Oilers Roster 08-09

The other day Kevin Lowe was talking about “50 contracts” and a few of them coming due in the summertime. This got me thinking about the RFA’s who need to be signed (specifically Pitkanen and Stoll) and if summer 2008 is going to play like a country song (“then the money ran out, and the engine blew”) for Lowe or his replacement.

We don’t know the 08-09 cap, and more importantly we don’t know the EIG budget. We do know the seats are sold and the good times are rolling for Cal and the boys, so let’s say the EIG cap for 08-09 is going to be 54M dollars. You can add more if you want, but years of being an Oiler fan have taught me not to be greedy (does anyone remember those Sather chats with the media that basically amounted to “you should be happy we have a team at all!” Glory days, indeed) so I’ll stick with a 54 million cap and assume I’m dreaming.

Here’s the numbers (cap hit) as I know them for 08-09:

  • GOAL: Roloson (3.667), Garon (1.1)
  • DEFENSE: Souray (5.4), Smid (.786)
  • DEFENSE: Staios (2.7), Greene (1.15), Roy (.500)
  • CENTER: Horcoff (3.6), Cogliano (1.133), Gagner (1.625)
  • LEFT WING: Penner (4.25), Torres (2.25), Moreau (2.00)
  • RIGHT WING: Hemsky (4.1), Pisani (2.5), Brodziak (.497)
  • TOTAL PLAYERS: 16/23
  • TOTAL COST: $37,258,000
  • CAP ROOM: $16,742,000 for 7 players

Here is the list of RFA’s with their current cap hit:

  • Pitkanen: 2.4
  • Stoll: 2.2
  • Grebeshkov: .950
  • Pouliot: .942
  • Nilsson: .916
  • Gilbert: .907
  • Jacques: .608 (est)
  • Stortini: .506

Here is the list of UFA’s and their current cap hit:

  • Tarnstrom: 2.00
  • Sanderson: 1.5
  • Reasoner: .950
  • Rourke: .475

Let’s say they get Pitkanen done at 4M/yr and Gilbert done at 2.2M/yr. Is that fair? I’m terrible at this stuff but let’s for the sake of argument say those are the numbers. Now, Stoll. He’s been awful. Let’s say they sign him for 2M/yr because he comes on but not enough for a raise. Anyone else? Stortini, let’s say .750 a year and Grebeshkov at 1.4M. And we’ll fill in with Jacques because we need a LW and we’ll pay him .750 too. I like Pouliot, so let’s sign him at 1M but only if he promises to follow Ethan Moreau’s brother around all summer.

23 MAN ROSTER (obviously projected)

  • GOAL: Roloson (3.667), Garon (1.1)
  • DEFENSE: Souray (5.4), Pitkanen (4.0), Grebeshkov (1.4), Smid (.786)
  • DEFENSE: Staios (2.7), Gilbert (2.2), Greene (1.15), Roy (.500)
  • CENTER: Horcoff (3.6), Stoll (2.0), Cogliano (1.133), Gagner (1.625), Pouliot (1M)
  • LEFT WING: Penner (4.25), Torres (2.25), Moreau (2.00), Jacques (.750)
  • RIGHT WING: Hemsky (4.1), Pisani (2.5), Brodziak (.497), Stortini (.750)
  • TOTAL PLAYERS: 23
  • TOTAL COST: $49,358,00
  • CAP ROOM: $4, 642,000 based on a 54M cap

A few notes:

  • Some of these young rfa’s are going to get Winchester’d unless they pick it up. Candidates include Pouliot, Nilsson and Jacques.
  • Brodziak is going to be a bargain next year.
  • They need to sign Gilbert Gilbert yesterday.
  • Signing Pitkanen instead of oversigning a forward rfa/ufa may not be in the plans.
  • There is going to be a big turnover based on results as they stand today. People underperforming their contracts include Roloson, Souray, Pitkanen, Penner, Moreau, Torres, Pisani, Stoll, Sanderson. Lordy, MacT deserves coach of the year so far!

Thoughts?

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20 Responses to "Oilers Roster 08-09"

  1. dwillms says:

    Just a couple corrections:

    Smid (.915, according to nhlscap.com)
    Nilsson (1.013)
    Jacques (.668)
    Stortini (.534)
    Pouliot (.942)
    Stoll needs a qualifying offer of at least 2.2 mil.

    TOTAL COST: $49,687,000
    CAP ROOM: $4,313,000

    My thoughts:
    1) I’d say Pitkanen gets $3.5, but call Gilbert $2.7 so it evens out.
    2) I think Stoll gets at least $2.5-$3.0

    This is my ‘core’ as of today:

    G: Garon
    D: Souray, Pitkanen, Gilbert, Smid
    F: Horc, Hemsky, Cogs, Gagner, Penner, Brodziak

    Souray/Penner can’t be moved b/c of their contracts. I’d keep Garon around b/c of his friendly contract. I’ve always liked Raffi’s game, but it’s time for him to move on.

  2. godot10 says:

    I’d try getting a 5 year deal for Gilbert which might cost close to $15 million. I think he will have shown enough by the end of the year to bite the bullet and lock up years.
    (Volchenkov signed for 5 years and $12.5 million.)
    (Whitney, 6 years $24 million).

    I like that Pitkanen can fly, but before his injury, he was prone to a pretty bad mistake per game. I need to see more to decide if he is worth locking up.

    Right now Stoll is looking at 2 more years with the minimum increase. I wouldn’t lock him up long term (with the likelihood that Horcoff, Cogliano, and Gagner as being the three guys long term). Stoll will likely be a candidate for team-selected arbitration, and well, I see Stoll and Torres as trade bait.

  3. Mr DeBakey says:

    Wheew!
    $50 million doesn’t buy much these days

    The first thing that jumps out from list is Grebeshkov, He’d have to take a huge step forward to be worth $1.4.

    Stortini @$740? I’d rather have Sanderson.

    The prevailing wisdom hereabouts is that success in the New NHL comes from guys outplaying their contracts.
    From that list, I see the following likelies:
    Garon (1.1)
    Smid (.786)
    Gilbert (2.2)
    Horcoff (3.6)
    Cogliano (1.133)
    Torres (2.25)
    Hemsky (4.1)
    Pisani (2.5)
    Brodziak (.497)

    I’m guessing that’s not enough
    I also guessing that likelies is not a word

  4. Andy Grabia says:

    They need to sign Gilbert Gilbert yesterday.

    I’m already getting cold sweats thinking about this. I was in heaven watching him and Pitkanen together last night. Pure heaven.

  5. Gord says:

    The more I look at “Souray (5.4), Pitkanen (4.0), Grebeshkov (1.4), Smid (.786)” on one side of defense, the more I realize how stupid it was to sign Souray. The other three have so much upside it is scary – we can not give all 4 enough ice time for them to flourish…

    Back to the main list – I agree with the concept but suspect Thoresen will be replacing Nilsson / Jacques.

    And I envision Sanderson / Reasoner / Tarnstrom & Rourke being resigned “if the price is right”.

    Nothing justifies Stoll getting paid more than $1.5; nothing justifies keeping Torres. With our upcoming talent on defense, Roy is definitely gone.

    I suspect Pouliot, Jacques & Stortini will be hoping for an offer yet alone a raise.

    If Grebs continues to improve, I suspect that Mikhnov is coming back to the Oilers – having a translator on the team will ensure Mikhnov makes the transition.

    Ultimately, the key for next year is have a core on defense – a blend of youth & maturity – a blend of defense & offense – a wee bit of toughness with speed to burn.

    If we can get Souray, Pitkanen, Grebeshkov, Smid, Staios & Gilbert locked in for under $17 million – by next year at this time, we will have one of the best cores in the NHL.

  6. Dennis says:

    Are we still talking about Mihknov??

    I just can’t see the Oilers bringing back 78 instead of 19 but then again, there’s a lot of season left too so maybe Pouliot will get it back together. And I’d think Thor would get the spot over JFJ as well.

    But the guys on the cheap filling in are about the only spots we can quibble over. It looks like Lain’s pretty well filled in the rest.

  7. HBomb says:

    Nothing justifies keeping Torres? From what I see, the guy has become a pretty solid two-way guy, and he’s bound to start scoring again at some point, given his shooting percentage is WAY below what he’s posted in the past. Plus, at 2.25 million, I’d say he’s relatively cheap for a guy who’s good for 20-25 goals a year.

    Anyways, my core?

    G: Garon
    D: Pitkanen, Gilbert, Smid, Greene
    F: Hemsky, Gagner, Cogliano, Horcoff, Penner, Torres, Pisani

    Everyone else is available in the right deal if I’m GM. And I’d shop Souray to San Jose towards the deadline and see if they would (and if he would) bite on a deal (pardon the terrible pun). Even if we just got a first rounder for him, that cap space has big-time value.

  8. jon says:

    I believe RFA re-signings have a minimum increase requirement in the CBA. So Stoll at the very least will be making more than 2.2 million.

    Also, I think there is a tendency from year to year to underestimate the effect of salary inflation. As a result, I’d say that if Pitkanen is signed long term, we’d be looking at between 4 and 5 per year. Grebs would likely be around where you’ve put him at 1.5, and in all honesty I see Stoll getting a raise and rounded out to 3.0 per year if he’s staying, despite a lack of great counting numbers. That to me is a big IF though.

    Hopefully we can get Gilbert under 3, but I don’t know if he’ll go for that, considering that there was a moderate degree of difficult in coming to terms for his entry level contract if you’ll recall. My prediction? We get him for 2 years at 2.5 to 2.75 per year and he tests the market at 27.

  9. jon says:

    I meant to say Gilbert long term for under 3 million in the previous post.

  10. PunjabiOil says:

    I think some of you are massively overrating what Gilbert will be getting. He’s a good defenceman, but lets pipe down – how many 1st year RFA defencemen cash in after 1 successful season, posting 22-28 pts?

    He won’t be getting more than 1.5M short term. No more than 2M long term.

    At least that’s what I think

  11. Matt says:

    Indeed… unless Gilbert’s counting numbers spike bigtime, p-o is dead on. If the Oilers smell too eager to lock him up for 4/5/6 years, then maybe his price edges up towards $2M/yr over that term, but you’re most likely looking at a comp of [Greene + inflation].

  12. godot10 says:

    Gilbert is not going to be cheap, because a short contract would be a bad idea from the Oilers point of view.

    Phaneuf, Weber, Suter will all be signing contracts soon. Bouwmeester is also a free agent, I think. Carle has just signed a lucrative contract. With offer sheets now in play, any good young defenseman won’t sign for less than Volchenkov, which is 5 years @ $2.5 million per.

    Gilbert is NOT going to be less than $2.5 million if he has a good season.

    Geez…so many people here are annoyed that the Oilers didn’t give Smyth a retirement contract, and yet they want to nickel and dime Gilbert.

  13. Gord says:

    Responses to points made…

    1) Souray has a no trade contract – so he will not be moving…

    2) Torres is not worth $2.25 million per year – only once in his 7 year career has he got more than 34 points. Phoenix has only one forward making more than $2 million per year – they have 6 forwards with more points than Torres.

    3) Stoll as a RFA can be offered less than his present salary – but he becomes a UFA if that occurs.

    4) If we could get Gilbert on a 5 year contract for $2.5 million a year – Lowe should grab it immediately…

    My guess is that Gilbert will get at least $2 million on a 1 year contract if he goes to arbitration…

  14. PunjabiOil says:

    godot:

    Carle has put up strong offensive numbers in this league, and went 53 pts in 39 games in his final year in the NCAA. That simply gets defencemen paid. That being said, most SJ fans weren’t too happy with the deal.

    I think the concern for RFA offersheets is overblown. In most cases, you’ll only see bigger names out. How many other GMs would throw an offersheet at a guy who has had one year of pro experience?

    Even if it happens – say it’s in the 1st and 3rd compensation range – do you match or take the picks – it’s a tough decision.

    Phaneuf, Weber, Suter will all be signing contracts soon. Bouwmeester is also a free agent, I think

    I think your massively overrating Gilbert, and his potential. He’s good, but he’s also no longer young. What you see is close to what you’ll get, long run.

    Geez…so many people here are annoyed that the Oilers didn’t give Smyth a retirement contract, and yet they want to nickel and dime Gilbert.

    Smyth was an UFA, and people were saying – you aren’t going to find a guy who can do what Smyth does for 5.5M or less. They were right. Now if Lowe didn’t think Smyth was elite, he should have saved up that cap space until he found a guy who was.

    Dustin Penner isn’t it.

    As for the comparison, Gilbert has a grand total of 34 GP. He has the offensive game, but is projected in the 22-30 point range. He’ll have only one full year of experience, and the Oilers can easily take him to arbitration to protect his rights and win an award closer to the 1.3-1.7 range.

    I’m not against signing him long term, but under those contracts, both sides have to bear the risk. At the 2.5M-3.0M range is quite simply put, terrible resource management.

  15. PunjabiOil says:

    1) Souray has a no trade contract – so he will not be moving…

    That by itself doesn’t mean much. If say, San Jose (hypothetically speaking) wants him, and the Oilers agree to the trade, would Souray say no? His off-season home is in LA. He’s not here in Edmonton because it’s his first choice – he’s here because the Oilers offered the best front loaded contract.

    2) Torres is not worth $2.25 million per year – only once in his 7 year career has he got more than 34 points. Phoenix has only one forward making more than $2 million per year – they have 6 forwards with more points than Torres.

    Torres has put up strong ES numbers in his career. For whatever reason, his shooting % has been terrible this year. That being said, he is a guy that could be moved, if there is interest around the league.

    I had a piece a while ago, predicting Torres will be moved:

    http://punjabsoil.blogspot.com/2007/10/prediction-raffi-torres-will-be-traded.html

    Simply put, the contract is backloaded. He’s only making 1.6M this year, but he’s due for an 800,000 raise. Me thinks the contract is structured that way in the sense for the Oilers – either he plays well, and if he doesn’t, the Oilers only end up paying 1.5M out of a 6.75M contract.

    3) Stoll as a RFA can be offered less than his present salary – but he becomes a UFA if that occurs.

    Not quite. The Oilers have to qualify him at the same salary to keep his rights. They can then agree on any amount, at any terms. So basically, if they qualify him at 2.2 – that doesn’t mean they can’t re-sign him for 2 years, 4.0M.

    What I worry for is Kevin Lowe paying Stoll on “potential”

    Stoll simply put hasn’t shown enough of it.


    My guess is that Gilbert will get at least $2 million on a 1 year contract if he goes to arbitration.

    No, no, no, no.

    I like to use Mike Cammaralleri as an example. The guy put up 55 and 80 points for the past 2 years. He had put up 109 points in the lockout AHL season. He ended up getting a total of 3.1M under arbitration. The Kings extended the award to 2 years.

    Nathan Horton went
    71 28 19 47 in his rookie year. He ended up signing a 1 year, 1.1M contract.

    Yeah yeah, I know – different positions, but what makes anyone fear Gilbert will be cashing in, especially if he posts 22-28 points? These arbitrators don’t know dick about EV+/EV-, quality of opposition, etc – so they basically measure a guy by his offence.

    Like I said – I’m not against giving Gilbert a long term contract – but he is what he is. No real need to ”pay him for potential” Don’t expect huge strides in his game, otherwise you’ll end up disappointed. 2.5M I would agree upon if the 6 year term were met. Nikolas Kronwall esque contract.

  16. godot10 says:

    //As for the comparison, Gilbert has a grand total of 34 GP. He has the offensive game, but is projected in the 22-30 point range. He’ll have only one full year of experience, and the Oilers can easily take him to arbitration to protect his rights and win an award closer to the 1.3-1.7 range.
    I’m not against signing him long term, but under those contracts, both sides have to bear the risk. At the 2.5M-3.0M range is quite simply put, terrible resource management.//

    This is being pennywise and pound foolish. As soon as one decides one has a player, particularly a defenseman, one should lock him up long term. One wants to lock up as many of Gilbert’s UFA years as possible (if he keeps playing the way he is playing). Pretty much any decent NHL defenseman gets $3 million. Volchenkov’s deal 5-year @ $2.5 million is now the low contract for a competent young defenseman.

    Two years of Gilbert via arbitration under $2 million is pointless if one has to pay him $5 million per season for the three after that. It makes more sense (if he keeps playing well) to sign him for 5 @ $3 million.

  17. godot10 says:

    //Smyth was an UFA, and people were saying – you aren’t going to find a guy who can do what Smyth does for 5.5M or less.//

    Smyth has gone back to being a significant minus player. Turns out that Horcoff covered up his defensive deficiencies.

  18. Dennis says:

    PJ makes some good points here. Heretofore, no one gets paid for playing tough min or doing relatively well in that role. It’s just counting stats.

    I’d say the most points Gilbert winds up with is 25 and that’s not going to blow the doors off the arbitrator.

    I do think they should sign him longterm, but I wouldn’t go nuts either.

  19. Master Lok says:

    Strangely enough – I find myself agreeing with PjOil and Dennis. I think the numbers thrown around for Gilbert’s longterm signing are ridiculously high. While he is playing in the top pairing – his stats aside from playing minutes, won’t demand a high contract.

  20. PunjabiOil says:

    Two years of Gilbert via arbitration under $2 million is pointless if one has to pay him $5 million per season for the three after that.

    You honestly see that type of potential in him?

    On the flip side, he’s a UFA after 2 years – so that will be weighed in the negotiations.

    We’ll see

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