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Forum: NHLJun 25 at 12:27
Forum: General Fantasy TalkMay 12 at 1:18
I think the bigger issue with Puljujarvi lies with how he was handled by Edmonton. He's clearly got talent, but he was expected to immediately produce in the NHL, which is extremely rare for 18 year olds. If you want a skill player like Puljujarvi to succeed, he needs to be played to his strengths, which includes playing him with other skill players.

In the limited minutes he played with McDavid, he was pretty good; and although that's expected when anyone plays with McDavid, he was clearly drafted as a potential complement to McDavid, so I don't know why they separated the two. Even if he was just a passenger, he's got skill (like I mentioned) so it could only help his development. Playing him with guys like Jujhar Khaira, Milan Lucic, and Drake Caggiula (3 of his 4 most common linemates in 2018-19) and expecting his skills to improve was a poor coaching decision, especially since Edmonton has notoriously lacked NHL-quality top six wingers. He should have been given more of a leash and been allowed to play more with McDavid as his center, or even Draisaitl.

34 of his 37 points in the NHL were primary points, and 32 of the 37 were at even strength, so he's clearly somewhat capable of creating offense himself. Now will he live up to his draft pedigree? Probably not, as he's lost valuable development time through his first four post-draft seasons. I don't think he's reached bust territory yet, although he is close. If I'm a GM with an open RW spot in the top six next to skilled linemates, I would not hesitate to pay a 3rd round pick for him.