Caleb Jones Signs His Entry Level Contract

Potential (alleged) hangovers aside, the Oilers brass got some housekeeping done today as they signed Caleb Jones to a three year entry level contract. 

Caleb Jones was drafted by the Oilers back in the fourth round in the summer of 2015. Do you remember that summer? Living in the fresh McDavid glow? Ahhhhh… What a time to be alive. Anyway. Despite the fact that most of us were nursing hangovers throughout the entirety of the second-seventh rounds of the 2015 NHL draft the Oilers were back at work, choosing Caleb Jones with the 117th overall pick.

Caleb Jones may not have the flash or draft pedigree of his older brother Seth, but this is still an Oilers prospect to keep our eyes on. Since bailing from the USHL program to play more games in the WHL, Caleb Jones has made some impressive strides in his draft+1 season. He had a solid year for the Portland Winterhawks on both ends of the ice (winning the team’s rookie of the year award), and I wonder if his fresh deal with the Oilers will land him with the Condors to ride out their season. Surely, you would think that getting his feet wet in the AHL would give Jones an idea of what he could be up against come fall. 

Is Caleb Jones a guy that will make the Oilers anytime soon? Not likely, but that doesn’t mean that he may not be an important part of the future. The Oilers, obviously, feel like Jones is worth the risk of signing and now we’ll have to wait and see how he moves forward. Caleb Jones has already followed his older brother’s path by going from the USHL to the Portland Winterhawks, and Oilers fans can only hope that the trend will continue by giving the organization a serviceable defenseman in the future. 

He may not be Seth, but you may not want to overlook Caleb Jones. 

Is He Any Good?

  • Bruce McCurdy at Cult of Hockey, Last Summer: Caleb Jones (D) is another is at his first pro camp, and it’s a measure of success that it doesn’t really show. He’s held his own, hasn’t stood out. 
  • Lowetide: I’d say (based on what we’re told Caleb Jones is a young man who is developing rapidly as we speak, with at least two more years of real development to go. When things like emerging, developing talent and great strides year over year are mentioned, it’s a positive arrow. He sounds like a two-way blue who will earn his keep (mostly) without the puck. His improved quickness and speed, as noted by ISS, is probably what got him drafted by Edmonton.
  • Hockey’s Future: Teamed at times with Nashville prospect Jack Dougherty on the top defense pairing, he has shown some offensive flashes in his first season with the Winterhawks to go along with his physical game. Not as highly-regarded as his older brother, Jones projects as a solid middle pairing two-way defenseman.
  • Elite Prospects: A versatile two-way defenseman that can fill many different roles and team needs in certain situations due to his workmanlike approach to his position. Possesses a tireless motor and is aggressive on the blue-line. Physicality and board battles are the anchors that hold his game together. Works hard in all situations and is a step ahead in problem solving. Exhibits good mobility, a quick, accurate shot from the point, and an active stick. All-in-all, a heads-up defenseman who plays a solid, smart all-around game.
  • Winterhawks Assistant GM Matt Bardsley: “As an organization, we are excited for Caleb and his family that he has signed his first NHL contract with Edmonton. In his first season in Portland, Caleb had the ability to impact the game by using his skating ability to lead or join the rush as well as defend against the rush. He has a great passion for the game and we are happy to see that he was rewarded with a contract from the Oilers organization.”

CALEB JONES’ JUNIOR STATS

Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM +/- GP G A Pts PIM
2013-14 U.S. National Under-17 Team USHL 33 0 7 7 57 -14
2014-15 U.S. National Under-18 Team USHL 25 2 6 8 28 14
2015-16 Portland Winterhawks WHL 72 10 45 55 64 4 4 0 2 2 6
  • A-Mc

    Does he make Edmonton anymore attractive to Seth?

    Someone on twitter mentioned offer sheeting Seth Jones. I wonder if having his younger brother in the system (though not on the team) makes Edmonton even slightly more attractive for Seth; In 3 years he could have his little brother making NHL appearances.

    • I always cheer for offer sheets so I would love to see Chiarelli do it. The Blue Jackets have cap issues but they would obviously find a way to make it work for Seth Jones… At least you would think so?

      • ziyan94

        Right on bm. They just traded Johansen, a right-handed 6’2 C, their best player by far IMO, for Jones, so it would be absurd if they left Jones exposed. Of course, that’s an opportunity that I suspect Chia would gladly take advantage of…

      • a lg dubl dubl

        I don’t know, man. Seth will get a 42mil contract for sure, but Columbus has to move someone or 3 to have decent cap space going into next season.

        If PC chooses to keep the 6mil kids only way is to offer sheet Jones or the like.

        Jones, 21 at 6mil/yr or Demers, 27 at the same price?

  • Keepyourstickontheice

    Good to see that he’s developing, and that the front office is at work locking up prospects. I will however reserve my excitement for when they sign Ziyat Paigin up.

  • #1 overall waivers pick

    CoH: Growth spurt in your future? You’ve got the genes going for you with Popeye and Seth in your family.

    CJ: (Laughs) I think I’ve almost got to 6’2 this year, I think I have a little more to grow, I don’t think I’ll get to 6’4 like Seth, but I wouldn’t say 6’3 is out of the question.

    Cult of Hockey: Scouting report, interview with Edmonton Oilers’ defence prospect Caleb Jones

  • RJ

    Has Bear signed?

    Bear was 5th in WHL scoring for defencemen, Jones was 11th in their draft +1 years and Bear is a RHD.

    I don’t mind the Jones signing, especially where he was drafted. That’s very un-Oilerslike.

  • McRaj

    Imagine if the Oilers would have been able to Acquire Seth Jones. This just brought me back memories of when certain fans and even bloggers on Oilersnation doubted that Seth Jones was a top pairing D-Man.

    39 Games with Columbus, 19 points, even Corsi and Fenwick relative to the team, while starting more in the D-Zone than the O-Zone and playing 25 minutes a night. Him and Klefbom or Nurse sure would have looked good together. *sigh* when will we have a #1 Right shot D-Man to drool over.

  • Spydyr

    I sure hope between Jones and Bear one of them blossom into another Davidson type player development project after a few years learning the pro game in the AHL.

  • toprightcorner

    Finally the Oilers may get 1 or 2 successful players drafted after the 4th round, you need one of those every couple years. Seth has the pedigree and was a great pick, if he turns out 70% as good as his brother, the Oilers will have a very goo 4-5 dman. Physical, strong on boards, good passer and solid shot, those are all things we need.

    In honesty I am pulling more for Bear but only cause he is a right shot. Both have a legitimate shot to be regular NHL players

  • Jaxon

    I think they should trade LD Caleb Jones to Columbus to play with his brother RD Seth Jones. That is where Caleb may have the most value, as it is something that would help CBJ make one of their top players happy and he is a good prospect in his own right. Plus, making Seth Jones happy as they go into contract negotiations this summer could be a very big deal if they want to tie him up long term and buy some UFA years at a decent price.

    The big prize for Edmonton would be Michael Paliotta, he’s a 6′-4″ 215lbs, Right D, Captain in Vermont got 36 pts in 41gp last season which is an NHLe of 30pts. He is only 22. He could be next year’s Colton Parayko (they are both RD, same age, same size and Paliotta outperformed Parayko last season). Scouting reports have Paliotta as a good skater, shutdown D who found an offensive side to his game. CBJ has great young depth on RD so they may be willing to let a RD prospect go for a LD prospect who is the brother of their franchise player.

    I know Paliotta will not be passing Seth Jones and David Savard on RD and CBJ just re-signed Prout for 2 more seasons as 3rd pair RD and Cody Gouloubef got 16 minutes per night as their 4th RD option and he is back next season and Paliotta is an RFA this summer that needs a new contract, so Paliotta may be somewhat expendable on the right side. Paliotta might also be a player that ends up exposed in an expansion draft as Tyutin has a no move clause and CBJ is bound to protect 2 of Jack Johnson, Seth Jones, Ryan Murray and David Savard, definitely leaving Paliotta exposed.

    And since CBJ’s manager has named Lauri Korpikoski to the Finnish World Cup roster, it seems he may value Korpikoski more than most people.

    LW Kerby Rychel seems to be unhappy in CBJ and had requested a trade at one time. Plus, in all likelihood, CBJ would end up exposing Rychel in an expansion draft anyway.

    From a March 22 Hockey Writers article by Dustin Nelson:

    “Worse yet, these aren’t four of the forwards you’d protect. Brandon Dubinsky, Nick Foligno, David Clarkson and Scott Hartnell all have NMCs. That leaves only three forward spaces with which to protect Brandon Saad, Boone Jenner, Alexander Wennberg, Cam Atkinson, William Karlsson, Oliver Bjorkstrand, Sonny Milano and Kerby Rychel.”

    So I would love to see LW Lauri Korpikoski and LD Caleb Jones for RD Michael Paliotta and LW Kerby Rychel.