POSTED ON Monday, 05.11.2015 / 10:41 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - / Inside the Oilers

Leon Draisaitl had a goal and an assist as the Kelowna Rockets won 5-3 to take a 3-0 series lead over the Brandon Wheat Kings on Monday night in Kelowna.

With the win, the Rockets are only one win away from a WHL Championship and an appearance in the Memorial Cup. Their next two games are on home ice in Kelowna.

Draisaitl opened the scoring with a shorthanded goal (video above) 6:35 into the first period. Morgan Klimchuk responded 1:13 later for Brandon to get the game on even terms. Gage Quinney regained the lead for the Rockets only 59 seconds after that, sending the home team into the first intermission with a 2-1 lead.

Dillon Dube's goal 4:15 into period two increased Kelowna's advantage to 3-1 and before the period would end, Rourke Chartier's 11th of the postseason made it a three-goal game. 26 seconds after Chartier's goal, Brandon responded to send the game into the final frame down a pair. 

Brandon made a game of it in the third period after Tim McGauley's goal midway through made it a 4-3 contest but Chartier's second of the night and 12th of the playoffs -- assisted by Draisiatl -- was the insurance marker.

The two teams play again on Wednesday in Kelowna. Game time is 8:05 p.m. MDT and it can be seen on Shaw TV (channel 10).

POSTED ON Monday, 05.11.2015 / 8:28 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - / Inside the Oilers

Highlights | Post-Game Interviews

Connor McDavid and the Erie Otters won on home ice Monday 4-3 to narrow their gap in the series to two games to one over the Oshawa Generals.

McDavid had a goal and an assist to help lead the Otters to the win.

Erie had a 2-0 lead after two late first-period goals by Remi Elie and Alex DeBrincat. That lead carried over through a scoreless middle frame and into the third.

In the third, McDavid scored five minutes in to make it 3-0 for the home team. 1:15 later, Cole Cassels scored to bring the Generals within a pair. With 7:36 to go in the game, Nick Betz scored to give the Otters a 4-1 lead.

Late goals by Sam Harding and Cassels made it 4-3 but that was as close as Oshawa would get.

Game 4 goes Wednesday at 5:35 p.m. MDT. Game 5 will be televised on Sportsnet and is Friday at 5:35 p.m. as well.

POSTED ON Saturday, 05.9.2015 / 10:43 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - / Inside the Oilers

Leon Draisaitl had a goal and an assist as the Kelowna Rockets won 5-3 to take a 2-0 series lead over the Brandon Wheat Kings despite having played the first two games on the road.

Brandon opened the scoring only 1:20 into the game before Draisaitl set up Rourke Chartier about 10 minutes later to tie it at 1-1. With three seconds to go in the first, Nick Merkley scored to make it 2-1.

Kelowna extended their lead to 3-1 only 27 seconds into period two. Peter Quenneville scored two goals four minutes apart early in the third to make it a 3-3 game, however.

Midway through the third, Nick Merkley scored his second of the game shorthanded to make it 4-3 and Draisaitl added an empty-netter to wrap it up.

The next three games of the series will be in Kelowna, starting with Game 3 on Monday at 8:05 p.m. MDT.

POSTED ON Saturday, 05.9.2015 / 10:27 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - / Inside the Oilers

The Erie Otters have fallen behind 2-0 in their best-of-seven Ontario Hockey League Championship Series to the Oshawa Generals after losing Game 2 5-1 on Saturday night.

Top-ranked prospect Connor McDavid had no points and was a -2. It was the first time in these playoffs that McDavid came away without a point. He had a point in each of his first 16 playoff games, scoring 19 goals and 43 points in those games.

POSTED ON Friday, 05.1.2015 / 11:18 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - / Inside the Oilers

A goal by Tyson Baillie with 5:05 remaining in the first overtime lifted the Kelowna Rockets to a 2-1 win over the Portland Winterhawks on Friday night, giving the Rockets a 3-2 series lead in Game 5 of the WHL Western Conference Final.

Oilers prospect Leon Draisaitl assisted on Riley Stadel's goal to opening scoring with 2:25 to go in the first period. That goal looked like it was going to be enough but with 3:33 to play in the third, Nic Petan scored to force overtime.

After three periods, shots on goal were 39-29 for Portland, but Kelowna found an extra gear in OT, outshooting the Winterhawks 20-4 in the fourth period.

Draisaitl's assist gave him 20 points so far in these playoffs with six goals and 14 assists in 14 games to lead all Rockets and rank fourth in the WHL in postseason scoring.

Kelowna can wrap up the series with a win on Sunday night in Portland. Game time is 6:00 p.m. MDT.

POSTED ON Saturday, 04.18.2015 / 9:57 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - / Inside the Oilers

WATCH: MacT Interview | Daly draws | Bill Scott | McDavid Interview | Actual Lottery

Following the Draft Lottery, Connor McDavid took part in a conference call with other top prospects Jack Eichel, Noah Hanifin and Dylvan Strome to discuss a variety of topics.

RELATED: Crosby on McDavid; Oilers winning the lottery

One topic that came up right off the hop for McDavid was his thoughts on Edmonton and the potential of being drafted by the Oilers.

“It’s a dream come true. It’s a great city to be in," McDavid began. "They’ve got the fans supporting them through a bit of a tough slide the last couple of years. The support they’ve received is amazing. That speaks volumes to the fan support they get in Edmonton. It’s pretty special.”

McDavid was then asked about what was going through his mind as Bill Daly drew cards 14 through 3, ultimately landing on Edmonton with the gold card.

“It’s been a weird day. At the same time, it’s been exciting. When they pulled the cards it’s the fastest my heart’s ever beaten. It’s sure exciting. If Edmonton selects me it would be a tremendous honour.”

The 18-year-old centre was asked about the top talent on the Oilers and the possibility of playing with them.

“They have younger talent, names like Hall, Eberle, (Nugent) Hopkins and Yakupov. And on D with Schultz. They have such a good group there, it’s hard to pick anyone. That’s going a little too far ahead of ourselves, obviously. The draft hasn’t started. We’ll see what happens.”

POSTED ON Saturday, 04.18.2015 / 9:43 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - / Inside the Oilers

Pittsburgh Penguins centre Sidney Crosby, himself a first-overall pick in 2005, talked to the media tonight about the Oilers winning the draft lottery, the possibility of Connor McDavid going to Edmonton and why that's a good thing for him.

“The great thing for him is that they have a lot of young guys there already,” Crosby said to Josh Yohe of the Pittsburgh Tribune. “That's a big thing for him. It's not like he's going to an older team or anything like that. He'll be able to grow with those guys. They have a ton of young talent there already, so it should be a good thing for him to be there.”

Crosby also talked about the potential comparisons to Wayne Gretzky, as he himself had to deal with in Pittsburgh with Mario Lemieux.

“He's definitely going to hear about that, and he'll have to deal with all the comparisons to him. It's to be expected.”

POSTED ON Saturday, 04.18.2015 / 9:28 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - / Inside the Oilers

WATCH: MacT Interview | Daly draws | Bill Scott | McDavid Interview | Actual Lottery

Oilers GM Craig MacTavish spoke with us from Switzerland shortly after the announcement that the Oilers had won the 2015 NHL Draft Lottery. Here is a transcript of the interview:

What were your thoughts when you first saw that the Oilers had won the Draft Lottery?

“We just started yelling. We were all in Switzerland, watching it on the iPad and then started to get nervous after it got by Carolina and got by Toronto. Then the palms started sweating. That was a great pronouncement by Bill Daly for sure.”

How does winning the lottery change any plans you may have had for this upcoming off-season and/or at the draft?

“We’re going to enjoy this for now. It’s a pretty special night for all the Oilers fans. It’s a game-changer for the franchise. I feel great for the players and I feel really good for the fans. We’ll enjoy that for an evening and then figure out how this all works going forward.”

Talk about Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel, the type of players that they are and what they could potentially bring to the Oilers.

“Both are great, great players. These players have been looked at and sought after for the last three years. It’s been earmarked an epic draft for the last three, four years with these players coming in.

“We’re extremely fortunate to be in this position. We’re going to relax and enjoy it tonight and we’ll let the Oilers fans celebrate and we’ll get onto the business of hockey tomorrow.”

What does it mean to have the ability to land a franchise player of this type with the Oilers in the situation that they’re in: emerging team, new arena being built, etc.

“Any one of the 14 teams would make a great case for being the best spot for this player. In particular, our situation with the new building, I’m not thinking about it so much from a building standpoint but just what it’s going to mean for the hockey club. I’m really happy for the players. Really happy for the fans. It gives the Oilers a real shot in the arm going forward.

“I could stand up there and talk about optimism and a bright future but I think everyone can share in that vision now with us winning the Lottery.

Last question, and only because I have to ask, what are the chances that you would consider trading the pick?

“What's less than zero? ... No chance."

POSTED ON Saturday, 04.18.2015 / 9:20 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - / Inside the Oilers

The numbers which came up for the Oilers in their successful draft lottery were (in order drawn) 5, 14, 6 and 1.

Each team was given a designated number of the 1,000 possible valid combinations and since the Oilers had an 11.5% chance of winning, they had 115 potential four-ball sets which would gain them the win.

You can view the number combinations assigned to each team via

POSTED ON Saturday, 04.18.2015 / 7:41 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - / Inside the Oilers

WATCH: Oilers select first overall | Interview with Bill Scott | McDavid Interview

The Edmonton Oilers won the draft lottery and will choose first overall in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.

More coverage to come, including an interview with Craig MacTavish and some of the prospects for the draft including Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel.

More details to follow!

Oilers official press release:


    The Edmonton Oilers won the 2015 NHL Draft Lottery tonight and earned the first drafting position for the First Round of the 2015 NHL Draft.
    This will be the fourth time the Oilers have selected first overall, after drafting Taylor Hall (2010), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (2011) and Nail Yakupov (2012) in consecutive years.
    The order of selection for the first 14 drafting positions in the First Round, only, of the 2015 NHL Draft is as follows:
    1.        Edmonton Oilers
    2.        Buffalo Sabres
    3.        Arizona Coyotes
    4.        Toronto Maple Leafs
    5.        Carolina Hurricanes
    6.        New Jersey Devils
    7.        Philadelphia Flyers
    8.        Columbus Blue Jackets
    9.        San Jose Sharks
    10.      Colorado Avalanche
    11.      Florida Panthers
    12.      Dallas Stars
    13.      Los Angeles Kings
    14.      Boston Bruins
    The remaining positions are determined by the results of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
    The drawing was conducted at Rogers Sportsnet’s studio in downtown Toronto and the winning team was revealed live on CBC and TVA Sports in Canada and NBC in the U.S. prior to their broadcast of Game 2 of the Penguins-Rangers First Round series.
    Fourteen balls, numbered 1 to 14, were placed in a lottery machine. The machine randomly selected four balls. The resulting four-number series (without regard to selection order) was matched against a chart that shows all possible combinations and the Clubs to which each was assigned. The chart (available on showed that the Oilers had been assigned the numbers (1-5-6-14) that were expelled.
    The Oilers would have picked third based on inverse order of regular season finish, representing an 11.5% likelihood that their combination would emerge.
    Full odds of winning can be found here.
    The 2015 NHL Draft will be hosted by the Panthers at BB&T Center in Sunrise, Florida from June 26-27.
                         Results of Draft Drawings
Year       Selected              Effect on Draft Order     Player Selected
1995       Los Angeles        Moved from 7th to 3rd  D Aki Berg
1996       Ottawa Retained 1st selection   D Chris Phillips
1997       Boston  Retained 1st selection   C Joe Thornton
1998       Tampa Bay          Moved from 3rd to 1st via trades  C Vincent Lecavalier
1999       Chicago                Moved from 8th to 4th  RW Pavel Brendl *
2000       NY Islanders       Moved from 5th to 1st  G Rick DiPietro
2001       Atlanta Moved from 3rd to 1st  LW Ilya Kovalchuk
2002       Florida  Moved from 3rd to 1st  LW Rick Nash **
2003       Florida  Moved from 4th to 1st  G Marc-Andre Fleury ***
2004       Washington        Moved from 3rd to 1st  LW Alex Ovechkin
2005       Pittsburgh           n/a         C Sidney Crosby
2006       St. Louis               Retained 1st selection   D Erik Johnson
2007       Chicago                Moved from 5th to 1st  RW Patrick Kane
2008       Tampa Bay          Retained 1st selection   C Steven Stamkos
2009       NY Islanders       Retained 1st selection   C John Tavares
2010       Edmonton           Retained 1st selection   LW Taylor Hall
2011       New Jersey        Moved from 8th to 4th  D Adam Larsson
2012       Edmonton           Moved from 2nd to 1st RW Nail Yakupov
2013       Colorado              Moved from 2nd to 1st C Nathan MacKinnon
2014       Florida  Moved from 2nd to 1st D Aaron Ekblad
2015       Edmonton           Moved from 3rd to 1st
* NY Rangers obtained Chicago's pick in a trade (via Vancouver and Tampa Bay). The Rangers selected RW Pavel Brendl fourth overall.
** Columbus obtained Florida's pick in a trade. The Blue Jackets selected LW Rick Nash first overall.
*** Pittsburgh obtained Florida's pick in a trade. The Penguins selected G Marc-Andre Fleury first overall