On July 18th the Edmonton Oilers released that they had signed Bakersfield leading scorer Josh Currie. I took a look at his career path up to today and was surprised at the journey he has taken and wanted to share it with all of you.
Edmonton Oilers: Josh Currie started his hockey career in the Maritime Junior A Hockey League in 08-09. This league, which consists of 12 teams, contains players aged 16-19. I did some research on this league, and very few pro players have come out of that league. The most prominent names being Adam Pardy, Ryan Clowe, and Andrew Macdonald.
An interesting piece of trivia, however, at 13 years of age, Sidney Crosby got called up to that league to play in two games. In Josh Currie’s case, he played one season in the MJAHL scoring eight goals and 17 assists in 45 games with the Summerside Western Capitals.
After graduating from that league he went to on to the QMJHL, spending four years with the Prince Edward Island Rocket, where he served as a captain in his final season. His first season He finished the year with only 20 points in 50 games but in his last season skyrocketed to 104 points in 68 games.
Even though he had a lot of success over his four-year minor league career, Currie was not drafted into the NHL. This, however, did not slow Currie down. If anything this represented the crossroads in Currie’s career, and he did not let it beat him
Instead of taking an amateur tryout in an attempt to stick with a team Currie signed a deal to play in the ECHL with the Gwinnett Gladiators. In his only year with the club, he notched 15 goals and 16 assists for 31 points in 70 games. As Currie has proven throughout his career, however, this was only the beginning.
His next season he went to Bakersfield (while they were still an ECHL team) and measurably improved, posting 14 goals and 28 assists for 42 points in 71 games. This improvement is what eventually led him on the path to the NHL.
Currie finished his ECHL career in Norfolk, only playing in 13 games wherein he scored 12 points. This stint was enough to get called up to the Bakersfield Condors of the AHL. He finished his season in Bakersfield with ten goals and 14 assists for 24 points in 53 games.
His success as a rookie propelled him to a full-time gig in the AHL. Currie followed up his rookie season with an impressive campaign showing improvement in all facets of his game. This is most noticeable by his increased scoring totals where he went from 10 goals to 22.
Because of this increase in scoring, Currie landed himself a place in the top 6, and on the power play. As in most places, Currie has gone he continued to rise up the ladder in 16/17, making way for his breakout year.
In 17/18 everything just seemed to go right for Currie. He once again got hot in the 20 goal mark while also posting 26 assists to lead the Condors with 46 points. He, after the departures of Puljujarvi and Rattie to the main club, was the key offensive cog in Bakersfield’s machine.
His success leads him to three days ago wherein he finally received his first full NHL contract. This means that come training camp this fall he’ll be fighting alongside other prospects for a shot at the big club.
For Josh Currie to continue to succeed he once again must show improvement at the AHL level. If he can expand his offense further and become a more dangerous player he may have a shot at the NHL. In general, however, Josh Currie’s age most likely prevents him from being anything more than a bottom six option at the NHL level, and that’s okay.
Not every prospect is a slamdunk, bonafide superstar. Bottom 6 forwards are just as vital to a team’s success as any other position. Currie is an example of the type of player Edmonton, and every other team needs more of.
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Currie throughout his career has been gritty, never give up forward wherever he plays. I think that kind of character is something that Edmonton could stand to add to their dressing room. Who knows? Maybe he can continue his trend of improving in every league he plays in and makes an impact at the NHL level.