I’ll be honest, I didn’t think Edmonton Oilers would keep Lennart Petrell around for another year. It’s a surprise to me that the Oilers reupped him for one more year. Petrell was a minor fan favorite last season, finishing third on the club in hits with 122 while only playing 60 games. One thing that Petrell did was finish his checks. Petrell doesn’t instill a lot of fear during the course of a game. He is an honest up and down winger that finishes his checks.
The issue I have with Petrell is thats all he did for the Oilers was finish checks. While he is one of the bigger players on the Oilers, his skating is subpar, his handling of the puck is poor and his shot release can be timed by sundial. Heading into the season, it looked like his shot would be his greatest asset but as training camp turned into regular season, what looked like clean looks were now turning into deflected and blocked shots for Petrell. He was also -10 on the season, which isn’t great for a 4th liner either. Needless to say, I’m not a fan of Petrell’s overall game but he still brings something to the table that the Oilers lack. At the same time, the Oilers need less one dimensional players.
If I Could Grant One Wish – Hands: He has a hard shot, but just can’t seem to find the target with it. Having 36 shots in 60 games is no good, even if it is a 4th liner like Petrell is. If he could find more comfort with the puck he could eventually become a top 9 player, but I’m not sure if that will ever evolve for him. He looked, at times, like the NHL game was too fast for him.
Prediction for 2013 – Will score less than 5 goals for the season: A lot fo factors go into this prediction. One, being the lockout as usual. Two, being that I don’t think he will get into 3/4 of the Oilers’ games like he did last season. If he does, the Oilers will likely be in trouble again, like they were last season. Petrell is an OK, put in a pinch type player if small injuries arise. He can play center which although I’m not sure if it will be needed on the Oilers. If the Oilers’ roster gets logjammed during the season, I could see Petrell being a waiver wire casualty.