So far today the Edmonton Oilers have addressed several issues with more work to be done.
I’ve moved the issues unresolved to the top, although some of the important items have been addressed. We shouldn’t expect the rfa (#3) issue to be addressed during this period so we’re left with positive (added Smyth, Justin Schultz, Darcy Hordichuk, Yann Danis) and the neutral (have not added a top 4D or the Pisani) so far today.
A possible depth chart
- Paajarvi, Petrell, Hordichuk
- N. Scultz-J. Schultz
- A top pairing defenseman capable of delivering big minutes at evens and at least one of PK and PP. 20+ overall. Methot moved to Ottawa so Edmonton is clear there. Still out there and available are men like Streit and
- An established 2-way winger to mentor the young players who will compete for bottom 6 roles (Lander, Hartikainen, Pitlick, etc). Winnik is my choice here, but the Oilers may have someone else in mind. I always say Pisani but maybe this man is a center.
- Get the rfa’s signed. Did a good job qualifying, but the Oilers often trade kids in this situation and Gagner isn’t out of the woods yet. Happy Omark was qualified, doubt he plays as an Oiler again.
A better Renney.I think yesterday was a very big day for Krueger. Based on reports, the key moments in the Schultz negotiations came when the new coach gave his vision and Schultz plus Hall started riffing on the possibilities. I imagine an Allman Brothers-style jam session that resulted in absolute magic. Can’t wait to see the vision on the ice. Justin Schultz or similar. Huge item for the Oilers. Should he emerge as a top 4, 35+ point defenseman who can handle reasonable opposition and remain in the black, Edmonton’s hard work this past week will sustain them for a decade on the blue. Brilliant. Ryan Smyth or similar.The extra year was the issue but the price tag is excellent. I think those who believe Smyth’s value to this team is low badly misunderstand what he can do for this team. They need to back off his special team minutes but this is a quality signing. Beauty A reasonable goaltending option for the Khabibulin free fall. Danis is a solid option, his .924SP with the Barons a year ago was safely inside the AHL’s top 10 and he gives the club excellent insurance. A solid signing. Crust.Hordichuk is perfectly suitable in this role, as I put forward in the RE series. I expect the Oilers will attempt to grab Tootoo this afternoon, so part of the crust remains uncrossed.
That’s the current state of affairs. I am:
- over the moon on the Justin Schultz signing
- pleased with the Smyth deal
- happy with the Danis signing
- fine with the Hordichuk re-signing
More work for the Oilers, but the overall feel of free agent weekend is positive. The defender and the Pisani will tell us a lot about the 12-13 Oilers. I imagine the club’s trades will come in addressing the final two areas, and we might see another free agent addition sometime in the next few days (Tootoo).
I don’t think we’ll see much more today from the Oilers.