OILERS SIGN BRANDON DAVIDSON

The Edmonton Oilers are almost through the signing season with the news today that Brandon Davidson has been added to the roster. Davidson is a favorite for all kinds of reasons, not the least of which is that his back story shows a young man who overcame obstacles to arrive at his current position. Davidson’s signing is important because he’s a factor for the 2015-16 at the deep end, but we know 10 (or more) blueliners are likely for the 2015-16 season.

50 MAN LIST

  1. G Cam Talbot (A big add by Chiarelli)
  2. G Ben Scrivens (He’ll need to prove himself in a big way)
  3. G Anders Nilsson (New G, adds to competition, pushes Scrivens)
  4. G Laurent Brossoit (AHL starter could be future No. 1)
  5. G Eetu Laurikainen (A great damn bet, we don’t know much yet)
  6. D Andrej Sekera (A cornerstone addition to a defense that must improve)
  7. D Mark Fayne (A big part of next year’s team, he’ll face tough opposition)
  8. D Oscar Klefbom (The first electric blue through the door in simply ages)
  9. D Justin Schultz (He has a chance to be part of an incredible future)
  10. D Nikita Nikitin (I’m not sure he makes through THIS summer)
  11. D Eric Gryba (Third pairing addition, he can play defense)
  12. D Andrew Ference (Erosion looks nearly complete)
  13. D Brandon Davidson (Waiver eligible, this is going to be close)
  14. D Griffin Reinhart (It’s not a matter of if, only when)
  15. D Darnell Nurse (Say hello to the future)
  16. D Brad Hunt (Last chance Texaco? Or a new beginning?)
  17. D David Musil (Reinhart’s addition may make Musil’s presence moot)
  18. D Jordan Oesterle (He could flourish under McLellan)
  19. D Dillon Simpson (Still working, suspect he gets full entry-level deal)
  20. D Martin Gernat (In the worst spot of any roster player. Prospect orphan)
  21. D Ben Betker (He has a nice combination of skills)
  22. D Joey Laleggia (His skills are somewhat unique, could blossom in Bakersfield)
  23. C Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (Fantastic player, love the Nuge)
  24. C Connor McDavid (Franchise)
  25. C Anton Lander (Very important season in his career)
  26. C Mark Letestu (Strong option at C, he can play other positions)
  27. C Leon Draisaitl (Willing to play the wing, and that could get him to the NHL in the fall)
  28. C Bogdan Yakimov (Can’t wait for McLellan and Chiarelli to see the earth mover)
  29. C Jujhar Khaira (Big man needs to show offense or could be gone)
  30. C Kyle Platzer (New pro has two-way skills)
  31. L Taylor Hall (Impact player could go super nova)
  32. L Benoit Pouliot (Vital to the club’s overall look. Big, strong, good)
  33. L Lauri Korpikoski (Fast winger with experience, two-way skills. Mentor)
  34. L Matt Hendricks (May see minutes on skill line)
  35. L Luke Gazdic (McLellan uses this player type)
  36. L Ryan Hamilton (Chiarelli may prefer his own AHL mentor)
  37. L Anton Slepyshev (Big opportunity, coach has no memory of any of the bubbling under)
  38. L Mitch Moroz (McLellan will be impressed with size/speed combination)
  39. L Kale Kessy (If that speed spike last year was no fluke, he’ll be a factor)
  40. R Jordan Eberle (They need two more like him)
  41. R Nail Yakupov  (He’s still here! Now, where to put him?)
  42. R Teddy Purcell (In this case, LACK of speed kills)
  43. R Rob Klinkhammer (Effective 4R, doesn’t bring enough offense though)
  44. R Tyler Pitlick (Newly qualified, needs to stay healthy)
  45. R Iiro Pakarinen (He should be working out like a bandit, with TC impact his goal)
  46. R Andrew Miller (He’s in a nice spot on this roster: Inexpensive and skilled)
  47. R Greg Chase (Guaranteed to get noticed early and often. Has the potential to surprise)

Davidson’s cap hit last season was $650,000 no word on numbers yet but a bump up to $700,000 (or so) seems likely and reasonable. I like Davidson, but wonder how on earth he’s going to make this team (and he is waiver eligible). If we make a depth chart of Oilers blue entering TC (and this is before the buyout window closes) it looks like this:

  1. Andrej Sekera
  2. Oscar Klefbom
  3. Mark Fayne
  4. Justin Schultz
  5. Niki Nikitin
  6. Eric Gryba
  7. Andrew Ference
  8. Brandon Davidson
  9. Darnell Nurse
  10. Griffin Reinhart

That’s a tough depth chart because the guy listed AFTER Davidson is the top defensive prospect to come through the system in a long, long time. AND he might be NHL ready. If Davidson is going to make the opening night roster, and avoid waivers, he probably needs a buyout, no free-agent addition, and at least one injury in training camp. That’s a lot.

The next question? Would he be claimed on waivers. That doesn’t seem especially likely until you look at some of the defensive depth charts of other teams. Davidson is close to NHL-ready and he’s very inexpensive. It’s going to be interesting.

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40 Responses to "OILERS SIGN BRANDON DAVIDSON"

  1. John Chambers says:

    Next step is just to have NN and his cap hit go on LTIR with a bullet wound, and I’d call this summer a resounding success.

  2. book¡je says:

    LT – (back to discussion about Ference from last thread) – There were some tweets out there about a month ago indicating that “Management felt like Scrivens let them down” (I can’t recall who, but remember seeing it and thinking it was a reputable source). When I read that, I realized that MacT and Lowe were still clearly part of the discussion. However, its worth noting that Scrivens is still here.

    It will be interesting to see this mixed management model where the old boys are still in the room and good friends with the owner and the new guys (President, GM, coach) are actually trying to run the team.

    Ference may be a barometer.

  3. Lowetide says:

    book¡je:
    LT – (back to discussion about Ference from last thread) – There were some tweets out there about a month ago indicating that “Management felt like Scrivens let them down”(I can’t recall who, but remember seeing it and thinking it was a reputable source).When I read that, I realized that MacT and Lowe were still clearly part of the discussion.However, its worth noting that Scrivens is still here.

    It will be interesting to see this mixed management model where the old boys are still in the room and good friends with the owner and the new guys (President, GM, coach) are actually trying to run the team.

    Ference may be a barometer.

    Completely rational take.

  4. Yeti says:

    John Chambers:
    Next step is just to have NN and his cap hit go on LTIR with a bullet wound, and I’d call this summer a resounding success.

    Is that a firm offer, John?

  5. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    book¡je:
    LT – (back to discussion about Ference from last thread) – There were some tweets out there about a month ago indicating that “Management felt like Scrivens let them down”(I can’t recall who, but remember seeing it and thinking it was a reputable source).When I read that, I realized that MacT and Lowe were still clearly part of the discussion.However, its worth noting that Scrivens is still here.

    It will be interesting to see this mixed management model where the old boys are still in the room and good friends with the owner and the new guys (President, GM, coach) are actually trying to run the team.

    Ference may be a barometer.

    Maybe. Or maybe you’re reading into it too much.

    If you consider it from the point of view of the organization as a whole (Owner down to Janitor) then it’s reasonable to say that Scrivens let the organization down.

    He was handed the reigns, he failed to take advantage. Maybe he wasn’t ready, maybe the team in front of him wasn’t good enough, but at the end of the day he was still very, very bad. He was a major contributing factor to the team’s position in the standings and a number of people losing their jobs.

    So I’m not sure how much that can be reflected onto MacT/Lowe. He let Katz down, all of the coaching staff, all of the management, the fan base, you name it. Terrible season for him, no question. Even new management has to recognize that.

  6. Moose says:

    RE: Waivers for Davidson…Every team has their own Brandon Davidson in the system, so I think it’s extremely unlikely he gets taken.Tough situation for him. He looks ready to be a low-event #6 (you don’t want a young #7 not playing), but a big log jam ahead. He might not even be the first call-up if Reinhart and/or Nurse go down.

    I’m sure in his mind he’d love some team to pluck him off waivers, but looks destined for Bakersfield. In reality, he’d need at least one of Ference / Nikitin off the roster and both Nurse + Reinhart in the AHL to be a viable option on the big club.

  7. pts2pndr says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!,

    My guess would be he got a big thumbs up from Dallas Eakinns when it came to wether or not ot acquire him! He saw him good in the Marlie system!

  8. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Moose,

    perfect world he’s a cheap cheap #7 that keeps you from having to call up Reinhart/Nurse when an injury happens

    if they somehow dump Ference and Nikitin, he’s right where he belongs

  9. Moose says:

    LadiesloveSmid,

    I think he’s a better #6 option at this point than Ference or Nikitin. Have one of those vets be the #7. Problem is, what are the chance that both Reinhart AND Nurse start on the farm? Doesn’t sound likely based on the verbals. With #9 guys signed, he needs two of them sent out in some form, in order to stick.

  10. pts2pndr says:

    Davidson equited himself well on his call up. All the extras aside I think he could be a productive 5/6 for a number of years. Regardless of wether it is with the Oil or another NHL team I wish the young man all the best! He has earned it, and also my utmost respect!

  11. Lowetide says:

    Moose:
    RE: Waivers for Davidson…Every team has their own Brandon Davidson in the system, so I think it’s extremely unlikely he gets taken.Tough situation for him. He looks ready to be a low-event #6 (you don’t want a young #7 not playing), but a big log jam ahead. He might not even be the first call-up if Reinhart and/or Nurse go down.

    I’m sure in his mind he’d love some team to pluck him off waivers, but looks destined for Bakersfield. In reality, he’d need at least one of Ference / Nikitin off the roster and both Nurse + Reinhart in the AHL to be a viable option on the big club.

    I think the Oilers will make their decision on things other than his waiver eligibility for sure. One of the things Edmonton does have is options on defense (Musil, Oesterle, Hunt) should Davidson be claimed.

    As for the risk, we only have to look back to last fall when EDM waived Anton Lander—a more significant prospect—and he cleared.

  12. spoiler says:

    book¡je: Ference may be a barometer.

    book¡je(Quote) (Reply)

    I think inferring too much from inactivity on Ference would be irrational.

    So I totally expect it to happen.

  13. Woogie63 says:

    book¡je:
    LT – (back to discussion about Ference from last thread) – There were some tweets out there about a month ago indicating that “Management felt like Scrivens let them down”(I can’t recall who, but remember seeing it and thinking it was a reputable source).When I read that, I realized that MacT and Lowe were still clearly part of the discussion.However, its worth noting that Scrivens is still here.

    It will be interesting to see this mixed management model where the old boys are still in the room and good friends with the owner and the new guys (President, GM, coach) are actually trying to run the team.

    Ference may be a barometer.

    Old Boys are a HUGE part of the decisions.

    When PC calls the boys back in the club to discuss business around the redwood boardroom table.

    PC sits at the head, MacT is at his right hand and sitting next him is Bill Scott and Rick Carriere
    on the left side of the table is Scott and Bob Green.

    There is no one else in the room.

    Old boys 5, New guys 1

    This is why so many of the 2015 decision look and feel so familar.

  14. wheatnoil says:

    I’ve given up trying to predict waivers. Most players go unclaimed and the small handful that do get claimed don’t necessarily seem like better bets than many of those that pass through.

  15. pocession charge says:

    Woogie63:

    Old boys 5, New guys 1

    This is why so many of the 2015 decision look and feel so familar.

    I don’t see that at all. I think the decisions have been quite solid for the most part. And PC does not come across like someone who is unsure about anything. He’s clearly driving the bus now.

  16. Soup Fascist says:

    pocession charge: I don’t see that at all. I think the decisions have been quite solid for the most part. And PC does not come across like someone who is unsure about anything. He’s clearly driving the bus now.

    Agree. Nicholson and Chiarelli have made it pretty clear that the latter will have virtual autonomy on the make up of this club. Woogie63, what Chia decisions do you see that have Lowe and MacT fingerprints on them?

    Bob Green, likely has had some influence but not sure he can be called OBC. I am sure he had a lot of input into Reinhart. In his position he should.

  17. wheatnoil says:

    For those asking. Brandon Davidson 2-way, 585K/85K— Bob Stauffer (@Bob_Stauffer) July 16, 2015

    Huh… looks like he took a pay cut. Not much in the AHL component either. I wonder why he didn’t just sign his Q-O, which would be (and I might be wrong on this) his previous year’s salary + 10%?

  18. Hammers says:

    Potentially keep Davidson , buy out Ference , sign Franson ,keep Nikitin until Xmas while trying to trade with a deep discount if not send to AHL . Keep8 D on roster until Xmas then bring up best forward to that time . If lucky someone bites on Nikitin . Davidson as a number 8 should get some injury time games and Nurse and Reinhart get 20 minutes plus a game in AHL . After Xmas Chia has decisions to make as his rid himself of both Ference and Nikitin and he could if both Nurse and Reinhart are ready bring them up or at least one of them . This gives Sekera and Fayne , Klefbom and Franson , Nurse or Reinhart with Schultz with 1 of the LH D going back down . Decide on Davidson and either he or Gryba get traded at deadline .

  19. Lowetide says:

    Davidson $585/$85K as per Bob Stauffer. Fabulous money.

  20. wheatnoil says:

    Lowetide:
    Davidson $585/$85K as per Bob Stauffer. Fabulous money.

    It’s less than his Q-O at the NHL level. Hockeyscap.com has his previous AHL salary at $62.5K.

    I guess he must have looked at the depth chart, figured he’d spend most of the year in the AHL, and took a haircut on his NHL money in exchange for an extra 33% on his AHL contract.

  21. SwedishPoster says:

    Hard to not love this guy. Very nice contract as well. Hope he comes in and rips it up in TC.

  22. bsmart says:

    Woogie63,

    I think the addition of Reinhart was a Bob Green move. He is a happy man. Not what I would have done given the available players left but I’m willing to wait and see. I was impressed by him in junior in the WHL and on the world junior stage. Will it translate to the NHL, time will tell.

    I love the Cam Talbot deal and thought Charelli wore a good poker face while dealing with Slats.

  23. Lowetide says:

    wheatnoil: It’s less than his Q-O at the NHL level. Hockeyscap.com has his previous AHL salary at $62.5K.

    I guess he must have looked at the depth chart, figured he’d spend most of the year in the AHL, and took a haircut on his NHL money in exchange for an extra 33% on his AHL contract.

    That’s a great point. Love this kid. Probably work back in Taber with corn and sugar cane in the offseason. I hope he makes $20 million in the NHL.

  24. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    That’s cheaper than I expected.

    Maybe he took the low NHL dollars to make the club think hard about sending Nikitin to the minors.

    Sending Nikitin down and bringing Davidson up saves us $400,000 against the cap (relative to playing Nikitin).

    So, based on that, if Davidson outperforms Nikitin at training camp it makes perfect sense to send NN to the minors and keep BD on the roster.

    Love it.

  25. godot10 says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!: Maybe.Or maybe you’re reading into it too much.

    If you consider it from the point of view of the organization as a whole (Owner down to Janitor) then it’s reasonable to say that Scrivens let the organization down.

    He was handed the reigns, he failed to take advantage.Maybe he wasn’t ready, maybe the team in front of him wasn’t good enough, but at the end of the day he was still very, very bad.He was a major contributing factor to the team’s position in the standings and a number of people losing their jobs.

    So I’m not sure how much that can be reflected onto MacT/Lowe.He let Katz down, all of the coaching staff, all of the management, the fan base, you name it.Terrible season for him, no question.Even new management has to recognize that.

    Eakins threw Scrivens under the bus. Fasth was the far better goaltender in training camp in a 1A and 1B situation. Eakins went with the one playing poorly. Scrivens continued to play badly, and could never recover his confidence, and Fasth learned that Eakins played favorites, and he was not one of them.

    Textbook example of how to ruin and alienate your goaltenders by the end of the 1st game of the season.

  26. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    godot10: Eakins threw Scrivens under the bus.Fasth was the far better goaltender in training camp in a 1A and 1B situation.Eakins went with the one playing poorly.Scrivens continued to play badly, and couldnever recover his confidence, and Fasth learned that Eakins played favorites, and he was not one of them.

    Textbook example of how to ruin and alienate your goaltenders by the end of the 1st game of the season.

    Let me start off by saying that I also don’t like Eakins.

    With that said, are you honestly suggesting that an entire season’s worth of poor performance by two highly trained and well paid professionals was the result of an arbitrary decision where one goaltender was awarded a start over another even though he was somewhat outplayed in limited pre-season action.

    That seems like a bit of a leap.

    Again, I don’t like Eakins. Heck, I didn’t like that decision…. but come on.

  27. Barcs says:

    I tend to check Godot’s post for the words “Franson” or “Eakins”.

    If those words are not found, I am almost always treated to a very insightful and fair minded take that I will find myself nodding along in agreement with.

    If those words are found, I tend to skim past.

  28. Younger Oil says:

    Just signed Pitlick too.

    Edmonton Oilers ‏@EdmontonOilers 1m1 minute ago

    The #Oilers have agreed to terms with forward Tyler Pitlick on a one-year contract | READ > http://ow.ly/2bu4FQ

  29. Ducey says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!,

    I am not sure where you get the idea Godot doesn’t like Eakins.
    ————–
    I don’t think Davidson gets claimed on waivers. There will be a 1/2 dozen of similar tweener type D on the wire. For example NYR have the same problem with Dylan McIlrath. As a #10 overall pick with good size and some face punching skills, he likely gets claimed ahead of Davidson.

  30. misfit says:

    Younger Oil:
    Just signed Pitlick too.

    Edmonton Oilers ‏@EdmontonOilers 1m1 minute ago

    The #Oilers have agreed to terms with forward Tyler Pitlick on a one-year contract | READ > http://ow.ly/2bu4FQ

    That’s everyone, no?

  31. Eh Team says:

    LadiesloveSmid: perfect world he’s a cheap cheap #7 that keeps you from having to call up Reinhart/Nurse when an injury happens
    if they somehow dump Ference and Nikitin, he’s right where he belongs

    I can’t see them keeping Nikitin and Ference if it means losing Davidson on waivers. They have spent three years developing Davidson and now he is ready to contribute as a 3rd pairing guy (or sit in the press box as #7). That’s valuable at his cap hit. Nikitin and Ference are just placeholders at this time.
    Nikitin will be on waivers before Davidson.

  32. Lowetide says:

    misfit: That’s everyone, no?

    Yep! No post up.

  33. Soup Fascist says:

    misfit: That’s everyone, no?

    Everyone but Fehr and Franson / Erhoff :^)

  34. v4ance says:

    The Ference and Souray situations are not alike even if some people think that it hurts the perception of the team.

    Souray came out in the press and criticized the management for how his injury was handled. The perception around the league was that his demotion to the AHL was a petty move on the part of the Oilers. The demotion hurt the team by removing a top 3 defenceman that the Oilers had on the roster. It was a “cut off your nose to spite your face” move and it was counterproductive.

    Ference was signed to a too rich contract for too long. Despite his off ice leadership, his on ice contributions haven’t been good enough and have hurt the team. If he leaves via trade, buyout or retirement, it will improve the team because his replacement will be better. This move, if and when it happens, will be perceived around the league as “for the good of the team and it will be strictly business”.

    I think of the New England Patriots and how they’ve been a contending team for so long. A lot is Brady at QB but tons of credit have to be given to Belichek for being ruthless in cutting people who were too old or too expensive or both. Players in the NFL know that the Pats are ruthless in this fashion but they still go and sign there because they know the team is doing everything to win.

    Cutting Ference would be a Belichek move because the team will have a better chance to win.

  35. v4ance says:

    Ducey,

    My belief is that Davidson COULD be claimed on waivers. It’ll all come down to training camp.

    If Davidson has a great camp and hangs around right to the end, other teams will notice. If those other teams look at their own projected cuts and sees that Davidson is better or cheaper than the end guys on their own roster, they’ll pluck him off waivers.

    If Davidson is good but not great, the Oilers can send him down early to the AHL and he’ll make it through waivers. The other teams will still be evaluating their own defencemen and if there’s still doubts on whether Davidson will be an upgrade or not, teams will normally give their own drafted/signed guys the benefit of the doubt.

    I believe Davidson will go down early because Nurse and Reinhart will be the ones who management will keep around to the end of training camp to see if either of the “rookies” makes it.

  36. G Money says:

    v4ance,

    I think this is correct.

    The Souray situation made EVERYONE look bad.

    The team was petty and self-destructive, no question.

    But Souray (terrific retirement letter aside) didn’t look impressive either, especially given that one key to the whole thing was his stupid, unnecessary, and basically self-inflicted injury from when he tried to fight Iginla.

    The Ference situation is just a matter of a player who was given a too-high too-long contract based on reputation instead of play. His presence on ice now hurts the team. If the team has the opportunity to do it, they should buy him out.

    Or they could be utterly classless and use some minor issue to try and void his contract altogether. That should make us *really* popular with players.

  37. G Money says:

    I like Davidson, I’m cheering for him, but realistically … he’s almost certainly a career AHL guy.

  38. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    G Money,

    Me too. But man, it’s hard to say with D.

    I looked up Johnny Boychuck, just to see. He played 5 full AHL seasons before going pro. He didn’t put up impressive totals (60ish points) until the 5th.

    I think the thing with D is to just keep them on the wire as long as possible, if you lose them to waivers so be it.

  39. LMHF#1 says:

    G Money:
    v4ance,

    But Souray (terrific retirement letter aside) didn’t look impressive either, especially given that one key to the whole thing was his stupid, unnecessary, and basically self-inflicted injury from when he tried to fight Iginla.

    Given that Iginla hurt him previously on a BS dirty play, and Souray was busy punching his way through the league prior to the injury, beating the tar out of Iginla was of course going to be part of the return matchup with Calgary.

    He didn’t go intentionally injure himself and get an infection.

  40. SoCaloil says:

    And to that point, what’s the battle of Alberta without a good fight
    Especially in those days
    Blaming a hockey player for fighting is like choppin wood without an axe
    It doesn’t make any sense
    It’s like chubaka. What’s a 2 leg creature doing coming from a four legit planet
    It doesn’t make any sense

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