Well, the 30th pick has been made and the first round has come to a conclusion. The Oilers made noise on the draft floor moving picks 16 (Barzal) and pick 33 to the New York Islanders in exchange for Griffin Reinhart. Many have criticized this move, but it will prove to be a valuable addition to the Oilers roster. Not only does Reinhart bring a strong defensive presence, he also brings the experience factor the Oilers lack. Yes, I know he’s 21, so “experience” isn’t exactly a trait that would pop into your head immediately, but if you take a glimpse at his track record you will be more than impressed.
Aside from that trade, the Oilers clearly won the day as they walked away with the greatest prospect to come along in the past 30 years. McDavid means a new era for the Oilers. His unprecedented speed and puck skills will take the NHL, as well as the Oilers, on to a new level. If the Oilers walk away with zero picks throughout the remainder of the draft and still acquire an A+ rating given the caliber of player they left with.
Granted, selecting Mathew Barzal at 16, and one of Bittner, Roy, or Harkins at 33 would have been a memorable haul, but the Oilers chose to address a position which they were shallow on. Reinhart creates depth on the blueline, and for the first time in years, the Oilers can potentially say no to adding another left handed defenceman.
All in all, it was a solid day for the Oil, but it doesn’t end there. Tomorrow is when we’ll see picks and players on the move, possibly Nikita Nikitin on his way out, as well as the chance a goalie is added to the fold. It will be an exciting day, and for once Oiler fans have faith in management.