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Edmonton Oilers select Sam O’Reilly 32nd overall – The Hockey Writers – Edmonton Oilers

Edmonton Oilers select Sam O’Reilly 32nd overall – The Hockey Writers – Edmonton Oilers

With the 32nd overall pick in the 2024 NHL Entry Draft, the Edmonton Oilers select Sam O’Reilly from the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL)

About Sam O’Reilly

Sam O’Reilly is always ready to compete and will do anything to regain possession of the ball using his strength and body positioning. He is constantly battling and getting to the tough spots on the ice. Whether it’s under the goal line, in the corners or along the boards, O’Reilly is right in the thick of it and usually comes out on top. He tends to do the most damage in tight spaces, driving hard to the net and wreaking havoc for a scoring chance or a second chance. He has a decent outside shot and is often available in the open ice, putting himself in the right spot at the right time to make or finish a play.

Related: THW’s 2024 NHL Draft Live Tracker

Defensively, O’Reilly’s motor and intensity are just as strong, and he does a great job of pressuring puck carriers and taking away chances. He has great awareness to corner, neutralize, and prevent plays from happening. His long reach and size can quickly take away time and space for opponents.

Sam O’Reilly, London Knights (Natalie Shaver/OHL Images)

O’Reilly’s work ethic makes him a very valuable player for any NHL team. The fact that he can play either wing or center would give them ample opportunities to use his strengths to their advantage. While he may not be a consistent top-six option, he could be a very effective third-line energy player who can be a factor in setting the tone and being strong defensively. His smarts could come in handy when killing penalties and his presence in net could certainly help on the power play.

THW Prospect Profile Excerpt

“There are plenty of prospects still flying under the radar heading into the 2024 NHL Draft. One name getting some recognition heading into the final stretch is London Knights forward Sam O’Reilly, as he continued to increase his draft stock rapidly throughout the season improve.

“When you look at the production, you understand why O’Reilly was successful in that area. O’Reilly is a versatile 60-yard player who can play a responsible game without the puck and display a strong work ethic when in the offensive zone. He doesn’t shy away from any opportunity for it to involve some form of physicality.”

Read the full prospect profile here

How this affects the Oilers’ plans

The Oilers liked what they saw in O’Reilly to give up picks and move on to the last pick of the first round to select him. The Oilers are happy to add him to their prospect pool because he has good play habits, is tough to play against and plays with a bit of grit while staying within the rules. He has very good offensive hockey sense and puck skills and is difficult to contain.

The Oilers have added a prospect to their organization who drives the net extremely hard, can tip pucks and screen goaltenders. He is physical all over the ice and can play a 60-yard game.