"Eat boards, Malkin!" - Theo Peckham
Here is my second ever Top 10 Prospects Chart:
This is not based on any fancy scale or criteria like Guy Flaming's or Lowetide's (yet) and is just based on who I feel could come up to the Oilers and actually perform / fit into a role right away. This is mainly based on (in decreasing level of importance):
a) prior NHL experience
b) success at the minor pro level (AHL, ECHL, etc.)
c) Oilers' current club needs
d) ability to improve (or amount of progress since draft day and/or signing)
e) success at the amateur level (OHL, CHL, etc.)
Honorable Mention: Slava Trukhno, Bryan Lerg
New to the list: Tyler Spurgeon, Cody Wild
Fresh off the list: Devan Dubnyk, Slava Trukhno
The solid play of Wild and Bisaillon, coupled with the skills and smarts of big leaguer Visnovsky, could mean that Grebeshkov is not necessarily going to be resigned. Grebs could command a good return and could be made expendable for the sake of these two skilled prospects. Also, new prospect leader Peckham has shown in the AHL that he has some offensive ability and in brief appearances in the NHL has shown what kind of solid and exciting brand of hockey he can play. I would love to see him continue to get more looks in the NHL and seriously think he's ready for full time action.
Tyler Spurgeon and Gilbert Brule continue to rise on the chart due to the inability of guys like Pouliot and Brodziak to put a lock on their NHL jobs. Brodziak faired pretty well tonight with two goals against Dallas but Pouliot is a guy who is missing in more games than an NHL player should be. In fact, Pouliot wouldn't even make this top 10 list if he were an AHL player. Pouliot has flashes of brilliance but those don't occur often enough to warrant keeping him around.
Ryan Potulny and Slava Trukhno continue to drop because of the abundance of LW players in the organization. This applies also to Dubnyk, who has dropped due to the rising worth of DesLauriers, coupled with the re-emergence of Dwayne Roloson as a legitimate starter. This, once again, also applies to Rob Schremp, who plays both C and LW, both of which are in abundance on this Oilers team.
And I still insist that Bryan Young is as solid an option as Smid and Strudwick. Only time will tell if this is true.
(The reason I didn't include Mathieu Roy and Jean-Francois Jacques is due to the fact that they haven't been entirely healthy for long enough periods for them to be considered "ready to contribute." If they had been, however, they would've pushed Bryan Young and Riley Nash off the list.)
Feel free to chip in on whether you agree or disagree.