2010 Oilers Draft - Realistic Expectations

Taylor Hall at his first press conference an Oiler.

The 2010 draft class has already received more media attention than any draft class in Edmonton history.  The top five picks have already made their Edmonton media rounds and will be written about as part of the "Oilers' rebuild" for some time.  But we know, using draft history from 1990-2005, 16% of all draft picks turn out to be career players.  The Oilers have been below that average since Bill Ranford was the clutchiest goalie in the NHL.  We also know the OHL, NCAA, and WHL are more likely to turn out career players than any other draft league and taking Junior-A, Junior-B, U.S. High School and Russian players is a bad bet.  How do those numbers affect the current Oilers' draft class?

Around the 'sphere, most writers feel the Oilers have drafted better over the last three years than at any time since the Stanley Cup era.  We'll need to wait at least another three years to see if that feeling is accurate.  But the 2010 draft has the added benefit of drafting first, and the draft position should help the overall success of the draft class.  Note that I've yet to study this and this is more of an educated guess.  If the Oilers are able to meet the league average, this year's crop of eleven players will produce two career players.  If there is a real draft slot effect, we can add another player to the list, meaning the Oilers will see, by the averages, three career players come out of the 2010 draft.

 

Rnd     Overall      Player      Pos      Country      Ht      Wt      Amateur League   
1 1 Taylor Hall  LW  CA  6' 1"  185 OHL 

 

By the averages, 63% of first round picks become career players and the number one overall pick has a 100% chance of becoming a career player.  Barring catastrophic injury, Taylor Hall has a lock on one of the career player slots for the 2010 draft class.

 

Rnd     Overall      Player      Pos      Country      Ht      Wt      Amateur League   
2 31 Tyler Pitlick  C  US  6' 2"  194 NCAA
2 46 Martin Marincin  D  SK  6' 4"  187 Slovakia
2 48 Curtis Hamilton  LW  US  6' 2"  209 WHL 

 

The 31st overall pick has had some tough going - from 1990 - 2005, only two of sixteen 31st picks turned out to be NHL players.  However, second round picks have become career NHL players 25% of the time.  By the averages, the Oilers will get one career player out of this group and of the group Martin Marincin has the worst of it - Slovaks went 5-for-48.

 

Rnd     Overall      Player      Pos      Country      Ht      Wt      Amateur League   
3 61 Ryan Martindale  C  CA  6' 3"  183 OHL 
4 91 Jeremie Blain  D  CA  6' 2"  190 QMJHL 
5 121 Tyler Bunz  G  CA  6' 1"  196 WHL 
6 162 Brandon Davidson  D  CA  6' 1"  190 WHL 
6 166 Drew Czerwonka  LW  CA  6' 2"  189 WHL 
7 181 Kristians Pelss  F  LV  5' 11"  179 Belarus
7 202 Kellen Jones  F  CA  5' 9"  164 Junior-A

 

There's just a 12% chance that players after the first round turn out to be career players, so of the seven late-round picks made by the Oilers, only one of them will turn into a career player.  Kristians Pelss and Kellen Jones are the longshots as career players from their leagues are rare occurrences.

So there you have it -- if the Oilers are able to manage an average draft from the 2010 class, there will be three career players, and Taylor Hall is a lock.  Anyone care to guess who the other two will be?

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