The Oilers assign Jesse Puljujarvi to the Bakersfield Condors

Photo credit:Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports
6 years ago
First Mark Fayne hit the waiver wire and now Jesse Puljujarvi is on the move as the Edmonton Oilers announced that the young Finn will be starting the year in Bakersfield.
After having an up and down pre-season, the Edmonton Oilers make the smart move and send Jesse Puljujarvi to Bakersfield for more seasoning. One of the nice things about Pool Party starting his pro career in Finland was that the Oilers have the luxury of sending him to the AHL rather than back to Junior. He’s getting pro experience while also trying to work on his game. That’s a nice development advantage that they have with him. Let him work the kinks out in the minors, I say.
While there were certainly bigger expectations for Jesse Puljujarvi coming into this season, the coaching staff certainly made the right choice in sending him to Bakersfield. As Oilers fans, we’ve been used to prospects playing in the NHL immediately (ready or not!) and it’s going to take a while to get used to the team developing players over a longer stretch. At the end of the day, Puljujarvi’s pre-season was only so-so and it’s a better idea to have him gain some experience and confidence in the AHL rather than let him struggle in with the Oilers.
Smart decisions aside, the narrative that comes out of this move will probably be the most interesting part. Obviously, there will be a story about how Kailer Yamamoto outplayed Pool Party for a roster spot (which he did) but I wonder if some people are going to turn this into some kind of competition between the two of them (it is not). Just because Puljujarvi is older (only by four months btw) it doesn’t necessarily mean that they should arrive in the NHL at the same time. Kids are going to develop differently and we should be thankful to have two guys like this in our stable instead of comparing their development paths.
Regardless of what happens in the short term, the Edmonton Oilers made the right decision in sending Jesse Puljujarvi to Bakersfield to start the year. This kid is going to be a big part of the future and it’s never a bad thing to let a key prospect take a little more time to marinate. Rushing prospects into the NHL has gotten the Oilers in trouble in the past and it’s almost refreshing to see that they’re taking their time with this one. Besides, I can’t imagine it’s long before we see Jesse again.


Regular SeasonPlayoffs
2014-15Hokki KajanniMestis15851389
2016-17Edmonton OilersNHL28178105
2016-17Bakersfield CondorsAHL3912162810-2
NHL Totals 2817810
Source: Edmonton Oilers, Verified Twitter Account, 10/01/17, 12:00 pm MST

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