This doesn’t sound sexy, but it could be effective. Mark Spector has an article up this afternoon about the Oilers offseason plans—and this doesn’t look like “home run” as much as “hit and run” for Edmonton this summer. Gains can be made—the Oilers are better off overpaying veteran free agents on short term deals—and if they can grab Boyd Gordon’s instead of Eric Belanger’s the team might make a move in the standings this winter.
- MacTavish: “We’ll add bodies through the UFA market, which is always a little dangerous, the draft, and potential trades”
- MacT’s list via Spector: another puck-moving defender, a shut down defender, need to get bigger up front.
- Spec mentions Braydon Coburn via trade.
- He also mentions adding a 1 or 2 line center may not happen.
- Spector also names a veteran winger we’ve discussed at length (Winnik) and a center we haven’t discussed in years (Handzus).
Interesting stuff, and thanks to Spec for giving Oilers fans something fresh to read during the dog days leading up to the draft activity. Let’s compare that list in Spector’s article with my list for MacTavish.
MACT’S SUMMER 2014 LIST
- A veteran top pairing defenseman. A real man, big time EV minutes and a history of successful sorties. (Possible Answer: Kulikov? Spec says trade).
- A 2line C with experience and the ability to play a two-way game. This is the other vital piece. (Surely they can aim higher than Handzus. I wanted him in the Weight trade for God’s sakes. I’m telling you now, if this is what they’re actually thinking there is a 100% chance Leon Draisaitl is in the opening night lineup. One hopes Gagner fetches a more reliable sort).
- A legit two-way winger who can score 12-15 goals. The Pisani role. Mentor, calms the waters. (Spec mentions Winnik, I’m fine with that, would also be happy with Kulemin or Moss).
- Find a way to get value, or make use of, Sam Gagner. (Spec mentions 89 being available).
- Improve the bottom 6F’s. (Suspect Winnik and Handzus would be the additions).
- Retain as much of the young cluster as possible. (Spec is all over this, you should read the article, very encouraging).
- Get Petry signed long term.
- Sign Schultz but DO NOT break the bank.
It isn’t sexy, but this sounds like a do-over for the 2011 summer. Steve Tambellini added:
- C Eric Belanger
- L Ben Eager
- L Darcy Horichuk
- D Cam Barker
- D Andy Sutton
- D Corey Potter
Can Craig MacTavish do better? I’d bet my house on it, especially the defenseman. Things we know for sure: Sam Gagner is gone, MacTavish is going back into the free agent pool and that is an alarming risk, but the kids are safe and that’s the important thing to remember during this truly dangerous summer for the Oilers.
Not a huge surprise, I wrote about him here:
- R Steve Pinizzotto is 0-7-7 in 11gp since coming over to Oklahoma City. Like Horak, his advantage is that the current GM traded for him. I suspect there’s a solid chance he returns on a two-way deal.
Two-way deal, signed in front of RFA’s Pitlick and Hamilton. Interesting opportunity for the AHL vet (acquired for Ryan Martindale) and we’ll see at training camp. His competition for a depth spot—Jesse Joensuu, Tyler Pitlick, Anton Lander—doesn’t scare anybody. He’s physical, and that might be enough to win the day.