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Drafting by need and the "improved" Oilers scouting staff

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Old
09-29-2003, 05:57 AM
  #1
speeds
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Drafting by need and the "improved" Oilers scouting staff

quote from today's Journal:

"Musil stopped just short of begging the Oilers to take the 5'9" 160 lb Czech center in the first round in 2002, but with Mike Comrie and Todd Marchant in the middle, the brass higher up the food chain didn't want another small player"

And all of a sudden it's pretty obvious why this kind of thinking is absolutely MORONIC. It's not even 18 months after that draft, and:

Comrie - holding out, maybe done as an Oiler
Marchant - gone

this is exactly why you don't draft for need, you simply don't know what your needs will be by the time the player is ready. I'd like to think the Oilers brass thought this way, but if this quote is indeed correct and not just Matheson's take on why they passed on Hudler, it's obvious they don't. Musil was upset they wouldn't take him in the first round, he must have been losing his mind when they wouldn't take him with their 4th pick in the 2002 draft, where instead they took Matt Greene.

Just my little rant, it still burns me that they didn't take the guy, I was at least hoping the reason they didn't take him was that they didn't think he'd make it, not something so shortsighted as "We have 2 small guys now, so why add another?"

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09-29-2003, 06:05 AM
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considering they past on O'Sullivan aswell this year maybe the brass is doing what Matheson is saying

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09-29-2003, 06:06 AM
  #3
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Hudler

Do you still think the hype about Hudler is as big as it was pre-draft?

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09-29-2003, 06:10 AM
  #4
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yeah, or even bigger, the guy has 3 or 4 goals for DET already this pre-season, and from what I've read on it, he's very likely to crack the wings this year. I'm not sure I'd have expected a guy his size to be ready this year back at the 2002 draft, but it's wasn't unthinkable; he was putting up a PPG (or near) in the Czech league during his draft year.

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09-29-2003, 06:19 AM
  #5
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I think you should draft the best player available, never mind what position he plays...That player could eventually allow you to do alot more things: Dump salary by trading a veteran, trade another player for a position of need, trade that player for something better...

My take anyways.,..

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09-29-2003, 06:22 AM
  #6
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The Oilers turn half of the centers they draft into wingers anyways, I don't know why they were worried about what position he plays.

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09-29-2003, 06:27 AM
  #7
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To be fair

Hudler was drafted 58th, which means a lot of GM's passed him by. Again it's the same old, same old. He is 5'9 so you don't draft him early. (though in the same draft Pierre-Marc Bouchard was drafted 8th overall, so who can figure?

I know Redline had him ranked very high despite his size. In fact they rated him 8th overall.

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09-29-2003, 06:36 AM
  #8
speeds
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spaz44
Hudler was drafted 58th, which means a lot of GM's passed him by. Again it's the same old, same old. He is 5'9 so you don't draft him early. (though in the same draft Pierre-Marc Bouchard was drafted 8th overall, so who can figure?

I know Redline had him ranked very high despite his size. In fact they rated him 8th overall.
understood spaz, there was something about this guy that a lot of teams didn't seem to like.

No one else passed on him 4 times like EDM though.

Small market teams have a tough time getting skill players into the system. To pass one up, whom your Euro scout - one of the guys you'd think would have seen him the most - is begging you to take seems goofy to me. If it's because your head scouts simply don't think the player will make it, and are wrong, that's one thing (every scout makes mistakes). If they kinda like him, but say "oh he's small, we don't need another guy like that, so let's take someone else who's bigger" then I'm not a big fan of that. Especially when you use that 4th pick to take a guy who is seemingly a rough and tough 4-6 D-man. You can find those guys on the trade market for a 2nd rounder, and you don't even have to worry about them busting.

Of course, if there's a shot that Greene can turn into Adam Foote, then it's a no-brainer to take that D, so hopefully I'm wrong on that one .

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09-29-2003, 07:33 AM
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [b
speeds][/b]Just my little rant, it still burns me that they didn't take the guy, I was at least hoping the reason they didn't take him was that they didn't think he'd make it, not something so shortsighted as "We have 2 small guys now, so why add another?"
Hindsight is the luxury of the critic. The Oilers don't need another midget sized whiz. What is needed is for them to show confidence in the AHL players who are ready to move up like Stoll.

Trade Comrie for what we can get and let's get on with it. I'm more interested in what Dvo & Izzy bring to the rink and whether Torres can justify the one way contract he was given? Can Chimera and Pisani continue to get better? Is Bergeron for real? Hopefully, the Coaching staff makes the cuts sooner than later and allows the stress to diminish a bit before the regular seasons starts for the young guys who are kept. Plus I want to see if the PP and PK are working and get some of the veterans that were always going to stay some quality ice time. So enough with the woulda, coulda, shoulda crap and let's get serious about winning the majority of the games that real count in the month of October.

After giving themselves a whack of job security plus nice raises too boot and adding another coach I think the real pressure should be placed on the Hockey operation boys. Excuses about why the PP isn't working are just not going to cut it with this particular hockey fan!

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09-29-2003, 07:41 AM
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OYLer
Hindsight is the luxury of the critic. The Oilers don't need another midget sized whiz. What is needed is for them to show confidence in the AHL players who are ready to move up like Stoll.
what hindsight? Most were upset that EDM passed on Hudler at the time of the draft

Do they need another small scoring C? Maybe not. But who is to say they couldn't have traded that player for something that did suit there needs?

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09-29-2003, 08:08 AM
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speeds
what hindsight? Most were upset that EDM passed on Hudler at the time of the draft

Do they need another small scoring C? Maybe not. But who is to say they couldn't have traded that player for something that did suit there needs?
I totally concur with speeds because it was something I have said before.

How do you draft for need when you have no idea what that need will be in 2-5 years? If Winchester turns out and Mikhnov turns out and Niinimaki turns out then how bad is our need for size. Sure as heck we will be able to grind out the tough games with our big guys but we will for sure be lacking in the skill department.

Wouldn't we all agree that the toughest thing for a small market team to get is the skilled player? Well if the BPA is the skilled player, and he is small what difference does it make? With Todd and likely Mike gone that whole little guy mess is going to be over and done with, so the Oilers passed on a very skilled player for the sake of size.(And Stoll is no giant.)

My vote always is to take the best player, and if all things are equal then draft for need. If you end up with two supremely skilled 5.9" players I am sure that if you needed to move one to a lesser skilled team you would be able to.

The odds are that you get one or two players out of every draft. Why not take the flyer with the little guy on your FOURTH pick of the draft? If you have drafted intelligently one of the first three players is going to be a keeper(And I think that we feel that the first three guys in 2002 are all keepers Stoll, Niinimaki and JDD) so going for the homerun...definitely worth it in my books.

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09-29-2003, 08:32 AM
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [b
speeds[/b]]Most were upset that EDM passed on Hudler at the time of the draft
I wasn't upset and most most of the hockey fans I hang with could have cared less. At the time we wanted size added to the club especially up the middle. To use an ole' golf adage ' you drive for show and putt for dough.' Meaning that drafting is a best a crapshoot and after a prospect developes and shows promise than you get excited. The Wing can afford to take a flyer on the more unconventional players because they can use the free agent market to cover up their mistakes.

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09-29-2003, 08:35 AM
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speeds
Of course, if there's a shot that Greene can turn into Adam Foote, then it's a no-brainer to take that D, so hopefully I'm wrong on that one .

I was right there with you freaking out on draft day when they passed on Hudler for the fourth time... but I'm actually feeling better about it right now than I was then. I've felt for years that the Oilers have been really lacking an intimidator on the blueline- the type of guy that makes opposing forwards angry... but nervous. Some of the feedback on Greene from members that follow college hockey has been pretty encouraging.

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09-29-2003, 09:10 AM
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OYLer
I wasn't upset and most most of the hockey fans I hang with could have cared less.
Well, on the Oiler boards here... We were all hugely surprised that Hudler lasted as long as he did. I thought for sure one of the picks Hecht was dealt for would be Hudler... Maybe not upset pe se... over the entire situation but very surprised.

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09-29-2003, 09:16 AM
  #15
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A few things:

1. Oilers still have plenty of small guys on the roster (Hemsky, York) and several in the system (Helminen, Johansson). As a matter of fact, wasn't Helminen rated WAY higher than where they took him? Johansson too, as I recall.

2. The guys taken ahead of Hudler (Deslauriers, Stoll, Niinimaki, Greene) may take longer to get here, but we have no proof they won't turn out. ALL of them are progressing, and one has played an NHL game before Hudler.

3. I understand about drafting the bpa, but darn it all guys (and girls) this team looks like a bunch of runts running around at times. imo one of Lowe's priorities was to increase size.

4. I think it comes down to Greene. He's not a sexy pick. Well, from what I've read he's big, with some speed and a little mean. These guys often take a long time to develop, but they're pure gold.

5. The Wings have a need, Hudler fits it nicely. Their other young centers are 5'11, 6'0, that kind of thing, and are around 200 pounds. The Wings have a "spot" open.

6. I don't think it's fair to point at the Comrie situation as something that could be anticipated. On the contrary, it's probably fair to assume the team planned to build around him.

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09-29-2003, 09:34 AM
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lowetide
A few things:



2. The guys taken ahead of Hudler (Deslauriers, Stoll, Niinimaki, Greene) may take longer to get here, but we have no proof they won't turn out. ALL of them are progressing, and one has played an NHL game before Hudler.
definitely true

Quote:
6. I don't think it's fair to point at the Comrie situation as something that could be anticipated. On the contrary, it's probably fair to assume the team planned to build around him.
that's one reason you don't draft for need; you simply don't know what will happen in the future. Yes, they assumed they'd build around Comrie, but that's why you don't draft around those kinds of assumptions.

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09-29-2003, 10:03 AM
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lowetide
A few things:

1. Oilers still have plenty of small guys on the roster (Hemsky, York) and several in the system (Helminen, Johansson). As a matter of fact, wasn't Helminen rated WAY higher than where they took him? Johansson too, as I recall.

2. The guys taken ahead of Hudler (Deslauriers, Stoll, Niinimaki, Greene) may take longer to get here, but we have no proof they won't turn out. ALL of them are progressing, and one has played an NHL game before Hudler.

3. I understand about drafting the bpa, but darn it all guys (and girls) this team looks like a bunch of runts running around at times. imo one of Lowe's priorities was to increase size.

4. I think it comes down to Greene. He's not a sexy pick. Well, from what I've read he's big, with some speed and a little mean. These guys often take a long time to develop, but they're pure gold.

5. The Wings have a need, Hudler fits it nicely. Their other young centers are 5'11, 6'0, that kind of thing, and are around 200 pounds. The Wings have a "spot" open.

6. I don't think it's fair to point at the Comrie situation as something that could be anticipated. On the contrary, it's probably fair to assume the team planned to build around him.
And while you have some points that are well conceded, you would have to agree, that if we traded Comrie straight up for Handzus(or any other perceived need...Boynton or Gomez or whoever else we have heard could be valuable to us) and still had Hudler over Greene we would be a better team today.

And the thing about Greene as someone mentioned, big 6th D-men are a much easier commodity to acquire than the skilled forward that is going to get you 65 points a year.

The Wings need is false as well, because at that time they had Fedorov, Yzerman, Datsyuk and Zetterberg in the mix. It was only this offseason that determined the center issue for the Wings, not at the moment they drafted Hudler.(Although I concede Oyl's point about the Wings being able to swing for the homerun and fill the spaces with FA.)

The point is that we can get every other thing as a small market team but we HAVE TO HAVE TO HAVE TO draft for skill because we know that we aren't going to get a free agent skilled player here.

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09-29-2003, 10:23 AM
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slats432
My vote always is to take the best player, and if all things are equal then draft for need. If you end up with two supremely skilled 5.9" players I am sure that if you needed to move one to a lesser skilled team you would be able to.
Simply put and I concur. This should be the standard. As long as you allow for occassional exceptions to the rule.

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09-29-2003, 11:42 AM
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speeds
18 months after that draft, and:
Comrie - holding out, maybe done as an Oiler
Marchant - gone
Okay, but this was also the case a few weeks ago during the '03 draft, when Lowe could have had Parise, remember? Another small guy with mega-skill, just like Hudler. Everyone thinks Lou L. is a genius for snaking the kid for a measly 2nd and a swap; conversely, does this mean Lowe couldn't find his ass with both hands?

Maybe it means Lowe is passing on the Hudler & Parise types for other priorities than pure skill: hulking mass, capacity for cruelty, etc.

It makes me think that right now Comrie may just be a tradable asset to get the menacing, mobile d-man the Oil need. As many have argued, York is the same size, but passes better, plays defense, and seems to have a better attitude, so if Comrie has to go, let's hope it's for someone of equal value, regardless of his position.

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09-29-2003, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slats432
if we traded Comrie straight up for Handzus(or any other perceived need...Boynton or Gomez or whoever else we have heard could be valuable to us) and still had Hudler over Greene we would be a better team today.
That implies that Hudler is a better prospect than Greene. We don't know that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by slats432
And the thing about Greene as someone mentioned, big 6th D-men are a much easier commodity to acquire than the skilled forward that is going to get you 65 points a year.
Why is he a 5-6 defenseman? Is that his upside? Hudler was certainly more valued (#3CSB, #13HN), but Greene wasn't exactly a wild pick. He was rated #54 CSB and #76HN. They took him 44th.

He's described as being big, mobile, a good positional defenseman. They liked him enough to take him 44th. I don't see any evidence it was a mistake.


Quote:
Originally Posted by slats432
The Wings need is false as well, because at that time they had Fedorov, Yzerman, Datsyuk and Zetterberg in the mix. It was only this offseason that determined the center issue for the Wings, not at the moment they drafted Hudler.
Well, Fedorov was entering his ufa summer, so one would think that Ken Holland's situation in this regard was a bit different than Lowe/Comrie. Fedorov had the right to move on, Comrie has no such freedom. Huge difference, and it seems to me that the GM of a 23 year old centerman would assume he'd be back, even after a prolonged negotiation.

The Comrie issue is truly unique, with two once in a lifetime (lockout season coming, unusual first contract) events driving it.

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09-29-2003, 02:28 PM
  #21
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Gad lowetide I'd hate to cross you at hightide or is that hitide. Not that I don't agree with you completely on the points you have argued well.

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09-29-2003, 02:44 PM
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OYLer
Gad lowetide I'd hate to cross you at hightide or is that hitide. Not that I don't agree with you completely on the points you have argued well.

Didn't mean for it to come off heavy handed, if it did I apologize. I respect the people on this board alot, and specifically slats432 who I was responding to (and speeds earlier). I can't tell you the number of things I view differently because of the people on this board. Very bright people, great hockey knowledge.

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09-29-2003, 06:49 PM
  #23
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I agree with Slats and Speeds on this one. The NHL draft is indeed a crapshoot but the Oiler recent trend to get bigger, stronger does not necessarily translate into better. Hudler is at 20 (or whatever age he is) is already fast tracking to make a Stanley Cup contending team.

I see the Oilers drafting bigger players but I question leaving some potential great players on the draft board because of their current size fixation. What I see is the drafting of many 3-4 line players who will be huge but not necessarily deliver the high-end skills that most great team have. Size is indeed an issue with this hockey team but so is having a very limited number of elite-type, skill players beyond Hemsky.

Hudler, Parise, O'Sullivan were all deemed too small, too slow, or possibly too flawed to be drafted by this hockey team. We'll know in three years or so whether the big players drafted instead will pan out. But for my money, I would rather have big league talent than big, depth players who fill a role but won't necessarily snipe that big goal this lunch bucket team needs and has been lacking for so many years. Size does matter but skill first.

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09-29-2003, 06:53 PM
  #24
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Ya, it's pretty obvious that the Oilers draft for need. Otherwise they wouldn't have traded down in the draft and instead would have picked Parise.

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09-29-2003, 07:40 PM
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thome_26
Ya, it's pretty obvious that the Oilers draft for need. Otherwise they wouldn't have traded down in the draft and instead would have picked Parise.
don't agree there, I for one had Pouliot ahead of Parise in a general sense ( I may be wrong on that, time will tell I suppose)

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