One year ago, the Edmonton Oilers delivered an incredible Orientation camp to the city of Edmonton. Connor McDavid, Darnell Nurse, Leon Draisaitl and a cast of dozens were on hand and Oilers fans were out in full force. This year? It all happens in Jasper.


It all starts tomorrow and culminates in a scrimmage on July 6—a 4-on-4 tournament for the Billy Moores Cup. Moores, as you may know, was an outstanding coach for the Golden Bears and at the NHL level (plus Japan, WHL, the resume is outstanding).

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below



  • Zach Nagelvoort: He is a 2014 Oilers pick who has not progressed. ISS (scouting resource) talked about a quick glove—he needs a strong 2016-17 to establish himself as a signable prospect.
  • Nick Ellis: He had a strong year with Providence (NCAA) and the Oilers won a small signing war (not Ty Conklin level, but there were suitors). Interesting prospect, a .936SP should get your attention. 
  • Miroslav Svoboda: He had a good year. He was struggling with one Czech team—got traded to another—and then had
    a strong run through the end of the season and through the playoffs.
  • Dylan Wells: A 2016 pick from the OHL who did not have a good year. Scouting reports were solid and the verbal suggests he is a bona fide prospect. Unusual to see a gap this wide on a draft pick (verbal versus performance. 
  • Tomas Kral. Czech goalie (like Svoboda) he is a little older (23) and this should be an interesting player to watch this week.


  • William Lagesson: Impressed Oilers fans at the world juniors, and looks like his
    defensive skills are the greatest part of his game. He attended a year ago. 
  • Caleb Jones: Speed and size are his calling card and he posted some impressive boxcars last year. WheatnOil took a look at Jones and Bear recently.
  • Markus Niemelainen: A big, mobile defender with two-way ability, he was just drafted and will be an easy player to spot—he is 6.05. 
  • Matthew Cairns: Big defender (6.02, 202) is a two-way type
    based on the scouting reports I have read. Good speed, can make a solid
    first pass and has a plus shot. Played in OJHL last season. 
  • Shane Hanna: He is a 22-year old college man, and has completed three seasons with Michigan Tech in the NCAA. Undersized, can move the puck.
  • Mark Auk. Another Michigan Tech LHD, he is 21.


  • Ethan Bear: A strong year but no contract. He has been working with Oilers on his skating, so we can hope he signs soon. A tremendous draft +1 season. 
  • John Marino: Another member of that 2015 draft that produced some impressive D prospects. He has a range of skills and is coming off a strong year. Like Bear and Jones, he was at this camp last year. 
  • Filip Berglund: Drafted last week, he has size and skill. I am looking forward to seeing what he can bring offensively. 
  • Vincent Desharnais: College man, not a lot of information on him. Steve Kournianos: Very big, skates awkward but makes good first
    pass. Not physical, no way on the PP. Best thing he does is stand people
    up, use long stick to jar puck loose during board play. Doesn’t have
    Paigin’s shot/skill
  • Jason Fram: Offensive defenseman and graduating junior from Spokane. Boxcars look good, he is 21.
  • Nick DeSimone. Another college player (Union College), he is a little bigger (6.01, 190) than the other college invites.


Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
  • Tyler Vesel: Two-way college center returns, less impressive in 2015-16 than he was in previous seasons (USHL and NCAA). 
  • Aapeli Rasanen: Impressive resume for a later pick in 2016, creative center with speed.
  • Zach Aston-Reese: Playmaking center has been in NCAA (Northeastern) for three years, 21.
  • John Stevens: Bigger center from Northeastern, he is 6.02 and was close to a point-per-game.
  • Tomas Soustal. One of the most talented invites, he is 19 and has two-way skills. 6.03, RHC.


  • Drake Caggiula: One of the more famous prospects at this camp. Flyers GM Ron Hextall:  “He’s got speed, he plays
    hard, he has a lot of good attributes.  He’s got a shot at being a top
    six (player) based on his ability. He’s not the biggest player, but he
    plays hard.”
  • Joey Benik:  He is 5.10, 175 and a pretty solid college scorer. Scored like a demon at St. Cloud State and is on an AHL contract. 
  • Scott Allen Big winger who played in Norfolk last year, will be in Bakersfield in the fall.
  • Tyler Benson: Early second round pick in 2016, if he is healthy this will be a player to watch at camp. 
  • Jake Lucchini Impossibly small winger from Michigan Tech.
  • Brandon Biro Fabulous resume from Spruce Grove Saint, on his way to Penn State fall 2017. Offensive player.
  • Peter Zhong: Small scoring winger with speed and hands, he played at lower levels last year. 


  • Jesse Puljujarvi: No. 3 overall pick, still a little uncertain how the heck he fell to Edmonton. Big, strong, fast. 
  • Aidan Muir: Now 20, he lost playing time in college last year. Still big and strong, so we hope, but he needs to have a better year at Western Michigan. 
  • Patrick Russell: Like Cagguila and Ellis, college signing of some note. A bit older, he should stand out at this camp. 
  • Jaedon Descheneau St. Louis Blues (unsigned) pick in 2014, he finishes a fine junior career with the Kootenay Ice. Small and skilled.
  • Josh Melnick Playmaking forward from Miami of Ohio, he totaled 48 assists in his final USHL season.
  • Dominik Shine Scoring college winger for Northern Michigan, he is one of the older prospects at the camp (23).
  • Luke Esposito. His uncle is Mark Messier, Esposito is a Harvard man and he was at the same camp one year ago


Esposito explained the purpose of the camp a year ago:

  • Esposito:“The thing that they preach from the beginning of this camp is that
    you’re not going to earn a contract and you’re not going to lose a
    contract. It’s a development camp in the very sense of
    the word. They have us here to teach us things. We’ve been doing some
    systems stuff and some off-ice training. You obviously want to make a
    good impression on the organization, but it’s really just to learn from
    the experience and take everything out of it that you can.”

      • Rod the Viking

        We saw Sweden live at the WJHC 3 times in Helsinki and I really paid attention to Lagesson since he was the only Oiler draft pick in the tournament.
        This might upset some people but to me he looked like a young Kevin Lowe when in his own end, good stick, played sound positionally and was physical, I would call him a stay at home but he did jump up in the play and scored a couple of goals,I would say his shot is average to slightly above. He is an interesting prospect.

        • Keepyourstickontheice

          Probably not going because he’s back in the KHL next year. I think he’s free to come over after that. I’d like to see him play in North America, hoping for a Chara, not a Belov.

      • BM

        So it’s not a surprise…. We do still need a top 4 RHD, and he needs to have a strong offensive element to his game.

        Does anyone think: Yakupov, Reinhart, and the 2017 first round pick is enough for say Ryan Ellis off Nashville, or maybe Dumba since there’s been smoke there?

        These are two solid puck moving, offensive, #4 defencemen with upside. They’re also likely available, and likely quite affordable using secondary assets. I know everyone has their eyes on Barrie but frankly that’ll cost us another core piece and I don’t think that’s a smart move at this time.










        • Suzycue123

          Poile would never take on THREE useless assets that don’t contribute to an already competing lineup looking to make a run. Nashville is not rebuilding last time I checked. They have zero reason to trade Ellis.

          This is why ON fans cannot be gms. Not to hate but it’s not like x box where u can jus type in any trade and expect one of them to work.

          I believe PC is doing everything in his power to build a contender. But not the way of what others say or think.

          • Word. Think about it, yakupov and Reinhart are cast-offs from the 29th place team in the NHL. Plus giving up ryan ellis makes us more likely to finish higher in the standings, making that draft pick of less value in a weaker draft next year.

            • Rocklobzter

              I’d be careful giving out first round picks before a season starts, they have way more value the nearer it gets to the draft. And heaven forbid we finish near the bottom but still miss out on a skilled forward prospect 😉

            • Cheap Shot Charlie

              Considering it took Hall to get Larsson there is no way we are getting another dman for anything less than RNH+ or Eberle+. Chiarelli set the market value with Hall. It’s not going to go down much now that free agents are are signed.

              Demers is our best option now. I bet he is also negotiating with the Oilers now but wants more that they can give after Lucic got a full NMC with his contract. Our roster is set for next season.

      • JimmyV1965

        I think Poille may be willing to trade a dman. They have another stud marinating in the minors who they have to expose. That leaves them a min of five dmen to protect. Of course they will demand a lot for one of them, not spare parts.