Friday, June 17, 2011

How Trading Next Year's 1st Round Pick to Get Another Top 5 Pick This Year COULD Make Sense

At this point in time you'd be an eternal optimist to expect the Oilers to draft outside of the top 5 next year. So in essence we'd be giving up a top 5 pick next year and #19 overall this year for the right to draft twice in the top 5 this year. This idea was brought up by Robin Brownlee at ON. At first I thought that it made little sense, I mean Yakupov, Grigorenko, Murray, lots of high end guys should be there for the taking next year.

So why in the blue hell would the Oilers consider such a risky pick? Is it simply the ideology that a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush? Do the Oilers REALLY believe that we won't be a high lottery team next year? Do they expect us to bypass the same learning curve that the New York Islanders have gone through? Do they honestly believe that Ales Hemsky will be healthy, that Shawn Horcoff will also stay healthy and produce offensively, could they somehow foresee Sam Gagner taking that step in his offensive output that many of us had hoped to see after a solid offensive rookie season? Maybe, but I think that they are thinking something else.

So then what in the blue hell could they be thinking? Are they out of their freaking minds? Is Kevin Lowe back in charge and ready to make a splash without taking the future into consideration? In my opinion their thought process is either two or three fold.

This is how I break down what I assume that they are thinking when considering or pursuing a trade like this:

#1-They are looking to address the two biggest holes on their team, a 1st line center (Ryan Nugent-Hopkins) and a #1 defenseman (Adam Larsson). So why not just wait until next year to draft a 1D if RNH is the consensus #1 this year? Well the easiest answer IMO is that they see Larsson as the superior prospect to Murray or any other D in next years draft.

#2-Then why wouldn't they just take take Larsson this year and hope to take Grigorenko next year (assuming that we'll be in a position to do so)? Well for one thing it looks like the Oilers have shied away from drafting or acquiring Russians in recent years. Whether it be the threat of the KHL (which seems very real in the case of Grigorenko) or the fact that the Oilers simply don't want to have many Russians on their team for various reasons. I see the Oilers as likely to take a pass on the most skilled players in next years draft. So what happens if Murray is off the table when it's time for them to draft?

#3-They plan on ending the rebuild as we know it this year. After acquiring RNH and Larsson or possibly Hamilton the Oilers plan on remaking their roster and adding some key players via free agency and trade. They assume that we won't be in the top 4-5 next year so they are willing to move #19 and next years 1st before making some big time moves to vault our team into respectability. Not to mention defenseman are notorious for having tons of growing pains so we'd be one year ahead of the game if we took Larsson now and gave up a chance at Murray next year.

Personally when I go through these possibilities, I hope that they are thinking #'s 1 and 2 because #3 is risky (see Burke, Brian for further reference). The difference in this case is that we would be giving up a mid 1st for the right to take 2 players that we really like in the same draft and in essence signal an end to our drafting cornerstones/drafting high part of our rebuild.

RNH being a western Canadian kid and Larsson being a Swede means that they fit right into the player makeup of our rebuild. If they think that Larsson is better than a possible chance at Murray next year then I say throw caution to the wind and go out and get your guy. Will this finally be the draft where the Oilers make some bold moves? Or will it be the same old song and dance with rumors galore while on draft day nothing comes to fruition?


VincenzosOil said...

Don't agree with you much but on this I do. Tambo's reported effusive praise of Larsson's ability is a strong pointer that they like AL a lot.

The allure of a quick ascension up the rebuild ladder might also be irresistable for ST.

The only caveat, and I'm on board with a move to nab both RNH and Larsson, does ST have the ability to flesh out the lineup with key off season acquistions.

Nonetheless, good read BBO.

Bryanbryoil said...

IMO we either go for the gusto (RNH and Larsson) or we push hard to add Columbus' 1st and take Zibanejad or Hamilton there and keep next years pick. I'm fine with either way TBH as long as it looks to be in our clubs best interests.

Maverick said...

Last year it seems "Mr.Dithers" tried to acquire Boston's pick and draft both Seguin and Hall, maybe this year he will be more successful. I think the "trump card" is that if they trade their pick next year is that if Hemsky does not sign by the trade deadline is that they will trade him for a first round pick in 2012. So they will still have a 1st rounder in 2012 just not as high as their own. So is there really a downside??