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Photo Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

All About Caleb Jones

Since signing his entry-level contract in April of 2016, Oilers fans have been patiently waiting to see how Caleb Jones would develop. Brother of Columbus Blue Jackets star, Seth Jones, Caleb Jones has spent the past couple of years finishing up his junior career before going pro, playing his first full year in Bakersfield in 2017-18. Looking ahead, Jones will continue to be a name to watch as he polishes all aspects of his game and earns more ice time with the Bakers Condors. So what do the Oilers have in Jones? Today, we continue our look at the prospect pool with a breakdown of the AHL sophomore, Caleb Jones.

BIO:

Position: Defence — Shoots:  Left
Born: June 6th, 1997 — City: Frisco, Texas
Height: 6 feet 1 inch — Weight: 205 lbs [185 cm/93 kg]
Drafted: 117th overall (4th round in 2015)
Major Junior: Portland Winterhawks — League: Western Hockey League
Current Team: Bakersfield Condors

NEWS AND SCOUTING REPORTS

In late June, Caleb Jones was interviewed by Robert Tychkowski of the Edmonton Sun, telling him that he’s hoping to make the NHL jump sooner than later.

I just turned 21, it goes quick,” he said. “You want to get to the NHL as quick as possible. There was certain point in my head where I’m saying I don’t want to be in the American League. I want to be in the NHL. That’s really my mindset this summer. I don’t care where they have me slotted, where they think I’ll be. I want to come in and basically force myself onto the roster. I’ve been putting in a pretty good amount of work this summer. I still have a lot to do but I’m confident coming to main camp that I will be ready to go and turn some heads.

To give us a better idea of what kind of player Jones might turn out to be, we’ve also compiled varying scouting reports from around the web that have been done over the years.

Dustin Nielson, earlier this summer:

I think Caleb Jones’ long term potential is flying under the radar a little bit. Jones was a point per game player in his final year with the Winterhawks. In his first pro season with the Condors, he put up 17 points in 58 games.

He won’t be an offensive dynamo at the next level but I’d be shocked if he doesn’t become an NHL regular. For a 21-year-old he thinks the game at a high level, which should allow him to become a workhorse in Bakersfield this season.

From Jameson Ewasiuk, Dobber Prospects:

After a strong WHL career, Jones turned pro last season and recorded two goals and 17 points in 58 games for Bakersfield. His stats were a little lower than some had hoped for and further development is clearly necessary in the AHL, but the young defender has an intriguing toolset. The younger Jones doesn‘t excel at any one specific area but he is a smooth skater with solid size that can contribute at both ends of the ice and can engage physically. The Oilers will be patient with the young rearguard and although he doesn‘t likely have the offensive upside of a player like Bear, Jones could develop nicely into a bottom-pairing, all-situations defender that brings reliability to his team‘s backend. There is a chance he develops into a legit top four defender but at the moment we have to wait and see what kind of progression his overall game makes in his second pro campaign. Could be a smart late-round pick knowing that the Oilers don‘t have many defense prospects ahead of him on the depth chart.

From Curtis Joe, 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.

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.

PRE-DRAFT RANKINGS

  • International Scouting Services: 133

VIDEO AND HIGHLIGHTS

Highlights from Jones’ 2017-18 season:

Caleb Jones’ first professional league goal:

Jones fights Austin Wagner

Caleb Jones’ exit interview after his first full pro season:

CAREER STATS

SEASON TEAM LEAGUE GP G A TP PIM +/- PGP G A TP PIM +/-
2011-12 Dallas Stars U16 T1EHL U16 10 3 2 5 12
2012-13 Dallas Stars U16 T1EHL U16 40 2 17 19 36 4 0 1 1 2
2013-14 USNTDP Juniors USHL 33 0 7 7 57 -14
U.S. National U17 Team USDP 52 1 14 15 90
USA U17 WHC-17 6 0 3 3 4
2014-15 USNTDP Juniors USHL 25 2 6 8 28 14
U.S. National U18 Team USDP 65 6 19 25 50
USA U18 WJC-18 7 0 5 5 0 6
2015-16 Portland Winterhawks WHL 72 10 45 55 64 4 4 0 2 2 6 0
Bakersfield Condors AHL 3 0 0 0 2 -2
2016-17 Portland Winterhawks WHL 63 9 53 62 54 3 11 2 8 10 28 3
USA U20 WJC-20 7 0 2 2 2 2
2017-18 Bakersfield Condors AHL 58 2 15 17 43 -25

PLAYER TOTALS BY LEAGUE

LEAGUE GP G A TP PPG PIM +/- PGP G A TP PPG PIM +/-
AHL 61 2 15 17 0.28 45 -27
T1EHL U16 50 5 19 24 0.48 48 0 4 0 1 1 0.25 2 0
USDP 117 7 33 40 0.34 140 0
USHL 58 2 13 15 0.26 85 0
WHC-17 6 0 3 3 0.50 4 0
WHL 135 19 98 117 0.87 118 7 15 2 10 12 0.80 34 3
WJC-18 7 0 5 5 0.71 0 6
WJC-20 7 0 2 2 0.29 2 2

Stats provided by Elite Prospects

Previously:

  • 18% body fat

    hopefully ready for 2019-20,

    Russel gone, sekera gone, klef and nurse solidified, and a left side D looking like this

    Klef, nurse, jones,

    Right side

    Larsson, Bouchard, Benning, Bear.

    Much cheaper and better,

  • OriginalPouzar

    An uneven season from Caleb this past year in the AHL but that was not unexpected given he was a rookie pro.

    He had a tough start to the year and then missed a bunch of games with a concussion but he seemed to find his game a bit in the back half of the season. Here is hoping he parlays that uptick in play in to a solid second year in the AHL. He’s a fantastic skater – that’s his go to.

    • Sammy27

      He skates very well, and by all reports does everything to an acceptable level. Hopefully the type of player that once he earns the trust of the coaches he will play a Steve Staois kind of role.Jack of all trades, master of none?

  • ponokanocker

    I really thought we’d see Jones get a few games last year. Hopefully he can show enough to get some NHL time this year. With the NHL transitioning to speed, I would think his play would be a good fit.

  • El Oilero

    The future (as in 1 to 2 years) is:
    Nurse – Larrson
    Klef – Bouchard
    Jones – Bear

    So let’s hope Sekera and Russell have great seasons so we can flip them at a high value at the trade deadline or next summer for some wingers or prospects.

    • Kass - Brought to you by BTF 2.0

      I watched him fairly closely the last 2 years in Penticton and in camp. He’s probably the second best skating defenseman in the organization. Very composed – I think he can become an NHLer.

  • Serious Gord

    Russell and sekera signed until end of 20/21 season. Getting them gone before then means trading them and taking someone of equal value (negative or positive back).

      • The 5 D’s

        Not so sure why we as Edmonton fans are so quick to run out one of our best dman. When not hurt Sekera was and is a solid pick up trading him will depend on the year.

    • Russell isn’t as bad as people make him out to be and won’t be hard to move in a year or two and it might be hard but there are ways to work around Sekera’s contract, Washington had Orpik’s contract and they did just fine. Worst case scenario in a few years is that Russell gets moved and Sekera gets used as a veteran stopgap for the young d-men coming up the system.

    • 18% body fat

      bad contracts are traded all the time, russels is just super bad to the oilers.

      Two years left on a contract to a cap floor team needing veterans is not as bad as a contract to them.

      • Glencontrolurstik

        Come on. Russell works very hard for his money and does most of what is expected of him. I would be over the moon if half of the team put themselves on the line every night like he does. I think he is one of the teams best assets, but I’ll probably get trashed for these comments.
        I don’t care, I like him on the team.

        • Daryl Katz

          ya this Russell bashing is getting old. i know we need to have players we can blame for the teams lack of success but he did what was expected of him last year.

          • I don’t get the blame at all. Maybe he’s not the smooth skating puck mover RHD we wanted but who cares? Isn’t it a good thing to have a slate of different guys on your blueline that you can use in different situations?

      • ed from edmonton

        Looking at the contracts Dmen are getting this year is quite surprising. Skeij got 5.25M and Ceci is likely to end up in the 4.5 to 5.5M range. Ceci is a guy who ended up at -27 last year.
        These results makes the many Oil dmen look like bargain contracts. Even Russel at $4,5 M for UFA years does not compare poorly. Larsen and Klef (assuming Klef can have a bounce back year) are bargains. Sekera at $5.5, if he can play close to his pre 17/18 form is not an overpay.
        The premium RHD can demand is really astounding.

  • ROILYDoGG$

    Anyone see Lagesson, Bergland play in Europe or at Camps here ? I would like to see one of these articles on them as they don’t get much exposure. However from the videos I’ve seen from SEL they both look like good skaters and potential to crack the Line up eventually .

  • OiLNATION

    Just imagine a future defense core to be:
    Klefbom- Larsson
    Nurse- Bouchard
    Jones- Bear
    Benning
    That is a skilled, offensive and mobile defense core that may be one of the best in the league.