Friday, June 25, 2010

Does Tambellini have the stones to make a deal on the draft floor?

When Kevin Lowe was G.M. of the Oilers he never seemed to have trouble making a quick decision on a deal. 2007 he moved up to take Riley Nash. He had no problem giving up a first round pick in 2006 to bring in Dwayne Roloson. The future of the Oilers certainly rests with whoever is drafted first overall today, but another big part of the future could depend on if current G.M. Steve Tambellini can make a quick decisison, something I'm told doesn't happen very often. If team X calls up the Oilers and wants to deal a pick for a player, or other picks, and Tambellini has to make a call on the spot...can he do it?

Past evidence that has been presented to me suggest no. From different sources across the league, here's what I've gathered from past deals the General Manager has and hasn't made.

- Agonized over dealing Cody Wild for Matt Marquardt, 2 minor league players that will likely never see the light of the NHL.

- Couldn't pull the trigger on trading Riley Nash for Mikko Lehtonen from Boston. Nash will never play for the Oilers, while 6'3, 200 lb Lehtonen led Providence in scoring.

- Reportedly wouldn't even trade a mid to late round pick for Lehtonen when the opportunity was there in the fall.

- Needed urging from Kevin Lowe to make the Lubomir Visnovsky for Ryan Whitney trade.

- Waited way too long to call up AHL veterans Chris Minard (March 11th) and Charles Linglet (April 2nd) which may have convinced them to re-sign with the Organization for longer. You need AHL veterans to help develop players on the farm, but both Minard and Linglet won't be back with this organization next year; their decision. It also might have something to do with the fact that Tambellini watched only ONE game live in Springfield and didn't talk to any of the players while he was there.

- According to some agents, the Edmonton G.M. wouldn't return calls, leading the Oilers to miss out on some top notch college free agents.

Tambellini has made some nice moves, like picking up Colin Fraser for a 6th round pick, and getting draft picks for Denis Grebeshkov and Steve Staios. However I don't think Tambellini will be able to make a quick decision, especially if it requires giving up a roster player who isn't past his prime for a draft pick.

Let's say a team wanted Dustin Penner or Andrew Cogliano for a first or second round pick. Will fear prevent him from pulling the trigger? I think so. Will Kevin Lowe step in to make the call? If he does, something is very wrong.


Racki said...

So there are rumors out there stating that the Oil are going to try and get a pick in the top 15 (sounded like they were aiming for 15 specifically?). That Oil Change documentary also mentioned a guy they consider the dark horse of the top ten that could have gone #2 overall with another month of play. I think it's Nino. Lots of hints dropped that pointed to a guy like him - scores big goals, is a leader and a real character, can play any forward role. And one of the scouts talking most about him was our Western scout (of course Nino plays in the Dub..).

I know we'll be stacked at LW, but I gotta say, I have had a thing for Nino since seeing him in the WJHCs... I'd be all for that.

Guy Flaming said...

My belief is that the player talked about in the OIL CHANGE documentary as being the dark horse, who tested off the charts in terms of leadership etc, is Austin Watson of the Peterborough Petes.

Kevin Prendergast described Watson as a player who, at the combine, blew people (Oilers?) away with their psycho-tests... it makes sense.

I wouldn't call Nino a dark horse.

jon k said...

New nickname: Stuttering Steve?

I think it would be Watson as well. He scored extremely well in his 10 regular season games with the Petes, putting up 20 points. Another month at 2 points per game would do that.

Racki said...

ahhh yah, good thinking. I didn't even think of Watson (although I guess that's what makes him the dark horse, right?). And I agree that Nino isn't an unknown at all.. good point.

=^..^= meow said...

is Penner even worth trading for a draft pick unless it comes up top-10? who after that can you say will be a decent pick to replace a possible 30-40 goals over the next couple years?

if you get McIlrath at 15# for Penner - is that worth it? and why cant someone like be traded later - like around the deadline - if necessary?

Tambo is definitely a vanilla douche but gauging the value for these guys is goofy. now, if they can trade Cogliano for the chance to pick up Brad Ross? hell yes

Ribs said...

I wouldn't call Nino a dark horse.

Can you find a list with him in the top 5? Top 3? The Oilers suggested this mystery guy could go #2.

uni said...

Ribs, Nino's play is pretty much well defined. He's been in the spotlight in the same role for some time now and would by no stretch of the imagination be considered an unknown quantity. An extra month of play the way he was playing to close the season would not really have him in the discussion of the top 2 players for the draft.

A guy like Watson, who was playing limited 3rd line minutes in Windsor, then was hurt for a good month, then basically tore it up when given prime ice time in Peterborough would be someone that would move up in the draft rankings given another month of sustained pay like he did at the end.

The combination of a dark horse and unknown quantity would point to Watson rather than the Swiss hope. Connolly could also be considered as such I suppose to a lesser degree.

Ribs said...

I suppose, uni. Those 10 games must have been really impressive showings if it's the case. It's hard to find much love out there for the guy and I don't think the Oiler scouts can be that out to lunch.

Racki said...

Yah I don't think it's Connolly at all. I think what guy suggests (Watson) makes the most sense, as he's a bit of a lesser talked about guy who really came into his own after he was traded away from the stacked Spitfires. I presume the leadership/personality makes sense too, but i don't know anything on that.

Guy Flaming said...

Ribs, read this:

That should give you more clarity.