Oilers Draft Review

This is a review of what the Edmonton Oilers did (and didn't) do at the 2013 NHL entry draft:

Round 1

7th overall selection - The Oilers take Defensman Darnell Nurse 7th overall and while I've seen his name come up for the Oilers in a few mock drafts I really expected them to take a forward. The team is clearly weak at forward and has a real need for skilled players with size to complement the young forwards already in the system, so when the Oilers went to the podium with Nishushkin still on the board I was quite surprised that they picked Darnell Nurse. With that said I think Nurse really adds alot to the defensive prospect pool of the Oilers and gives them a position of strength to deal from when making trades for the forwards the team needs. Nurse may be a couple of years away from the NHL but he will get there and he will make an impact so that really opens the door for MacT to trade good prospects like Marincin, Mussil, Fedun etc.. I still think they like Klefbom too much to deal him unless the return is just too perfect.

Nurse is a 6.04 185lb 18yr old who is described as a big shut down defender with a mean streak who intimidates the opposition. He's a good skater and has shown great progress in his offensive game this past season. Nurse could be the Oilers #1 defender someday but the organization needs to let the player develope in Jr rather than rushing him into the NHL.

Round 2

37 overall - The Oilers traded this pick to the LA Kings for picks 57, 88 and 96. We all expected some 'bold' moves in the 2nd rd so it was a little disapointing to see the pick moved for 3 later picks.

56 Overall - The Oilers draft Marc Olivier Roy. Described as a hard working two-way winger with great skating ability and perhaps a guy who has under-rated offensive potential. Roy is 6.00 and 175lbs.

57 overall - Traded to the St Louis Blues for picks 83, 94 and 113.

Round 3

83 overall - Bogdan Yakimov is huge at 6.05 202lbs and has great playmaking ability and vision. His weakness is his skating but the player has the right tools and if the Oilers can work with him on his skating there may be a player here. Of note Yakimov is from the same town as Nail Yakupov and attended Yakupov's fater's hockey school.

88 overall - Anton Slepyshev could be a real steal for the Oilers in the draft. The 6.02 187lbs winger was eligible for the 2012 draft but was passed over, despite being ranked quite high by some. He has played the past 2 seasons in the KHL and has above average skating abiltiy and a shoot first mentality. Watch out for this guy!

Round 4

94 overall - Jackson Houck is a 6.00 186lbs right winger and while he doesn't bring alot of size he is very physical and gritty. He's a player who wins battles and is the heart and soul guy on his team. His weakness in his skating but he has enough value in other areas to justify the pick.

96 overall - Kyle Platzer is a bit on the small size, listed at 5.11 185lbs but he makes up for that with his speed. He played a 4th line role on a deap London Knights team so we'll see next year if there is enough offense here.

113 overall - Aidan Muir plays center and Left wind and is listed at 6.03, 185lbs. He's described as a power forward and needs to work on his skating and add a little more strength. He is only 17 years old so so there is quite a bit of developement time for the player.

Round 5

128 Overall - Evan Campbell is a 6.02 190lbs 20yr old left winger drafted from the BCHL. This pick seems like a bit of a reach but the player showed a huge improvement this season and is commited to the UMass Lowell River Hawks so Campbell has some time to work on his game before turning pro.

Round 6

158 Overall - Ben Betker. 6.05 200lbs defender who played against the oppositions top 6 forwards and on the PK last year. He was named the most improved player on the Silvertips this season and was ranked #147 by NHL Central Scouting despite being unranked in the preliminary and the midterm reports. Betker sounds like the type of player with the determination and work ethic to prove people wrong, I'll keep my eye on this guy.

Round 7

188 Overall - Gregory Chase has great vision but needs to work on his consistency, work ethic, and defensive game. Chase is 6.00 195lbs.

Thoughts

We didn't see any of the 'bold' moves that Mactavish lead us all to beleive would happen at the draft but it certainly wasn't for a lack of trying. There were many reports of the Oilers being in on the Schneider deal which I'm glad didn't happen and Mactavish was talking with Paul Holmgren constantly throughout the 2nd round (presumably about Brayden Colburn).

Mactavish did manage to make to trades which effectively resulting in pick #37 being traded for picks 83, 88, 94, 96 and 113. Considering the Oilers came into the draft with no picks in the 3rd or 4th rounds I like these trades.

There are a few players here that need to work on their skating and I believe that the Oilers are confident that they can work with these guys in that area. Mactavish has stressed that he wants to draft high skilled players who have flaws that can be fixed and I think this is a great example of that.

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