by PuckStopsHere on 04/09/10 at 11:49 AM ET
The Edmonton Oilers have had a tough year. They finished last in the NHL this season. The AHL affiliate, the Springfield Falcons, also finished last in their league. For the Oilers, help is not on its way from their top minor team. Springfield has won 24 of their 77 games this season and has 63 points to sit in last place in the AHL. With 283 goals allowed, no team has allowed as many goals this season as Springfield has. Their 193 goals for is fourth worst in the league. Their -90 +/- rating is worst in the league.
Their top scorer is Charles Linglet. He has 74 points in 75 AHL games. He is currently in the NHL with the Oilers and has no points in his three NHL games. The only other two players with significant scoring totals this year are Chad Wiseman and Colton Fretter, who have 54 and 53 points respectively.
Their defence has been raided by NHL callups. Cody Wild, Taylor Chorney and Theo Peckham have all spent considerable time in the NHL this year. This left Chris Armstrong to be the top AHL-level defenseman in the system.
Goaltending took a hit when Devan Dubnyk was called up to the NHL. This left Bryan Pittan and Aaron Sorochan as the current AHL tandem. They come with .872 and .871 saves percentages respectively.
Springfield is a mess at the AHL level. Any talented players they had have been called up to the NHL, due to Oiler injuries. This led to the departure of most players in the system that have a modicum of game changing ability - including ones who are clearly not NHL ready. The Edmonton Oilers are a mess at the NHL level as well. This shows that Kevin Lowe and Steve Tambellini have done a poor job of running the show and probably should be replaced.
Edmonton may have some talent in their farm system outside of the AHL. Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson was their first round pick last year, who played well in Sweden and in the World Junior Championships. Jordan Eberle starred in the World Juniors as well and has recently joined the depleted Springfield Falcons after his WHL season ended. A couple prospects like this are not enough. For Edmonton to turn things around they need several talented young players to emerge. Clearly Springfield is not a source for such players and that puts Edmonton further behind.
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