Penticton Horizon

Ryan Pike at Flamesnation posted an excellent update on Calgary’s eligible list for the September Young Stars tournament in Penticton. Since Flamesnation is a friend of ours (seriously), I’m sure they won’t mind if I lift the idea and have a lash at Edmonton’s invite list.

If the teams run with last year’s rule (fewer than 100 pro hockey games for all combatants) the Oilers should have a very large list to choose from. Recent draft picks (2015+), college men and invites from the Orientation Camp in summer are all possible. Here is the universal talent pool as I see it, with 2016-17 numbers and league.


  • Nick Ellis. Bakersfield (AHL) 34gp, 2.69 .918.
  • Stuart Skinner. Lethbridge (WHL) 60gp, 3.26 .905.
  • Shane Starrett. Air Force (NCAA) 37gp, 1.99 .925.
  • Dylan Wells. Peterborough (OHL) 52gp, 3.07 .916.


  • Caleb Jones. Portland (WHL) 63gp, 9-53-62.
  • William Lagesson. UMass-Amherst (NCAA) 36gp, 2-6-8. Headed for Europe, so may not attend based on scheduling.
  • Markus Niemelainen. Saginaw (OHL). 59gp, 3-6-9. Headed for Europe, so may not attend based on scheduling.
  • Ziyat Paigin. Ak Bars Kazan (KHL) 17gp, 1-3-4; Bakersfield (AHL) 5gp, 0-0-0. He has 95 KHL and 5 AHL games, so is barely eligible.
  • Dmitri Samorukov. Guelph (OHL) 67gp, 4-16-20.


  • Ethan Bear. Seattle (WHL) 67gp, 28-42-70.
  • Sahvan Kaira. Swift Current (WHL). 70gp, 1-16-17.
  • Ryan Mantha. Niagara (OHL) 65, 17-41-58; Bakersfield (AHL) 2gp, 0-0-0.


  • LC Joe Gambardella. UMass-Lowell (NCAA) 41gp, 18-34-52; Bakersfield (AHL) 6gp, 1-2-3.
  • LC Kevin Klima. Chicoutimi (QMJHL) 32gp, 4-10-14; Moncton (QMJHL) 29gp, 4-18-22.
  • RC Steve Owre. Medicine Hat (WHL) 71gp, 26-62-88.
  • LC Brandon Saigeon. Hamilton (OHL) 66gp, 21-28-49.
  • RC Ethan Szypula. Owen Sound (OHL) 64gp, 11-36-47.


  • Tyler Benson. Vancouver (WHL) 33gp, 11-31-42.
  • Kirill Maksimov. Niagara (OHL) 66gp, 21-17-38.
  • Evan Polei. Red Deer (WHL) 69gp, 33-29-62; Bakersfield (AHL) 1gp, 0-0-0.


  • Chad Butcher. Medicine Hat (WHL) 68gp, 27-76-103.
  • Dave Gust. Ohio State (NCAA). 39gp, 18-23-41.
  • Kelly Klima. Chicoutimi (QMJHL) 35gp, 8-9-17; Moncton (QMJHL) 31gp, 14-18-32.
  • David Koch. Edmonton (WHL) 72gp, 21-49-70.
  • Patrick Russell. Bakersfield (AHL) 68gp, 8-9-17.
  • Kailer Yamamoto. Spokane (WHL) 65gp, 42-57-99.


Matt Benning, Jesse Puljujarvi and Drake Caggiula are all eligible to play in this tournament, but my guess is the organization regards these men as NHL players in 2018-19. College men like John Marino, Aapeli Rasanen and Tyler Vesel won’t be playing pro so won’t be at the tournament. A player like Evan Campbell, unsigned after his college career, might be an option. I’ll be on the lookout for TC invites who qualify to play in the tournament and will update as we get closer to Penticton.

  • OriginalPouzar

    There is zero chance of Benning or Drake going – they are clearly NHL players.

    I would think the chances of JP going are next to zero.

    I fully expect Yamamoto to dominate this tournament and I hope that Benson is right there with him – it is huge for this organization for Benson to play a full year of hockey and re-establish himself as a real prospect again.

    Other than that, I look forward to seeing how the new pro d-men and the goalies perform.

  • Florescent Oil Orange

    Wait what not one but 2 Klimas. I’m guessing the old boys club strikes again.

    If they are the offspring of Petr Klima I hope they have the heart from the second half of his career and talent from first half

  • madjam

    This years tourney should be closer than last two years , where Oilers seem to dominate . Wonder if Oilers site will carry any of the games live ? Would be nice to see some of the youth in action and make our own assessments as well . Several of them are intriguing , especially the defence .

  • Penticton is a wonderful place. Canada’s Hawaii. I recall Brian Burke belly aching about moving the tournament to Lethbridge. I’m happy to say it stays in BC.

    Lots of names on the list of prospects that could attend, but few of quality. Weak, weak prospect pool in Oil country.

    • HardBoiledOil 1.0

      it’s a “weak weak prospect pool” as you put it because most are or will be on the Oilers this year. same happened to the 80’s Oilers, all the talent was on the NHL squad and not much in the system, although that was partly because our head scout at the time Barry Fraser forgot how to draft well and there was nothing in the system after the dynasty was over.

  • a lg dubl dubl

    Looking forward to hearing more about Paigin, I’ve been hoping he’d make the jump to NA after being drafted and glad he did. Hopefully in another 2 years he’s fighting for a bottom pair role with the big club.

    • OriginalPouzar

      Agreed – it seems a material amount of fans see him playing a number of NHL games this year based on playing pro in Europe. I would temper those expectations. Yes, its great that he played against men but still extremely unlikely that he won’t require some development time in North America.

      • a lg dubl dubl

        Kind of like JP! Sure he played against more established players over seas but just because he did doesn’t mean he’ll set the NHL on fire in his first season. I’m pulling for 98, but would rather him play one more year in the AHL on the top line rather than 2nd line or most likely 3rd line in the NHL. Give the kids time to mature and adjust to better players and give a guy like Jagr a 1 year deal.

  • WhoreableGuy

    Greatest Penticton Tourney moment ever was when Darnel Nurse beatdown Rasmus Andersson.

    All of the Flames fans were crying about such a size mismatch, Nurse pretty much explained that he didn’t want to and Andersson kept insisting (as you could see with the constant jabs to Nurse’s face as he stood there smiling) so he gave him his wish.

    Here’s a animated gif of it for you all to enjoy :


  • Rob...

    What’s the story behind Sahvan Kaira being in the tournament? Is this a favor to Jujhar, or is there a player there? 6’3″ and 218 lbs, is a decent size…