After reading in a post today on TSN, it was identified that Taylor will not attend the summer evaluation camp for Hockey Canada. By skipping the camp by rule, he will be ineligible to play in Buffalo this Christmas. Which in turn basically states he will be playing top six minutes in Edmonton come this fall. Is this a good thing for both parties? Is Hall ready for a young and inexperienced season in Edmonton, where losing (something he is NOT used too) will be a regular occurrence. Also with Canada losing the WJHC for the first time in 5 years is this something Hockey Canada would like to see?
Never the less the decision has been made and Hall will be in the Oilers lineup. The question now remains what fantasy impact will he have come this season. There is no doubt he will be a star in this league, and if you are in a keeper league then Hall may be on your radar in the early rounds. Most fantasy league are year to year, so the issue becomes do you draft him in the higher rounds like many people did with Tavares or do they wait and see and make a waiver claim like many did with Howard, Myers and Duchese? Wait a minute, weren’t those 3 players all finalist for the Calder this year. Where was Tavares? All that hype…… what did it amount to; a lot of frustrated owners come the later stages of the fantasy season.
So how do we view Hall? I think you have too look for something along the lines of a Tavares. A highly touted player being drafted by a league doormat, then making the team the very next year. Like Hall, Tavares as we know was draft by the Islanders who would not be mistaken for a playoff team in the near future. Had very little in support and thus his play suffered as the year went on. When an unknown like Matt Moulson scores 30 goals…..enough said.
Hall will have some talent around him in Eberle, Cogliano, Gagner and Hemsky, but outside of Hemsky the others are young unproven players who are still trying to find there way. So yes Hall will see significant power play time and late game minutes, but expect the wear of a bad Oiler season to take its toll. He may end with a 50 point 20 goal season, but that is not what you expect when draft a player in the 1st 5 rounds as many hype driven fantasy players will do.