Here’s a great question: “How much of a talent is Jake Neighbours?”
Neighbours, a 20-year-old captain and forward, led the Edmonton Oil Kings to the 2022 WHL Championship. The Oil Kings defeated the Seattle Thunderbirds 6-2 in Game 6. He assisted on both goals.
Neighbours scored 17 points (three goals, 14 assists) in 19 postseason games. The Oil Kings lost just three games en route to becoming 2022 WHL Champions.
With the win, Edmonton advanced to the 2022 Memorial Cup. The Memorial Cup road starts on June 20th in Saint John, New Brunswick, at 5:00 pm Central.
Neighbours, a St. Louis Blues prospect, recorded two points (one goal, one assist) in nine games to start the 2021-22 NHL season. He was then assigned to the WHL. He achieved a lot of success in Edmonton, Alberta.
But what about St. Louis, Missouri? I think Neighbours will be all right for now.
Blues general manager Doug Armstrong was recently asked by NHL.com if he thinks his team needed to make major tweaks before the 2022-23 NHL season.
Armstrong responded: “It doesn’t need major tweaking. In a cap system, we’re in a really good spot for next season. We have so many returning players under contract. We have a couple of good players in Perron and Leddy and Husso (who aren’t signed), but we do have a lot of returning players. We’re excited about our American League team [the Springfield Thunderbirds], they’re undefeated in the playoffs right now in the Conference Finals. We have (Zachary) Bolduc and (Jake) Neighbours, our last two first-round picks, playing very good in their respective junior leagues trying to win a Memorial Cup.”
“There will be change, that’s just the nature of pro sports in a cap system. But I do like the group we’re bringing back.”
Neighbours’ resume continues to grow. He has emerged, and it’s possible we can see him making his full-time debut next season. I share the same thoughts on Blues forward Alexei Toropchenko and Blues center Logan Brown.
How would you rank Neighbours’ talent?