Monday, June 30, 2014

Are the Oilers making another move?

The Oilers just finished signing a last minute pending UFA last week and then picked up their pick skilled center at the draft and a handful of draft prospects who may or may not ever see the light of day in the NHL. You can take a closer look here at my draft analysis on the Oilers.

With free agency coming up they still have to either trade or land a few more players. Who is left? Who are you OK with? What would you attempt if you were GM of the Oilers? These can be difficult decisions for management. The team is extremely under the microscope now so every move they will be careful to feel like they have made the fans happy without sacrificing the future. I listed the player in red that I would at least entertain if gotten for right trade and/or price. Without going into detail on every player feel free to comment your thoughts.

Who can they trade for?

Vincent Lecavalier C
Braydon Coburn D
Brayden Schenn C
Sean Couturier C
Ben Lovejoy D
Martin Hanzel C
David Moss R/L
Keith Yandle D
Bryan Bickell L
Jamie McGinn L/R
Kyle Clifford L
Dwight King L
Jordan Nolan L/R
Patrick Marleau C
Johnny Boychuk D
Tyler Myers D
Eric Staal C
Jordan Staal C
Rene Bourque L/R
Josh Bailey C

Who can they sign as a UFA? 

Danny Heatley LW
Thomas Vanek LW
Brad Richards C
Dan Boyle D
Paul Stastny C
Jerome Iginla RW
Mike Cammalleri LW
Mike Ribeiro C
Martin Havlat RW
David Legwand C
Ryan Malone LW
Olli Jokinen C
Ville Leino LW
Milan Michalek LW
David Booth LW
Christian Ehrhoff D
Andrej Meszaros D
Kyle Quincey D
Sami Salo D
Brooks Orpik D
Willie Mitchell D
Dave Bolland C
Stephane Robidas D
Matt Moulson L
Radem Vrbata R
Jussi Jokinen L
Mikhail Grabovski C
Devin Setoguchi R
Steve Ott C
Nikolai Kulemin R
Steve Downie R
Lee Stempniak R
Matt Niskanen D
Dustin Penner L
Vernon Fiddler C
Daniel Winnick L
Marcel Goc C
Anton Stralman D
Brian Boyle C
Mark Fayne D
Brendan Morrow C
Mason Raymond L
Michal Handzus C
Peter Regin C

The list is plentiful so there will be no shortage of availability. If you strike out at the top end guys, wait a day to a week and you get the bargain prices. Who would you consider giving a contract to and for how much term and or dollars? My biggest point is there is lots of players available and many will be a upgrade in the bottom 6.

So your the GM, what's your offer?  Do you continue waiting or step in and swing for the hills or offer short term but overpay on a 1 or 2 year contract?

In the meantime and in between time that's it for another edition of Jambalaya hockey discussion.

P.S. #follow me on twitter for some recent updates of possible UFA signing info or possible trades. Sometimes I get some good heads up in advance but to be fair most often I do not. I prefer to not use blog for those type possibilities#

Time to Get Back on the Saddle Again

It's been a while... Hello. 

I've been on a personal hiatus from the Edmonton Oilers. Never once in my life has my loyalty to the Oilers changed. But last season watching the train come off the wheels made me not care. For once, I didn't want to wear my Oilers gear. For once, I said to hell with it. They don't try, why should I?

In the past 4 years every single player has been changed. I'm not naive to think this year will be any different, but at least this year, I have some hope. 

I'm back. I'll be here once again bringing my point of view on the Edmonton Oilers and affiliates. Web site is getting a well deserved make over. 

This is a new season. GOILERS!!!


Friday, June 27, 2014

Last Minute 2014 NHL Draft thoughts...

Not going to take much of you Oiler fans time with this post. I have been asked several times who I believe are the top priorities for the Oilers to draft should they be on the board at #3.

I believe the Draft priority will be:
#1. Aaron Ekblad
#2. Sam reinhart
#3. Leon Draisaitl

This would mean, no matter what, they will be drafting on of these three players in just over a hour and fifteen minutes.

There is a possibility of a trade to move into second round with using a prospect and/or a current player along with a later draft pick. It likely hinges on if that team makes a trade or not with another team for a current roster player.

Follow me on twitter at if you do not already. I will be tweeting live during the Draft. Happy to converse and talk during the entire draft.


Thursday, June 26, 2014

Oilers 'Pre-NHL Draf't rumours flying

Can't go to far without hearing a new rumour swirling right now for the NHL during free agent frenzy, 2014 NHL Entry Draft and apparently a good time trade week.

I just wanted to touch on some possible trade situations that are being discussed or looked at. Right now the Oilers still covet a Top 6 Center and a Top 2 defence man. The draft will answer 1 of the 2 immediately. I know your saying 'what?' Yes, Aaron Ekblad, Sam Reinhart and/or Leon Draisaitl will be likely to good to be sent back to their CHL team. Please don't give me the 'they have to earn it first' lecture. Of course they have to earn it and they will. All I am saying is, I believe they are all ready for the jump, they are that good right now. Maybe Leon could need 1 more year but not likely.

So having said that, the Oilers could have potential interest in Vincent Lecavalier as a temporary second line center to give them a year or two before finishing off the last time on the third line.

 Would that work? Do you hate the idea of a slower Vincent playing for the Oilers? Willing to trade for his salary and give up Klefbom? Think he is washed up? I actually don't mind this idea but would be a possible solution if they strike out at Stastsny.

Sounding like Edmonton has 5 impending trade possibilities but two are based on trading the pick. This will be a interesting next 24 hours. Let the good times roll! The Oilers are definitely in the mix on almost anything they can and keeping their hands on as much as possible.

In the meantime Oiler fans, enjoy the last night before the Draft. It's year 5 of the rebuild coming up. Oilers plan on improving so maybe one last ride upon the good ship Koolaid?

follow me on twitter for prospect news and oiler and hockey talk

MOCK Draft 2014 NHL - who do the Oilers take?

Just finished last night my 2014 NHL Mock Draft. As promised to several of you on twitter and here at, I would post the day before draft day in Philadelphia.

Here are my results……

          # Team Player
1. Florida Panthers Sam Reinhart
2. Buffalo Sabres Sam Bennett
3. Edmonton Oilers  Aaron Ekblad
4. Calgary Flames Michael DalColle
5. New York Islanders Leon Draisaitl
6. Vancouver Canucks Nick Ritchie
7. Carolina Hurricanes Hayden Fleury
8. Toronto Maple Leafs Nikolaj Ehlers
9. Winnipeg Jets Jake Virtanen
10. Anaheim Ducks Brendan Perlini
11. Nashville Predators William Nylander
12. Arizona Coyotes Alex Tuch
13. Washington Capitals Jared McCann
14. Dallas Stars Ivan Barbashev
15. Detroit Red Wings Kasperi Kapanen
16. Columbus Blue Jackets Travis Sanheim
17. Philadelphia Flyers Roland McKeown
18. Minnesota Wild Kevin Fiala
19. Tampa Bay Lightning Julius Honka
20. San Jose Sharks Dylan Larkin
21. St.Louis Blues Anthony DeAngelo
22. Pittsburgh Penquins Nikolay Goldobin
23. Colorado Avalanche Joshua Ho-Sang
24. Anaheim Ducks Conner Bleackley
25. Boston Bruins Adrian Kempe
26. Montreal Canadiens Jakub Vrana
27. Chicago BlackHawks Nick Schmaltz
28. Tampa Bay Lightning Robert Fabbri
29. Los Angeles Kings Nikita Scerbak
30. New Jersey Devils Thatcher Demko

In the meantime you can follow me on twitter on more NHL talk, rumours and mostly prospect info on the NHL Entry Draft

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Could the Oilers be one of the 12 teams chasing UFA Jiri Sekac?

What are the chances this 6'2, 190 lb Czech player lands in Edmonton? He has taken a long road to get to the NHL but is being highly sought out right now according to those in the inside circles of hockey. I highly doubt he is coming to Edmonton but never say never for a team that has been trying it's luck outside the NHL for talent to bring in.

Check out his stats here at elite prospects . Nothing shouts out at you that he is a top 6 player but possibly a player to add some skill and bigger size on the third line. You have to try swinging for the fence sometimes otherwise you never even hit first base. This recent tweet suggested the following...

Vishal Hussain @vishal_hussain
European Sources: Jiri "Cakes" Sekac has eight NHL offers, #Devils #Flyers #Senators appear to be frontrunners for his services.

It's rumoured that he will likely select to play in New Jersey with the Devils as Jagr is once again a prime recruiter as per usual. Don't think he ends up here in Edmonton just more curious if he actually may have been at least targeted by the young Oilers team.

for more info on NHL prospects or oilers news follow me on twitter

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

'REVS 2014 Top 15 NHL Prospect Rankings' (Final Rankings)

Way back in August of last year I put out my rankings for this coming draft. It's always interesting how half way through a season people like to rip apart a ranking list but have no idea how much more difficult it is to rank players before they even start the new season going into their draft year. I was quite pleased the past 3 seasons with my early pre-season rankings (10 months in advance) out and once again am happy that I was able to still anticipate most the top selections far enough in advance.

Here was my official ranking to start the season back in August 10/13;
1.Sam Reinhart
2.Aaron Ekblad
3.William Nylander
4.Roland McKeown
5.Jake Virtanen
6.Blake Clarke
7.Nick Ritchie
8.Leon Draisatl
9.Michael Dal Colle
10.Jakub Vrana
11.Ivan Barbashev
12.Jared McCann
13.Anton Karlsson
14.Joshua Ho-Sang
15.Sam Bennett 

Honourable mentions:
Oskar Lindblom
Haydn Fleury
Nick Schmaltz

Well, the season of hockey has been completed. Tournaments are done, playoffs are finished. Combine is past us and now players are being interviewed by NHL teams this week. The draft is just over a week away and now we are ready to see whose name is called out by which team a week from this coming Friday.  I have 4 players being moved out of the top 15 with one of them being put in honourable mention while having 1 from my honourable mention last August being moved into the Top 15. 

NOTE: Some may question Sam Bennett in the ranking and that is fair, but last August you would be hard pressed to find any rankings with him in the top 15. I have moved him from #15 to #6. Blake Clarke was my biggest disappointment and scouts were shocked his season provided a move backwards rather then forward. This year's Nick Ebert? Time will tell. The biggest change for me was putting Nikolaj Ehlers at #4 when he was not on my last August radar. Truth is, he was a player, I just plainly missed and didn't follow or hear of him much before this season coming into Halifax. Many of his points were provided without Jonathan Drouin so his point totals are not misrepresented IMO. William Nylander dropping had more to due to the lack of point production he was able to show this year but in fairness to Nylander he still has great skill but was tossed around several club teams in Sweden.

The lists I put out are based on "Best Player Available" on NHL Draft day. That is the criteria  for my selection in the Draft Rankings

FINAL RANKINGS for REVS 2014 - Top 15 NHL Prospect Rankings:

1. Sam Reinhart
2.Aaron Ekblad
3. Leon Draisaitl
4.Nikolaj Ehlers
5.Michael Dal Colle
6. Sam Bennett
7. Jake Virtanen
8. Nick Ritchie
9. Brendan Perlini
10.Haydn Fleury
11.Kasperi Kapanen
12.Ivan Barbashev
13. William Nylander
14. Rolan McKeown
15. Jared McCann

Honourable Mention:
Joshua Ho-Sang
Kevin Fiala
Alex Tuch

Questions, comments? Disagree, agree? Let me know, always willing to dissect the players bit by bit. After all, isn't that what makes this so fun? 

I will be posting a NHL MOCK Draft next Thursday the night before the Draft. I still think the Oilers will be selecting one of Aaron Ekblad or Leon Draisaitl this NHL Entry Draft and it is very likely they will be playing the 2014/15 season full time with the Oilers past the 9 game mark.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

What to make of the 2014 NHL Draft Top 4 Prospects?

The city of Edmonton and Oiler fans everywhere are buzzing about this years NHL Entry Draft coming up at the end of June. Granted there is not much else to be focusing in on with the exception of the hiring of Craig Ramsey yesterday as a assistant coach.

The difference this year is the unpredictability of who the Florida Panthers and Buffalo Sabres will be picking and what will be left for the Edmonton Oilers. From the best information I can gather the Oilers so far have the players ranked in this order if they could select their Top 4 rankings. They will select the highest ranking player they have listed and be happy doing so.

#1. Aaron Ekblad
#2. Sam Reinhart
#3. Leon Draisaitl
#4. Sam Bennett

The only thing that may stand out different for the Oilers from most of the NHL is where they rank Draisaitl. Very few teams rank him in their top 3 and would much sooner have Bennett in that slot. Until recently I was pretty sure needing offence the Panthers would for sure select Reinhart or Bennett but a recently posted article here may tell us different. Ekblad may be a risk but Florida even last year did not go with the high offensive output of Drouin instead selected the big man-child from Finland. It is very likely this could be the situation this year and a franchise defensemen is not such a bad prize to grab.

Buffalo is up next. On their website they specially linked this video to their site evaluating players at the draft. Reading too much into this? I don't think so. There is lots of other opinions and this video could be a tell they want Sam Reinhart. Should he be off the board then it's highly likely a low scoring team like Buffalo will go with Bennett. 

So if the Oilers do have their rankings as listed above by me, it's almost a certainty that Reinhart will be gone in the top 2 picks regardless. That leaves their list as they pick up Ekblad at the #3 spot if Florida takes Reinhart but if Ekblad goes to Florida and Buffalo takes Reinhart, then the Oilers will select Aaron Ekblad.

I am pretty sure when the Oilers walk to the podium June 27th they will be selecting a large, skilled and smart franchise Defensemen in EKBLAD or a potential #2 large bodied, strong, skilled Center in DRAISAITL. Either way, the Oilers will be getting bigger and more skilled in one of their most desperate needs moving forward. It's a good year and Oiler fans have something to be excited about.

NEXT UP? My Year End 'REVS 2014 Top 15 NHL Prospect Rankings'

Saturday, June 7, 2014

It's time to decide on "Leon Draisaitl"

Ok, before you slaughter me here, I am interrupting my weekly article here at on the Oilers breakdown by position in light of the upcoming draft. Take a look here  to understand my reasoning on why we should take Leon Draisaitl with the #3 pick. Right now we will not have Sam Reinhart available at the #3 spot regardless of what your hearing, he will be gone. Maybe, just maybe we have Aaron Ekblad available. I believe he is a potential #2 d-man and that is hard to come by but our problem is we can't wait for the 2-3 years it takes for him to grow into being a star a=in the NHL. The fans will have none of it. We also need a #2 center and we need it now. Nothing seems available without giving up a valuable part of this franchise and we need a larger bigger centermen to take on tougher centre's in this league. Could Leon Draisaitl be that man and start this coming season? I believe he is ready and at worst he has one more year to develop if not able to shine in training camp and in 9 exhibition games.

This team can't afford to finish worse then 20th next season without huge backlash (you can take that to the bank) and Leon may be the best option. If you read the above article you would probably agree Sam Bennett will not be the option. I personally believe he is Gagner2 in the making and on a team needing more and picking at #3 has other needs.

I predict Leon Draisaitl will be a Edmonton Oiler come the day of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. Like it or not, he is probably our best option. Got a comment , leave it in the comments section and we can discuss this more.

In the meantime, and in between time, that's it for another edition of Oilers hockey!

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