They put Sheldon Souray back on the DL today, his body unable to endure the pounding of a long season. He’ll probably be back at some point but we should probably brace ourselves for the “we’re shutting him down so he’ll be ready for next year” press release. Souray seems like a decent fellow and his shot from the point looked dangerous when we saw it but the bet seemed risky and the pricetag too dear and the result is no different now that the cards have been dealt.
According to Hoyle, the Oilers need to do some price shaving similar to WAL-MART in order to get some wiggle room by summer. Word today than an NHL General Manager told The Hockey News that he expected someone would be willing to make a nice offer to Kevin Lowe for defender Steve Staios. The writer is a fellow named Adam Proteau and to quote the article “as one Western Conference GM (who spoke on condition of anonymity) told thehockeynews.com Tuesday, Edmonton blueliner Steve Staios might be an attractive alternative to a team that loses out on the upcoming Brian Campbell trade deadline sweepstakes. I really think (Lowe) will get an offer for him – and under the right circumstances, it might even come from me.”
My guess is that it’s Doug Wilson from San Jose.
Sending away Staios probably gives the Oilers more money to spend on Joni Pitkanen and that would have to be considered a good trade at this point in time. The Oilers should keep both of them, mix in Gilbert, Souray, Smid and Greene for the fall and add another veteran to that group but the reality is that the contracts of Souray, Pitkanen and Gilbert will take up so much money they’ll be rolling those three plus a trio of kids again next season.
And that is best case scenario. Worst case is they deal Pitkanen for something less than immediate help and get shutout in the summer when trying to pluck a useful veteran from the UFA tree.
Shawn Horcoff also has a problem shoulder and he apparently tweaked it at the All-Star game. The Oilers need their best veteran players and losing him for any length of time would make this team all but unwatchable. Having said that, it might give one of the minor leaguers a chance to step into the lineup and get some playing time.
The Oilers at this point in the season have devoted so many at-bats to young players it seems incredible that their depth chart at center could soon be Stoll-Gagner-Cogliano-Schremp but we’re not far from it as we speak.
When do pitchers and catchers report anyway? Did Jesse Orosco catch on with anyone? What about Jeff Fassaro?