Today’s news will be a sight for sore eyes in Edmonton (and perhaps a generator of bitterness for Toronto since they sacrificed their first and second rounders for Phil Kessel). As I mentioned earlier today, the Oilers’ losing ways guaranteed that they will have one of the top two picks. So they might look at the upcoming combine as a hockey buffet, since the list of invitees was announced today.
NHL.com provided the full list of players who have been asked to participate in the Scouting Combine, which takes place from May 24-29.
This year’s invitation list includes top prospects from all corners of the globe, including the two most-talked-about prospects — Windsor Spitfires left wing Taylor Hall and Plymouth Whalers center Tyler Seguin.
Also on the list are the top defensemen available — Erik Gudbranson of the Kingston Frontenacs, Brandon Gormley of the Moncton Wildcats, Windsor’s Cam Fowler and the Edmonton Oil Kings’ Mark Pysyk.
Top goalies Jack Campbell of the U.S. National Team Developmental Program and Calvin Pickard of the Seattle Thunderbirds also will be in attendance.
Here are a few names that stood out to me, merely for joke-related reasons.
- If Brandon Archibald isn’t nicknamed “Tiny” after the Hall of Fame NBA guard, then there is no justice in the world. Yes, I know that he is 6-3 and 200 lbs. but he will be called “Tiny” and you all will just have to live with it.
- Brock Beukeboom, son of former Ranger Jeff, is on the list. Does this mean we’ll see the triumphant return of “Puke-eboom”? (“Charlie, come on out and get your whoopin'”)
- I’d make fun of Tyler Pitlick, but I assume he got to where he is today by beating up people who make unimaginative nicknames for him. I feel the same way about the careers of Jody Shelly, Derek Boogaard and Dick Butkus. Miroslav Satan, however, is exempt from this rule.
Anyway, the bigger story will be about Taylor Hall vs. Tyler Seguin (with a possible appearance by Cam Fowler). We’ll be sure to keep you up to date on the big prospects this summer.