Offensive talent, defensive depth, highlight Edmonton Oilers Top 20
The expectations have been building for the Edmonton Oilers, and the time has come to deliver. After half a decade at or near the bottom of the NHL standings, the club now has an embarrassment of riches when it comes to young talent. This is true not only of graduated, full-time NHL players but also of the teamís prospects.
A trio of first overall picks, a blockbuster free agent signing on the blue line, and a host of complementary and supporting talents has stocked the cupboards incredibly well. The 2012-13 season is the first in awhile where there is a real expectation that the team begins to deliver on the brighter future that has been promised over the last five years.
1. (1) Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, C, 9C
Drafted 1st round, 1st overall, 2011
This will be Ryan Nugent-Hopkins' last appearance on this list given the fact that the only reason he remains is due to injury. A Calder Trophy runner-up in 2011-12, the young star posted near point-per-game numbers as an 18-year-old rookie, opening eyes with his offensive ability, defensive awareness, sublime vision, and off-the-charts intelligence. He is everything you would expect from a first overall pick and is destined to be a fixture on the top line in Edmonton for the next decade or more.
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