Alex Galchenyuk is really close to getting back on the ice this season. Hopefully he will get a chance to strut his stuff by playoff time for the Sarnia Sting of the OHL. Combine him once again with likely 1st overall draft pick Nail Yakupov and the odds of the Sting getting to the OHL Championship will increase by 4x I am sure.
Alex more then likely, will not be able to just step in where he left off. Being out of hockey with such a injury can take time to get your game legs back under you, not to mention the timing that is needed for chemistry with his team. The playoffs are close around the corner and the teams will only be that much tougher then earlier in the season.
Hemsky has resigned here in Edmonton. We now have our lines looking more like this...
Now before you shut this idea down, hear my thoughts and take time to really think about this possibility. I don't think there is much argument should the Oilers finish in 29th or 30th spot overall, Nail Yakupov or Michail Grigorenko will be selected. But what if they finish better? I really thought they were going to let Hemsky go at the trade deadline meaning the team very likely would have less chance of winning some games down the stretch. That has all changed, and now the Oilers very possibly could finish as high as 23rd overall (I am thinking they will be a bottom 5 team regardless)
So if this is a rebuild, are we really willing to go after the defencemen who will be a min of 3 years away from being a defencemen in the NHL that is a difference maker? Our top lines are not solid yet, especially if a top 6 forward is available in this NHL Draft year. Biggest question this next year will be Sam Gagner. Will his progress continue or will he return to the former player we all complained about? Is he a fit for the wing or does he need to be a center in the NHL?
Enter Alex Galchenyuk. He was considered a top three possibility before the season began but his injury this season may very well set him back further down the draft line. Several scouts I have spoken with in the OHL and fans from their have told me, they see no reason for him not to go top 5 pick, even though teams have very little to go by this year. While I do have a my REVS draft list on the top 15 players ranked at the 2012 Draft, I personally have my own preferences.
I would rate my Oiler draft list as...
So what if the Oilers were to select Alex Galchenyuk? Due to his injury year, it would almost be certain they would want him back in the OHL one additional year to continue to grow after missing a critical development year. That would allow the Oilers one additional year to figure out what they really have in Sam Gagner and spread some of the entry level contracts apart in addition to seeing the development of some of the young d-men to continue. It is even possible that should Gagner continue his growth at center , Galchenyuk could end up playing on the wing.
Alex comes from hockey bloodlines. His father played for Dynamo Moscow and was a decent player in his own right. Young Alex looks to be a much better skilled player then even his father but with a tough rugged edge. He plays very much like a big Center who skates and works like a power forward out there on the ice. He isn't afraid to go into the tough areas of the ice and works out like a madman.
It may not be the popular idea around Edmonton with all the past injuries we have seen but IMO it very well could be a match made in "Oiler Heaven". Is it possible our top 9 could look like this to start the 2013/2014 season?
More food for thought then anything, but regardless of any decision made, the scouting department will have their hands full making a difficult decision as who to pick this year should the Oiler finish 27th overall or better for the 2012 NHL Draft