possible trades the oilers should make to improve their defence? We need to discuss these some more!

    • It’s not just LT or Oilers Nation. In the Oilogosphere there seems to be somewhat of a hands off thing when it comes to discussing actual NHL’ers during the off season. Not completely but more often than not you get tons of stuff about guys that’ll never see an NHL game. Some fans eat it up.

      Me? I’d like to read more about how real NHL’ers train, what their off season is like or perspectives on why they succeeded or failed last year and which actual NHL’er might take a leap to the next level.

      I like NHL talk. Real player stuff about real NHL players. The other guys/prospects/longshots/never-will-be’s don’t interest me at all. But you have to admit that stuff is hard to get because hardly any blogger has direct access like media guys such as Gregor.

      But that’s just me and I’ll skip over the prospect articles until the season starts no big deal.

    • Looks like my original comment was edited…….wasnt that bad I thought…….anyhow…
      LT – he’s just way too deep a prospect…..not that interesting too me…

      My interest would lie more along which rookies showed well at the showcase……top end prospects league wide, including McD

  • Lowetide

    Always happy to get input from readers. I do like passing along items about prospects and Leveille is an interesting one—for me.

    That said, there are any number of stories I can focus on for ON. So, if you have any suggestion, please pass them along. Thanks.

    • Sheldon "Oilers Fan for Life!!!"

      Would love to see an article taking each position and comparing us against the teams in our division. If several writers all compared their opinions that would be cool. Kind of like a Car and Driver shootout kind of format.

      Maybe everyone ranks each team by position.

  • Young Oil

    I’ve been a big fan of Leveille for over a year now, shocked he didn’t get drafted. A couple more things about him:

    1. He is a RHD, perhaps the position weakest on our depth chart.

    2. While 6’0” 223 lbs may seem chunky, he is actually under 10% body fat. Built like a tank.

    really hope he gets a contract, especially if it can slide for a couple of seasons.

  • Sheldon "Oilers Fan for Life!!!"

    Big D-men bloom late as they have to grow in to the body and get the coordination back. Worth a look for sure even if it is a long shot. If he can bomb the puck on the right side of the power play that would be great.

    GREEN for sure! I really like a lot of what you see in the video, go watch it.

  • NJ

    @Lowetide

    I love all your work. I have a question that maybe you could answer on here or via article on your website re:Draisaitl

    He wasn’t an NHL player last year. I believe there’s a long career as a first liner somewhere in there, however it seems most people believe that’s going to happen this year based on him running over the WHL. What are your thoughts? I personally think a stint in the AHL does wonders for him, as opposed to a rinse repeat of last year but that’s just me.

  • NJ

    C’est Bon write up.

    Forget all about the “we need a #1 stud D”. They are only available in your fantasy hockey draft. Larsson? Weber? Doughty? Ha. Ha. Ha.

    This story is a good look at a possible chance to pick up a future player on the sly and cheap. No need to deal a pick or player and he could slot in back in the Q or as an Admiral.

    Bon chance LL!

  • B_Oliver

    @Lowetide
    How tradeable do you think Yakupovs contract would be NEXT summer? lets say he exceeds your reasonable expectations and scores 25 goals and 55 points to finish the season. For 1 year, 2million bucks, that contract is GOLD next summer. Teams up against the cap will be frothing at the mouth to get a player who has that much upside and with a contract like that.

    I think we get a decent haul for Yak at that point, but at the same time if he’s successful this season the Oilers are almost obligated to see how good he is the year after. At least in my opinion.

    Thoughts?

  • My favourite free player.

    Max Domi march 19yr (.374) 57gm 20 EVG 37 EVA 57 EVP

    NHLE 82gm 11 EVG 19 EVA 30 EVP

    Alexis Loiseau draft +3 20yr (.339) 68gm 30g 42 EVA 72 EVP

    NHLE 82gm 13 EVG 17 EVA 30 EVP

    Alexis got an AHL contract from switch a chance to prove himself. His performance was equal to max domi’s from an NHL production measure. Luckily Alexis did not cost us a the 12th overall pick in a draft.

    Tyler soys draft year NHLE is 21 EVG 23 EVA 43 EVP I hope he shows well at camp.

  • Joy S. Lee

    “He has a heavy shot that needs to find the net more often.”

    Then…

    “No. 1 in SOG among QMJHL defenders last season.”

    Wait, whaaat… was his team an offensive juggernaut? Because I’m not sure how else to quantify those two “facts.”

  • Joy S. Lee

    From the highlights I see a young guy that needs to make a big jump in foot speed (all situations)and puckhandling. But I like his dedication to improve and his build. His ability to move his feet quickly and instinctively will be vital to him considering an pro career. For what it’s worth; just my sense from watching the clip above.