A Competitive Advantage

Jonathan Willis
December 22 2012 11:37AM

If the NHL starts up again in January, the Edmonton Oilers might be one of the league’s most improved teams. The shorter season means that low probability events – things like Nikolai Khabibulin's red hot start to 2011-12 or Jeff Deslauriers' five consecutive road wins back in 2009-10 – will have more impact than they would over an 82-game schedule. More than that, however, the Oilers have a competitive advantage.

That advantage is the Oklahoma City Barons. Robin Brownlee wrote briefly yesterday about the impact guys hitting the ground running could have and I’m in complete agreement on that score.

The fact that three of the Oilers’ top-six players – Jordan Eberle, Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins – will have 20+ games under their belt by the time the league is back in session is almost certainly a good thing. This isn’t the 1970’s, so “mid-season shape” doesn’t mean what it used to, but it seems entirely reasonable that a 20-year old who has been skating regularly in game situations is going to outperform a 30-year old who has not been playing competitive hockey all year.

For Hall in particular, starting in the minors is a positive. It was obvious that he was at less than 100 percent coming off shoulder surgery; he did not excel in his first few games with the Barons. He’s been exceptional since, though, rivaling Jordan Eberle as the team’s best forward.

The advantage goes beyond that, however.

On defence, Justin Schultz has been a revelation. I had high expectations, given what scouts and hockey men I respect have had to say about him over the years, but he’s blown those expectations out of the water. This summer, I posited that the Oilers needed a backup plan on the blue line just in case Schultz had difficulty adjusting to the majors. I still think the team could use some help on the back end but those concerns are gone: Justin Schultz is and was NHL-ready.

There is some fear that Schultz – as with many college players before him – hits a wall at the mid-season mark. But this is a guy who has been the AHL’s best player in the early going, a guy who on playmaking ability alone is probably the Oilers best offensive rearguard already. He should get top-four minutes in the first NHL game he plays.

Other Barons players either should or could play a key role in Edmonton.

Teemu Hartikainen appears to have won a job; he fit well on a line with Eberle and Nugent-Hopkins but at least as importantly has continued to be a factor when separated from the elite talent. I am still dubious about his offensive upside, but he looks to me like a guy who can be a decent complementary player on a skill line and given his size and willingness to play a physical game he is a good fit for team need. He is particularly adept at the cycle game in the offensive zone, something valuable regardless of which line he ends up on.

Magnus Paajarvi may or may not get a job immediately once hockey starts up, but there’s virtually no chance he isn’t on the Oilers’ roster at some point this year if hockey is played. He lacks the finishing ability of an elite player, but what he has a real knack for is puck possession – he is both a capable distributer and a great option for skating the puck up ice. Combine that with his penchant to cheat for defense, and he’s a guy who can fill in anywhere.

Yann Danis is the other guy who might crack the Oilers’ roster relatively early in the year. Nikolai Khabibulin was hurt this fall, and though it seems like he’s ready to go he also turns 40 in January; maybe the time off helps him, but there should be no tolerance for early season struggles. Danis has been excellent for the Barons after a lousy October, he has NHL experience, and he’s a capable backup if Khabibulin falters and/or is hurt again.

If the season starts in January, these guys – along with players who have played in Europe, like Ales Hemsky, Sam Gagner and Ladislav Smid – will give the Oilers an advantage other teams don’t have: a strong core of players who don’t need to adjust to playing hockey again. It’s the exact sort of advantage that could propel the Oilers up the Western Conference standings, and cause individual players to surpass expectations.

Recently by Jonathan Willis

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Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#101 David
December 23 2012, 07:40PM
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DSF wrote:

I don't recall ever being bullish on Ryan Murray.

I would have picked Galchenyuk first overall.

I agree thee Oilers have a nice second pairing.

What they don't have is a first pairing.

Every team in the league has prospects like Klefbom, Marincin and Musil.

How would you like to be in Burke's shoes with Gardiner, Rielly, Finn, Blacker and Percy all under 25?

Hell, Minnesota has Suter and Gilbert as a top pairing and has Scandella, Brodin, Falk, Spurgeon, Dumba and Cuma all under 25.

I believe when you were anointing the Blue Jackets as the next greatest thing you praised Murray.

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#102 Romulus' Apotheosis
December 23 2012, 07:50PM
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DSF wrote:

No one is writing them off but they are currently not trending very well.

Do you deny that?

If you say someone is projected as a bottom 4 and say that that person's wheels are falling off...

yes. you are prematurely writing that person off.

I see no evidence either player is trending poorly. In fact, all the evidence points the other direction.

The big factor is injury re: Klefbom, not his performance or development.

Any organization would be thrilled to have these guys in their system.

Is either a lock? no. greater players have been lost to injury, chance, etc.

but barring the disappointment surrounding injury, I'd think you'd have to possess a rare brand of pessimism to be anything but elated to have two such prospects in a system.

http://lowetide.ca/blog/2012/11/4-prospect-winter-2012-martin-marincin.htm

http://lowetide.ca/blog/2012/11/3-prospect-winter-2012-oscar-klefbom.html

http://www.hockeysfuture.com/prospect-rankings/preseason-prospect-rankings-2012-13/page/3

http://www.hockeysfuture.com/team-rankings/

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1245951-ranking-hockeys-top-50-prospects-after-the-2012-nhl-draft#/articles/1245951-ranking-hockeys-top-50-prospects-after-the-2012-nhl-draft/page/24

http://www.tsn.ca/draftcentre/feature/?id=9601

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#103 nuge2nail
December 23 2012, 07:52PM
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Oiler Domination To Follow

@DSF "How would you like to be in Burke's shoes with Gardiner, Rielly, Finn, Blacker and Percy all under 25?"

"How would you like to be in Tambellini's shoes with Hall, Hopkins, Yakupov, Eberle and Gagner all under 25?"

Furthermore to indulge another one of your useless comments. http://www.hockeysfuture.com/teams/toronto_maple_leafs/ http://www.hockeysfuture.com/teams/edmonton_oilers/ Our defensive prospects are ranked much better than Torontos. Only you would want to be in Burkes shoes.

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#104 nuge2nail
December 23 2012, 07:56PM
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Oiler Domination To Follow

Petry.Gardiner - Shultz.Rielly - Klefbom.Blacker - Marincin.Finn - Musil.Percy -Gernat.Mikus

Our 25 and under D is just as good or better than the shoes you dream of. Wake up buddy. No Need to be Negative just for the sake of being Negative. We have 6 guys above 7.5 Leafs have 3.

Furthermore Oilers are Ranked 3rd in the Entire NHL while the Leafs are ranked 20th. http://www.hockeysfuture.com/team-rankings

Your cherry Picking again, kind of like the post you put under Sniper Hemsky where you put Zetterberg on your useless list, but failed to include teammate Linus Omark who should have been NUMBER TWO overall on there.

Sad.

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#105 David
December 23 2012, 08:03PM
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@DSF

I'm trying to understand you DSF. Let's go over what you believe.

The Canucks are an elite team, one of the best in the league - I one hundred percent agree.

The oilers are terrible - finishing 30, 30, 29 of course I one hundred percent agree.

The futures of the wild and the panthers are very bright - I one hundred percent agree.

Many of the oilers prospects that people thought would be big parts of the future are probably going to be nothing or very little help. Ex. Pitlick lander, Hamilton, martindale - I agree. Maybe the possibility exists for some late blooming but many oilers prospects are not going to play in the show with any great impact if at all. I don't know what we were doing selecting Moroz in the second round.

The oilers future sucks - how? Taylor hall, Jordan Eberle, the Nuge, Yakupov, Schultz, giving the oilers elite talent. Gagner, Petry, Smid, Klefbom, Marincin Musil and a handful of other intriguing defensive prospects. Are you so blased against the Oilers you throw the obvious out the window? Or do you just enjoy trolling? What are you doing on Oilers nation anyways? These same players on another team and you would be declaring that team the future dynasty. I agree with most of the prospects you praise for other teams. But can you really say Stuart Percy is a positive when Klefbom isn't? That just plain stupid. So you'd rather take Seguin? So that means Hall is garbage? We got a number one center the next draft in the Nuge. So I ask again, what are you doing on Oilers nation?

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#106 Katzhater
December 23 2012, 08:15PM
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Oilertown, DSF is smarter than you. He is also more informed about hockey than you, and just about everyone on this site. Quit whining.

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#107 Katzhater
December 23 2012, 08:24PM
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Also, the Oilers defense is terrible. The arena deal proposed by Katz is a scam if there ever was one, and will not help the city of edmonton in any way, shape, or form.

One last tangent for you Oilersnation morons: the owners of the NHL franchisees are not losing money. Even the terrible southern state based ones. Misleading information from Forbes magazine does not prove otherwise.

Stupid idiots on this site. Especially these morons Book!e and David S. I think one is a realtor and the other writes superficial articles ad nauseum.

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#108 Oilertown
December 23 2012, 10:33PM
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Katzhater wrote:

Also, the Oilers defense is terrible. The arena deal proposed by Katz is a scam if there ever was one, and will not help the city of edmonton in any way, shape, or form.

One last tangent for you Oilersnation morons: the owners of the NHL franchisees are not losing money. Even the terrible southern state based ones. Misleading information from Forbes magazine does not prove otherwise.

Stupid idiots on this site. Especially these morons Book!e and David S. I think one is a realtor and the other writes superficial articles ad nauseum.

Annnd we have another troll. Not whining just sick of trolls such as DSF and yourself.

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#109 Oilertown
December 23 2012, 10:35PM
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Book!e and David S have been around this site for a very long time and are straight up characters unlike yourself.

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#110 Kodiak
December 23 2012, 10:36PM
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DSF, I'm still trying to find in the article where Willis said the Oilers will be or could be a top tier team this year? All I got out of it was that the shorter season may be an advantage for the Oil to sneak into the playoffs, and all you seem to do is compare them to one of the top teams and say, nope, they aren't good enough. We don't give a rats @ss about the Canucks and no one with any brains around here is suggesting the Oilers=Canucks. Give it up already. At least follow the theme of the article and compare the Oil to the 7/8/9 teams and tell us why the Oil suck too much to be in that mix.

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#111 nuge2nail
December 23 2012, 10:42PM
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Oiler Domination To Follow

DSF wrote:

1. Damien Brunner RW Zug NLA 27 23 25 48 2. Jaromir Jagr RW HC Kladno Czech 27 18 25 43 3. Tomas Plekanec C HC Kladno Czech 28 20 22 42 4. Evgeni Malkin C Metallurg Magnitogorsk KHL 29 13 28 41 5. Nick Bonino C Neumarkt/Egna Italy2 13 17 21 38 6. Tyler Seguin C/RW Biel NLA 24 23 14 37 7. Jan Mursak RW Olimpija Ljubljana Austria 21 12 24 36 8. John Tavares C Bern NLA 22 14 21 35 9. Erik Condra W SC Riessersee Germany2 16 18 16 34 10. Henrik Zetterberg C Zug ET 18 14 17 31 11. Ales Hemsky RW HC Pardubice Czech 25 14 17 31 12. Pavel Datsyuk C CSKA Moskva KHL 25 9 22 31 13. Alex Ovechkin LW Dynamo Moskva KHL 24 13 17 30 14. Ilya Kovalchuk LW SKA St. Petersburg KHL 24 12 18 30 15. Joe Thornton C Davos NLA 27 7 22 29 16. Patrice Bergeron C Lugano NLA 18 11 17 28 17. Patrik Berglund C Vasteras Allsvenskan 25 18 9 27 18. Mikael Backlund C Vasteras Allsvenskan 20 11 16 27 19. Sergei Kostitsyn LW Avangard Omsk KHL 21 9 18 27 20. Anze Kopitar C Mora Allsvenskan 25 9 18 27 21. Daniel Briere C Eisbaren Berlin DEL 17 6 21 27 22. Jason Spezza C Rapperswil NLA 25 8 18 26 23. David Krejci C HC Pardubice Czech 22 14 11 25 24. Drew Miller LW Braehead Clan EIHL 17 13 12 25 25. Marek Zidlicky D HC Kladno Czech 25 3 22 25

Linus Omark 29 12 31 43 Zug ET ... Should be Second on this list ahead of teammate star winger Zetterberg. Also ahead of other league players such as Tavarez, Thorton, Seguin, Bergeron and Spezza. The problem with DSF is not only does he cherry pick with his stats, but he also manipulates made-up stats and is selective in posting these useless stats when the Oilers are involved. Its sad and pathetic to try to dishearten fans and make stuff up- also to be so negative all the time.

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#112 Oilertown
December 23 2012, 11:15PM
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nuge2nail wrote:

Oiler Domination To Follow

DSF wrote:

1. Damien Brunner RW Zug NLA 27 23 25 48 2. Jaromir Jagr RW HC Kladno Czech 27 18 25 43 3. Tomas Plekanec C HC Kladno Czech 28 20 22 42 4. Evgeni Malkin C Metallurg Magnitogorsk KHL 29 13 28 41 5. Nick Bonino C Neumarkt/Egna Italy2 13 17 21 38 6. Tyler Seguin C/RW Biel NLA 24 23 14 37 7. Jan Mursak RW Olimpija Ljubljana Austria 21 12 24 36 8. John Tavares C Bern NLA 22 14 21 35 9. Erik Condra W SC Riessersee Germany2 16 18 16 34 10. Henrik Zetterberg C Zug ET 18 14 17 31 11. Ales Hemsky RW HC Pardubice Czech 25 14 17 31 12. Pavel Datsyuk C CSKA Moskva KHL 25 9 22 31 13. Alex Ovechkin LW Dynamo Moskva KHL 24 13 17 30 14. Ilya Kovalchuk LW SKA St. Petersburg KHL 24 12 18 30 15. Joe Thornton C Davos NLA 27 7 22 29 16. Patrice Bergeron C Lugano NLA 18 11 17 28 17. Patrik Berglund C Vasteras Allsvenskan 25 18 9 27 18. Mikael Backlund C Vasteras Allsvenskan 20 11 16 27 19. Sergei Kostitsyn LW Avangard Omsk KHL 21 9 18 27 20. Anze Kopitar C Mora Allsvenskan 25 9 18 27 21. Daniel Briere C Eisbaren Berlin DEL 17 6 21 27 22. Jason Spezza C Rapperswil NLA 25 8 18 26 23. David Krejci C HC Pardubice Czech 22 14 11 25 24. Drew Miller LW Braehead Clan EIHL 17 13 12 25 25. Marek Zidlicky D HC Kladno Czech 25 3 22 25

Linus Omark 29 12 31 43 Zug ET ... Should be Second on this list ahead of teammate star winger Zetterberg. Also ahead of other league players such as Tavarez, Thorton, Seguin, Bergeron and Spezza. The problem with DSF is not only does he cherry pick with his stats, but he also manipulates made-up stats and is selective in posting these useless stats when the Oilers are involved. Its sad and pathetic to try to dishearten fans and make stuff up- also to be so negative all the time.

Completely agree, its very sad when an old man has nothing better to do with his life then berate the Oilers all the time by digging up useless stats which he cherry picks from to try and make himself look like he knows what he is talking about. I think 99.8% of people on this site would agree with that.

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#113 GVBlackhawk
December 23 2012, 11:23PM
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David wrote:

I believe when you were anointing the Blue Jackets as the next greatest thing you praised Murray.

It is true. He had Murray listed as a possible top pairing with Seth Jones.

It is the same article that he was lauding Jack "turnstile" Johnson.

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#114 GVBlackhawk
December 24 2012, 12:01AM
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Katzhater wrote:

Also, the Oilers defense is terrible. The arena deal proposed by Katz is a scam if there ever was one, and will not help the city of edmonton in any way, shape, or form.

One last tangent for you Oilersnation morons: the owners of the NHL franchisees are not losing money. Even the terrible southern state based ones. Misleading information from Forbes magazine does not prove otherwise.

Stupid idiots on this site. Especially these morons Book!e and David S. I think one is a realtor and the other writes superficial articles ad nauseum.

Thank you for enlightening us with your unbelievable insight. I would be willing to pay big money to glean the knowledge that you have stored in that superhuman brain of yours. Please let me know.

That is, IF you have the time when you are not working on the Origins of the Universe...

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#115 GVBlackhawk
December 24 2012, 12:06AM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

If you say someone is projected as a bottom 4 and say that that person's wheels are falling off...

yes. you are prematurely writing that person off.

I see no evidence either player is trending poorly. In fact, all the evidence points the other direction.

The big factor is injury re: Klefbom, not his performance or development.

Any organization would be thrilled to have these guys in their system.

Is either a lock? no. greater players have been lost to injury, chance, etc.

but barring the disappointment surrounding injury, I'd think you'd have to possess a rare brand of pessimism to be anything but elated to have two such prospects in a system.

http://lowetide.ca/blog/2012/11/4-prospect-winter-2012-martin-marincin.htm

http://lowetide.ca/blog/2012/11/3-prospect-winter-2012-oscar-klefbom.html

http://www.hockeysfuture.com/prospect-rankings/preseason-prospect-rankings-2012-13/page/3

http://www.hockeysfuture.com/team-rankings/

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1245951-ranking-hockeys-top-50-prospects-after-the-2012-nhl-draft#/articles/1245951-ranking-hockeys-top-50-prospects-after-the-2012-nhl-draft/page/24

http://www.tsn.ca/draftcentre/feature/?id=9601

Good job Rom. I'd say you owned DSF on this blog today. A true beat down.

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#116 Oilertown
December 24 2012, 12:07AM
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GVBlackhawk wrote:

Thank you for enlightening us with your unbelievable insight. I would be willing to pay big money to glean the knowledge that you have stored in that superhuman brain of yours. Please let me know.

That is, IF you have the time when you are not working on the Origins of the Universe...

That dudes a real piece of work. Sounds like a cow towner.

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#117 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
December 24 2012, 08:28AM
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David S wrote:

I can't speak for Book!e (other than he seems like a decent, well informed guy), but I can tell you I don't "write superficial articles ad nauseum".

The person you're referring to is David Staples. You may not agree with his journalistic direction, but I'm fairly sure he researches the crap outta pretty much everything he writes as he is a paid, award-winning career professional journalist. Anyone who is a regular reader of his column or Cult of Hockey blog would have to agree. I'd also mention that being a professional, he doesn't stoop to name calling and website trolling to forward an ill-informed agenda.

Hate less and pay attention more. It'll make you look a whole lot less dumb.

maybe dumb is the look he is going for?

never can tell with the kids and their google these days

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#118 DSF
December 24 2012, 09:44AM
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GVBlackhawk wrote:

It is true. He had Murray listed as a possible top pairing with Seth Jones.

It is the same article that he was lauding Jack "turnstile" Johnson.

Murray with Jones seems like a reasonable projection if the Jackets pick first overall.

Jack Johnson in Columbus:

21GP 4G 10A 14P +5

Pro rates to 16G 40A 56P +20

This is a player who is the same age as Jeff Petry:

73GP 2G 23A 25P -7.

Now I suppose you're going to argue that, in his time in Columbus, Johnson was playing with a better team and in front of a better goaltender.

You may want to do a little digging into the Jackets D prospects before passing judgement.

Assuming they draft Jones, here's what their 25 and under list would look like:

Jack Johnson 1st round pick 2005

Seth Jones 1st round pick 2013

Ryan Murray 1st round pick 2012

Tim Erixon - 1st round pick 2009

John Moore - 1st round pick 2009

David Savard - 4th round pick 2009 - 27GP 3G 17A 20P Springfield AHL.

Now considering Nikita Nikitin just barely missed the 25 year old cut, that's an incredible cluster of young D.

I would think John Davidson might be open to trading the first overall pick for some help up front.

I wonder if the Oilers would dangle Yakupov to acquire Jones?

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#119 David
December 24 2012, 10:11AM
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DSF wrote:

Murray with Jones seems like a reasonable projection if the Jackets pick first overall.

Jack Johnson in Columbus:

21GP 4G 10A 14P +5

Pro rates to 16G 40A 56P +20

This is a player who is the same age as Jeff Petry:

73GP 2G 23A 25P -7.

Now I suppose you're going to argue that, in his time in Columbus, Johnson was playing with a better team and in front of a better goaltender.

You may want to do a little digging into the Jackets D prospects before passing judgement.

Assuming they draft Jones, here's what their 25 and under list would look like:

Jack Johnson 1st round pick 2005

Seth Jones 1st round pick 2013

Ryan Murray 1st round pick 2012

Tim Erixon - 1st round pick 2009

John Moore - 1st round pick 2009

David Savard - 4th round pick 2009 - 27GP 3G 17A 20P Springfield AHL.

Now considering Nikita Nikitin just barely missed the 25 year old cut, that's an incredible cluster of young D.

I would think John Davidson might be open to trading the first overall pick for some help up front.

I wonder if the Oilers would dangle Yakupov to acquire Jones?

I'm just wondering why Murray who was having a good season and then got a shoulder injury is projecting to be a first pairing Defensemen. (he's still in junior) and Klefbom (he's a first round pick too) was having a good season and then got a shoulder injury is trending downwards?

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#120 David
December 24 2012, 10:18AM
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DSF wrote:

Murray with Jones seems like a reasonable projection if the Jackets pick first overall.

Jack Johnson in Columbus:

21GP 4G 10A 14P +5

Pro rates to 16G 40A 56P +20

This is a player who is the same age as Jeff Petry:

73GP 2G 23A 25P -7.

Now I suppose you're going to argue that, in his time in Columbus, Johnson was playing with a better team and in front of a better goaltender.

You may want to do a little digging into the Jackets D prospects before passing judgement.

Assuming they draft Jones, here's what their 25 and under list would look like:

Jack Johnson 1st round pick 2005

Seth Jones 1st round pick 2013

Ryan Murray 1st round pick 2012

Tim Erixon - 1st round pick 2009

John Moore - 1st round pick 2009

David Savard - 4th round pick 2009 - 27GP 3G 17A 20P Springfield AHL.

Now considering Nikita Nikitin just barely missed the 25 year old cut, that's an incredible cluster of young D.

I would think John Davidson might be open to trading the first overall pick for some help up front.

I wonder if the Oilers would dangle Yakupov to acquire Jones?

I agree the blue jackets defensive prospects look good. Although almost all of that list has yet to play a single game in the NHL. But it does look good. I'm just asking you to come off your anti oilers bias just a little bit. Then you could be intelligent. I'm fairly confident that if you asked around the league to people in upper management, they would say Klefbom is a good prospect. He's young. Galchenyuk missed a whole season to injury and he seems to be doing just fine. Same with Morgan Rielly. I would say that as long as Klefbom's shoulder heals properly he will be just fine.

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#121 TigerUnderGlass
December 24 2012, 10:24AM
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@DSF

Can you tell us all again how a player not on the Canadian roster will be playing ahead of Gagner on the depth chart?

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#122 DSF
December 24 2012, 10:43AM
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David wrote:

I'm just wondering why Murray who was having a good season and then got a shoulder injury is projecting to be a first pairing Defensemen. (he's still in junior) and Klefbom (he's a first round pick too) was having a good season and then got a shoulder injury is trending downwards?

Well, Murray was selected second overall for a reason.

7 defensemen were selected ahead of Klefbom in the 2011 draft so you would have to think there is a gap in their potential.

In 67 total games in the SEL, Klefbom has scored all of 7 points.

While I certainly wouldn't compare the two leagues, Murray had 17 points in only 23 games in the WHL before he was injured.

Hard to say how the injuries will affect these players careers, but I think you have to give the nod to Murray as a prospect

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#123 DSF
December 24 2012, 10:54AM
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David wrote:

I agree the blue jackets defensive prospects look good. Although almost all of that list has yet to play a single game in the NHL. But it does look good. I'm just asking you to come off your anti oilers bias just a little bit. Then you could be intelligent. I'm fairly confident that if you asked around the league to people in upper management, they would say Klefbom is a good prospect. He's young. Galchenyuk missed a whole season to injury and he seems to be doing just fine. Same with Morgan Rielly. I would say that as long as Klefbom's shoulder heals properly he will be just fine.

I agree, Klefbom looks like a very good prospect.

With Schultz looking like a potential top pairing D in the future and if Maricin and Musil work out the OIlers could be in a good position in 3 or 4 years.

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#124 Romulus' Apotheosis
December 24 2012, 10:58AM
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DSF wrote:

Well, Murray was selected second overall for a reason.

7 defensemen were selected ahead of Klefbom in the 2011 draft so you would have to think there is a gap in their potential.

In 67 total games in the SEL, Klefbom has scored all of 7 points.

While I certainly wouldn't compare the two leagues, Murray had 17 points in only 23 games in the WHL before he was injured.

Hard to say how the injuries will affect these players careers, but I think you have to give the nod to Murray as a prospect

What's with this pathetic zero sum game again?

Who's taking away from Murray?

The kid was a near 1st overall. Anyone, as of now, poking that kid in the eye ought to be banned from speaking about hockey.

Except.... no one is. it's a stupid straw man you've created.

You might as well say Weber is really good and therefore Klefbom is terrible.

For the last time... Murray being an amazing prospect has almost nothing to do with Klefbom. In no world does Klefbom lose anything by the presence of Murray.

How about some reasonable arguments. crap.

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#125 David
December 24 2012, 10:58AM
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DSF wrote:

Well, Murray was selected second overall for a reason.

7 defensemen were selected ahead of Klefbom in the 2011 draft so you would have to think there is a gap in their potential.

In 67 total games in the SEL, Klefbom has scored all of 7 points.

While I certainly wouldn't compare the two leagues, Murray had 17 points in only 23 games in the WHL before he was injured.

Hard to say how the injuries will affect these players careers, but I think you have to give the nod to Murray as a prospect

I like Ryan Murray but being selected second overall doesn't mean much when it comes to Defensemen. Eric Johnson first, Cam Barker third, Thomas Hickey fourth, Luke Schenn fifth. The other players you have listed for Columbus were not second overall picks. Erik Karlsson fifteenth, tyler Myers Twelfth, Ryan Mcdonagh twelfth, Shea weber 49, P.k. Subban 43, Kris Letang 62, Duncan Keith 54. Defensemen are all over the map. You just have an anti oilers bias.

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#126 Romulus' Apotheosis
December 24 2012, 11:00AM
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DSF wrote:

I agree, Klefbom looks like a very good prospect.

With Schultz looking like a potential top pairing D in the future and if Maricin and Musil work out the OIlers could be in a good position in 3 or 4 years.

Much more reasonable. thanks!

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#127 David
December 24 2012, 11:01AM
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DSF wrote:

I agree, Klefbom looks like a very good prospect.

With Schultz looking like a potential top pairing D in the future and if Maricin and Musil work out the OIlers could be in a good position in 3 or 4 years.

And that's all I'm saying. No guarantee that they will turn out but they are tracking well.

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#128 DSF
December 24 2012, 11:04AM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

What's with this pathetic zero sum game again?

Who's taking away from Murray?

The kid was a near 1st overall. Anyone, as of now, poking that kid in the eye ought to be banned from speaking about hockey.

Except.... no one is. it's a stupid straw man you've created.

You might as well say Weber is really good and therefore Klefbom is terrible.

For the last time... Murray being an amazing prospect has almost nothing to do with Klefbom. In no world does Klefbom lose anything by the presence of Murray.

How about some reasonable arguments. crap.

You might want to check post #118.

If you're following along you'll know that the subject of Murray came up in a general discussion about Columbus' D prospect pool.

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#129 DSF
December 24 2012, 11:10AM
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David wrote:

I like Ryan Murray but being selected second overall doesn't mean much when it comes to Defensemen. Eric Johnson first, Cam Barker third, Thomas Hickey fourth, Luke Schenn fifth. The other players you have listed for Columbus were not second overall picks. Erik Karlsson fifteenth, tyler Myers Twelfth, Ryan Mcdonagh twelfth, Shea weber 49, P.k. Subban 43, Kris Letang 62, Duncan Keith 54. Defensemen are all over the map. You just have an anti oilers bias.

Absolutely true.

There are hits and misses all the time and D develop more slowly and all sorts of things can go wrong on the way to Grandma's house.

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#130 DSF
December 24 2012, 11:10AM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

Much more reasonable. thanks!

Now all they need is a #1D.

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#131 Romulus' Apotheosis
December 24 2012, 11:22AM
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DSF wrote:

You might want to check post #118.

If you're following along you'll know that the subject of Murray came up in a general discussion about Columbus' D prospect pool.

I was following along.

David asked a perfectly reasonable question: why in one instance a major injury to a prospect = "trending down" and in another it fails to merit attn?

That's quite different from the straw man comparison you responded to here:

"Hard to say how the injuries will affect these players careers, but I think you have to give the nod to Murray as a prospect"

David never claimed otherwise... though he has since thrown cold water on all D prospects, which seems completely reasonable.

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#132 Romulus' Apotheosis
December 24 2012, 11:24AM
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Now all they need is a #1D.

Yes. badly.

that or a healthy Whitney, plus 1 top 4

or a busted Whitney, plus 2 top 4

the committee of champions model is an option.

ps. and a bottom 6 killer and a G and probably a C.

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#133 David
December 24 2012, 11:29AM
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DSF wrote:

Now all they need is a #1D.

And that's the big question isn't it. In a league that is getting harder to score goals they are going to have to out score teams to win. Looking through my oilers colored glasses I think the team will have a competent defense 4-5 years from now (goal tending could be a concern but for now let's see what Duby can do). I'm pretty sure that if the Oilers want a number one D then they will have to part with one the "untouchables" up front. As hard as it is to say it, I think this is the best course to take. Which one to trade though, this will be something they should look at in a few years.

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#134 David S
December 24 2012, 12:58PM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

Yes. badly.

that or a healthy Whitney, plus 1 top 4

or a busted Whitney, plus 2 top 4

the committee of champions model is an option.

ps. and a bottom 6 killer and a G and probably a C.

I think the most you could hope for is a healthy busted Whitney. He'll never be as good as he was when we got him.

DSF is right on this one. None of our "top 4" would be labelled as such on any other team in the league. That's the problem. I'd settle for two legit top 4's for my wish list.

And Danis as our backup/1A. I'm sure the Barons could really use the wisdom and "good guyness in the room" of our Russian retiree.

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#135 nuge2nail
December 24 2012, 01:42PM
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David S wrote:

I think the most you could hope for is a healthy busted Whitney. He'll never be as good as he was when we got him.

DSF is right on this one. None of our "top 4" would be labelled as such on any other team in the league. That's the problem. I'd settle for two legit top 4's for my wish list.

And Danis as our backup/1A. I'm sure the Barons could really use the wisdom and "good guyness in the room" of our Russian retiree.

Oiler Domination To Follow

I would think Smid and N Schultz would be considered legitimate shut down top 4 d on many teams.

I would also think Petry and J Shultz have the potential to be legitimate offensive top 4 d on many teams.

J Shultz just scored his 16th goal of the season for the barons last game - hes closing in on the ALL TIME RECORD before the mid season mark.

If Whitney is Healthy our Defence will not be a weakness for this team - If not we need to add one more top 4 in case of injuries and to give us depth on D that we havent had since dare i say the Pronger Year.

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#136 GVBlackhawk
December 24 2012, 03:45PM
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DSF wrote:

Murray with Jones seems like a reasonable projection if the Jackets pick first overall.

Jack Johnson in Columbus:

21GP 4G 10A 14P +5

Pro rates to 16G 40A 56P +20

This is a player who is the same age as Jeff Petry:

73GP 2G 23A 25P -7.

Now I suppose you're going to argue that, in his time in Columbus, Johnson was playing with a better team and in front of a better goaltender.

You may want to do a little digging into the Jackets D prospects before passing judgement.

Assuming they draft Jones, here's what their 25 and under list would look like:

Jack Johnson 1st round pick 2005

Seth Jones 1st round pick 2013

Ryan Murray 1st round pick 2012

Tim Erixon - 1st round pick 2009

John Moore - 1st round pick 2009

David Savard - 4th round pick 2009 - 27GP 3G 17A 20P Springfield AHL.

Now considering Nikita Nikitin just barely missed the 25 year old cut, that's an incredible cluster of young D.

I would think John Davidson might be open to trading the first overall pick for some help up front.

I wonder if the Oilers would dangle Yakupov to acquire Jones?

No no. Jack Johnson is not a good defenseman. The following are his stats with the Los Angeles Kings. A total of 338 games played...as opposed to your paltry 21 game sample.

07-08: -19; rel corsi -20.4

08-09: -18; rel corsi -11.5

09-10: -15; rel corsi -4.9

10-11: -21; rel corsi -8.7

11-12: -12; rel corsi -10.1

Jack Johnson's rookie year relative Corsi score was a staggering -436. Hence, 'the turnstile' moniker.

Lastly, Dean Lombardi had this to say about Jack Johnson on January 20, 2010 (courtesy Frozen Royalty):

"Jack was a thoroughbred out there. But he was all over the place. He was awful as a hockey player. As an athlete, you’re going, wow! Look at the way he skates, shoots, he can pass. But he had no idea where he was going. At times, he was playing forward at Michigan. You had no idea what position he was playing. But he had always been the star and he always got his numbers. Then he turns pro and for the first time, we’re telling him ‘whoa, just make the first pass and learn to play in your own end.’ How about making a read in your own end about the right guy to pick up? He was awful."

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#137 DSF
December 24 2012, 04:27PM
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GVBlackhawk wrote:

No no. Jack Johnson is not a good defenseman. The following are his stats with the Los Angeles Kings. A total of 338 games played...as opposed to your paltry 21 game sample.

07-08: -19; rel corsi -20.4

08-09: -18; rel corsi -11.5

09-10: -15; rel corsi -4.9

10-11: -21; rel corsi -8.7

11-12: -12; rel corsi -10.1

Jack Johnson's rookie year relative Corsi score was a staggering -436. Hence, 'the turnstile' moniker.

Lastly, Dean Lombardi had this to say about Jack Johnson on January 20, 2010 (courtesy Frozen Royalty):

"Jack was a thoroughbred out there. But he was all over the place. He was awful as a hockey player. As an athlete, you’re going, wow! Look at the way he skates, shoots, he can pass. But he had no idea where he was going. At times, he was playing forward at Michigan. You had no idea what position he was playing. But he had always been the star and he always got his numbers. Then he turns pro and for the first time, we’re telling him ‘whoa, just make the first pass and learn to play in your own end.’ How about making a read in your own end about the right guy to pick up? He was awful."

Oh there's no doubt Johnson had a lot of chaos in his game as a youngster but you have to bear in mind that Lombardi quote was from 3 years ago when Johnson was 22.

Remember how Smid looked when he was 22?

65GP 0G 4A 4P -15.

Rel Corsi ia about as meaningful as counting turnips that fall off a truck.

Defensemen take time to ripen but if you wanted to trade Petry to Columbus for Johnson, I'd wager the Jackets would laugh at you....and so would I.

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