Answering the 5 Biggest Questions About the Edmonton Oilers Draft Plans
Thanks to another miserable season, the Edmonton Oilers currently hold the seventh overall pick in this year's NHL entry draft, and with such a deep draft pool, the Oilers have quite a few options available at their disposal.
General manager Craig MacTavish has vowed to make bold moves in order to rebuild a roster more capable of competing in the tough Western Conference.
Here is a look at the answers to the five biggest questions about the Edmonton Oilers’ draft plans.
Do the Oilers Trade the Pick?
It all depends. The Edmonton Oilers are in a fortunate position, as the seventh overall pick is a valuable asset.
This is the year when the Oilers’ scout team will actually have to work to find a piece that can fill one of the various holes on the roster.
If the team feels like they can trade the draft pick down to acquire a roster player and a later pick, chances are they would be inclined to listen to offers.
The Oilers will have to evaluate who they could potentially draft in the seventh spot, as well as potential players who could be available later in the draft before they truly decide what to do with their pick.
Do the Oilers Draft a Defenseman?
The 2013 draft is deep with talented defenseman who could potentially be impact players for the Oilers in the future.
Defensemen often take a couple of years in the CHL or AHL after being drafted to further develop their game, but there are players in this draft who could possibly make the instant transition.
Darnell Nurse, Rasmus Ristolainen and Nikita Zadorov are the most likely candidates for the Oilers should they decide to draft a defenseman.
Do the Oilers Draft Another Forward?
The Oilers will have to decide whether or not they select a talented forward should a player like Sean Monahan of the Ottawa 67’s be available at the seventh selection.
Monahan could be one of the most NHL-ready prospects in this year's pool and could very well compete for a roster spot right out of the gate.
If the Oilers are drafting the best possible player available, Monahan could be an Oiler come 2013-2014.
A player like Curtis Lazar has also been mentioned as a potential target for the Oilers should they decide to trade down.
Having played for the Edmonton Oil Kings, Oilers management has had plenty of opportunity to watch Lazar develop, and considering the Oilers need role players, Lazar could be an excellent option for the team.
Do the Oilers Try to Trade Up?
While the seventh overall pick could yield an excellent prospect or player for the Oilers, Edmonton has the assets available to consider trading their pick along with a player or prospect in the attempts of trading up.
If the Oilers were to consider packaging a player like Magnus Paajarvi or even a roster player like Ales Hemsky, they could consider moving up in the draft.
The top three picks—Seth Jones, Jonathan Drouin and Nathan MacKinnon—would all fetch a steep asking price, with Jones likely off of the table, but if Edmonton wanted to attempt to acquire Drouin and MacKinnon, they could certainly put the pieces together to make the pitch.
Do the Oilers Acquire Another First-Round Pick?
While it is uncertain as to if a player like Ales Hemsky would garner a first-round pick if traded at the draft, Edmonton could look to add another pick to go along with their seventh overall choice in this year's draft in an attempt to bolster their farm system.
A likely scenario would see the Oilers trading the seventh overall pick down and making a separate deal to hold two later first-round choices.
It would all depend on whether or not the Oilers had serious intentions on making moves for roster-ready players come July 1 and the beginning of the free-agency period.
Craig MacTavish is likely to make significant moves, and if a trade presented itself that would garner a second first-round pick, it would be hard to ignore going forward.