WOULD LINDHOLM HELP ELEVATE DRAISAITL'S LINE?
Let’s take a look at the recently-spectacular Ryan McLeod-Draisaitl-Warren Foegele line, which ranked second in the NHL by GF/60, and performed like a top line on an NHL roster:
When paired with speedy forecheckers and capable puck transitioners McLeod and Foegele, the line was dominant across the board, in a very small sample. The only area they suffered in was faceoffs. On the other hand, Draisaitl-Foegele was great but not excellent across the board. If the Oilers acquire a top six player, they will seek to demote McLeod to 3C. Lindholm would play with Draisaitl-Foegele. Lindholm is not the transitional menace that McLeod is, but his passing and shooting skills as a centreman are a nice contrast to the skill set of Foegele, and Lindholm could definitely benefit and elevate the Draisaitl-Foegele duo.
As for the level of competition faced by this line, Draisaitl this year has spent roughly 60% less time against elites than Lindholm has. I would love to see what Foegele-Lindholm-Draisaitl could do against that sort of competition, and Draisaitl could sorely use a 30 goal, 70 point player on his line. Draisaitl and Foegele are the types of playdrivers that Lindholm might thrive with.
All in all, Draisaitl could use some more support on his line, and Lindholm looks like a quality second line right-shot centre. Is he worth the rumored $9M extension from years past? No. But he certainly looks to be worth as much as any of the Oilers’ wingers, who are all making $5-5.5M or less.
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