Guy Flaming has an absolutely first-rate update on Oilers’ prospects up at his site - one I strongly recommend reading. Among the items mentioned by Flaming is an interesting Oilers rookie camp invite – a player named Burke Gallimore:
Also coming to camp is Saskatoon Blades forward Burke Gallimore. He's an Edmonton native and quite frankly I was surprised that he went undrafted in June after scoring 26 goals and 53 points as a WHL rookie. The Oilers will have a small window of opportunity to claim his rights after he attends their camp by signing him to an entry level deal. Sounds crazy but considering the entry level deal doesn't hit the books until his WHL days are done, it's basically like drafting him in September.Gallimore’s listed at 5’-11.5" and was born and raised in Edmonton.
I included Gallimore in my list of WHL forwards eligible for the 2009 NHL Draft. He was ranked #71 among North American skaters, but because I thought he was rated a little bit high and he didn’t really jump out at me I didn’t do a write up on him. I intend to correct that oversight now that he’s a player of interest to the Oilers.
For WHL players, the first place I look is Michael Remmerde’s site. Remmerde’s a scout for Red Line Report based out west, and doesn’t pull any punches when it comes to Gallimore:
Strengths: Overall decent skill level. Consistent, if not especially passionate, effort level. Weaknesses: Very soft. Probably not going to get much bigger. This guy just didn't do anything worthwhile every time I saw him. There was some good production from this guy this season, so I know there must be some nice puck ability there. But I have to see it with my own eyes, and I just didn't. Average skater at best. Seemed to be on cruise all the time and didn't do any of the dirty work. Seems to have no physical game at all.
There’s more over at Remmerde’s site, and he pegged Gallimore as a likely 5th round selection.
Gallimore played on a line with Derek Hulak and Oilers’ prospect Milan Kytnar in Saskatoon, and it’s a good bet the Oilers are familiar with him as a result. Jim Matheson talked to him before the draft (whoever wrote the headline and captioned the picture for Matheson was clearly having a bad day) and revealed that he did very well in stamina and leg strength tests at the scouting combine. This fits well with other reports which have called Gallimore difficult to knock of the puck.
Lorne Molleken, his coach in Saskatoon, had praise for him as well:
"You could see that he was a real intelligent player. The puck just seemed to follow him around, simply because he goes to the right areas."
Numbers-wise, Gallimore was +26 on a very strong team, and his 26 goals and 53 points work out to being 19.0% of Saskatoon’s offense last year. Using Desjardins’ league equivalency, we get an NHL projection based on Gallimore’s numbers last season of 9 goals, 10 assists and 19 points over an 82-game schedule, which puts him in Carter Ashton/Landon Ferraro range.
He’s a legitimate prospect, albeit not a high-end one, and the Oilers could do worse than to pick him up for nothing.
Other minutiae: According to the NHL website, Gallimore’s ranked in the top-100 in the world at Call of Duty IV, and his favorite singer is Taylor Swift. Sounds like a prime candidate to room with video game aficionado and man’s man Tom Gilbert.