Oilers GM expects Leon Draisaitl to make a 'strong case' to make the team

Aug 30, 10:37 AM

The Edmonton Oilers are no strangers to having high-level prospects in attendance at training camp, with a plethora of top, young draft picks joining the organization in recent years.

The latest to join the mix is 2014 third overall pick Leon Draisaitl, who general manager Craig MacTavish believes will present the club with a difficult decision in regards to whether the he's ready for the NHL, or if he needs additional seasoning back in the Western Hockey League (or elsewhere).

“Anybody, whether fan, coach, manager, media, anybody that says that they can tell you definitively whether Leon Draisaitl is ready or is not ready before getting the information at training camp is naive,” MacTavish said, as per the Edmonton Sun. “That would reveal a very superficial understanding of the game of hockey. Fortunately, we don’t have to make that decision right now.

“In my mind, I feel he’s going to make a strong case," MacTavish added. "I’ve seen him play, he’s going to make a strong case, I’ll be shocked if he’s not going to make a strong case.”

Draisaitl scored 28 goals and added 67 assists in 64 games for the WHL's Prince Albert Raiders this past season, and could be in line to further develop his game in a European professional league if he fails to crack the Oilers' lineup out of training camp.