Cogs

 

In the final season before the NHL lockout, 2003-04, the worst three teams in the league were the Pittsburgh Penguins with 58 points, and the Chicago Blackhawks and Washington Capitals with 59 points each.  Seven short years later and two of the franchises have already added a Stanley Cup. Despite their leading scorer failing to score even 60 points, in that 2003-04 season the Edmonton Oilers finished with 89 points, yet still failed to qualify for postseason activity. They would go on to not only lose the Sidney Crosby sweepstakes, but in one of the strangest drafts of all time, they were awarded the 25th overall pick.

 

Determined to make the most of their situation, they were excited to select the 18-year-old Cogliano, who had just compiled 102 points in 49 games in the OPJHL, good enough to be crowned top scorer in the league. In the limited time he had played internationally, Cogliano scored five goals and seven assists in only six games to lead a team that also featured players such as Steve Downie, Bryan Little, Marc Staal, Ryan Parent, Ryan Wilson, and Cal Clutterbuck. Needless to say, Canada won the gold that year.

 

After being drafted, Cogliano decided to go the college route, and played two years at Michigan, skating again for Canada in the U-20 World Juniors each year. Although his international point totals were much lower, his college production was getting better and he added two more gold medals to his resume. As of today, Cogliano has skated for Team Canada three times, winning gold each time.

 

In 2007-08, the speedy Cogliano made the jump from college straight to the NHL, which is something very few players have been able to do. In that rookie season, Cogliano would score 45 points, heating up specifically toward the end of the season, where he would even set an NHL record by scoring three consecutive overtime goals. Up until this point in his career, everything was moving along fantastic for a guy who still couldn’t even buy a drink in the United States. The future looked extremely promising.

 

The Edmonton Oilers organization though, was having trouble attracting elite talent. After Chris Pronger’s departure in 2006, the Oilers were fighting hard to avoid the stereotype of being a city that no one wanted to play for. The team would find itself sliding further and further over the next three seasons, with Cogliano getting caught in the quicksand. Despite scoring 18 goals in each of his first two seasons, Andrew would score only 21 over the next two years.

 

As Cogliano’s stock fell, there were some positives to look at that many either fail to acknowledge or simply skim past. After almost being shipped to the Ottawa Senators in a package for Dany Heatley, the deflated Cogliano registered his lowest NHL point total in his third season (28). Working hard to improve upon that low period, Cogliano rebounded with a 35-point season and showed his frustration through 64 penalty minutes, over double any of his previous penalty totals. The frustration is encouraging, showing that Cogliano is not happy with the losing environment.

 

With the Edmonton franchise building around youth, Cogliano found himself skating primarily with the most recent number-one-overall choice Taylor Hall and the highly-touted Jordan Eberle for the majority of the season. The average age of this line was 20 years and 8 months and the talent was out of this universe.

 

While it’s taken some time and it will likely continue to take development time, try to remember that Andrew Cogliano is only 23 years old, has still yet to play an AHL game, and has also yet to miss an NHL game in the four years he’s played. He’s fast and incredibly skilled, but is still learning the game on one of the worst teams in the league right now. Although the Oilers are having trouble moving up in the standings, how long will it be before they replicate the success of Chicago, Pittsburgh, or Washington? As the short-sighted managers in your league focus on Edmonton players such as Taylor Hall, Sam Gagner, Jordan Eberle, or Magnus Paajarvi, keep Andrew Cogliano’s name in the back of your head. With this much talent in the organization, it’s only a matter of time before the team establishes itself in the upper echelon of the league.

 


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Darryl Atkinson said:

habsrule
Value is relative to position You know, about 6 years ago, I grabbed a guy in my rotiserie auction, right at the end, for our minimum salary. He was a high draft pick, talented guy, never really broken through, and many were forecasting him as a bust/2nd liner at best/soft-no heart type of guy. I figured, what the hell, someone liked him enough to take him high 4 or 5 years ago, maybe it is just taking time for his game to adjust, he certainly has some skill. I got laughed at for leaving some other guys on the board, but wasn't competing that year, so took a gamble, like Tim is suggesting. Henrik Sedin was worth it...It doesn't happen every year, but if it happens once in a while, it makes a huge difference to your team. Of course it depends on your league, how deep it is, but always gamble on a young former 1st rounder over an established vet on the way down....
April 25, 2011
Votes: +1

Shadow said:

Shadow
... I don't have a crystal ball, so I'm not gonna bash the author for having a differing opinion from my own.

My take is that Cogliano doesn't have the finish or the hockey sense to ever be a legit fantasy asset. He has the skill, he just doesn't seem to have a clue how to put it all together. He simply doesn't excel in ANY role that he has been placed in up to this point.

I mean, if you're a rebuilding club that has some extra draft picks, then I guess it couldn't hurt to throw a late rounder at him and take a flier. But yea, my personal opinion is that he will never be fantasy relevant.
April 24, 2011
Votes: +0

Marc said:

MGW
downer OK, I don't want this to be a team-up and bash the author here. It's been said many times before, but one of the reasons why this site is so valuable (in addition to being interesting), is that there are a variety of authors with different opinions.
Anyway, keep up the good work Dobber et al.
April 24, 2011
Votes: +0

doulos said:

doulos
checking center ****Cogs has been used as a checking center, but the guy is 5'10" with speed and skill. How ****in the world would that translate to a checking line center?

See Marchant, Todd. Same size. Same skillset. Checking center. Just better at it.
April 24, 2011
Votes: +0

Tim Lucarelli said:

duballstar014
... Cogs has been used as a checking center, but the guy is 5'10" with speed and skill. How in the world would that translate to a checking line center? I'm pretty sure this is a major reason why he's struggled over the past couple seasons. Like this season, all it takes is one trade or injury and doors open. Look at Cal O'Reilly before his injury. He was centering the #1 line for his team. Look at Mike Santorelli in Florida. Things happen and doors open.

Drafting RNH doesn't worry me when considering Cogliano's value. If he gets moved, then so be it! A change of scenery could actually speed up his development. The above article essentially looks at the Edmonton franchise turning the corner and Cogliano benefiting from this. A trade could do the same.

Either way, his fantasy value is pretty much shot right now (as evidenced by the comments below too), so he is a bargain investment. I'm not saying to go out and make him your franchise center, but I think each year you should have at least one or two players who cost practically nothing but still have the potential to pay dividends for your roster.

I also want to add that I truly appreciate all of the feedback from you folks. I've found it difficult at times to get any constructive criticism and without it, I'll never be able to improve my writing.
April 24, 2011
Votes: +0

Dan Martin said:

DanMartin
April Fool's? Was waiting for the punchline that never came. I guess in a 20 team points only league maybe he has some potential value as a #3 or #4 guy down the road...

I don't see him being on the Oilers much longer, particularly if they draft RNH. His best chance is to grow into a checking role. The problem with that is he's terrible on faceoffs and he's small. But you never know I suppose.

April 24, 2011
Votes: +0

doulos said:

doulos
Different Role Cogliano needs to sit down in the off season and get his hands on as many Dave Keon videos as he can obtain and hope to play like him - because that's his only hope for a decent NHL career now - and he will never be as good as Keon either. He will either make it as a PK/Checking Forward who can chip in an above average goal tally, or he'll fade away into nowhere land - maybe after bouncing around to a couple teams who becoome enticed by his speed and don't watch enough of his to see his massive blindspots.

But Cogliano needs to improve in areas like faceoffs and work ethic - no minor areas. As the real skill begins to make their way to the top of the roster over the next couple years I only hope that he can carve out a space somewhere because though he's not even looking to be a Marchant like player any more, he's always been pretty positive and not said too much despite the numerous trade rumours he's involved in.

His ice time with Hall and Eberle is nothing but a big red herring and has everything to do with injuries and the sad state the team is in, and there's no value in reading anything into it.
April 24, 2011
Votes: +0

Tim Lucarelli said:

duballstar014
... The attitude both of you have toward Cogliano is actually the exact reason I wrote the article. You two have already given up on him. The team itself is brutal right now, so for a guy who didn't go through the traditional steps to the NHL, he's just taking longer to learn.

Does he look like a third line center now? Did he play most of the year with Hall and Eberle because of injuries? Yes on both counts, but a 23-year-old third line center can always move up due to injuries. As the team gets better, he'll likely get better too.

Marc said:
I foresee a much brighter future for MPS, Gagner, and maybe even Omark than Cogs.


Yeah, I agree. But Cogliano's future is still bright, which is why he should be available in your league and available for just about nothing. How much will MPS, Hall, Gagner, and Omark cost you? I'm not saying he's going to be a #1 line center, but he should be able to rack up some more points in the #2 or #3 spot as the team collectively improves.
April 24, 2011
Votes: +0

Marc said:

MGW
unfortunately #2 I have to agree with Dobber here. I like to cheer for the young Oil team, but I've watched him many times over the past few years and it's increasingly clear that his success at the junior level likely will not translate into success in the NHL. He has all the speed in the world, and none of the finish. He reminds me of a mini-Erik Cole running around the ice, out-skating the D, and then looking lost in the offensive zone.

Of course, he'll likely up his point total if he plays with Eberle and Hall, but I just don't see the talent level you are talking about (at least not at the NHL level). I foresee a much brighter future for MPS, Gagner, and maybe even Omark than Cogs.
April 24, 2011
Votes: +0

Hockey Hoser said:

Hockey Hoser
ouch! Do you feel his 45 point rookie season was just an anomoly then? I don't get to watch the Oilers often but I do remember Cogliano from his junior days and he did look promising. But then again so did Maholtra at the junior level and as good as he's been as a 3rd line center in the NHL, I don't feel he's quite lived up to his billing. Kinda same prediction for Cogs. Personally I hope to see some of that flash at the NHL level. Time will tell.
April 24, 2011
Votes: +0

dobber said:

0
unfortunately i dont believe you have ever watched cogliano play. He can skate around the rink all he wants but he has no finish or drive, nonexistent hands.

Also, he played with hall and eberle for the majority of the season because a) horcoff was injured b) gagner was injured c) there's nobody else.

IF/when the oilers (and I really hope they do) establish themselves as an upper echelon team, cogliano will not be on it and if he is, he will be a third line defensive center.
April 24, 2011
Votes: +0
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