Edmonton Oilers Players in Review: Tyler Pitlick


The case of Tyler Pitlick is one of uncertainty and intrigue as the difficulty of remaining a consistent everyday NHL player has always defined him as a player. Last year, on a poor Edmonton Oilers squad Pitlick had a real shot at becoming a main stay in the Oilers bottom six forward grouping. Obviously the Edmonton management staff has seen some potential with Typer Pitlick and recently resigned him to a one year contract worth $ 760 K and change. This upcoming season could be a make or break season for Pitlick as to whether or not he has a future in the NHL.


As a second round pick (31st overall) from the 2010 NHL entry draft there were reasonable expectations for Pitlick to develop in the minors and push for a NHL job sooner rather than later. However, at age 23 there simply has not been enough progress to woo the Oilers management staff. Pitlick has always been an offensively gifted prospect that has struggled to put it together at the NHL level. In the minors he has been able to play at a high level and was an AHL level scoring winger.

Last season he got the call and joined the club for a handful of games before suffering a lacerated spleen in a New Year’s Eve tilt against the Calgary Flames. In his 17 regular season games with the Oilers he only added two goals to the club and alternated in and out of the line up on the fourth line.

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After a stellar career at Minnesota State (WCHA) and in Medicine Hat (WHL) Pitlick proved that he can be a valuable offensive player having tallied 62 points in 56 games in the Western Hockey League. However, that was quite some time ago. Pitlick has not been as advertised and has failed to produce more than 23 points in any season in his professional career. Though it is of note that Pitlick has been generally used as a third line scoring winger or a fourth line checking/defensive unit.

GP: 17, G: 2, A: 0, Pts: 2, +/-: -3

Injuries have also prevented Pitlick from reaching the expectations of a second round pick. His inability to stay healthy makes it difficult to gauge where his development is at. Not until Pitlick plays an entire season can we accurately predict how and if Pitlick can succeed at a NHL level.


This upcoming training camp will be a difficult task for Pitlick if he wants to survive the rounds of cuts and be on the Oilers opening day roster. In my mind I don’t believe that Pitlick makes the NHL club at the start of the season due to the depth of the Oilers forward group. In order for him to make the team he would have to outplay the likes of other Oilers bottom six wingers;

Based on the track records of the above mentioned players I see Pitlick destined for another year in the minors, but if a more skilled offensive player goes down due to injuries look for Pitlick to be recalled. While I am sure Pitlick will receive a few games of NHL consideration near the end of the season for evaluation I project his position on the depth chart on the third scoring line with point totals such as these;

GP: 10, G: 1, A: 2, Pts: 3, +/-: -4

Overall, Pitlick is still a developing prospect with a injury history. There are some good qualities to his game that suggests he could one day be a bottom six player in the NHL. However, his durability as a player has prevented him from identifying with a role on the current Oilers squad. My prediction would be that the Oilers will give him (and others) every opportunity to make the NHL team and leave their calling card for the new regime. If things do not turn out for Pitlick this upcoming season look for the Oilers to move him before the deadline as part of  a larger deal or for a late round pick or at the end of the season I could see the Oilers let him walk.

Next: Edmonton Oilers Players in Review: Oscar Klefbom

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