Teemu Hartikainen has been knocking on the NHL door for two years now. An NHL team that “talks” about size and grit with skill has a candidate staring them in the face.
The Edmonton Oilers are probably going to spend a lot of money on someone like Jordin Tootoo this summer. We know that the management group in place subscribes to the theory that protection is required and that’s the reason RNH fell into the boards and hurt himself.
I think it’s reasonable to assume the following at this point in time:
- The Oilers and Ryan Smyth will hammer out a deal.
- The Oilers will find a way to wiggle out of the Eager contract via trade.
- The Oilers will be on the lookout for a bottom 6 winger like Tootoo, who will take a job labelled for Paajarvi or Hartikainen.
I have some questions for the group:
- Does Hartikainen bring enough skill, size and battle to be considered for an eventual role as a top 6F, or is he destined to be a role player?
- Is Hartikainen a better option in 12-13 than Tootoo?
- If forced to choose–say a trade is about to happen–would you pick Hartikainen over Paajarvi?
- Would you consider it a mistake if the Oilers signed Ryan Smyth but sent back Hartikainen and Paajarvi?