GOOD TIMING

Right on cue, Jesse Puljujarvi delivered a very strong performance last night on the second (and third) line. We discussed his AHL boxcars (11gp, 2-5-7 going in) before the game as a possible concern, and then framed those numbers around his AHL centers (Josh Currie, Jere Sallinen) being less helpful than the newly available Anton Lander. After going 1-1-2 against the San Diego Gulls last night, the Finn is now 12gp, 3-6-9 (NHLE: 82gp, 11-22-33) and closer to our established line in the sand (point per game). It is important to see progress for JP, if not for a recall to Edmonton later this year, then for opening night 2017-18.

Puljujarvi played just the power play with Lander, but they combined on the second goal (sweet pass from JP to Lander, with Taylor Beck getting an assist as well). I think we eventually see the rookie on a line with Lander, Puljujarvi is easily one of the best Condors, but needs skill players alongside.

A potentially important development took place during the first 50 games of the 2016-17 season. The Edmonton Oilers, who have been searching for a responsible veteran who could post some offense for the bottom 6F, saw Mark Letestu come into his own in the role on the fourth line. This could be big, and may mean youngsters like Jujhar Khaira, Anton Slepyshev and others will be eased into the everyday roster alongside the veteran. If Letestu can do that, and maintain his impressive offense, the Oilers will have found their Pisani.

MARK LETESTU

Letestu has played mostly with Zack Kassian and Matt Hendricks, and his possession number is around 49 percent with the veterans (and Anton Lander). He boasts a 5×5/60 of over 1.50 and a 5×4/60 of 3.37 (including four goals). He has 3 EV, 5 PP and 2 PK goals this season. He could use a little help, and I would like to see him in the mentor role more often—that Pisani role is important. He is nine points ahead of my projection at this time. Impressive.

ZACK KASSIAN

Kassian has been highly productive at a position that needed some inside solutions. After trading away Nail Yakupov and (eventually) sending down Jesse Puljujarvi, the Oilers had only Jordan Eberle, center-turned-wing Leon Draisaitl and Kassian at the NHL level. Kassian still plays 12 minutes a night, but they have been mostly effective. I projected him to be at 12 points, so his number is in the range of expectation.

TYLER PITLICK

This blog lit over 1,000 candles for this player to establish himself, and he made it! He delivered quality performances, and shot the puck a lot—something Edmonton needs from the RW very badly. Pitlick led the team this year (or leads) with 10.69 shots per 60 minutes at 5×5. A damn shame he was injured, and that allows him a window for free agency. Hope they sign him.

DRAKE CAGGIULA

Caggiula has lasted longer than I thought he would, and that may because of guarantees in his contract. I like his speed, and he has a good shot. He is a small player, but not shy—in fact, for me he is very aggressive in the offensive end of the ice. None of his fancy stats (5×5/60) or adding numbers (faceoffs) shines, but he has speed, is a rugged player, and has skill. I would like to see him for 20 games on the wing, with a veteran center. Might get my wish straight ahead. The Oilers have nursed him through the year, I wonder if he would have benefited by ripping up the AHL.

ANTON SLEPYSHEV

Another good story among rookie forwards is the Russian Anton Slepyshev. We may look back on this period as the time when a quality winger emerged as a real answer. As soon as Todd McLellan arrived, he seemed to take a liking to Slepyshev’s skill set, and there has been steady progression since. Around three shot attempts per game, 8.4/60 shots per 60 at 5×5—both good indicators. Miles to go, but along with Jujhar Khaira and Pitlick, there were some nice arrows from farmhands upon arrival this season. You know who saw this fellow from miles away? Corey Pronman.

ANTON LANDER

The RE missed his games by a lot (unless he plays the balance of the season) and I think Jujhar Khaira is going to grab that 4L job next season. Still, he can fill multiple roles and perhaps the Oilers keep him as 14F next year. If I were Vegas, this is a guy who might tweak my interest. Phone PC, agree to draft Lander in exchange for a sweetener. Lander can win faceoffs, kill penalties, step up as needed, and clear waivers too. All of that has value.

MATT HENDRICKS

The first rugged role player I followed through the end was a man named Dallas Smith. He was a tough defender for the Boston Bruins, spent several years with Bobby Orr as his partner. In 1970-71, when Orr finished a +124, Smith went +94 as his partner. You might think we talked about it all summer, but plus minus did not arrive as a public statistic until about 1975 (this is from memory). Smith was as reliable as the black lab of my youth, the dog and Smith fading away together as I grew up and spent less time at home. I never forgot the dog, or Smith, and think of both from time to time.

JUJHAR KHAIRA

He looks NHL-ready, and it is a shame we didn’t get to see him. His future is not promised to us, as Khaira (unlike Slepyshev) is eligible for the expansion draft. I think there is a chance we see a LW depth chart of Milan Lucic, Patrick Maroon, Benoit Pouliot and Jujhar Khaira. Expensive as hell, but that won’t be Khaira’s fault. I am anxious to see him score enough to stay in the NHL as a depth player.

TAYLOR BECK

The fact Beck hasn’t played much should not disguise the fact that this was a reasonable bet. If Pitlick and Slepyshev had been unable to deliver, Beck would have played far more this season. And there are still 27 games to come. He hasn’t gotten much of a look in his games.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

  • RC Mark Letestu—He has another year on his contract and may be under consideration for protection from expansion. Ideally, you would have him as 4C and second PP, but he can help in all three disciplines. The Oilers need a foundation veteran for these young forwards who will be coming up, from Jujhar Khaira next season through Tyler Benson in 2018 or 2019 fall, and beyond. At 32, he may be helpful over the next couple of years.
  • R Zack Kassian—He is RFA at the end of this season, I hope the Oilers sign him. He is a solid option as 4R and he can scoot and play multiple roles. A very nice find, he can move up the depth chart from time to time.
  • R Tyler Pitlick—Ironically, his injury may give him a window to jump through on the way to UFA status this summer. Despite the injury history, I hope he signs with the Oilers. If I am LV, this is a guy I go after in free agency—and that might be too tempting for the player to pass on.
  • C Drake Caggiula—Chiarelli’s Bruins did employ smaller players, but they had to play a balls out style. Caggiula is such a forward, and the only real question is offense. This shouldn’t be viewed as a major negative, most prospects suffer from the same question mark upon entry into the NHL. He will get another full season to show his abilities.
  • R Anton Slepyshev—Our minds often lose the battle with our hearts over these young players. If you scan this group and pick one, maybe two men who will succeed in a real way, that is probably right in terms of how this will go. Slepyshev has done more to improve his chances than anyone this year. Seriously.
  • C Anton Lander—It’s the speed, stupid. Lander has good hands in the AHL, given enough time on a skill line he would no doubt cash enough to post 40-point seasons on a top line. That is an expansion team, he is Hartland Monahan. Nothing wrong with that, but on a contender he is 14F. A good one, mind you, and I hope he stays.
  • L Matt Hendricks—No one should ever ask if he had more to give.
  • L Jujhar Khaira—For me, the injury has merely delayed the inevitable: He is an NHL player. The expansion draft is a worry, I would protect him even if it meant exposing a veteran forward. I like him a lot.
  • R Taylor Beck—If he is open to the idea, signing Beck for the same role next season makes a lot of sense. RW is likely to have some major turnover, with Jesse Puljujarvi and Zack Kassian perhaps the only sure things. He might emerge from a mix that could include Anton Slepyshev, Tyler Pitlick, Iiro Pakarinen and others.

PARSING WORDS, VOLUME 4000

  • Elliotte Friedman: When it comes to Edmonton and the trade deadline, remember the club could have some serious bonus overages affect the salary cap for next season. GM Peter Chiarelli will be conservative if he can’t move out a big salary. Source

This is the confirmation I think we needed in terms of Jordan Eberle. He has been on the TSN trade watch list for a couple of weeks, and for me it was a summer move. However, not being able to move Benoit Pouliot (or Mark Fayne) probably means Eberle is next up on the way to cost certainty. Where might he go? Well, we should look for a team who needs a scoring RW, and a team with a center-right wing who can shoot the puck, is under control, and can play with Connor McDavid. Any ideas?

PARSING WORDS, VOLUME 4001

  • Elliotte Friedman: Finally on the Avalanche, there’s a certain logic that they are one of the teams taking a run at Edmonton’s Brandon Davidson. Davidson, a great story who’s carved out a nice niche, is not someone the Oilers want to trade, but someone they may be forced to move. First, it will be tough to protect him in the expansion draft. Second, he’s going to be due a raise, but so are Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl. The Oilers also want to keep Kris Russell. You can’t keep everyone, so the Oilers are being proactive. Davidson will help someone. Source

Joe Colborne has been mentioned on this blog previously, Jarome Iginla is certainly in play. I don’t consider either player to represent equal value with Davidson and his contract, but as I said yesterday, seems to me the return on a Brandon Davidson trade will be disappointing. Why? As good as he is, Davidson is not yet an established NHL player, and injury concerns impact his value. You may say well then don’t trade him, but the fact we are talking about it suggests that some teams are calling. Doesn’t mean Edmonton is interested, but the smoke-fire story has a long and successful history.

I would trade Brandon Davidson, but not for Jarome Iginla. Perhaps the Oilers can package Davidson and something else to the Avalanche and get a more suitable return.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

A fun Wednesday show, beginning at 10 on TSN1260. Scheduled to appear:

  • Bruce McCurdy, Cult of Hockey. The off week, Brandon Davidson, what do the Oilers need to add, expansion draft.
  • Ryan Holt, Condors PBP. Excellent play-by-play man called an interesting game last night. We will check in on Jesse Puljujarvi and the rest of the farmhands.
  • Derek Taylor, TSN. CFL free agency, rumblings out of Toronto, CFL schedule looks good for all but Ottawa.

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter.

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122 Responses to "GOOD TIMING"

  1. npanciroli says:

    I was thinking about Friedman’s piece on Davidson a lot yesterday.

    Maybe they are looking at Soderberg. Wasn’t this a Chiarelli signing in Boston? Kind of like a Maroon grab with retention.

    Awful year though and I know nothing of him.

  2. Pouzar says:

    I wonder if Khaira is back after the break. We sure could use his speed on the 4th line.
    Trade for a vet 3C and we are cookin.

    The Pitlick injury still kills me.

  3. npanciroli says:

    Pouzar,

    I really wanted to see him with McDavid also.

  4. jake70 says:

    “Arizona State University said in an email Friday evening that the university “has no intention of proceeding to sign a development agreement or an option to lease or any other agreement with the Coyotes.”

    Just move this team to Vegas already and call it a day. Then no one has to worry about expansion drafts screwing up their rosters.

  5. Younger Oil says:

    When was the last time an Oilers prospect playing in the AHL came up and hit their NHLE? I’m guessing it doesn’t happen very often due to the fact that a player getting Top 6 time in the AHL usually gets Bottom 6 time in the NHL, but even so, most of the time the NHLE is noticeably different from the actual results.

    Also, neat little thing from last night:

    Remember when we traded Paajarvi and a 2nd which turned into Barbashev for Perron? And then we traded Perron into part of the package for Reinhart?

    All three of Paajarvi, Barbashev, and Perron played in the St. Louis lineup last night, and all three got points.

    You don’t usually see trades turning out like that five years down the line.

  6. DBO says:

    Maroon-McDavid-Vanek
    Lucic-Draisatl-Puljujarvi
    Pouliot-Nuge-Eberle
    Caggulia-Letestu-Kassian
    Hendricks-Lander

    Balance? Unicorns? Playoff team and possible contender? Not sure, but it would be heck of a fun team to watch, and would be built for the playoffs. Tells you how far we have come that the third line was our first 2 years ago.

  7. OF17 says:

    Your comments about Letestu maybe being a Pisani got me thinking. Running Letestu at 3RW next year would be far from the worst thing in the world. Defensive conscience, can take faceoffs, shoots when given a chance, skating for rushes and strength for cycles. Sounds a lot like a Pisani to me. Of course, it probably won’t happen, but if we can find enough centers to spare Letestu at 4C, it could be quite nice. Been a long time since we had a legitimate two-way 3rd line.

    EDIT: Something like Lucic-Berglund-Letestu would work with Khaira/Lander at 4C. That line would be one of McLellan’s security blankets in no time.

  8. Ducey says:

    npanciroli,

    Soderberg has a NTC (he likely would waive) and makes $4.75 M/ yr for the next three years. Doesn’t look like a fit.

    Maybe Rocco Grimaldi? He is a small (5’7″) RH C taken in the 2nd round in 2011. He is in the final year of his ELC. He has put up decent numbers in the AHL (111pts in 162 gms) the last three years including 46 19 17 36 this year. He has 28 NHL games.

    No idea on his value or whether he is “hard on the puck” – a Chia requirement.

    Or maybe JT Compher? Another smaller RH C (5’10”). A second rounder he put up big numbers in his last year of NCAA (63 pts in 38 games) and has done nicely in his first AHL season (33 11 15 26).

  9. OF17 says:

    Ducey,

    How about Pouliot + Davidson for Soderberg?

  10. Ducey says:

    jake70:
    “Arizona State University said in an email Friday evening that the university “has no intention of proceeding to sign a development agreement or an option to lease or any other agreement with the Coyotes.”

    Just move this team to Vegas already and call it a day.Then no one has to worry about expansion drafts screwing up their rosters.

    They do that and no one has to worry about $500 million flowing into their pockets, just litigation after the Vegas owner sues the NHL.

    That horse is already out of the barn.

  11. Pouzar says:

    npanciroli:
    Pouzar,

    I really wanted to see him with McDavid also.

    They looked good in an extremely SSS.

  12. Ducey says:

    OF17:
    Ducey,

    How about Pouliot + Davidson for Soderberg?

    I don’t think I would do that. Soderberg has 11 pts this year (Pouliot has 10). He is 31 and had another three expensive years on his contract. On the other hand he is a C and did have nice boxcars last year.

    I think Pouliot is faster, a year younger and has a year less on his cheaper contract. I might trade Pouliot straight up for Soderberg. Adding Davidson is too much.

  13. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Re: Freidman

    Since Bruce has berated everyone who mentions trading Davidson are you two going to call him up this morning so Bruce can berate Elliott?

  14. Dicky94 says:

    Eberle + Davidson + Pitlick + Caleb Jones + 2018 1st for Duschene and Iggy.

  15. Generational Poster says:

    Pouzar,

    Could have swore I read somewhere (Twitter?) that Benning is expected back Saturday vs. Chicago and Khaira a game or two after. Can’t seem to find it now, though.

  16. dustrock says:

    What would be typically Oilers is trading Davidson for Iginla (ugh, I refuse to consider Colborne), Bring a Former Great Back to His Roots V. 6.2.

    Then Iginla flatters to deceive for the rest of the season, scores 1 goal in the playoffs in a 5 game loss, and retires.

  17. dustrock says:

    The other funny thing is that there’s no indication of the Leftorium.

    It’s like Nurse doesn’t exist, and the Oilers have Klefbom and Sekera, and need to decide between Davidson and Russell.

    To me, the only way re-signing Russell makes sense is if one of Klefbom or Nurse will be traded.

    Otherwise, we’re going to pay a guy to play his wrong side for another 3 years? Barf.

  18. Pouzar says:

    Generational Poster:
    Pouzar,

    Could have swore I read somewhere (Twitter?) that Benning is expected back Saturday vs. Chicago and Khaira a game or two after.Can’t seem to find it now, though.

    thx!

  19. Scungilli says:

    dustrock: Then Iginla flatters to deceive for the rest of the season, scores 1 goal in the playoffs in a 5 game loss, and retires.

    Or they sign him 2×5 because he’s good in the room.

  20. npanciroli says:

    dustrock,

    Yeah Russell signing is still a nightmare to me.

  21. slopitch says:

    So we need to be cap conscious but Davidson is one of the best value contracts on the team? I dont buy it.

    I see 2 options:
    1) package Davidson + Eberle. Perhaps to Dallas?
    2) Move Davidson to for an upgrade somewhere (work on leftorium) then move Eberle for an underwhelming return.

    I do agree that Chai needs to clear some salary though. Isnt the solution to just move Russell/Pouliot or dump Fayne?

  22. dustrock says:

    npanciroli:
    dustrock,

    Yeah Russell signing is still a nightmare to me.

    And I think this is where a lot of the misunderstanding/Russell Civil War on Twitter comes from: I think guys like Matt Henderson have basically said “look, good bet on a one year deal, but please absolutely do not re-sign him and use cap space for a d-man we don’t need”.

    So MH feels like he needs to keep beating the drum of Do Not Resign until we’re past July 1st.

  23. John Chambers says:

    I think PC will make a major move at the deadline, and true to form I think the trade addresses immediate needs while offering some breathing room vis a vis cap space.

    My thought: Eberle, Davidson, and a 1st for Tyson Barrie. From there acquire a rental RW like Vrbata or Vanek.

    The Oilers would still have to protect 4-4-1, but since Eberle and Davy would be gone they could instead protect Maroon (or Reinhart).

  24. npanciroli says:

    dustrock,

    I think the thing that scares me the most is the cap hit Russell comes with. after July first long term under 2 mil sure but hes gonna probably get atleast over 3. Davidson, Nurse, Benning all already better and cheaper IMO.

  25. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    WC standings this morning via games. 8th place set to 0. Ties broken with pts% (games in hand)

    MIN 19
    SJS 12
    CHI 11
    EDM 7
    ANA 7
    NSH 3
    STL 1
    LAK 0
    ——————–
    CGY -1
    VAN -5
    WPG -6
    DAL -6
    ARI -15
    COL -22

    I thought LAK was going to walk up the standings, but they still can’t score and Budaj is slowing down from a quality first half of the season.

    Don’t count out CGY either obv, but I think you can stick a fork in VAN and everyone below them.

    WPG and DAL both need to win 6 more games than LAK over the next ~32 games or so.

    Next to impossible.

    Also,

    EC is fun to watch.

    Top 4 teams are all from the Metropolitan. MTL and OTT are starting to slide and while MTL *should* make it, there is a scenario where they slide right out.

    They’ve only won 8 of their last 32 games in reg.

    FLA with Huberdeau and Barkov back are my pick to jump up and take a spot, either in the last wildcard or top 3 in the Atlantic.

    WSH 21
    CBJ 16
    PIT 15
    NYR 11 – first wildcard
    MTL 8
    OTT 4
    TOR 2
    NYI 0
    ————————–
    PHI 0
    FLA -1
    CAR -2
    BOS -2
    NYD -3
    BUF -4
    DET -4
    TBY -5

  26. dustrock says:

    Also, Boo, Hiss, to Bye Week.

  27. RPG says:

    James Mirtle ‏@mirtle 2h2 hours ago

    Really excited for our new contributors: @mike_p_johnson, @AndrewStoeten and @dellowhockey will all be writing columns for @TheAthleticTO.

    It would appear that Tyler Dellow is about to resurface.

  28. RPG says:

    James Mirtle ‏@mirtle 2h2 hours ago

    Yes Tyler is back writing for the first time in years and back on Twitter. Follow him here: @dellowhockey.

    I’m sure Spec is happy about this.

  29. slopitch says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    Tampa is gonna sneak there way in there and win the lottery. Unreal. They were supposed to be a cup favourite.

    Also, NYI back in the mix. They could surprise.

  30. Woogie63 says:

    CapFriendly has an excellent expansion simulator.

    Wild, CBJ, Ducks, Peds have lots of work to do or they will lose a very good NHL player.

    It looks like NYR will lose Michael Grabner, would he look great on McDavid’s wing?

    Very fast, big boxcars, excellent contract, still withterm

    Lots of moves to be made, but based on the simulator Davidson would not be in the top 6 dman for Las Vegas

  31. Ducey says:

    Curtis Lazar has been healthy scratched quite often recently.

    Davidson for Lazar may make some sense. Right handed, quick, gritty, can play C or RW. Just turned 22. Kind of a 3rd line type right now with some upside. And of course he played with the Oil Kings.

  32. dustrock says:

    Ducey:
    Curtis Lazar has been healthy scratched quite often recently.

    Davidson for Lazar may make some sense. Right handed, quick, gritty, can play C or RW. Just turned 22. Kind of a 3rd line type right now with some upside. And of course he played with the Oil Kings.

    I’m not sure Lazar has any upside whatsoever.

    Regarding Tampa Bay, reminds me of years ago in the NBA, the Spurs lost David Robinson to season-ending injury and were just horrible.

    They drafted Tim Duncan. And dominated the league for years.

    Thankfully Patrick doesn’t seem to be a McDavid/Matthews type.

  33. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    jake70:
    “Arizona State University said in an email Friday evening that the university “has no intention of proceeding to sign a development agreement or an option to lease or any other agreement with the Coyotes.”

    Just move this team to Vegas already and call it a day.Then no one has to worry about expansion drafts screwing up their rosters.

    Keeping Brandon Davidson isn’t worth a $16.6 million dollars to Mr. Katz.

    I’m not sure Brandon Davidson is worth $16,6 million to his own parents to be honest.

  34. Jeremy says:

    I just heard that the Oil have a deal in place with Ryan Mantha of the Niagara Ice Dogs… Will be waiting until some time in the summer to sign it. Not sure how reliable the source is but was told the info came from a relative of Mantha’s.

  35. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    dustrock,

    I like the player, but how do you figure he’s a 3rd line type with upside?

    He’s a 0.2 ppg player at the NHL level.

    He’s a 0.3 ppg player at the AHL level.

    He’s not that young.

    I mean I’d trade for him, but the cost couldn’t be that high. Let’s be honest about where he is in his career right now though. He is basically Khaira from one year ago, without the size or nastiness.

    Good kid though, I’m certainly rooting for him.

  36. leadfarmer says:

    I still don’t understand how they got someone to pony up half a billion dollars for a team when with just a little patience they could have bought a team for 200 mil and move them there.

  37. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Woogie63:
    CapFriendly has an excellent expansion simulator.

    Wild, CBJ, Ducks, Peds have lots of work to do or they will lose a very good NHL player.

    It looks like NYR will lose Michael Grabner, would he look great on McDavid’s wing?

    Very fast, big boxcars, excellent contract, still withterm

    Lots of moves to be made, but based on the simulator Davidson would not be in the top 6 dman for Las Vegas

    Until all the wheeling and dealing is done by the teams before the expansion draft I wouldn’t read too much into anything.

    Today rosters will not be the rosters on expansion day so until then its like a cow’s opinion.

    It doesn’t matter.

    Its moo.

  38. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Ducey:
    Curtis Lazar has been healthy scratched quite often recently.

    Davidson for Lazar may make some sense. Right handed, quick, gritty, can play C or RW. Just turned 22. Kind of a 3rd line type right now with some upside. And of course he played with the Oil Kings.

    *Lazar looks at Anton Lander’s offensive production in the NHL and AHL wistfully*

  39. OF17 says:

    Ducey: I don’t think I would do that. Soderberg has 11 pts this year (Pouliot has 10). He is 31 and had another three expensive years on his contract. On the other hand he is a C and did have nice boxcars last year.

    I think Pouliot is faster, a year younger and has a year less on his cheaper contract. I might trade Pouliot straight up for Soderberg. Adding Davidson is too much.

    Personally, I would. Soderberg and Pouliot have had similarly disappointing seasons, so in both cases I don’t think it makes sense to put much weight into this year. Based on the three previous to this year, Pouliot is a 13-34-47 per 82 LW, and Soderberg is 11-36-47 per 82. Soderberg has played an average of 18 games per season more than Pouliot, which adds value. He also has positional flexibility between C and W that Pouliot doesn’t. He is a year older and has a contract that goes a year longer. That’s a minus.

    For me, it essentially boils down to fixing our C (and in turn RW) depth in a move that kept salaries essentially even. Means Caggiula is out of the 3C hole this year and that C and RW are set with McDavid-Nuge-Soderberg and Draisaitl-Eberle-Puljujarvi next year. With Lucic and Maroon, LW could be solid with, say, Slepyshev thrown in. We wouldn’t have any real holes at forward, leaving 2RD as the only significant piece missing. NYC or not, that’s an appealing enough position that I bet Shattenkirk at least thinks about it. Regardless though, the move ticks one of the summer’s two big items before the season is even over. That would be huge.

  40. Chachi says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Its moo.

    Great “Friends” reference. People are tying themselves into knots worrying about the various permutations and combinations involved in the expansion draft. All we actually know is Vegas has to take a player from each team and until Toronto loses a player we won’t actually know if Lou figured out a way around that. For better or worse the Oilers do not have any players who are expansion draft eligible and might be exposed who are irreplaceable. The way I look at it the expansion draft will give the Oilers another spot open on the 50 man list to sign a free agent of equivalent or better value than whomever they lose to Vegas.

  41. pocession charge says:

    There was some talk from Stauffer yesterday about signing Kris Russell for four years at $4M/yr. Let me just say: Gag! That is a *massive* overpayment. He signed a one year deal for $3.1M this year and that has set his market value. He doesn’t bring offense so there is absolutely zero reason to pay him any more than that on another one year deal. If he wants term, then he gets even less salary — say in the $2.5M-3M range. At that, I would only do 2 years but no more. There are gong to be lots of options available in the summer. Only a fool would do $4M times 4 years.

  42. Chachi says:

    Woodguy v2.0: *Lazar looks at Anton Lander’s offensive production in the NHL and AHL wistfully*

    Bruce Garrioch’s article on Lazar is hilarious http://www.ottawasun.com/2017/02/07/senators-unlikely-to-trade-curtis-lazar-despite-plenty-of-interest

    Boiled down it basically says Lazar is not goo enough for an everyday spot in the lineup (they are platooning him with Chris Neil!), they won’t send him down to the farm because they think he’ll get picked up on waivers, they won’t trade him unless they get a huge offer, but they may also leave him exposed in the expansion draft. That clears it up.

  43. who says:

    OF17:
    Your comments about Letestu maybe being a Pisani got me thinking. Running Letestu at 3RW next year would be far from the worst thing in the world. Defensive conscience, can take faceoffs, shoots when given a chance, skating for rushes and strength for cycles. Sounds a lot like a Pisani to me. Of course, it probably won’t happen, but if we can find enough centers to spare Letestu at 4C, it could be quite nice. Been a long time since we had a legitimate two-way 3rd line.

    EDIT: Something like Lucic-Berglund-Letestu would work with Khaira/Lander at 4C. That line would be one of McLellan’s security blankets in no time.

    Interested in your description of Letestu. I don’t see him as a fast enough skater to be a rush guy and he isn’t a big body on the cycle either. He is a very smart player but his skill set is rather limited.

  44. pocession charge says:

    No to that Soderberg contract! He’s not going to be getting much better at this point so why on earth would you want to pay a complementary player for that price and term?

  45. pocession charge says:

    Chachi: Bruce Garrioch’s article on Lazar is hilarious http://www.ottawasun.com/2017/02/07/senators-unlikely-to-trade-curtis-lazar-despite-plenty-of-interest

    Boiled down it basically says Lazar is not goo enough for an everyday spot in the lineup (they are platooning him with Chris Neil!), they won’t send him down to the farm because they think he’ll get picked up on waivers, they won’t trade him unless they get a huge offer, but they may also leave him exposed in the expansion draft. That clears it up.

    Translation: the Senators have overvalued Lazar and he isn’t has good as they thought/hoped.

  46. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    leadfarmer:
    I still don’t understand how they got someone to pony up half a billion dollars for a team when with just a little patience they could have bought a team for 200 mil and move them there.

    The race to become the First Major Sports Franchise based in Las Vegas might be worth the extra $250MM or so.

    Gary is cagey.

    All franchises are in great shape up until the point where they move and they move to the city and company that Gary was talking to for years about the franchise being unstable.

    Watch it happen with CAR/QUE

  47. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Chachi: Bruce Garrioch’s article on Lazar is hilarious http://www.ottawasun.com/2017/02/07/senators-unlikely-to-trade-curtis-lazar-despite-plenty-of-interest

    Boiled down it basically says Lazar is not goo enough for an everyday spot in the lineup (they are platooning him with Chris Neil!), they won’t send him down to the farm because they think he’ll get picked up on waivers, they won’t trade him unless they get a huge offer, but they may also leave him exposed in the expansion draft. That clears it up.

    Awesome.

  48. RexLibris says:

    Pacific looks like it will be SJS at the top, EDM v ANA for 2nd/3rd then LAK v CGY fighting for position.

    Quick is expected back in March, I expect, though stopping goals hasn’t been the Kings’ primary issue.

    Meanwhile CGY seems to score well enough but they let in far too many against.

    We’ll see which flaw comes to dominate their respective teams’ future.

  49. Bruce Wayne says:

    The difference between Curtis Lazar and Mark Stone is illuminating.

    While Lazar was the first round pick, Stone was a much better scorer in junior while Lazar was a decent scorer who got a boost for his intangibles.

    Lesson: trust the points, don’t give a boost for intangibles.

    Lazar played one year of junior post draft and then made the NHL team. Stone played two years of junior post draft, and then two years in the AHL where he showed he could score.

    Lesson: leave players in junior and play them in the AHL. Guys who score in the AHL are usually good NHL players.

  50. treevojo says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Until all the wheeling and dealing is done by the teams before the expansion draft I wouldn’t read too much into anything.

    Today rosters will not be the rosters on expansion day so until then its like a cow’s opinion.

    It doesn’t matter.

    Its moo.

    Well that really limits the things people can talk about on a bye week.

    What I don’t get is why trade Davidson at the deadline.

    Nurse still isn’t healthy and depending on severity he may not be back up to expected levels this year.

    If Davidson is a part of the starting six during the playoffs and plays well wouldn’t his value be higher to the same teams that would want to protect him from expansion.

    I would prefer keeping all our d available for the playoffs. Depth could be huge. Find a shot first right winger and call it a day for the deadline.

  51. dustrock says:

    pocession charge:
    There was some talk from Stauffer yesterday about signing Kris Russell for four years at $4M/yr.Let me just say:Gag!That is a *massive* overpayment.He signed a one year deal for $3.1M this year and that has set his market value.He doesn’t bring offense so there is absolutely zero reason to pay him any more than that on another one year deal.If he wants term, then he gets even less salary — say in the $2.5M-3M range.At that, I would only do2 years but no more.There are gong to be lots of options available in the summer.Only a fool would do $4M times 4 years.

    This is just absolute madness and would likely go down as one of the worst contracts in NHL history.

    $4m for 4 years for a player to play at a bottom-pairing level on his wrong side.

    Otherwise, so long Klefbom and/or Nurse.

  52. Truth says:

    What scares me most about the Friedman piece is: “The Oilers also want to keep Kris Russell. You can’t keep everyone, so the Oilers are being proactive.”

    He’s going to want a lot of money and a lot of term. If the Oiler D are listed by LD – RD and in order talent (your opinion may vary):

    Klefbom – Larsson
    Sekera – Gryba
    Nurse – Fayne
    Benning –
    Russel –
    Davidson –
    Reinhart –
    Oesterle –
    Simpson –
    etc.

    Fayne is as good as gone, IMO. Gryba is looking less likely to be a fit with the upcoming pros, although he shoots right. This poses a problem if Russel is given top 4 money and term, no? I’d rather them lose Davidson for nothing and let Russel walk. A big Russel contract means for sure one of Eberle and Nuge are gone, maybe both.

  53. Ducey says:

    Woodguy v2.0: *Lazar looks at Anton Lander’s offensive production in the NHL and AHL wistfully*

    I don’t think wistfully means what you think it means.

    Lazar has 36 pts in 172 NHL games over 2.5 seasons
    Lander has 35 pts in 214 NHL games over 6 seasons.

    Lazar was playing in the NHL in his draft +2 season. Lander was still in Sweden.

    So draft +2
    Lazar 67g 15 pts NHL
    Lander SEL

    Draft +3
    Lazar 20 pts in 76 NHL games
    Lander 6 pts in 56 NHL games + 5 pts in 14 AHL games

    Draft +4
    Lazar 1 pt in 29 NHL games + 4 pts in 13 AHL games
    Lander 1 pt in NHL 11 games + 20 pts in 47 games AHL

    Ottawa has done a textbook job of screwing up Lazar’s development. He does not get offensive minutes and he has not been able to develop in the minors.

    At the same age Lazar has 36 NHL points, Lander (even giving him credit for a whole draft +4 yr) had 7.

    I think he still has upside and certainly more offense than Lander

  54. Truth says:

    I have no idea who the Oilers will find for trading partners, but the way I see it the following must happen if one of Eberle or Nuge is traded:

    If Eberle is traded it must be for a right shot W or C.

    If Nuge is traded (and Eberle has not been traded for a right shot C) then the return for Nuge must be a C that directly replaces his spot in the lineup.

  55. McSorley33 says:

    I still remember all the weird talk in here about Lazar during his draft year …..beyond strange. Even as the Oilers had the # 7 overall selection.

    An Oil King Fetish?

    Those are some mean NHL box cars for Mr. Lazar…

    Speaking of which…I see Mr. Debrincat continues to struggle in the OHL.

    Any word on the surprisingly injured Mr. Benson?

  56. Primetime says:

    Jeremy:
    I just heard that the Oil have a deal in place with Ryan Mantha of the Niagara Ice Dogs… Will be waiting until some time in the summer to sign it.Not sure how reliable the source is but was told the info came from a relative of Mantha’s.

    From Hockeysfuture.com:

    Mantha has taken to the open style played by Niagara under coach Marty Williamson during his two OHL seasons with the Ice Dogs, showing an offensive side to go with his physical play in 2015-16. Since he was drafted out of the USHL while committed to playing college hockey, the Rangers have until June 2018 to decide whether to tender Mantha an entry-level contract. He projects as a defense-first defenseman with some puck moving skills.
    Read more at http://www.hockeysfuture.com/prospects/ryan-mantha/#ZsEQKJYp5VFVVZdU.99

    According to this, the Rangers still own his rights for another year?

  57. Oil2Oilers says:

    I would prefer to keep Davidson and think Russell would fetch a higher return.

    If Davidson must go I think Ryan Strome would be fair compensation.

  58. OF17 says:

    who: Interested in your description of Letestu. I don’t see him as a fast enough skater to be a rush guy and he isn’t a big body on the cycle either. He is a very smart player but his skill set is rather limited.

    Interested in yours too. For me, Letestu is great at nothing but gets solid to good marks in just about everything. He skates well enough to be able to keep up to and contribute to a rush, for instance, despite not being fast enough to be a legitimate threat in his own right. He’s not a bruiser along the boards, but he’s solid to good at it and can contribute to a line that way. While not top-6 calibre, Letestu’s shot (and willingness to use it) makes him a threat to score, and he can play the slot disruptor role as well. That’s where his flexibility comes from, and it’s why we’re in the extremely unusual situation of having our 4C play both PP1 and PK1. Having a 3RW with those attributes that costs less than $2 million and can play C at any time is a pretty interesting idea to me.

  59. pocession charge says:

    treevojo: Well that really limits the things people can talk about on a bye week.

    What I don’t get is why trade Davidson at the deadline.

    Nurse still isn’t healthy and depending on severity he may not be back up to expected levels this year.

    If Davidson is a part of the starting six during the playoffs and plays well wouldn’t his value be higher to the same teams that would want to protect him from expansion.

    I would prefer keeping all our d available for the playoffs. Depth could be huge. Find a shot first right winger and call it a day for the deadline.

    Agreed 100%. No need to trade Davidson at all. In fact, I would consider protecting him in the expansion draft. The goal should be to get real NHL players on value contracts. They have that with BD already, so why move him for draft picks? Doesn’t make a lick of sense.

  60. RexLibris says:

    Chachi: Bruce Garrioch’s article on Lazar is hilarious http://www.ottawasun.com/2017/02/07/senators-unlikely-to-trade-curtis-lazar-despite-plenty-of-interest

    Boiled down it basically says Lazar is not goo enough for an everyday spot in the lineup (they are platooning him with Chris Neil!), they won’t send him down to the farm because they think he’ll get picked up on waivers, they won’t trade him unless they get a huge offer, but they may also leave him exposed in the expansion draft. That clears it up.

    I’m trying to remember if the Oilers overvalued a player to this extent in recent years? Maybe in net (Dubnyk/Deslauriers). I think there was some concern about losing Chorney on waivers Way Back When.

    Since then I think the measure has been a little more appropriately set on whom a team might value.

    That said, I do wonder about the competition Davidson would have for available D in an expansion draft scenario and wonder if Letestu might not have a little more value as a depth C who could be moved in a year’s time as a pending UFA.

  61. bbf_iii says:

    Primetime: From Hockeysfuture.com:

    Mantha has taken to the open style played by Niagara under coach Marty Williamson during his two OHL seasons with the Ice Dogs, showing an offensive side to go with his physical play in 2015-16. Since he was drafted out of the USHL while committed to playing college hockey, the Rangers have until June 2018 to decide whether to tender Mantha an entry-level contract. He projects as a defense-first defenseman with some puck moving skills.
    Read more at http://www.hockeysfuture.com/prospects/ryan-mantha/#ZsEQKJYp5VFVVZdU.99

    According to this, the Rangers still own his rights for another year?

    From all other sources HF looks to be wrong. He re-entered the draft for 2016, but didn’t get picked. He attended Sabres development camp this past summer too. Looks very much to be severed from NYR.

  62. Chachi says:

    RexLibris: I’m trying to remember if the Oilers overvalued a player to this extent in recent years? Maybe in net (Dubnyk/Deslauriers). I think there was some concern about losing Chorney on waivers Way Back When.

    Since then I think the measure has been a little more appropriately set on whom a team might value.

    That said, I do wonder about the competition Davidson would have for available D in an expansion draft scenario and wonder if Letestu might not have a little more value as a depth C who could be moved in a year’s time as a pending UFA.

    No doubt, the Oilers have overvalued players over the years, but I can’t remember anything like this in the last while. Chorney might be the last one and look at how well he is doing now. He’s an occasional player on one hell of a good NHL team. Like LT says, with prospects, wait 11 years.

  63. Woogie63 says:

    treevojo: Well that really limits the things people can talk about on a bye week.

    What I don’t get is why trade Davidson at the deadline.

    Nurse still isn’t healthy and depending on severity he may not be back up to expected levels this year.

    If Davidson is a part of the starting six during the playoffs and plays well wouldn’t his value be higher to the same teams that would want to protect him from expansion.

    I would prefer keeping all our d available for the playoffs. Depth could be huge. Find a shot first right winger and call it a day for the deadline.

    I agree with the point that the rosters will change between now and the expansion draft.

    If the Oilers’s lose Davidson, Reinhart, Kahaira, Pouilot that is a very modest price. Which may create an opportunity to “help” a team that is looking at losing a more substantial piece.

    #goodweekwhenNYIgotboychukleddy

  64. Jeremy says:

    Primetime,

    Thanks for the link. I found it curious that he would no longer be Rangers property as well, unfortunately the person I asked didn’t have any answers. This is his 3rd OHL season after the 2014 draft, since he did not go to school would he not have been a draft re-entry last year?

  65. LMHF#1 says:

    McSorley33:

    Speaking of which…I see Mr. Debrincat continues to struggle in the OHL.

    Any word on the surprisingly injured Mr. Benson?

    Hey! Get your own bit!

    🙂

  66. RexLibris says:

    I’m running a mock expansion draft right now, just to see who’s out there and what sort of D depth I find. Davidson is nice, and I like him as a 3rd pairing guy, but against the combined D corps depth of 29 other teams, I don’t think this necessitates the need to move him for pennies on the dollar.

    I’d much prefer to keep the D depth we have going into the playoffs, face losing Russell to free-agency and Davidson to the expansion draft (though when I look at it, I think Letestu makes a whole lot more sense for an expansion roster).

  67. treevojo says:

    RexLibris:
    I’m running a mock expansion draft right now, just to see who’s out there and what sort of D depth I find. Davidson is nice, and I like him as a 3rd pairing guy, but against the combined D corps depth of 29 other teams, I don’t think this necessitates the need to move him for pennies on the dollar.

    I’d much prefer to keep the D depth we have going into the playoffs, face losing Russell to free-agency and Davidson to the expansion draft (though when I look at it, I think Letestu makes a whole lot more sense for an expansion roster).

    Interesting

    Why does a 32 yr old 4th line center with one year left to ufa make more sense for a expansion roster?

  68. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    RexLibris:
    I’m running a mock expansion draft right now, just to see who’s out there and what sort of D depth I find. Davidson is nice, and I like him as a 3rd pairing guy, but against the combined D corps depth of 29 other teams, I don’t think this necessitates the need to move him for pennies on the dollar.

    I’d much prefer to keep the D depth we have going into the playoffs, face losing Russell to free-agency and Davidson to the expansion draft (though when I look at it, I think Letestu makes a whole lot more sense for an expansion roster).

    This is a big deal.

    I’ve run the mock draft a couple of times. The reality here is that LV is going to have 3 NHL quality goaltenders, and probably 8 second pairing Dmen. That’s a good start for a hockey club.

    THey are going to have a really tough time finding quality forwards. They may have virtually no forwards who can score 20 goals or 50 points.

    There is a very real chance they take one of our forwards, not because they are better than the D we expose, but because they already have a bunch of D and need something up front. Maroon, Kassian, Letestu, Pitlick, Khaira, Pouliot, etc.

    Side note: every time I run the draft I end up at or near the cap floor. If I’m the GM in LV I make Joe Thornton a heck of an offer. Maybe $10 million for 1 year. I’ve got the room and it will help put butts in seats.

  69. Shane says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!,

    Do you think that Vegas will have a hard time selling tickets? I just assume all the casinos will buy the season tickets to comp to their high rollers. Could be a sellout every game

  70. RexLibris says:

    treevojo: Interesting

    Why does a 32 yr old 4th line center with one year left to ufa make more sense for a expansion roster?

    While I grant you I’m conducting a mock draft online, and therefore the results are going to be sloppy, I found the following D men were, all things being equal, available:

    Brodin
    Emelin
    McNabb
    Schenn
    Petrovic
    Edmundson
    Koekkoek
    Pulock
    Manson
    Dumoulin

    I don’t think all those names will necessarily be available, but if 7 of the 10 are, Davidson is still further down the list.

    Also, I think McPhee will add players to give his team a respectable beginning but will acknowledge that having a surplus of available UFAs to sell off at the deadline next year or the year after could also really benefit his organization if he can move them for picks or prospects at the deadline.

    He could stock through the draft or move those picks to teams facing a cap crunch *coughChicagocough* for cap relief.

  71. kinger_OIL says:

    – What is the sequence of events this off season? Is it:

    1) Draft lottery post-playoffs to determine order (does Vegas get a chance to win lottery?)
    2) 2017 Draft near end of June
    3) each team provides list of protected players
    4) Vegas expansion draft after the NHL Draft, but before FA?
    4) Free Agency July 1st (and Vegas gets to participate?)

    – I’m just trying to figure out how much information each team has about their roster, and other rosters before Vegas starts picking players.

  72. ashley says:

    Trading Eberle for cap room, should it happen, would highlight the half of the trade equation we sometimes neglect as fans.

    Sure some players would be nice to have on the team as they are better than the ones we currently have. This was a true statement for almost every single free agent that might sign with the Oilers for the past 7 years. However, what is the cost?

    Fayne and Pouliot were useful players for the Oilers at a time when they had few useful players. Now finding themselves on the fringe where they would have been on any other NHL team, you have to look at those contracts. Signing marginal players that are worth 1 million and available by the dozens to multimillion dollar contracts with term handcuffs the organization for years and now may require shedding a very good, skilled scoring winger to make it all work.

    CHI ran into problem like this. Except all their players were good and they had to trade some very useful pieces to make the dollars work.

    I maintain that GM’s have the greatest ability to damage the roster and limit the team’s ability to compete on July 1 than any other day…and potentially for many years into the future.

    The Fayne Pouliot July 1 was a bad day for this organization. Not because these guys can’t fill a role, but because of the contracts they were given. That’s not the players’ fault. That’s the GM’s fault. Awful management at a time when the Oilers needed much better decision making.

    It also highlights why Chia balked at trading Drai for Subban. Subban is a great NHL defenceman. But for 9 million a year, Chia can do a lot of other things with this roster than what a one dimensional Dman can bring. Drai plus room for a 4 million dollar Dman for example > Subban.

  73. RexLibris says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!,

    I finished at $60M, but this was my first run at it and I put very little stock in the results, more than anything I just wanted to see what names were likely to be floating around.

    If PIT buys out Fleury, McPhee could make a bid on Bishop, Fleury or a host of pending UFA Gs. He could take three backups in the exp draft.

    Yes, the forward group looks pretty iffy. I’ve heard Rick Nash’s name as a likely Vegas pickup. I wonder if OTT throws some draft chum in the water to get them to take Bobby Ryan (I doubt it if they are so far gone in player evaluation that they want a blue chip F prospect for Lazar).

    Suffice to say, I think we may be overstating Davidson’s worth just a bit, but all the same wouldn’t be completely surprised if he was taken.

  74. Primetime says:

    Jeremy,

    See BBF’s post above…looks like you’re right and he re-entered the draft.

    Don’t know much about the player other than he’s big, right handed and put up some points.

    Have you seen him play? Is there something there that the Rangers and every other team in the re-draft miss that we should be excited about (other than he’s big and RHD which is always exciting!)

  75. RexLibris says:

    kinger_OIL:
    – What is the sequence of events this off season?Is it:

    1) Draft lottery post-playoffs to determine order (does Vegas get a chance to win lottery?)
    2) 2017 Draft near end of June
    3) each team provides list of protected players
    4) Vegas expansion draft after the NHL Draft, but before FA?
    4) Free Agency July 1st (and Vegas gets to participate?)

    – I’m just trying to figure out how much information each team has about their roster, and other rosters before Vegas starts picking players.

    I don’t know about the lottery but the expansion draft takes place June 18 to 20, with announced results on the 21st.

    The entry draft runs June 23 and 24.

    Free agency July 1.

    *edit (update) – In the 2017 draft lottery, the expansion Vegas Golden Knights will have the same odds of winning the lottery as the team that finishes with the third fewest points in the 2016–17 NHL season. Vegas will pick no lower than sixth overall in the first-round, and will select third in each subsequent round of this draft. (per wikipedia)

  76. Woogie63 says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!: This is a big deal.

    I’ve run the mock draft a couple of times.The reality here is that LV is going to have 3 NHL quality goaltenders, and probably 8 second pairing Dmen.That’s a good start for a hockey club.

    THey are going to have a really tough time finding quality forwards.They may have virtually no forwards who can score 20 goals or 50 points.

    There is a very real chance they take one of our forwards, not because they are better than the D we expose, but because they already have a bunch of D and need something up front.Maroon, Kassian, Letestu, Pitlick, Khaira, Pouliot, etc.

    Side note:every time I run the draft I end up at or near the cap floor.If I’m the GM in LV I make Joe Thornton a heck of an offer.Maybe $10 million for 1 year.I’ve got the room and it will help put butts in seats.

    The sports climate in Las Vegas is interesting, the money for the football stadium is in jeopardy. Which would leave the Knights and UNLV as the only teams in town.

    Loose survey this weekend of my Uber drivers, Blackjack Dealers, and cocktail waitresses suggest there is a lot of interest in the hockey team. However we had to get the Sportsbook in Treasure Island to put the Montreal/Oilers game on one of the 30 screens.

  77. treevojo says:

    RexLibris,

    Doesn’t Bobby Ryan have a nmc?

  78. commonfan14 says:

    This needs highlighting:

    Smith was as reliable as the black lab of my youth, the dog and Smith fading away together as I grew up and spent less time at home. I never forgot the dog, or Smith, and think of both from time to time.

    Could you get prose like this in a section on a 4th line grinder from any other hockey blog?

    If you have to ask the question…

  79. New Improved Darkness says:

    I just tried to fix a whitespace defect in my post, and got this message:

    Your edited comment was marked as spam. If this is in error, please contact the admin.

    My post shows in the thread (for me, anyway).

    It would be tragic if my post was hell-banned for containing some tainted URL: more insanely devious word play per square inch than any post I can remember for a long time.

    My own mouth was hanging open when the quadruple play served itself up on a platter.

    You just can’t make this stuff up.

  80. Jethro Tull says:

    dustrock: This is just absolute madness and would likely go down as one of the worst contracts in NHL history.

    Not even close…..

  81. kinger_OIL says:

    RexLibris,

    – Great post LT by the way! Got me thinking: so I looked up:

    1) Sometime in playoffs determine draft order: Vegas could actually get the 1st over-all pick: “The expansion team is guaranteed the same odds in the draft lottery as third lowest finishing team”

    2) Teams provide list of protected players by June 17th

    3) Vegas granted a 48 hour window prior to the expansion draft to sign any pending free agent (RFA or UFA, one per team) that was left unprotected. If a team loses a player to Vegas during this signing window they will not have a player selected from their roster during this draft: Russel?

    4) Expansion draft selections announced on June 21

    5) NHL Draft June 23-24

    6) FA July 1st

    – Going back to #3, note that Vegas is able to sign any teams pending RFA/UFA. So there could be some interesting dealings prior to the expansion draft, and they could sign Rusell

    – If the Oil want to sign Russell, they need to do so prior to expansion draft, and will therefore expose Davidson (or trade him prior).

    – Now it makes sense to me

    *LT You are going to be busy from June 17th untill day 2 of Free Agency: can’t wait to be logging in then 100’s of times…

  82. treevojo says:

    Speaking of bad contracts what will LA have to attach to Brown or Gaborik to get Vegas to take one of those players in expansion

  83. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    RexLibris:
    Ca$h-McMoney!,

    I finished at $60M, but this was my first run at it and I put very little stock in the results, more than anything I just wanted to see what names were likely to be floating around.

    If PIT buys out Fleury, McPhee could make a bid on Bishop, Fleury or a host of pending UFA Gs. He could take three backups in the exp draft.

    Yes, the forward group looks pretty iffy. I’ve heard Rick Nash’s name as a likely Vegas pickup. I wonder if OTT throws some draft chum in the water to get them to take Bobby Ryan (I doubt it if they are so far gone in player evaluation that they want a blue chip F prospect for Lazar).

    Suffice to say, I think we may be overstating Davidson’s worth just a bit, but all the same wouldn’t be completely surprised if he was taken.

    Yeah.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if he was taken either. I’ll say he’s the best player (especially factoring in age/contract considerations) that we will expose.

    I’m say rather there are two limiting factors to that:

    1. We favour a statistical bent in this online community that does not align perfectly with the average NHL GM.
    2. There is a reasonable chance that “Team Need” trumps “Best Player” in the expansion draft, just like it often does in the regular draft.

    But yeah, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was taken either.

  84. Ducey says:

    Woogie63: The sports climate in Las Vegas is interesting, the money for the football stadium is in jeopardy.Which would leave the Knights and UNLV as the only teams in town.

    Loose survey this weekend of my Uber drivers, Blackjack Dealers, and cocktail waitresses suggest there is a lot of interest in the hockey team.However we had to get the Sportsbook in Treasure Island to put the Montreal/Oilers game on one of the 30 screens.

    I would expect a good chunk of attendance will come from tourists. They had 42 million of them last year. Almost all are coming to spend big money on entertainment.

  85. RexLibris says:

    treevojo:
    RexLibris,

    Doesn’t Bobby Ryan have a nmc?

    He does. Plus a 10-team NTC.

    Good heavens ANA was wise to get out from under that deal.

    Good case study there about over-investing in wingers.

    https://www.capfriendly.com/players/johnny-gaudreau

  86. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    Shane:
    Ca$h-McMoney!,

    Do you think that Vegas will have a hard time selling tickets? I just assume all the casinos will buy the season tickets to comp to their high rollers. Could be a sellout every game

    Won’t be a sellout every game, but I expect good sales.

    I don’t think it will be a Toronto/Edmonton/Montreal level market, but I also think it will be a whole lot better than the Carolina’s and Florida’s of the league.

    That said I still see this owner as being a guy that wants to make a mark, and make it quickly. Bringing in a HOF caliber guy to be his teams first captain would be an interesting move. Something like the Sundin to Vancouver play.

    Thornton, Marleau, Sharp, Datsyuk (if he’ll come), Iginla are all UFA. Some are better than others but I could see a one year overpayment being a good bet for this franchise.

    *** I recognize those guys aren’t all HOF caliber

  87. John Chambers says:

    RexLibris: While I grant you I’m conducting a mock draft online, and therefore the results are going to be sloppy, I found the following D men were, all things being equal, available:

    Brodin
    Emelin
    McNabb
    Schenn
    Petrovic
    Edmundson
    Koekkoek
    Pulock
    Manson
    Dumoulin

    I don’t think all those names will necessarily be available, but if 7 of the 10 are, Davidson is still further down the list.

    Also, I think McPhee will add players to give his team a respectable beginning but will acknowledge that having a surplus of available UFAs to sell off at the deadline next year or the year after could also really benefit his organization if he can move them for picks or prospects at the deadline.

    He could stock through the draft or move those picks to teams facing a cap crunch *coughChicagocough* for cap relief.

    Hey Rex!

    You’re absolutely correct – George McPhee will have a lot of 4-5 defensemen on RFA contracts to choose from.

    But I don’t think LV is necessarily limited to selecting 7 or 8 of them. In his shoes I would stockpile a surplus of defensemen, and then trade some of those players for scorers or draft picks.

  88. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    Ducey,

    For sure.

    I live in Lethbridge and my in-laws have a condo about 5 minutes from the stadium. I’ll catch an Oilers game there before I ever catch one at Rogers place, that’s for sure. I’m not alone in that sentiment.

    They should get good crowds but I doubt they get great crowds. Lots of tourists, sure, but lots of competition for time and dollars too.

  89. russ99 says:

    This post along with McCurdy’s post yesterday about Davidson makes me ponder next year:

    Do we really want kids doing heavy lifting in a compete for the cup year?

    I’m happy with Davidson, Benning, Nurse and Oesterle as well as Puljujarvi, Pitlick, Slepyshev, Khaira and Caggiula at this point in their respective development curve, but if we want to chase a cup next year, don’t we need more veterans to shore up the bottom lines and pairings, not less?

    And would 7-9 of these younger players on an 18 man roster be too many? Not to mention that none are assured a solid, reasonably healthy season, except probably Benning?

    Especially considering you can find some guys who can really cheap in the last half of free agency?

    And also considering some of the veteran forwards we’re keeping have not been real effective numbers wise or in leading by example?

  90. RexLibris says:

    Ducey: I would expect a good chunk of attendance will come from tourists. They had 42 million of them last year. Almost all are coming to spend big money on entertainment.

    Probably worth noting that there will be times when it will be necessary to differentiate between tickets sold and attendance. They can have every liquor store in town give them away (ARZ gave tickets away when you bought a bottle of Smirnoff one season – I think it was medically justified) and have only 2000 people show up, so long as they have some sort of revenue stream coming back from them.

  91. John Chambers says:

    treevojo:
    Speaking of bad contracts what will LA have to attach to Brown or Gaborik to get Vegas to take one of those players in expansion

    The most attractive assets to LV are 1st round picks. If Lombardi and Gorton offered first round picks they could likely get McPhee to select Brown and Girardi*.

    *NMCs notwithstanding

  92. RexLibris says:

    John Chambers: Hey Rex!

    You’re absolutely correct – George McPhee will have a lot of 4-5 defensemen on RFA contracts to choose from.

    But I don’t think LV is necessarily limited to selecting 7 or 8 of them. In his shoes I would stockpile a surplus of defensemen, and then trade some of those players for scorers or draft picks.

    I picked 10 D the first go around.

  93. adamjames says:

    Jeremy,

    I once played the part of insider too. This all takes place in the days following Chiarelli’s dismissal in Boston. My youngest brother was in his grade 12 math class when his teacher pulled him and his hockey team buddies aside.

    The teacher tells them his nephew works at an airplane hangar somewhere in BC (do not recall exact location) . The private jet they were prepping for the runway was a Katz owned plane.

    The guy working at the hangar notices Katz waiting to board. He strikes up a convseration with King Darryl and asks him where they’re headed. He replied “Boston to pick up our new GM”

    And the rest is history. For the price of a contract, i don’t see a downside. Hope it happens.

  94. Jeremy says:

    Primetime,

    I haven’t seen him play, I live in Niagara so I may have to make it to an Ice Dogs game now that there is a possible Oilers connection. He has put up some points this season (doubled his previous career high already) but as a 20yr old he should be dominating. If I make it to a game I will watch him closely and report back.

  95. John Chambers says:

    RexLibris,

    Ha. So you did.

    If you’re Peter Chiarelli you probably sit back and let Davy or Reinhart get taken, and then offer a 1st + Fayne or Pouliot for Josh Manson or Ryan Pulock at the draft.

    Basically exchange Davy for a young RHD at the cost of a 21 OV pick.

    I foresee a lot of teams making side deals with McPhee to trade for guys he’s picked up in the expansion draft. We are going to see A LOT of player movement in late June.

  96. Jeremy says:

    adamjames,

    At least you have a cool story, I have “I talked to someone, who talked to someone who is a relative of…”

  97. godot10 says:

    dustrock: I’m not sure Lazar has any upside whatsoever.

    Regarding Tampa Bay, reminds me of years ago in the NBA, the Spurs lost David Robinson to season-ending injury and were just horrible.

    They drafted Tim Duncan.And dominated the league for years.

    Thankfully Patrick doesn’t seem to be a McDavid/Matthews type.

    Tampa is probably eyeing Timothy Liljegren if they draft high, who would be the right shot D they are missing.

  98. jonrmcleod says:

    From an article on the Oilers’ website:

    After noticing their relationship off the ice, Fleming decided to form an all-Finnish line in Puljujarvi, Sallinen and Pakarinen. The troupe enjoys skating together and have an arsenal of weapons at their disposal to help them ‘Finnish.’

    Elite pun.

    Also, this:

    “He’s come down here with a good attitude,” said Condors Head Coach Gerry Fleming, who’s been utilizing Puljujarvi as a certified top six player and aims at getting him 18 to 22 minutes of ice time a night. “He’s getting a lot of scoring chances but we’re trying to really get him to focus on his play away from the puck and we’re seeing improvements in that. It’s something that we’ve been focusing on more: stops and starts in his game and he’s really conscious of it.”

    https://www.nhl.com/oilers/news/future-watch-puljujarvi-coming-along/c-286558904

  99. Woogie63 says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!: Won’t be a sellout every game, but I expect good sales.

    I don’t think it will be a Toronto/Edmonton/Montreal level market, but I also think it will be a whole lot better than the Carolina’s and Florida’s of the league.

    That said I still see this owner as being a guy that wants to make a mark, and make it quickly.Bringing in a HOF caliber guy to be his teams first captain would be an interesting move.Something like the Sundin to Vancouver play.

    Thornton, Marleau, Sharp, Datsyuk (if he’ll come), Iginla are all UFA.Some are better than others but I could see a one year overpayment being a good bet for this franchise.

    ***I recognize those guys aren’t all HOF caliber

    Ticket prices for the Golden Nights is going to be interesting and good show runs $120 – $150. Hockey in lots of southern hockey markets price tickets under $50.

    I can’t see the Golden Knights wanting to be the cheapest ticket on that town. If you paid $500M, I think you believe you have a premium brand.

  100. godot10 says:

    What I don’t get is why trade Davidson at the deadline.

    Nurse still isn’t healthy and depending on severity he may not be back up to expected levels this year.

    If Davidson is a part of the starting six during the playoffs and plays well wouldn’t his value be higher to the same teams that would want to protect him from expansion.

    I would prefer keeping all our d available for the playoffs. Depth could be huge. Find a shot first right winger and call it a day for the deadline.

    Davidson has MORE trade value after the expansion draft, and after some playoff experience. Go 4-4-1. Teams losing a D in the expansion draft will be looking for a cheap replacement.

    There is really no scenario, other than some GM losing their mind and making a overpay, that is better than protecting Davidson in the expansion draft. Protecting Davidson also gives leverage in negotiating with Russell.

  101. treevojo says:

    Benoit pouliot
    Mark fayne
    Andrew McDonald
    Dustin brown
    Marion gaborik
    Johan franzen
    Simon derpres
    Jason garrison
    Carl sederberg
    Matt moulson
    Tyler ennis
    Keri lehetonan
    Anti niemmi
    Matt beleskey
    Nick bjugstad

    These are some of the players without nmc’s that i would think have negative value that Vegas could take on in the expansion draft with add ins by the teams that would like to get rid of them.

    Vegas could get quite a few 1st Rd draft picks to take on some of these guys I would think.

  102. vinotintazo says:

    treevojo:
    Benoit pouliot
    Mark fayne
    Andrew McDonald
    Dustin brown
    Marion gaborik
    Johan franzen
    Simon derpres
    Jason garrison
    Carl sederberg
    Matt moulson
    Tyler ennis
    Keri lehetonan
    Anti niemmi
    Matt beleskey
    Nick bjugstad

    These are some of the players without nmc’s that i would think have negative value that Vegas could take on in the expansion draft with add ins by the teams that would like to get rid of them.

    Vegas could get quite a few 1st Rd draft picks to take on some of these guys I would think.

    It will have to be one hell of a package for LV to take contracts that no-one wants (Negative Values). at most teams only take 1 of these. You can only have so many bad contracts.

  103. treevojo says:

    vinotintazo,

    Yes it would

    Dustin brown + 2017 and 2018 1st Rd picks

    Do you pull the trigger if u r McPhee?

    Does Lombardi?

  104. hunter1909 says:

    Woogie63: I can’t see the Golden Knights wanting to be the cheapest ticket on that town. If you paid $500M, I think you believe you have a premium brand.

    Just because you spend a lot of money in business doesn’t necessarily translate into a balanced balance sheet. Quite the opposite in my Ltd experience.

  105. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    slopitch:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    Tampa is gonna sneak there way in there and win the lottery. Unreal. They were supposed to be a cup favourite.

    Also, NYI back in the mix. They could surprise.

    They only have 2 good Dmen and no goalie this year.

    Crazy how fast things change.

  106. judgedrude says:

    Question for LT (or somebody else) regarding NHLe values.

    These are values for players coming out of a league and into the NHL, and LT has shown in the past that there are age variations, particularly for AHL players. For instance, a 1 ppg 20 year old will perform better than a 27 year old.

    That said, how good are the statistics on an 18 year old, such as our good Finn. Most comparable players would stay in Europe, the CHL, or go to college. I’m concerned that the AHL Draft +1 number would not be sufficiently accurate because of a lack of prior players as comparables.

  107. JDï™ says:

    jonrmcleod: Fleming

    Fleming also mentioned on Stauffer’s show how Gusto has shown up with a positive attitude, has worked hard, and has been a good team mate since his demotion.

    So for all the bad things written about him lately, it’s good that he’s accepted his role and is not being a distraction to the team.

  108. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Ducey: I don’t think wistfully means what you think it means.

    Well done

  109. stevezie says:

    The thing about Davidson is he is behind Nurse, Klef, and Sekera on the team. And, apparently, for whatever reason, Russell.

    I think he should be higher. However, if that’s how we’re going to play him, it makes sense to at least explore his value. He could easily be worth more the the Avalanche than he is to us.

  110. Ducey says:

    We have forgotten Chia’s trump (little t not big T) card with LV:

    2016 5th round pick Graham McPhee.

  111. stevezie says:

    Ducey,

    “Don’t take Davidson or I’m signing the boy to Siberia. Don’t fuck with me, George.”

  112. Woogie63 says:

    hunter1909: Just because you spend a lot of money in business doesn’t necessarily translate into a balanced balance sheet. Quite the opposite in my Ltd experience.

    I get that …

    My question is more around the ticket prices … obviously your ROI is quicker on a full house of $175 tickets than a full house of $50 tickets …. what is the pricing that gets you to the full house? In Winnipeg you will get +$175 a ticket but Arizona you can’t get +$50 a ticket.

  113. Klima's_Bucket says:

    LT says:

    “Eberle is next up on the way to cost certainty. Where might he go? Well, we should look for a team who needs a scoring RW, and a team with a center-right wing who can shoot the puck, is under control, and can play with Connor McDavid. Any ideas?”

    Florida could use a scoring RW.
    Jagr isn’t going to play forever…or is he?

    Florida has an underachieving Bjugstad capable of playing C/W and likes to shoot the puck.
    He’s 6’6″.
    Florida also has an abundance of Right shot D and a shortage on the left.

    Perhaps a deal between the two could work.

    Something like:

    Eberle & Davidson
    FOR
    Bjugstad & Pysyk ++

    Helps free up cap space for Edmonton and gets the Cats a scoring winger.
    Helps both teams fix their handedness on D.

  114. oilswell says:

    closer to our established line in the sand (point per game). It is important to see progress for JP, if not for a recall to Edmonton later this

    How established is this line in the sand, really?

    Vic’s original line was point per game as a 20 year old, not as an 18 year old. Quanthockey lists 18yo AHL players and there weren’t a lot of them that played 20 games (which is a common threshold for computing the NHLE numbers).

    Of the few players on that list that have made it so far, Pastrnak was at 1.12, and William Nylander at 0.86 and he trails both.

    This said, yeah the production is worrying to me for a #4.

  115. Ducey says:

    stevezie:
    Ducey,

    “Don’t take Davidson or I’m signing the boy to Siberia. Don’t fuck with me, George.”

    Or, “You know George I am just projecting forward a few years. I really like how your son is developing. Good kid. Good character. You did well. I could see him playing LW with McDavid ,.. unless my defense is weak. Then I likely need a vet up there and Graham might get broken in on the 4th line with Lander. It all depends upon my ability to keep a good core of cost controlled Dmen. Guys like Davidson. You understand what I am saying, George?”

  116. Clay says:

    npanciroli:
    dustrock,

    Yeah Russell signing is still a nightmare to me.

    The truly “because Oilers” transaction will go something like this: Chia trades Davidson for less than full value because he can’t protect him, and because the plan is to sign Russell after the expansion draft. The expansion draft happens, and Russell decides instead to sign with Calgary.

    Book it.

  117. hunter1909 says:

    Woogie63: I get that …

    My question is more around the ticket prices … obviously your ROI is quicker on a full house of $175 tickets than a full house of $50 tickets …. what is the pricing that gets you to the full house?In Winnipeg you will get +$175 a ticket but Arizona you can’t get +$50 a ticket.

    My Vegas business life being even less than my Ltd one…

    Maybe they do packages. “Come to Vegas and see Ice in the desert” lol

  118. hunter1909 says:

    hunter1909: “Come to Vegas and see Ice in the desert”

    “There is more going on in Las Vegas than putting ice in your alcoholic drink”

  119. vinotintazo says:

    Dream scenario:

    we go 4-4-1, las vegas takes a foward.

    We trade Davidson + 2017 1st + (Bear or Jones or Benson) to Winnipeg for Trouba on Draft day.

    One can dream.

  120. OilSafety says:

    Klima’s_Bucket:
    LT says:

    “Eberle is next up on the way to cost certainty. Where might he go? Well, we should look for a team who needs a scoring RW, and a team with a center-right wing who can shoot the puck, is under control, and can play with Connor McDavid. Any ideas?”

    Florida could use a scoring RW.
    Jagr isn’t going to play forever…or is he?

    Florida has an underachieving Bjugstad capable of playing C/W and likes to shoot the puck.
    He’s 6’6″.
    Florida also has an abundance of Right shot D and a shortage on the left.

    Perhaps a deal between the two could work.

    Something like:

    Eberle & Davidson
    FOR
    Bjugstad & Pysyk ++

    Helps free up cap space for Edmonton and gets the Cats a scoring winger.
    Helps both teams fix their handedness on D.

    Bjugstad even shoots right.

  121. commonfan14 says:

    vinotintazo: Dream scenario:
    we go 4-4-1, las vegas takes a foward.
    We trade Davidson + 2017 1st + (Bear or Jones or Benson) to Winnipeg for Trouba on Draft day.
    One can dream.

    Why wait for Draft day?

    Woodguy v2.0: WPG and DAL both need to win 6 more games than LAK over the next ~32 games or so.
    Next to impossible.

  122. vinotintazo says:

    commonfan14: Why wait for Draft day?

    so…no other players have to be protected.

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