The Oilers depth chart and cap number is different today than it was yesterday. Here’s what the Oilers roster might look like opening night and the cap number (or close to) for the club.

Roloson (3.667M)
Garon (1.2M)

Souray (5.4M)
Pitkanen (2.4M)
Tarnstrom (2M)
Greene (1.15M)
Grebeshkov (950k)
Smid (915k)

Pouliot (942k)

Left Wing
Penner (4.3M)
Torres (2.25M)
Moreau (2M)
Nilsson (1.013M)

Right Wing
Sanderson (1.5M)
Thoresen (570k)

Jacques (668k)
Stortini (534k)

TOTAL: 23 players
RUNNING TOTAL: $47,509,000
ROOM: -$2,509,000

A few things to talk about:

  1. Although Lowe is over the stated 45M cap, he may not deal anyone just to shed dollars. The Oilers do have a lot of puck moving defenders, so someone may go (Tarnstrom? wouldnt’ that be a kick in the head, I think Boston traded a ufa signing last season) and I guess you could make a case that Pitkanen could be dealt for forward help too.
  2. It should be a terrific debate for the rest of the summer about which of these players will outperform their salary. I’ll pick Garon, Pitkanen, Smid, Stoll, Pouliot, Hemsky, Thoresen.
  3. Also fun will be to predict which players won’t cover their salaries by a significant amount: I’ll guess Souray and Penner.
  4. We should begin to discuss the number of at-bats that will go to rookie forwards. Injuries will have an impact but the way this roster shapes up currently almost all of the Oilers pro prospects will start in the minors. Since the open slots up front appear to be 4line LW and slots 13F and 14F, I’d say this gives an advantage to guys like Brodziak and Stortini who have played pro for awhile over the Cogliano’s and Schremp’s. Nilsson’s hold on that 4line LW job is open to question, maybe someone will surprise there, and of course there are questions regarding Reasoner’s effectiveness and Stoll’s health.
  5. I don’t recall a time when a Lowe/MacT team looked more out of sync than this one. Last summer I wrote something called “Can MacTavish coach Harvey’s Wallbangers?” and although Kevin Lowe has overhauled areas of the roster it still doesn’t look like a MacT team to me.
  6. Kevin Lowe isn’t done up front. Right? I think he’ll send out a defenseman and a forward for a scoring upgrade later in the summer.

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13 Responses to "Ciphering"

  1. SweatyO says:


    - I don’t think they trade Pitkanen. Not a chance after Lowe’s lusted for him for five years and has now finally landed him (giving up Smith in return, just to put the exclamation point on it). He hasn’t played a game with the Oilers yet, and I’ve got him after only that guy who wears 83 on the “untouchable index”.

    - My pick to outperform his deal? Torres. Book it right now: 30 goals from Raffi this year.

    - If this Penner thing “works out” for the Oilers (and I’m sort of hoping it doesn’t, i.e. Anaheim matches), I think the next move is a center plus a young d-man to get a better center who can shoot the puck.

    Thing is, I’m deadset opposed to the idea of tacking Gilbert onto Stoll to get Marleau or Smid onto Horcoff to acquire Jokinen. The incremental cost to “upgrade” from Horcoff isn’t worth what we’d have to give up.

  2. Oilman says:

    I think you’re right regarding the trade – but I think Burke (just because he said he would and he’s a stubborn Irishman) matches the Penner offer

  3. original fan says:

    What’s with the “one-year” Pitkanen contract?

  4. momentai says:

    If Penner stays on the Oilers, Lowe has some decisions to make next offseason. We would still have Stoll/Pitkanen/Grebeshkov/Nilsson/Pouliot/Thoresen needing to sign as RFA’s. And I don’t think there’s a ton of money left in the cupboard.

  5. digger says:

    LT, I think you’re taking that 45M figure WAY too seriously, and too literally.

    I believe that to be a working number, not one that is immoveable.

    There’s been ample examples of them willing to shell out big money for an asset they covet…it’s too bad this loosening of the strings didn’t happen last summer, but c’est la vie. It looks like there’s been a shift in attitude between Feb 27/07 and this summer.

  6. Mr DeBakey says:

    “it still doesn’t look like a MacT team to me”

    Johnson, Asham & Vigier are avialble for about $2.4 million total.

    Agree on Souray not covring his salary – I like that signing less each day.

  7. digger says:

    Agree on Souray not covring his salary – I like that signing less each day.

    How many big ticket UFA signings do cover their salary, though?

    It’s pretty much a guarantee that these types of players will get overpriced contracts…it’s basically a “getting an asset for nothing but $$” tax. ;)

  8. Dennis says:

    Yeah, Digger, it’s almost to the point of HOW much of an overpay on a UFA because everyone has to throw in a few extra bucks PLUS an extra year of term just to lure a guy.

    Personally, I’m hoping that for the Oilers sake on the ice, one of Greene or Grebs matures or has matured to the point where we can lean on them for ES and then we use Souray to driv e the PP. Then if he makes his bones though, and the league somehow signs a big US TV deal, he’ll still look attractive and there’ll be a team out there with enough new space to take him on in a deal.

    As for the Penner Included roster, that’s not a bad top six, ie Penner-Torres-Horc-Stoll-Pisani-Hemsky.

    There isn’t that super talented forward to unlock the rest of 83′s jam but it’s not a bad top six. And it leaves a workable group of 18-78-28 and Sanderson to make up a third line.

    And the only way we bring in this scoring forward is if it’s a dman plus Horc or Stoll out to bring in a talented centre to play with Hemsky. And, even with Katz included, would we have the space?

  9. Lowetide says:

    Dennis: The more I think about Stoll the more I believe the Oilers (and everyone else) will wait 20 games to make sure he’s healthy.

    Anyone have thoughts on Lowe signing Stoll and Pitkanen during the year? What’s the CBA rule about that again?

  10. momentai says:

    I don’t have the CBA on hand or anything but I seem to recall that extensions may only occur after Janurary 1st on any player coming off a 1 year contract. Stoll is coming off a 2 year pact I believe so should be available to be extended at any time this season.

    Am I off?

  11. PunjabiOil says:

    Momentai, you are absolutely correct

  12. RiversQ says:

    LT, I’m pretty sure that $45MM number is out the window.

    Katz has made that kind of stance untenable IMO.

  13. rickibear says:

    Sweatyo: I would give up Roli, Horcoff and Green to a team who needs a veteran Goalie, a semi established Defenceman, and a top two center to replace the #1a center they would send over out of there #1a and #1b group.

    That is the only way i move any of the guys you are talking about.

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