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Looking back at the 7-15th picks from the 2014 NHL Draft

With six years of recaps in the books, our pursuit of NHL Draft knowledge to determine whether or not the Oilers should use the 10th overall pick has landed us here, the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. After the jump, I’ve listed another group of nine NHL hopefuls that were selected within the 7-15 range in their respective draft year to see if there’s anything we can learn in relation to this year’s pick. Will the following names affect your thinking about what to do with the 10th overall pick? We shall see.

Today, we dive into the 2014 NHL Draft. 

Haydn Fleury (7) – D – Carolina Hurricanes

Rookie Season (2017-18 w/ Carolina Hurricanes): 67GP – 0G, 8A for eight points

Pre-Draft Scouting Report:

“Fleury has already gotten bigger and stronger after a year of emphasizing those features in Red Deer. His offensive production was way down from his draft year numbers — a cause for some concern — but he has improved defensively since coming to Raleigh last summer. Fleury is a great skater for his size but not overly physical. He did not make Canada’s World Junior team last year, but should be a solid candidate to do so this season.”

Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM +/-
2017-18 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 67 0 8 8 14 -2
2017-18 Charlotte Checkers AHL 3 1 1 2 0 3
NHL Totals 67 0 8 8 14

William Nylander (8) – C – Toronto Maple Leafs

2017-18 Season: 82GP – 20G, 41A for 61 points
Rookie Season (2016-17 w/ Toronto Maple Leafs): 81GP – 22G, 39A for 61 points

Pre-Draft Scouting Report:

“Nylander’s overall hockey sense is special and he has a feeling and understanding for the game that few players enjoy. He can withstand physical pressure and is rarely separated from the puck or knocked around. He is very confident and can play a skill game. He is a go-to player and is very good at working give-and-go plays with teammates. As for weaknesses, Nylander’s shots can be blocked at times and he is susceptible to opponent poke checks. He is relatively light though this doesn’t prevent him from being highly effective and dangerous. Nylander doesn’t always show vigor in backchecking and his desire for puck possession can slow down other teammates.”

Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM +/- PGP G A Pts PIM
2017-18 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 82 20 41 61 10 20 7 1 3 4 0
NHL Totals 185 48 87 135 46 13 2 6 8 2

Nikolaj Ehlers (9) – LW – Winnipeg Jets

2017-18 Season: 82GP – 29G, 31A for 60 points
Rookie Season (2015-16 w/ Winnipeg Jets): 72GP – 15G, 23A for 38 points

Pre-Draft Scouting Report:

“Blessed with dynamic speed and sniper’s hands, Ehlers did not have to adapt to the QMJHL so much as the league needed to readjust and try to stop the blazing Dane. Able to dance through defenders and fire his laser-precise wrister home, he will only get better as he continues to get stronger and more capable of breaking through physical pressure. Creative with the puck, Ehlers is working hard to round out his game.”

Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM +/- PGP G A Pts PIM
2017-18 Winnipeg Jets NHL 82 29 31 60 26 14 15 0 7 7 2
NHL Totals 236 69 93 162 85 15 0 7 7 2

Nick Ritchie (10) – LW – Anaheim Ducks

2017-18 season: NHL: 76GP – 10-17-27
Rookie Season (2015-16 w/ Anaheim Ducks): 33GP – 2G, 2A for four points

Pre-Draft Scouting Report:

“Ritchie has all the makings of a prototypical, Eric Lindros-type power forward. A big bodied winger with smooth hands and a shooting touch, he is not overly aggressive to make the big hit, but when he does make contact he’s probably one of the smoothest hitters in the game. As with any player his size, his agility and flexibility are two areas that could improve. But he dominated at the junior level and should be effective as he continues to develop.”

SEASON TEAM LGE GP G A PTS PIM +/- PGP G A PTS PIM
2017-18 Anaheim Ducks NHL 76 10 17 27 72 3 4 0 0 0 8
NHL TOTALS 186 26 33 59 171 19 4 0 4 54

Kevin Fiala (11) – LW – Nashville Predators

2017-18 Season: 80GP – 23G, 25A for 48 points
Rookie Season (2016-17 w/ Nashville Predators): 54GP – 11G, 5A for 16 points

Pre-Draft Scouting Report:

“Shifty in his skating, he rarely blows a tire or loses his poise. He is strong on his skates and avoid checks and physical contact from opponents. Fiala’s agility is paramount to the effectiveness of his skill set. He holds onto the puck as if it’s glued to his stick and is very tricky as a dangler, especially when entering the zone with speed; he can accelerate with three short steps. Fiala is creative and loves to put that on display. He has an uncanny ability to determine when teammates are in close vicinity and finds them with the puck. Whether shooting or passing, he uses a slingshot-like motion to accurately send the puck where he wants it to go. His shot has good on-goal accuracy with it, be it a wrister or slapshot. Fiala is a go-to guy with game-breaking skills who is turned to when a goal is required, something he often delivers.”

Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM +/- PGP G A Pts PIM
2017-18 Nashville Predators NHL 80 23 25 48 26 20 12 3 1 4 8
NHL Totals 140 35 30 65 44 18 5 1 6 8

Brendan Perlini (12) – LW – Arizona Coyotes

2017-18 Season: 74GP – 17G, 13A for 30 points
Rookie Season (2016-17 w/ Arizona Coyotes): 57GP – 14G, 7A for 21 points

Pre-Draft Scouting Report:

“Perlini’s primary assets are his speed and puck skills. He has tremendous hands and displays offensive savviness, consistently finding the soft spots in the offensive zone where he can redirect shots and cash in on rebounds. Perlini’s size is his secondary asset. He uses his size and strength to absorb and work through body contact. If he learns to be assertive with his size on the forecheck, his production could explode.”

Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM +/-
2017-18 Arizona Coyotes NHL 74 17 13 30 28 -2
NHL Totals 131 31 20 51 48

Jakub Vrana (13) – LW – Washington Capitals

2017-18 Season: 73GP – 13G, 14A for 27 points
Rookie Season (2016-17 w/ Washington Capitals): 21GP – 3G, 3A for six points

Pre-Draft Scouting Report:

“Vrana is a bit undersized at 5’11 and 185 pounds but is a high-skill winger with even higher upside. He is a good skater, though more smooth than explosive. He possesses a good release and a nose for the net from just about anywhere on the ice, displaying a goal scorer’s touch. Consistency is still an issue with Vrana. When he is frustrated or things are not going well, he tends to disappear for stretches. Like most young offensively-minded forwards, he still needs to work on his defensive game. Shows good creativity and plays an unselfish game despite being more of a scorer than a playmaker. High-end talent.”

Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM +/- PGP G A Pts PIM
2017-18 Washington Capitals NHL 73 13 14 27 12 2 18 2 4 6 2
NHL Totals 94 16 17 33 14 18 2 4 6 2

Julius Honka (14) – D – Dallas Stars

Rookie Season (2017-18 w/ Dallas Stars): 42GP – 1G, 3A for four points

Pre-Draft Scouting Report:

“Honka is a slick, puck-moving defenseman. With a hard, accurate right-handed shot he is a threat from the point and is masterful on the power play unit. Honka can dominate in offensive situations, but also understands positional play. He handles physical play despite his lack of bulk and stature.”

Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM +/-
2017-18 Dallas Stars NHL 42 1 3 4 14 -1
2017-18 Texas Stars AHL 10 0 2 2 6 -4
NHL Totals 58 2 7 9 18

Dylan Larkin (15) – C – Detroit Red Wings

2017-18 Season: 82GP – 16G, 47A for 63 points
Rookie Season (2015-16 w/ Detroit Red Wings): 80GP – 23G, 22A for 45 points

Pre-Draft Scouting Report:

“Larkin is a fast and offensively skilled, highly-touted forward prospect. He has incredible skating combined with great on-ice vision that aids him in setting up teammates or scoring himself. He works hard and plays a responsible two-way game.”

Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM +/- PGP G A Pts PIM
2017-18 Detroit Red Wings NHL 82 16 47 63 61 -9
NHL Totals 242 56 84 140 132 5 1 0 1 18

THE WRAP…

Add another list of serviceable NHLers to our Draft research assignment. This 2014 Draft list shows me another cluster of young players that are either on the cusp or already contributing at the NHL level less than four years after being drafted in the first round. Sure, four years is a long time when you think of the Oilers need to win now, but it’s not all that long when you consider the bigger picture. For me, doing this project over the past week or so has really strengthened my feeling that the Oilers should use their pick to draft the best player available. Sure, there are risks in using the pick, but there are potentially larger risks in trading the pick for an older, more expensive player. I don’t want to sound like a broken record here, but, after putting together seven years worth of picks, I can’t help but think the best bet is to head up to the podium and make the pick. What do you guys think?

PREVIOUSLY IN THE DRAFT COUNTDOWN

  • TKB2677

    Good lord. Another dude at #10. I guess Richie looks like he’s at least an NHLer but he’s a 3rd/4th liner. Getting a 4th liner with the #10 is not exactly great.

      • TKB2677

        So are you telling me that if the Oilers drafted a player with the #10 and all he turned out to be was a mediocre 3rd liner, you’d be happy with that? He had 27 pts, that isn’t even good 3rd line production. To put it into perspective, Khaira, who was a 3rd round pick had 11 goals and 21 pts. I would sure hope that a player taken 10th overall has a bigger ceiling than a 3rd liner.

      • ScottyPrime

        Yeah, it’s been a tough spot. The thing is, though, that it’s not like there hasn’t been great talent available at that spot, just that the team picking there often missed it, usually because they drafted for size over skill. I wonder if there will be any good #10’s in the near future of this article series, probably just another dud at #10 in 2015…

  • Kybra

    The only reason not to make the pick is if you think you contend next year with one key addition to the team. I don’t think we do.
    By my count we need two or three pieces, who may already be in the system; but not quite ripe. We also need bounce back years from Klefbom, Rej, and Talbot. And just that I think gets us to the Conference Finals. But to hoist the Cup, this team needs Puljujarvi, Yamamoto, and Ethan Bear playing minutes on the PP, and they’re not there yet. Make the pick, save an extra player from expansion, and look to contend two years from now when we figure out how to get a few contracts off the books.
    Go Oil!

    • crabman

      @Kybra,

      another option for trading the pick is if it is a bit of a trade down and get another asset to do so. If these lists have shown us anything is that there is value between 10-15, but the 10th pick hasn’t been great. If the Oilers could trade down in the 1st and get another 2nd round pick or good prospect that could be a good move. The 2nd could be moved for immediate help or used to add another prospect. Ofcourse I wouldn’t make these moves until we see who is available at #10.

      • Kybra

        @Crabman
        If I’m trading beans for beans I’m looking at the Rangers. They have one early and two late first rounders. We give them two in the top ten, they give us two at the bottom of the first. I really believe that would be a solid move in most years, but not this year. All the juice is in the top 12.

  • Kybra

    @Crabman
    If I’m trading beans for beans I’m looking at the Rangers. They have one early and two late first rounders. We give them two in the top ten, they give us two at the bottom of the first. I really believe that would be a prudent move in most years, but not this year. All the juice is in the top 12, and we need quality not quantity.

    • crabman

      @Kybra,

      I’d like to see the 10th traded to Philly for the 14th and 19th in a trade down. If someone Philly really covets falls there could be the makings of a trade. I would take 2 of, Farabee, Wild, Merkley, McIsaac, Lundestrom, Smith, or Kupari over almost anyone that would fall from 6-9 to 10.