On the Lowdown yesterday, I got a text asking about trading Nail Yakupov (can’t remember the return). I suggested the trade didn’t feel like a win for the Oilers, and a followup text asked ‘who is off limits?’ and I thought that was an interesting question. Here are my magnificent seven:
- No. 1 overall selection in the 2015 draft
- Taylor Hall
- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins
- Jordan Eberle
- Darnell Nurse
- Leon Draisaitl
- Oscar Klefbom
That’s my list. Nail Yakupov isn’t on it and I love that kid’s potential. Anton Lander didn’t make the cut and I love his future. Benoit Pouliot is quality, not on the list. Mark Fayne, Bogdan Yakimov, the young Slepyshev, No. 16 overall, next year’s first-round pick (although if the movie had been ‘The Magnificent Eight’ I would have listed the pick). The Oilers have a lot of nice things they can deal for the right return.
One thing is true: The Oilers cannot trade any of those magnificent seven. They are unique, hard-earned talents and their future is enormous. There are other ways to address need.
NO MORE DEPTH DEFENSEMEN, DAMMIT!
All kinds of little items to discuss this morning, we’re getting to the good stuff now, folks. Let’s take these one at a time and please remember it’s all chatter none of these things is written in stone.
- Matty: Chiarelli may take a run at Bruins UFA defenceman Adam McQuaid July 1, with the going price about $2.5 million a year for a tough No. 5 D-man. Source
I don’t like this idea at all. The Oilers have more No. 5 defensemen than the rest of the Pacific division combined. Spending $2.5M on this player is really a terrible idea. Plus he’s picking up injuries every year now despite being 28. The Oilers can’t keep adding depth defensemen.
"That kid is a player. He will need to learn a bit in the AHL, but he won't need three years to develop." Ferraro on Slepyshev. #Oilers
— Jason Gregor (@JasonGregor) May 28, 2015
Ferraro’s words are encouraging. I think the best part of the signing involves the player’s response to it. He’s willing to play on the farm with Bogdan and develop—that’s a great attitude going in. If he can play the Willy Lindstrom role, well that’s a damn good player. Slepyshev’s contract details are here. I said at the time of his signing (this week) that starting in Bakersfield makes the most sense, but keep in mind the competition at 3L (Matt Fraser is he signs, Iiro Pakarinen, Leon Draisaitl) isn’t the 1985 Oilers in quality.
Ferraro: "1st time you guys see McDavid in the neutral zone, you will be amazed. Other guys slow down with the puck, he seems to speed up."
— Bruce McMcCurdy (@BruceMcCurdy) May 28, 2015
I’m just collecting McDavid quotes now, for the Lowetide 25th anniversary post. Gonna be a lot of tweets on that one too. Both this quote and the one below come from Bruce via Jason Gregor’s show.
Ferraro: Real impressed with Anton Lander. Harder player than I realized, better with the puck. If he's your 3rd guy you're in good shape"
— Bruce McMcCurdy (@BruceMcCurdy) May 28, 2015
Lander’s emergence as an NHL player was a big item from last season. Sometimes you get something in a losing season, we may have forgotten that over these long, lean years. Lander’s presence on the roster gives Edmonton some real flexibility and may mean moving Boyd Gordon at the deadline. Remember, Todd McLellan likes to run (or did) four lines at about the same ZS, which woul make Gordon’s strength (punishing ZS’s) less useful. Lander gives Edmonton that option. Someone should send Todd Nelson a thank you card.
2nd angle of Marc-Olivier Roy goal https://t.co/qjdavkhMkg
— Marina Molnar (@mkmolnar) May 29, 2015
I very much doubt Edmonton signs him, but that was a nice goal he scored for Quebec at the Memorial Cup last night. The fact Edmonton appears unlikely to sign him OR trade him before the deadline suggests his value must really have plummeted over the period after the draft. Here are the EV numbers in 2014-15 for the Quebec Remparts top-scoring forwards:
- Dmytro Timashov 66GP, 14-52-68 1.03EVp-p-g
- Adam Erne 60GP, 27-27-54 .900EVp-p-g
- Kurt Etchegary 65GP, 21-31-52 .800EVp-p-g
- Vladimir Tkachev 46GP, 14-18-32 .696EVp-p-g
- Anthony Duclair 26GP, 9-9-18 .692EVp-p-g
- Marco Roy 59GP, 21-13-34 .576EVp-p-g
- Massimo Carozza 68GP, 15-18-33 .485EVp-p-g
- Guillaume Gauthier 66GP, 13-19-32 .484EVp-p-g
- Jerome Verrier 40GP, 6-10-16 .400EVp-p-g
The thing that bugs me about this non-signing is that the Oilers haven’t been very good at assessing this stuff for ages. The current poster boy for drafting and missing the boat (imo) is Martin Marincin, but Roy and his 21 goals plus two-way play have value. He hasn’t done much to help himself this week at the Memorial Cup and we may never hear from him again. I’d feel a lot better about this if the Oilers had a better track record for assessing and development.
BLUES AND SOBOTKA STUBBORN
It looks like Vladimir Sobotka is going to play in the KHL again next season, and the Blues are saying they’ll wait him out. This is a silly standoff, because Sobotka, 27, is a very useful player. The Blues are a good not great team, and they should be finding a way to get useful value for the player. Story is here, dumb dumb dumb.
HORSE IN THE RACE
We don’t hear much about RNH and that’s fine, but it’s interesting to see what he enjoys and the things he may spend time doing outside of hockey when his long and productive career is over. Horses and hockey have a long tradition, fun article here.
NHL COMBINE INVITE LIST
The list is out today, I have an article up at ON about it. I think this is a very valuable list because it tells us the players outside the top 75 that teams are interested in seeing (Central invites the top 75, then teams request the rest).
LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE
10 this morning, we hit the air on TSN 1260. Friday! Scheduled to appear:
- Steve Lansky, Big Mouth Sports. NHL playoffs and the Blue Jays.
- Antony Bent, FC Edmonton. Eddies caught a big win Sunday, need three more points tonight.
- Alex Thomas, Oilers Rig. Alex has been doing a great job looking at possible Oilers’ additions for the summer, we’ll have a look.
- Paul Almeida, SSE. We’ll preview the Saturday show and talk about the draft/trading picks.
10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. Talk soon!