Last year when we were doing this, I did my rankings based on which player has lived up to their potential the most, and would rank players currently in the NHL higher than those without. This year, I saw Drake Caggiula and knew he’d be on the team, and a lot of really good prospects who might not be. I just couldn’t justify putting a terrible player like that above guys like Evan Bouchard and Kailer Yamamoto. It just wasn’t going to happen. As a result, my rankings were done by just asking myself which player I am happiest about having in the system. It’s non-scientific, but it works.
At #21 we have goaltender Dylan Wells.
Dylan Wells is a goaltender drafted #123 in the fifth round of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft. He has spent the past 4 seasons with the Peterborough Petes putting up numbers that don’t look particularly good. Here’s the thing about goalies, I no nothing about them, or what traits they could have to help them stop the puck. The only stats I understand with them are the results. Scouts have a pretty good record of targeting goalies with pedestrian numbers over ones with really good numbers, so I don’t really question it anymore. They turn out right a lot more often than not.
For those of you who do know how to analyze goalies, here’s a video.
What have you done for me lately?
Nothing promising, actually. According to DobberProspects Dylan Wells was one of the best goalies in the OHL during 2016-2017, but faulted a bit last season. He may have lost his starting job as a 20-year-old in his final WHL season.
After his Junior season ended, the Oilers put him on an Amateur Tryout for their farm teams. He rode a lot of pine in the AHL not making an appearance on the ice, then was sent down to the ECHL. In the ECHL he played a total of 11 minutes and gave up three goals. Hopefully, that’s not a sign of things to come.
What does the future hold?
Probably more time in the ECHL. The Oilers seem to have a lot of goalies fighting for playing time in the system right now, it’s going to be up to them on who goes where. It’s hard to overstate how important the playing time is going to be. Is the AHL going to run tandem all year? No one wants a young developing goalie to be sitting on the bench for months on end, it’s going to be interesting to how they thread that needle.
Lastly, what happens if Dylan Wells, Olivier Rodrigue, and Stuart Skinner all look better in camp than the $2.5M man in Koskinen? That would look pretty stupid wouldn’t it? Also, where is Al Montoya going to play? This post may have raised a lot more questions than answers.