Spector’s Hockey Rumors has published a report today that the Oilers are about to invite a “semi-high-profile” (?) UFA forward to be joining Oilers camp – not sure if its a tryout or a signing. Some will like it, some will hate it. It will certainly be water-cooler talk!
As much as I’d like it to be Mike Johnson, and pray to God Almighty that it’s Eric Lindros, I expect it is Anson Carter.
Here are the negatives for Anson Carter:
- He’s a very inconsistent player on a pretty young (and they will be inconsistent) team.
- He isn’t physical despite his size.
- He’s not close to being a two-way player.
- Even if he has a good season, then what? He’s a fading player whose peak was probably around league average.
Here are the positives:
- He has 674 games NHL experience.
- He can find open spaces.
- He can still score given optimum circumstances.
Eric Lindros and Anson Carter are somewhat comparable offensive players based on last season. Lindros’ EV points-per-60 number was 2.00, and his PP number was 2.74/60. These are similar to Carter’s numbers last year (at EVs, he was 1.76, on the PP he was 2.53/60). To give you a comparable, Hemsky’s EV points-per-60 was 2.09 last season, he PP numbers was 5.45. According to Behind the Net, Lindros had the second easiest minutes in terms of opposition amongst Dallas forwards, and Carter played the 5th toughest in Columbus. Both were slightly in the red numbers plus/minus, so I’d say at a guess they were about equal in EV results for the season (Columbus plays in the soft “Detroit and crap” division).
Lindros had a bunch of missed games because of foot and groin problems, and he’s extremely unlikely to play even 60 games. Carter had a sprained shoulder last season, played in 64 games (about 15 more than Lindros). Mike Johnson remains a nice option, but reports from Jim Matheson a few days ago suggested that Edmonton wasn’t interested. Maybe they changed their minds.
I’ve always liked Eric Lindros as a player, and if they signed him now it would be a cool thing. Anson Carter doesn’t appeal to me on any level, but he may well be the guy Spector is talking about, and Mike Johnson would be a nice fit with this team.
Just to post them where we can find them if something does happen, here are the scoring rates for each player at EVs and PP:
Even strength per-60-minutes
- Eric Lindros 2.00
- Anson Carter 1.76
- Mike Johnson 1.54
- Mike Johnson 4.17 (small sample)
- Eric Lindros 2.74
- Anson Carter 2.53
EDIT TO ADD: It’s Anson Carter. I believe this impacts Robert Nilsson quite a bit, not so much Pouliot and Brodziak. Nilsson’s being bumped down to 4line (if Carter makes the team) could have an impact on players like Schremp. I don’t like the move, but if MacT doesn’t believe Nilsson can do the job and this makes him more comfortable then it may be a solid stopgap measure.