Jeremy Roy is generally considered to be at player of interest for the Oilers with their sixteenth overall selection despite being ranked 29th on Bob McKenzie's final list. And it's not just McKenzie that has him ranked well past Edmonton's selection: International Scouting Services has him 22nd, McKeen's has him 24th, and Craig Button has him 27th. So why are we even talking about him as a possibility with the 16th overall pick? Offense.
Jeremy Roy scored at a very healthy rate this season, and he did while demonstrating some impressive skills as this profile from Shawn Reznik (late March) suggests:
Jeremy Roy is the best QMJHL defender available in this year's draft bar none. Instictually, he's head and shoulders above the rest. He does his best work in the offensive zone where he's quick, agile, and makes smart plays to contain pressure against the opposition... No one should be overlooking his defensive game. Roy's skating is arguably his biggest strength. He has a low center of gravity and uses it to separate players from the puck. If he gets caught out of position (which doesn't happen often), it doesn't take long for him to get back into the play and break up an attack. Once he's retrieved the puck, he immediately looks to transition to an offensive breakout and does it with ease.
That's a pretty glowing report. Is it backed up by a look at Roy's comparables? I think it is. In this case, a comparable player was someone who played his draft year in the CHL, had an adjusted points per game rate between 0.81 and 0.99 (90% to 110% of Roy's offensive production), and was selected somewhere between 24th and 34th overall. A player with similar goal-scoring is highlighted in blue.
Considering the section of the draft we're looking at here, that's an awfully impressive list. In the chart below I've listed each player's number of regular season games, his time on ice per game (if the NHL was recording TOI for more than half of the games he played), his points per game, and the first season he played in at least forty games:
Given that we're looking around for comparables in the late first and early second round, that looks like a pretty good record to me. Of course, these players were all drafted at least a decade ago. That's not because people aren't scoring like this anymore; they just tend not to last this long in the draft. Let's take a look at what Roy's comparables would look like if the Oilers took him 16th:
It's a younger group, so there are fewer finished products here, but it's still a pretty encouraging list. I think we can say with confidence that half of these guys have played or will play top four minutes for a good chunk of their careers, and at 16th overall, that's a darn good record.
So what are people worried about? How is it that Roy has fallen so far on so many lists? Honestly, I'm having a hard time finding consistent, concrete criticisms. It's not his age (he's quite young for the draft) and it's not his toughness (he played through a broken wrist, making his offense that much more impressive). At 6'0'' and 188 lbs., he is a bit on the small side, and despite the report quoted above, there have been some scouts worried about his skating and physicality (McKeen's, but it's behind a paywall). Nevertheless, at this point, I'm pretty confident that I'd have Roy somewhere in my top fifteen.
Next up tomorrow morning: Evgeny Svechnikov
Introduction to Comparables
Connor McDavid - Comparables
Jack Eichel - Comparables
Mitch Marner - Comparables
Dylan Strome - Comparables
Ivan Provorov - Comparables
Noah Hanifin - Comparables
Timo Meier - Comparables
Lawson Crouse - Comparables
Jakub Zboril - Comparables