Since the Oilers won the Draft Lottery, there has been non-stop talk about how the Oilers are going to "ruin" Connor McDavids career just like they have "ruined" all of their other 1st round draft picks' careers. Comments like "RIP McDavids Career" are showing up all over the place, whether it be on Reddit or elsewhere.
If anybody had any sort of sense or knowledge whatsoever, they would know that the Oilers HAVE NOT, infact "ruined their first round picks" careers at all.
The Oilers 3 previous 1st Overall Picks in the past 5 drafts have been:
2010: Taylor Hall
2011: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins
2012: Nail Yakupov
Let's also include Jordan Eberle, who was drafted 22nd overall in 2008, as well as Darnell Nurse and Leon Draisaitl... 7th and 3rd overall in 2013 and 2014.
Lets start with Taylor Hall:
In the 2010 Draft, most would agree that it was a toss up between Taylor Hall and Tyler Seguin for 1st overall pick. The Oilers chose Hall, and since then Hall has put up 263pts in 299 games played which is 0.88 points per game. Tyler Seguin has had 282pts in 354 games played which is 0.80 points per game. Therefor, Taylor Hall has been a more effective player than Tyler Seguin has been. The only other player comparable from that draft year would be Jeff Skinner (7th overall) with 216pts in 336 games played or 0.64 points per game. From these numbers, one would say that Taylor Hall has been the best player from his draft year.
Next, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins:
Gabriel Landeskog is the only player from the 2011 draft year that is really comparable in numbers to Ryan-Nugent Hopkins. Landeskog has 193pts in 281 games played for a points per game average of 0.69. Nugent-Hopkins has 188pts in 258 career games or 0.73 points per game. Based off of this information, it would also be safe to say that Nugent-Hopkins has been the best performing player from his draft year.
In 2012 the Oilers drafted Nail Yakupov first overall:
It is easy to agree that Yakupov has under performed thus far in his career, with only 88pts in 192 games played for a 0.48 points per game average. However, from the class of 2012 draft picks, the only other player to have more points than Yakupov is Alex Galchenyuk with 104pts in 193 games played for a 0.54 points per game average. Galchenyuk has undoubtedly also played with a much stronger team, defence and goalie than the Oilers have had. But fair is fair, so we'll say Yakupov has been the 2nd best performer from his draft year (Ryan Murray could also be discussed but since he is a defenceman I will leave him out, but feel free to comment on him)
Jordan Eberle was drafted 22nd overall in the 2008 NHL Draft. This is the year that Steven Stamkos went 1st overall. Also in 2008, Drew Doughty was selected 2nd overall, Alex Pietrangelo as selected 4th overall and Erik Karlsson was selected 15th overall. Other than those 4 players, Eberle has been by far and away better than any of the other 18 players selected before him in the draft and has 284pts in 365 games played for a 0.80 points per game average. ONLY Steven Stamkos has a better points per game average than Eberle with 498pts in 492 games played for a 1.01 points per game average. Obviously Karlsson, Doughty and Pietrangelo have been outstanding defensively, but there is really nobody else from that draft year that has been anywhere close to Eberle who was selected 22nd overall.
As for Darnell Nurse and Leon Draisaitl:
Neither have played enough games (Draisaitl has 37gp and Nurse has 2) to seriously judge how well they have performed in the NHL. Since returning to the Kelowna Rockets of the WHL, Draisaitl has had 53pts in 32 games played in the regular season, as well as 15pts in 9 games played in the WHL Playoffs. Darnell Nurse, a defenceman from the Sault St. Marie Geryhounds of the OHL has put up 33pts in 36 games played in the regular season and had a plus-minus of +18
TLDR; The Oilers have not ruined the careers of their draft picks like so many people have been saying they have. Instead, their consistent failure is due to faulty management that is unable to assemble a team with good defence, goaltending, depth and a decent coach.