There are going to be so many things coming at us over the next few weeks the mind boggles. Tomorrow, I’ll publish my final list (with mock draft) and we’ll continue draft talk by examining Peter Chiarelli’s last five drafts.
On the trade and free agency front, Pierre Lebrun got 10 minutes with Oilers general manager Peter Chiarelli and it’s a must-listen (link below). I’m going to quote just one line, but this is a really worthwhile listen.
- Peter Chiarelli: “The way we are going to have to spend our money in the future probably means we’re going to move a player. When that future is I don’t know. Basically we’ve got a year to play with in my mind.” Source
I never believe general managers (except Craig MacTavish, who was too honest) at this time of year. That said, this is the first summer since arrival that PC doesn’t have a giant laundry list of vital chores to do. Sounds like he’ll sign McDavid, Draisaitl and Russell (in that order) and then see how everything else plays out.
Far from sexy, but a fall roster with tweaks that bring balance may be the play here. As we have discussed in the past, Edmonton could manage the current roster (or almost) and get under a $77M cap.
PROJECTED 2017-18 ROSTER
There are things we don’t know for sure, like the actual overage, but I’ve included most of the cap money in there (McDavid, Puljujarvi, Nurse, I left out Caggiula, Slepyshev, Benning, they total $1.325M). The club also gets a (small) break on Sekera’s deal when he goes on LTIR (but they have to replace him on the roster). Can they get this team securely into the playoffs by February, allowing Peter Chiarelli to add pieces at the deadline? That’s probably what we’re talking about here, adding at the deadline, if it becomes a quiet summer. There’s too many bets on this roster as posted, it’s too far from balanced, to be a favorite to win the division. Playoffs? A team with Connor McDavid is going to make a lot of noise.
Here is an overview of some of the important NHL dates leading up to Free Agency: pic.twitter.com/zMgDsrUWt9
— CapFriendly (@CapFriendly) May 30, 2017
The key dates for Oilers fans:
- June 1: Last day to sign Miroslav Svoboda.
- June 15-30: Buyout window, Benoit Pouliot and Mark Fayne candidates.
- June 18: Expansion draft lists are made public
- June 21: Vegas roster is revealed
- June 23-24: NHL draft weekend
- June 25: UFA window opens to talk to other teams
- June 25: Qualifying offers must be submitted (Oilers will say goodbye to several players)
- June 26: RFA’s may speak to other teams
- June 30: Cap revealed
- July 1: Free agency
— Marco Bombino (@marco_bombino) May 31, 2017
Liljegren seems to be falling down the draft board, seems an overreaction after a solid SHL season that included dealing with mono. He played 19 games in the SHL (NHLE: 12.5) and averaging 10 minutes. His scouting reports shone like a diamond but he appears to be fading near draft day. If he falls down in the first round is he worth the risk? I sure think so.
Jim Matheson sent out a tweet a couple of weeks ago about Jordan Eberle and possible destinations. He mentioned Dallas, and then followed up a question with “Cody Eakin” as part of a possible return. It’s an interesting name, not one you would expect to be part of a one-for-one but the interesting thing about Eakin is how many areas he covers for the Oilers. He was 52.3 percent in faceoffs last season, his boxcars (60gp, 3-9-12) crumbled partly due to a shooting percentage that went from 12.1 to 3.7. Previous to this past season he scored 35 or more points in three straight seasons. He is 26, plays in all disciplines (1:42PK, 1:09 PP last season) and has a $3.85 million cap hit for two more seasons (then UFA).
He can play center or wing, up and down the lineup and should recover offensively. No way Edmonton moves Eberle straight up for Eakin (I think) but Edmonton may also want a young player or a pick (Dallas has No. 3, No. 29, No. 39, No. 70 and No. 101, among others) as part of an Eberle trade. Either way, interesting name by Matty. Brett Ritchie is a player we have talked about before, I have him among the targeted forwards for summer.
LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE
A busy morning, TSN1260. Scheduled to appear:
- Darcy McLeod, Because Oilers. What should the Oilers do with that extra money?
- Adam Cook, CTV Edmonton. Eskimos training camp well underway!
- Scott Wheeler, Pension Plan Puppets. NHL combine and the draft.
- Jared Book, Bluebird Banter. The Jays are on fire!
10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. Giddyup!