The all-time all-draft team of the Edmonton Oilers is littered with Hall of Famers – up to nine of them on a 20-man roster when all is said and done. And that doesn’t even include Wayne Gretzky, the best player in the history of the game, because he was never drafted into the NHL.
Huge credit goes to the early drafting of GMs Larry Gordon and Glen Sather, and super scout Barry Fraser, who selected six future Hall of Famers in the first three NHL seasons of the organization – Kevin Lowe, Mark Messier and Glenn Anderson in 1979, Paul Coffey and Jari Kurri in 1980 and Grant Fuhr in 1981. All but Coffey and Fuhr (top-10 picks) outperformed their selection number in draft order. (See below)
Three picks in the past decade are on a trajectory for the Hall of Fame. Taylor Hall has a Hart Trophy to his name at 28, but he’ll need another six-plus years of all-star caliber play to win favor on ballots. It’s early in the careers of Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, but they’ve topped 400 points before the age of 25 with real and virtual Hart Trophies in their resumes. It’s just a matter of time for them.
Edmonton’s all-draft forward lineup reads like an All-Star Game roster with players such as Ryan Smyth, Jason Arnott, Esa Tikkanen and Miroslav Satan in support roles. It seemed a shame to leave off 1,000-game soldiers such as Kirk Maltby, Shawn Horcoff, Kelly Buchberger, Jason Chimera and Andrew Cogliano. Also on the taxi squad are Martin Rucinsky, Jarret Stoll, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Sam Gagner.
Coffey and Lowe are the studs on a blueline that otherwise lacks mega-star power. We thought Oscar Klefbom and Darnell Nurse too early in their careers to crack the top six.
The goaltending tandem of Fuhr and Andy Moog seems perfect. Who knows, Moog may one day become yet another Edmonton-drafted Hall of Famer. He’s 18th on the all-time wins list and was ranked the No. 57 goalie in THN’s ranking of the top 100 goalies of all-time in 2018. The Hall of Fame has become very welcoming in recent years opening the door to previously passed-over players, as Lowe just discovered in June.
Information includes draft year, draft position, amateur team and NHL stats (games-goals-assists-points; W-L-OTL, GAA, SP)
Mark Messier – 1979, 48th overall, Cincinnati (WHA) (1,756-694-1,193-1,887)
Connor McDavid – 2015, 1st overall, Erie (OHL) (351-162-307-469)
Jason Arnott – 1993, 7th overall, Oshawa (OHL) (1,244-417-521-938)
Leon Draisaitl – 2014, 3rd overall, P. Albert (WHL) (422-168-254-422)
Taylor Hall – 2010, 1st overall, Windsor (OHL) (627-218-345-563)
Ryan Smyth – 1994, 6th overall, Moose Jaw (WHL) (1,270-386-456-842)
Miroslav Satan – 1993, 111th overall, Trencin (Cze.) (1,050-363-372-735)
Esa Tikkanen – 1983, 80th overall, Helsinki (Fin.) (877-244-386-630)
Jari Kurri – 1980, 69th overall, Jokerit (Fin.) (1,251-601-797-1,398)
Glenn Anderson – 1979, 69th overall, Denver (WCHA) (1,129-498-601-1,099)
Ales Hemsky – 2001, 13th overall, Hull (QMJHL) (845-174-398-572)
Jordan Eberle – 2008, 22nd overall, Regina (WHL) (724-225-293-518)
Paul Coffey – 1980, 6th overall, Kitchener(OHL) (1,409-396-1,135-1.531)
Kevin Lowe – 1979, 21st overall, Quebec (QMJHL) (1,254-84-348-432)
Steve Smith – 1981, 111th overall, London (OHL) (804-72-303-375)
Jeff Petry – 2006, 45th overall, Des Moines (USHL) (680-69-184-253)
Jeff Beukeboom – 1983, 19th overall, S.S. Marie (OHL) (804-30-129-159)
Tom Poti – 1996, 59th overall, Cushing (USHS) (824-69-258-327)
Grant Fuhr – 1981, 8th overall, Victoria (WHL) (403-295-114, 3.38, .887)
Andy Moog – 1980, 132nd overall, Billings (WHL) (372-209-88, 3.13, .891)
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