Oil Drops for World Junior Championships

By John Christie

With this year’s tournament in Canada, the Edmonton Oilers will have six scouts present at this year’s tournament said Vice President of Hockey Operations Kevin Prendergast. The six scouts will be scouting the players the Oilers have drafted (Matt Greene) and players eligible for the 2003 draft (Robert Nilson, Marc-Andre Fluery). Usually, the Oilers have two to three scouts at the tournament but with the tournament being held in North America, more scouts will cover the different venues around Nova Scotia. Expect Kevin Prendergast (Chief scout and VP of Hockey Operations), Kent Nilson (Oilers European scout and father of draft eligible prospect Robert Nilson), Chris McCarthy, Brad Davis, Lorne Davis and Frank Musil (Oilers European scout) and possibly Kevin Lowe to be at the tournament.

Oiler Prospects to look out for:

Finland: Jesse Niinimaki (2002 Oilers 1st round pick) will play for team Finland taking the place of Mikko Koivu

Sweden: Jonas Alamtorp is confirmed and possibly Mikael Svensk (Sweden to confirm very soon)

United States: Matt Greene (2002 Oilers 2nd round pick) is confirmed. Dwight Helminen has not been confirmed by United States hockey of December 18, 2002.

Czech Republic: Tomas Micka has not been confirmed as of December 18, 2002

The Oilers could have six draft picks playing at the tournament this year.

Scouting strategy: All Oilers scouts will be at different venues watching their picks and draft eligible players. Since the games are being played in Halifax and Sydney, splitting the staff up is more productive and getting input from all scouts is beneficial during scouting meetings