Nail Yakupov is an Oiler! For the third consecutive year, the Edmonton Oilers picked went up to the podium and chose the best available player of the NHL Draft. The Russian right winger from the Sarnia Sting played a mere 65 games last season, yet the dynamic forward managed to put up an incredible 101 points with 49 goals and 52 assists.
"I feel great right now, excited to be in Edmonton, it's a great time in my life." said Yakupov after being drafted. Yakupov is quite possibly the most ready player of the draft to dive into the NHL and put up some respectable numbers. With Yakupov in the organization the hockey pundits and fans are just dying to see the top 3 picks with Hall and RNH will form and an extremely deadly first line in the future.
Yet, does he think he's ready to make the splash in Edmonton and swim with big fish with Hall and co., or sink like a Bonsignore?
"Yeah, why not? I have lots of time to work in the summer," he said. "I think I'm ready to play in the NHL. It's a great team, pretty young team. I saw a game in Detroit there and they showed great hockey. It's going to be a great team, plus me, maybe."
Maybe? You can bet this kid can and will make the starting line-up come October and you can bet that this team has more than just the potential to be great team or dare I say...create a dynasty?
But let's be real. The Oilers haven't made the play-offs in 7 long seasons and the team MUST find the post season in 2013. Anything less than a play-off spot would definitely be a bust. The only thing the Edmonton Oilers can do is just work hard and work well with each other and play the game they love.
"I want to just work and show how I can play hockey. Help my team try and win every game. That's what I want."
Here is hoping for you to do well kid!
Congratulations to Nail Yakupov 2012 #1 Draft Pick