Something Wild

It took about 40 months, but Peter Chiarelli has almost flushed the entire Oilers roster as it stood the day he took over as general manager in the spring of 2015. The names that remain (Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Leon Draisaitl, Oscar Klefbom, Darnell Nurse, Jujhar Khaira) survived a rollercoaster ride and are part of what fans hope will be a successful team in the coming years. Will Chiarelli be around to see the completion of his vision?

THE ATHLETIC!

Give The Athletic as a gift or get it yourself and join the fun! Offer is here, less than $4 a month! I find myself reading both the hockey (Willis, Dellow, Pronman, et cetera) and the baseball coverage a lot, it’s a pure pleasure to visit. We’ll sell you the whole seat, but you’ll only need the edge.

In the Farm Workers post each year, I have a passage that says “if we make a list of the RFA’s each summer, we can probably, as a group, pick the cuts and be fairly close. That 50-man gets a haircut every summer.” This summer, there were a bunch of RFA’s and here is what happened (so far):

  1. LD Darnell Nurse. It’s a fascinating story unfolding, I thought (and still think) Nurse was part of the McDavid cluster and signed, sealed and delivered as a long term player here. It is a curious time for this player, we’ll have to wait and see. He would have significant trade value.
  2. RD Matt Benning. He’s now signed to a reasonable two-year deal and may be relied on to play inside the top-4D this winter. I’m a fan of his game.
  3. C-R Ryan Strome. He’s signed to a two-year, $3.1 million deal. That kind of investment is going to require more offense than we’ve seen from Strome. A big season for him.
  4. R Anton Slepyshev. He was a surprise keeper in year one under Todd McLellan, progressed well and was emerging during the playoffs in 2017 spring. An injury derailed his 2017-18 season, detoured his NHL career and has him back in Russia.
  5. R Drake Caggiula. Signed a two-year, $1.5 million deal, the lowest AAV among the RFA’s signed by the Oilers from the NHL side. He might be in a bit of trouble as an Oiler, important for him to improve in multiple areas.
  6. G Laurent Brossoit. He lost his job on a Saturday night in Calgary. And the Oilers won the game! I think he has a chance to have a career, he signed in a good situation (Winnipeg).
  7. G Nick Ellis. It was impossible to see his struggles and then his retirement.
  8. R Iiro Pakarinen.  He was a solid PK man but is gone to the KHL.
  9. LD Keegan Lowe. He won a contract and there’s a chance he’ll play more NHL games this season.
  10. R Ty Rattie. His break came late and Rattie took full advantage. Rattie got a one-year deal and a ticket to the top line (maybe) in 2018-19. I bet he works like a demon in camp.
  11. L Joey Laleggia. He signed in the St. Louis organization, I’ll be interested to see if the Blues return him to defense.
  12. R Patrick Russell. Russell didn’t play in the NHL, sometimes that’s an indicator an organization is going to move on. Edmonton re-signed him.
  13. LD Dillon Simpson. Signed with Columbus, his skills are close to Lowe’s and one of them leaving is no surprise.
  14. LD Ben BetkerBig man is no longer in the organization and has not yet signed elsewhere.
  15. R Brian Ferlin. It’s a miracle he played at all. No update on new destination.
  16. R Greg ChaseHe was traded mid-season (Florida organization) and played more AHL than ECHL once in a new organization. He has talent, hasn’t emerged in pro hockey.
  17. RC Kyle Platzer. He showed a little more than Chase but not enough to earn another contract. Signed an AHL deal with the Charlotte Checkers for next year.
  18. LC Grayson DowningHe brought less than expected and has moved on via an AHL deal with the Colorado Eagles.
  19. L Braden Christoffer. He signed an AHL deal with the Condors.

Seven of the 19 names, or 36 percent, were retained. For Peter Chiarelli, the decisions moving forward are all players he would have procured and history tells us that’s a completely different ballgame (GM’s like their guys, it’s a human thing). Here are next year’s RFA’s and my call on each.

  1. F Tobias Rieder. Edmonton will need to find some more dollars next summer to get him signed long term. He is a very good fit for the Oilers.
  2. R Jesse Puljujarvi. In a way, you’re hoping he scores 18-20 as opposed to 35 goals this coming season. As it stands, his second contract is going to be closer to Nail Yakupov’s than Leon Draisaitl’s, and that’s a good thing.
  3. R Ty Rattie. It’s all or nothing for Rattie, who is in the ultimate race against time. He’ll need to shoot the gap by scoring 20 goals (or so) this season, while one or both of JP or Kailer Yamamoto struggles. I don’t think he gets a long-term deal next summer.
  4. L Jujhar Khaira. The big man can play center or wing and is coming along as a penalty killer. I think he may carve out a solid career.
  5. L Pontus Aberg. He has talent but is in a similar spot to Rattie. Aberg will need to impress early and often to make it past names like Drake Caggiula, Jujhar Khaira and the young phenoms.
  6. RD Joel Persson. I believe his current contract will be the 2019-20 contract.
  7. G Shane Starrett. He will need to take a step forward this season to earn another contract.
  8. R Tyler Vesel. He is just getting started and has a nice range of skills, my guess is Vesel will get a second contract.
  9. L Joe Gambardella. He showed well in his debut, if he can build on it this season chances are the Oilers keep him.
  10. R Patrick Russell. He received another contract this season but his boots and offense at the AHL level suggest Russell is shy of being an NHL player. He got another year, and that’s interesting.
  11. LC Colin Larkin. There isn’t a lot offensively and that’s at the AHL level. Suspect he doesn’t get a second deal.

ROUND TABLE

My article for The Athletic today is Projecting the 2018-19 opening night lineup and between 10 and 11 this morning I’ll talk about the coming season with three respected guests. Bruce McCurdy (Cult of Hockey at the Edmonton Journal), Darcy McLeod (Because Oilers), Tyler Hupka (famous and infamous twitter character) will offer opinions on a wide range of subjects. We did this last year and I’m still employed, so we’re going to do it again. Great people, great opinions. It’s fab radio.

At 11, Rob Vollman from ESPN and NHL.com will join us, we’ll chat about McDavid’s chances of winning the Art Ross and the Richard trophies. Finally, we’ll talk to Kevin Nogle from the Phinsider about the Miami Dolphins. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!

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96 Responses to "Something Wild"

  1. frjohnk says:

    I would also believe that Nurse is valued very highly by Oilers management and if there was cap room to sign him to a long term deal the Oilers would have done it already.

    I think it is unlikely but in the event that Nurses camp is going to play hardball ( hold out for the start of the year) how long until the Oilers make a trade to free up some cap space?

  2. OriginalPouzar says:

    I don’t believe the time its taking to get Nurse signed to this contract is any indication that he is not part of the core or the “McDavid cluster” or valued by the coaching staff or management.

    Sometimes contracts take a bit of time to get done, in particular when you have an agent like the one Nurse has.

    Not to mention, the most prominent RFAs that are still unsigned are Nurse comparables – Morrissey, Hanafin, Theodore etc.

    Its seems its there is a tier of player that remains unsigned and I believe that, once one signs, the others will follow fairly quickly.

  3. OriginalPouzar says:

    Come on Matty B., step up and grab that 2RD spot and don’t look back – its a key to the season.

    You weren’t able to do it last year but you are now a year older, have a new contract, and are a year further removed from the concussion.

    The opportunity is there for you!

  4. jtblack says:

    “we’ll chat about McDavid’s chances of winning the Art Ross and the Richard trophies.”

    Let’s take a moment to pinch ourselves and remember, that with or without Stanley; whoever is the GM, etc, etc; Oilersnation gets to watch the GREATEST Talent to hit the ice in many, many years.

    The best part is that Connor is 21. When people try to determine how Good he is they already have to jump to past Generations and look at All Time Greats; Crosby, Gretzky and Lemieux for comparisons.

    Knock on wood for good health, but we may be witnessing the most dominant offensive player since #99.

    Given nobody touched Connor at ESP last season, if he plays 75+ games he should have an excellent chance at his 3rd Art Ross in a row. Only been done by 5 other players in the last 70 years.

    #GRATEFUL
    #McDAVIDRULES

  5. OriginalPouzar says:

    If Strome was given more time at right wing in the top 6, I think he would provide some decent offence but it seems he is likely pigeon-holed in to the 3C spot.

    Nothing wrong with that, however, given current depth of wingers, its likely not going to be a high scoring 3rd line (I believe Jesse will earn a top 6 spot early in the year, hopefully by October 6).

  6. Clarkenstein says:

    It’s possible Nurse wants to get back East and play with the Leafs. Poor cap management has left him as the guy without a chair when the music stopped. Chia has overpaid on absolutely everybody in his situation then he comes to Nurse and is undoubtedly asking him to play for less! And the “incident” that nobody wants to talk about may have had an effect on his desire to stay here too. Shhh.

  7. jtblack says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Come on Matty B., step up and grab that 2RD spot and don’t look back – its a key to the season.

    You weren’t able to do it last year but you are now a year older, have a new contract, and are a year further removed from the concussion.

    The opportunity is there for you!

    I just don’t see Benning as a 2RD. His boots are so so. Overall game is decent, but I think he’s best slotted for 3RHD.

    And as Woodguy always points out, once players have to play above their skill set, trouble quickly sets in (see OIlers D last year) …

  8. OriginalPouzar says:

    “RD Joel Persson. I believe his current contract will be the 2019-20 contract.”

    Persson has $850K in performance bonuses which won’t be available for his next contract.

    Are you anticipating he signs in the range of $1.75M (his salary plus performance bonus from the current contract) or apx $925K?

  9. Side says:

    Clarkenstein:
    It’s possible Nurse wants to get back East and play with the Leafs. Poor cap management has left him as the guy without a chair when the music stopped. Chia has overpaid on absolutely everybody in his situation then he comes to Nurse and is undoubtedly asking him to play for less!And the “incident” that nobody wants to talk about may have had an effect on his desire to stay here too. Shhh.

    How many unsubstantiated rumours can one fit in a post?

    Nurse says “these guys are like brothers to me, I want to be here”

    Fan says “Nurse wants to go to Toronto and wants to leave after the “incident””

  10. Clay says:

    I count 3 players still on the NHL roster for when Chia started? (Nuge, Klefbom, Nurse). Incredible turnover.

    I’ve been thinking about the following a lot lately: when 2010 hit with the much-ballyhooed H.O.P.E., I distinctly remember how excited we were about the coming decade, with the assumption being that there was small chance we wouldn’t see Stanley by 2020.

    Eight seasons in, and this decade has not unfolded as we’d hoped. Even with McDavid.

    This fan base deserves better imho.

  11. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Of the 5 players on the roster when Chiarelli took over, that would be the extended, 50-man roster. Only Nuge & Klefbom were on the actual team; Khaira was in OKC, Nurse in the Soo, Draisaitl in Kelowna.

    However you slice it, both the 23-man list & the 50-man have undergone 90% turnover in 3 years under Chiarelli.

    EDIT: Clay on the same page on this, even as we differ on Nurse’s status in 2015 April.

    FURTHER EDIT: I said “3 years under Chiarelli” but it is now 4 *summers* under him, with a major cull of June 30th of each.

  12. Jordan says:

    Hey LT –

    Greatly appreciate your dedication to educating your audience both here on the interwebs and on the airwaves.

    Who knew you could say “Suck it bitches” on live radio?

    Also, your take on the nurse contract situation was awesome. Shades of Tambellini?

    Rock on my friend. That was great radio.

  13. Coiler says:

    Clarkenstein:
    It’s possible Nurse wants to get back East and play with the Leafs. Poor cap management has left him as the guy without a chair when the music stopped. Chia has overpaid on absolutely everybody in his situation then he comes to Nurse and is undoubtedly asking him to play for less!And the “incident” that nobody wants to talk about may have had an effect on his desire to stay here too. Shhh.

    Count me as ignorant but what is this ‘incident’ you’re referring to?

  14. N64 says:

    Jordan:
    Hey LT –

    Greatly appreciate yourdedication to educating your audience both here on the interwebs and on the airwaves.

    Who knew you could say “Suck it bitches” on live radio?

    Also, your take on the nurse contract situation was awesome.Shades of Tambellini?

    Rock on my friend.That was great radio.

    Chia could learn a thing or 2 from LT Just look at that Round Table. Value contracts. Every one of ’em.

  15. frjohnk says:

    Coiler: Count me as ignorant but what is this ‘incident’ you’re referring to?

    LT smashed a Nurse bobblehead because Woodguy kept saying Nurse was a “right handed Dman”

  16. leadfarmer says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Come on Matty B., step up and grab that 2RD spot and don’t look back – its a key to the season.

    You weren’t able to do it last year but you are now a year older, have a new contract, and are a year further removed from the concussion.

    The opportunity is there for you!

    He is the only one that has a chance of not falling flat on his face in that 2 RHD slot. Everyone else I can’t see betting above 3rd slot.

  17. Melvis says:

    Jordan:
    Hey LT –

    Greatly appreciate yourdedication to educating your audience both here on the interwebs and on the airwaves.

    Who knew you could say “Suck it bitches” on live radio?

    Also, your take on the nurse contract situation was awesome.Shades of Tambellini?

    Rock on my friend.That was great radio.

    I was thinking about the Nurse contract situation this morning and missed LT’s radio take on the matter. Would someone care to elaborate on the salient points?

  18. Coiler says:

    And as far as Chiarelli goes, his management (trades) and handling of the cap has been atrocious at best. Overpayment with trades and contracts has been his MO since he came on board.

    I’m fully confident that any competent GM could have come into the situation and would have made some of the more acceptable deals like Talbot. When he gets canned, and he most definitely will, the list of wrongs will be lengthy.

    This team is hurting on D. You have a player in Nurse that screams talent and is exactly what the teams needs and you’re going to be stringing him along until the market dictates what he should get (a la Morrissey)? Why wasn’t the same rationale used for the Russian back up? Or Russell? Etc..

  19. Jordan says:

    Melvis: I was thinking about the Nurse contract situation this morning and missed LT’s radio take on the matter. Would someone care to elaborate on the salient points?

    LT’s take on the situation was that there was about a 400k difference between Nurse’s Camp and Oilers Mgmt. Nurse’s Agent wants 4.2 M per year, and Chia wants to give him 4.6 M.

    It was great.

  20. Wilde says:

    Lowetide: L Joe Gambardella. He showed well in his debut, if he can build on it this season chances are the Oilers keep him.

    R Patrick Russell. He received another contract this season but his boots and offense at the AHL level suggest Russell is shy of being an NHL player. He got another year, and that’s interesting.

    LC Colin Larkin. There isn’t a lot offensively and that’s at the AHL level. Suspect he doesn’t get a second deal.

    These contracts and all that Chia signs like them grind my gears and I don’t like looking at Bakersfields’ forwards for next season.

    Everyone should have offense. E v e r y o n e. Do not give contracts to guys who will teach your prospects how to play with players who can’t make plays.

  21. frjohnk says:

    Glad I have the day off and watching the youngest child to listen to TSN 1260 today. I listen quite a bit in the winter but pretty rare in the summer.

    “suck it bitches”

    Fantastic

  22. Wilde says:

    Also; if they ever feel like they’re not getting enough out of Strome they should try getting him on a line with good players.

    When you put a player with Strome, you learn more about that player than you do about Ryan.

  23. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    Melvis,

    It takes Balls of a Pirate to put it all on the line like that!

    https://tunein.com/podcasts/Sports-Talk–News/Nielson–Fraser-p643749/?topicId=123780675

  24. Melvis says:

    Thanks guys.

    Suck it bitches! lol

    Woot!

  25. Westchester Oil says:

    Jordan: LT’s take on the situation was that there was about a 400k difference between Nurse’s Camp and Oilers Mgmt.Nurse’s Agent wants 4.2 M per year, and Chia wants to give him 4.6 M.

    It was great.

    I read your comment. First I laughed. Then I cried.

  26. Melvis says:

    Death by a thousand cuts, plus a couple of attempts at seppuku, largely rests on the shoulders of the current GM. Life support by way of a thousand tiny stitches won’t stop the bleeding. I tend to view certain PTOs (Garrison) as little more than deflection, distraction, blog fodder and extra weight in the hope-orium backpack.

    The result? The Oilers and their spendthrift ways has them painted into a corner. And an agent playing hardball has Peter pinned to a wall in that corner.

    I agree with OP that the Morrissey contract, et al, plays a salient role in this drama, but the Jets have considerably more cap space and a better horse trader at at the helm.

    So now we’re sweating Nurse on the bridge – more likely the negotiations over whatever promises might follow an insufficient bridge. I can just imagine. Oy vey.

  27. flyfish1168 says:

    Clarkenstein:
    It’s possible Nurse wants to get back East and play with the Leafs. Poor cap management has left him as the guy without a chair when the music stopped. Chia has overpaid on absolutely everybody in his situation then he comes to Nurse and is undoubtedly asking him to play for less!And the “incident” that nobody wants to talk about may have had an effect on his desire to stay here too. Shhh.

    Rumours are just that. If you can’t fact check it and substantiate the source there is no truth to it. Like the one on Mathews wanting out of beleafland and getting back to Phoenix or the one that he is unhappy with Babcock’s systems. Choose your pick of rumours and poison.

  28. Ribs says:

    Every time someone’s contract comes up, all summer we hear from the player and management that “these things take time”, “it’s a process”, etc., but they never seem to explain what that actually means! Why does it take months to get these deals done? Especially when it’s your core guys that you want signed?

    I’d love a behind the scenes look at how some of these deals play out.

    Every time that Aberg photo is up there I get a little mad. My sister bought me the exact hat that he’s wearing for my birthday and I don’t know what kind of space age material it’s made out of, but it sucks. You get the slightest amount of sweat on the thing and it changes the hat’s colour to a copper colour. I wore it after hockey one day and now it looks like I’ve swirled it around a dirty toilet bowl, lol. I’m going to throw it in the washer to see if I can make the whole hat turn copper!

  29. Melvis says:

    Something Wild certainly warrants another look see. And it includes that Pontiac GTO. Nice touch LT.

  30. Bank Shot says:

    Ribs:
    Every time someone’s contract comes up, all summer we hear from the player and management that “these things take time”, “it’s a process”, etc., but they never seem to explain what that actually means! Why does it take months to get these deals done? Especially when it’s your core guys that you want signed?

    I’d love a behind the scenes look at how some of these deals play out.

    They don’t take time, and they aren’t a process. Player contracts are pretty tightly regulated. There isn’t much to fiddle with except money, and term,

    It takes months because waiting is a negotiating tactic.

    When a player like Nurse doesn’t have arbitration rights and his agent wants to get him more money, there has to be the appearance that he is willing to sit out games to put pressure on the GM.

    The idea is that a GM will pay more for a player in the fall when he really needs him, then he will in July when there is no pressure.

  31. Melvis says:

    Ribs: I’d love a behind the scenes look at how some of these deals play out.

    Dig up that scene (or many) on Oil Change. The one where Mac T is on the phone with Boyd Gordon.

    Mac T, in actor mode, positively effusive. Gordon sounding like he would have preferred a trade to the Patagonia Pampas.

  32. jtblack says:

    Jordan,

    “there was about a 400k difference between Nurse’s Camp and Oilers Mgmt. Nurse’s Agent wants 4.2 M per year, and Chia wants to give him 4.6 M.”

    This is too Funny ……

  33. Melvis says:

    I much prefer a beret. Of 20,000 plus at Rogers Place, I’ll be the only one in the joint wearing one.

    “Hey Woodguy, over here!”

    “Who is that ass? I’m not going anywhere near there and that bed sheet he’s wearing for a scarf.”

  34. Ribs says:

    Bank Shot: The idea is that a GM will pay more for a player in the fall when he really needs him, then he will in July when there is no pressure.

    I wonder if this actually works for the players? It seems pretty silly. Is there really any more pressure on the GM’s in the fall to sign their core guys when both the players and the team know a deal is imminent? It sounds like a bunch of dicking around to me. Haha

    Melvis: Dig up that scene (or many) on Oil Change. The one where Mac T is on the phone with Boyd Gordon.

    Mac T, in actor mode, positively effusive. Gordon sounding like he would have preferred a trade to the Patagonia Pampas.

    I will have to go a-looking!

  35. Jordan says:

    jtblack,

    I’m not the biggest fan of Dusty’s show, but its more interesting than a lot of radio programs because they recognize they are supposed to be entertaining.

    Same thing can be said for a lot of the content on the Lowdown.

    Scalding Hot Takes can be hit or miss, but it’s has the potential to be one of the most entertaining segments on radio, because they are trying to evoke a reaction and it blurs the lines of what’s appropriate and what’s not, which enhances the entertainment factor. It has some elements of shock jocking, but because it’s such a short segment that’s set up to make people laugh, its a much more positive and wholesome than most people who use that tool.

    Highly recommend it Thursday mornings. Life’s easier when I’m smiling.

  36. Klima's_Bucket says:

    Melvis,

    As someone that knows Boyd, he took an extra mill and an extra year to play in Edmonton compared to other offers he received. But, I’d still like to watch that scene from Oil Change.

  37. Melvis says:

    I imagined a radio show – the one he never gave. On location. A non linear history of hockey, rocknroll, booze, food etc. Let’s just say Mark Twain ghosts this one.

    LT and a dozen others, more or less on this blog ( including women) – bulid a couple rafts in the spring at the top of a river system – say the Mississippi – and float it down to Nola over the course of the summer.l

    Day times it’s jabber and radio and cd’s. Less linear and layered up with all the attendant SFX. One needs 24 tracks for this baby.

    As day turns to night, the power gives out and further downstream, imaginary night takes over. The sounds of nature and the music wafting out from the banks overplay the river side grilled meats on a stick and samoras. Unknowingly, we’re in another world.

    By the time we ge to New Orleans, we’re fully invested in the history of hockey, baseball, sports in geneeral and the musical influences of Europe, Africa, the Caribbean and all the rest of it on contemporary culture. Not so much Ken Burns as an Odyssey.

    There’s a Peabody in there, and this puts the kibosh on the summer hockey doldrums. Anybody interested?

    Note: It’s just that I don’t have anyblody to talk to today;-) And I need to clear out this Malbec before it gets too corky.

  38. Melvis says:

    Klima’s_Bucket,

    All I know, is that he didn’t sound particularly enthused. One could also chalk it up to personality.

  39. Lowetide says:

    Melvis:
    I imagined a radio show – the one he never gave. On location. A non linear history of hockey, rocknroll, booze, food etc. Let’s just say Mark Twain ghosts this one.

    LT and a dozen others, more or less on this blog ( including women) – bulid a couple rafts in the spring at the top of a river system – say the Mississippi –and float it down to Nola over the course of the summer.l

    Day times it’s jabber and radio and cd’s. Less linear and layered up with all the attendant SFX. One needs 24 tracks for this baby.

    As day turns to night, the power gives out and further downstream, imaginary night takes over. The sounds of nature and the music wafting out from the banks overplay the river side grilled meats on a stick and samoras. Unknowingly, we’re in another world.

    By the time we ge to New Orleans, we’re fully invested in the history of hockey, baseball, sports in geneeral and the musical influences of Europe, Africa, the Caribbean and all the rest of it oncontemporary culture. Not so much Ken Burns as an Odyssey.

    There’s a Peabody in there, and this puts the kibosh on the summer hockey doldrums. Anybody interested?

    Note: It’s just that I don’t have anyblody to talk to today;-) And I need to clear out this Malbec before it gets too corky.

    Tell me about the women…

  40. Jordan says:

    Lowetide: Tell me about the women…

    The women are from all corners of the world. They’re beautiful. They’re rich. They have huge… tracts of land. They have a wide variety of personalities. They enjoy to try new and exotic foods and liquors.

    They’re a wonderful group of people that both Men and Women are attracted to. If they were’t such insufferable homers for the Leafs, Yankees and Patriots, they might be a perfect group to seek companionship within. (edited)

  41. SwedishPoster says:

    Joel Persson scored his team’s only goal in a surprise loss against SC Bern in the CHL which in euro hockey means the champions hockey league and is a tournament between the top clubs in europe sans the KHL. It was Växjö’s first competitive game of the season. No clue how he played overall, didn’t watch and it’s a tournament real low on hype and thus reporting in Sweden. But good thing his scoring touch didn’t get lost during the summer.

  42. OriginalPouzar says:

    First prospect update of the season, a one-timer PP goal from Persson:

    https://youtu.be/FdyaTrr0zeE

  43. OriginalPouzar says:

    leadfarmer: He is the only one that has a chance of not falling flat on his face in that 2 RHD slot. Everyone else I can’t see betting above 3rd slot.

    I would agree, that’s why I consider him one of the keys to the season.

    Outside chance that Jarabek can many survive there (2nd pairing and off-side seems like alot to ask from him but he did it with a middling Benn, perhaps he will find some chemistry with an ever-improving Nurse?).

  44. OriginalPouzar says:

    Wilde:
    Also; if they ever feel like they’re not getting enough out of Strome they should try getting him on a line with good players.

    When you put a player with Strome, you learn more about that player than you do about Ryan.

    Fantastic numbers for the line when Strome has played with either McDavid (very small sample) or Drai(small sample but larger).

  45. Shane says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    I don’t know, wearing #94? I’m starting to see some sideburns…

  46. London Jon says:

    That’s a rocket. He looks a lot bigger than 5’11” 85kg

    The other guys on that pp must be tiny

  47. Melvis says:

    Lowetide,

    Ha. Let’s seee. I pitch and get the line drive at my head so I’m taking the safe route.

    There’s your wife, for one.

  48. pts2pndr says:

    What would you consider an appropriate offer for Nurse? Chiarelli gets chastised for overpaying but a numer of posters believe he should trade for Faulk who may end up as 3rd pairing right D at aprx one million a year more than Russel. I didn’t like the Larsson Hall trade but all oiler players had been so devalued by the previous coach that was the price required. The question asked is for all posters as I am realy curious and would like to see what the group think is! I believe the team may be waiting until they can fit a long term contract for Nurse into the equation with a buy out of Russels contract if required to fit him in next year and moving forward.

  49. OriginalPouzar says:

    A buyout of Russell at some point is definitely a realistic possibility. Given his NMC, I would imagine there is zero chance he remains under contract to the Oilers at the time of the expansion draft – it would be egregious to protect him.

    A buyout next june provide a 4 year dead cap hit – $900K cap hit in all the years except for the 2020/21 season where its $3.4M (stupid signing bonus).

  50. Lowetide says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    A buyout of Russell at some point is definitely a realistic possibility.Given his NMC, I would imagine there is zero chance he remains under contract to the Oilers at the time of the expansion draft – it would be egregious to protect him.

    A buyout next june provide a 4 year dead cap hit – $900K cap hit in all the years except for the 2020/21 season where its $3.4M (stupid signing bonus).

    Oilers should be able to trade Russell at some point. NHL teams value veteran defensemen. Might have to add a sweetener but he has value.

  51. Scungilli Slushy says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    A buyout of Russell at some point is definitely a realistic possibility.Given his NMC, I would imagine there is zero chance he remains under contract to the Oilers at the time of the expansion draft – it would be egregious to protect him.

    A buyout next june provide a 4 year dead cap hit – $900K cap hit in all the years except for the 2020/21 season where its $3.4M (stupid signing bonus).

    Why not just trade him? He might even be willing this season if they are o*t *f t*e pl*y*ffs at the deadline knowing he can and likely will be moved the next summer.

    To me he and Sekera are tradeable because they can still play (yes there is some uncertainty with Sekera) and as UFA signings any return is acceptable to free up cap.

    Drafted players and those acquired by trade had an acquisition cost above cap cost, so a move needs to restore the value spent on them, at least.

    ** LT and his sneaky ways beat me to it

  52. Scungilli Slushy says:

    pts2pndr:
    What would you consider an appropriate offer for Nurse? Chiarelli gets chastised for overpaying but a numer of posters believe he should trade for Faulk who may end up as 3rd pairing right D at aprx one million a year more than Russel. I didn’t like the Larsson Hall trade but all oiler players had been so devalued by the previous coach that was the price required. The question asked is for all posters as I am realy curious and would like to see what the group think is! I believe the team may be waiting until they can fit a long term contract for Nurse into the equation with a buy out of Russels contract if required to fit him in next year and moving forward.

    I find it difficult to think of a trade scenario that is reasonable for Nurse. He is a rare bird these days in that he is young, competent, large by today’s move to mobile D who are often smaller, is a fantastic skater, and seriously tough.

    Most teams wouldn’t trade that type. He could be the current games version of Pronger he settles a bit more.

    It would take a sweet return to make it worth while and teams don’t offer that to the Oilers, yet.

  53. pts2pndr says:

    jtblack: I just don’t see Benning as a 2RD.His boots are so so.Overall game is decent, but I think he’s best slotted for 3RHD.

    And as Woodguy always points out, once players have to play above their skill set, trouble quickly sets in (see OIlers D last year) …

    Very good point but the wheels fell off with Larsson (back injury) that he played through followed by his family bereavement! Larsson is the single most important person to the defense! The team had no one able to step up to first pairing right D. This was about the time that Benning was concussed which really put a screw in the works. The number of injuries not withstanding the fact they were toourmost vulnerable position sewered the eason!

  54. OriginalPouzar says:

    Lowetide: Oilers should be able to trade Russell at some point. NHL teams value veteran defensemen. Might have to add a sweetener but he has value.

    Should but you never know – lots of factors including Russell manipulating the list he has to give to make consummating a trade to make it tougher for management.

    I HATE the thought of a sweetener to get rid of a contract. I understand the premise but, for a team that is still building prospect depth and will require a steady stream of graduates, its egregious to me.

    At the end of the day, whether it be by trade or buyout, that contract needs to go prior to protected lists being finalized.

    I think every Oiler fan will be able to agree on that.

  55. OriginalPouzar says:

    Scungilli Slushy: Why not just trade him? He might even be willing this season if they are o*t *f t*e pl*y*ffs at the deadline knowing he can and likely will be moved the next summer.

    To me he and Sekera are tradeable because they can still play (yes there is some uncertainty with Sekera) and as UFA signings any return is acceptable to free up cap.

    Drafted players and those acquired by trade had an acquisition cost above cap cost, so a move needsto restore the value spent on them, at least.

    ** LT and his sneaky ways beat me to it

    Yes, a trade is preferable, obviously, but it may be easier said than done – there are clauses that can be manipulated, the contract is already an overpay and he may regress to make it moreso, etc.

    Also, I don’t see any situation where him waiving to consummate a trade will work as, in such a case, I would assume he will require the acquiring team to agree to accept the NMC as a condition to his waiving and I can’t see any team agreeing to that.

    I suspect a trade will have to be with regard to the list he has to provide and Russell can get inventive with that if he really wanted to.

  56. pts2pndr says:

    Scungilli Slushy: I find it difficult to think of a trade scenario that is reasonable for Nurse. He is a rare bird these days in that he is young, competent, large by today’s move to mobile D who are often smaller, is a fantastic skater, and seriously tough.

    Most teams wouldn’t trade that type. He could be the current games version of Pronger he settles a bit more.

    It would take a sweet return to make it worth while and teams don’t offer that to the Oilers, yet.

    I agree as I see him being a first pairing D by age 25. Perhaps not a number one due to offensively a little shy but a number 2. I think a long term deal at 4.5 to 5.2 would be a value contract moving forward!

  57. Bank Shot says:

    OriginalPouzar: Yes, a trade is preferable, obviously, but it may be easier said than done – there are clauses that can be manipulated, the contract is already an overpay and he may regress to make it moreso, etc.

    Also, I don’t see any situation where him waiving to consummate a trade will work as, in such a case, I would assume he will require the acquiring team to agree to accept the NMC as a condition to his waiving and I can’t see any team agreeing to that.

    I suspect a trade will have to be with regard to the list he has to provide and Russell can get inventive with that if he really wanted to.

    Russell can’t be that inventive because 15 teams will have to be on his trade list in 2020-2021.

    He’ll have one season left on his contract. That should be movable.

  58. Ryan says:

    Bank Shot: Russell can’t be that inventive because 15 teams will have to be on his trade list in 2020-2021.

    He’ll have one season left on his contract. That should be movable.

    I’m with OP on this one.

    Russell ‘s already a 31 year-old bottom pairing defenseman with a $4m cap hit for three more years and a NMC to boot. Heck of a sticky wicket

    I mean yeah, any contract’s moveable. You could trade Lucic tomorrow if you retained half his salary and packaged him with JP.

    What a tail on that thing. Chiarelli really got worked on that deal. Worse than I thought.

    You can’t even buyout the last year of that contract unless you have to for the expansion draft because there’s a million dollar signing bonus on the last year.

    Wow. A buyout on the last year costs 3 million year one and 500k hit on the second year.

    Chiarelli. Good grief.

  59. leadfarmer says:

    Well except after July 1st of the last season that he is owed 1.5 mil. Someone will take that

  60. Ryan says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    A buyout of Russell at some point is definitely a realistic possibility.Given his NMC, I would imagine there is zero chance he remains under contract to the Oilers at the time of the expansion draft – it would be egregious to protect him.

    A buyout next june provide a 4 year dead cap hit – $900K cap hit in all the years except for the 2020/21 season where its $3.4M (stupid signing bonus).

    4 years.

    4m hit.

    Modified NTC. NMC.

    Signing bonus on the 4rth year of the contract.

    Never mind that the Russell contract blocked any opportunity to upgrade 2RD, that 4rth year signing bonus really irks me as it makes the contract very painful to buyout.

  61. Pescador says:

    Lowetide: Oilers should be able to trade Russell at some point. NHL teams value veteran defensemen. Might have to add a sweetener but he has value.

    Assuming he can maintain previously established performance levels, last thing the Oilers need is veteran D to fall off a cliff, to borrow a phrase.
    ala Jason Garrison.
    Pretty tough to trade Russell with his salary after a season of healthy scratches

  62. Pescador says:

    leadfarmer:
    Well except after July 1st of the last season that he is owed 1.5 mil.Someone will take that

    Doesn”t that mean that Russell will need protecting in the expansion draft to make it to the final year?

  63. frjohnk says:

    Hanifim signs $4.95M AAV for 6 years.

  64. OriginalPouzar says:

    That may start the dominoes for the other 3 RFA d-men.

  65. Ryan says:

    Lowetide: Oilers should be able to trade Russell at some point. NHL teams value veteran defensemen. Might have to add a sweetener but he has value.

    Well, the Oilers did get a 3rd for a 36-year-old Staois, but that was a decade ago and Darryl Sutter has retired.

    I think that the market for grizzled, hard-nosed, veteran dmen has dried up in today’s speed game.

  66. OriginalPouzar says:

    Bank Shot: Russell can’t be that inventive because 15 teams will have to be on his trade list in 2020-2021.

    He’ll have one season left on his contract. That should be movable.

    I think he can make a trade very tough. Already half the league is out and I’m not sure the market is going to be that great for a 33 year old (I think) overpaid d-man. Not to mention the acquiring team would, presumably be leaving him exposed in the expansion draft. This deal is not going to look good for the Oilers – maybe be better than a buyout but that’s never going to be an “easy” contract to move.

  67. OriginalPouzar says:

    leadfarmer:
    Well except after July 1st of the last season that he is owed 1.5 mil.Someone will take that

    In that scenario, we protected him in the expansion draft……..

  68. Ryan says:

    Ryan: Well, the Oilers did get a 3rd for a 36-year-old Staois, but that was a decade ago and Darryl Sutter has retired. 🙂

    I think that the market for grizzled, hard-nosed, veteran dmen has dried up in today’s speed game.

    I am not sure this comment reads the way I had intended.

    The only point I was trying to reflect on is how much the that aspect of the game has changed.

    The end of the era in my mind occurred when Shero traded two seconds for a 33-year-old Murray who was done. I can still remember Woodguy chortling over this deal like it was yesterday.

    It was over five years ago, Gordy, how time flies.

    Remember the good old days when you could trade your aged, 35 plus, grizzled, hard-nosed dman with a year left on his contract for a decent pick at the deadline.

  69. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    frjohnk:
    Hanifim signs $4.95M AAV for 6 years.

    Damn those fLames…That’s a pretty good value signing…

    On a good note, Nurse shouldn’t be any more than that based on Hanifins point totals (Unless they base his value on advanced stats or something)

  70. Lowetide says:

    Would you sign Nurse to that deal?

  71. Ryan says:

    OriginalPouzar: I think he can make a trade very tough.Already half the league is out and I’m not sure the market is going to be that great for a 33 year old (I think) overpaid d-man.Not to mention the acquiring team would, presumably be leaving him exposed in the expansion draft. This deal is not going to look good for the Oilers – maybe be better than a buyout but that’s never going to be an “easy” contract to move.

    Shero’s still employed in this league as a GM, right? Two second rounders please!

  72. Rebillled says:

    Anyone else notice Barzal ranked higher than Leon on the Sportsnet list?

    Oh David Spade, why did you leave Farley in charge of the

  73. pts2pndr says:

    Lowetide:
    Would you sign Nurse to that deal?

    I think Nurse brings more to the table overall and given the inflationary cap I would try for 7 or 8 but I would do the same deal!

  74. Ryan says:

    Lowetide:
    Would you sign Nurse to that deal?

    I’ll tell you what I think.

    Nurse had 24 points at 5v5 with 11 second assists. I think his agent is super pissed off that Chiarelli blocked a long term deal.

    Pass it to McDavid or someone else who does and you’re getting paid.

    If I were his agent, I’d want to go long term after last season’s numbers. Look not only did my client lead the Oilers blue line in toi/60 at 5v5, but he posted 0.93 pts per hour! Positive possession metrics. Gf/60 of 55%. Second in total toi/60! That’s a top pairing defenseman!!!

    I’m not as bullish on Nurse as some. I have a lot of time for dmen who can transition the puck with an outlet pass. Nurse doesn’t transition the puck well enough for my liking.

    I’d still do the Hannafin deal for Nurse, but I’d bet Nurse and his agent want more.

  75. OriginalPouzar says:

    Lowetide:
    Would you sign Nurse to that deal?

    I don’t really like the 6 years, would prefer 7 or 8 but, yes.

  76. Pescador says:

    Ryan: I’ll tell you what I think.

    Nurse had 24 points at 5v5 with 11 second assists. I think his agent is super pissed off that Chiarelli blocked a long term deal.

    Pass it to McDavid or someone else who does and you’re getting paid.

    If I were his agent, I’d want to go long term after last season’s numbers. Look not only didmy client lead the Oilers blue line in toi/60 at 5v5, but he posted 0.93 pts per hour! Positive possession metrics. Gf/60 of 55%. Second in total toi/60! That’s a top pairing defenseman!!!

    I’m not as bullish on Nurse as some. I have a lot of time for dmen who can transition the puck with an outlet pass. Nurse doesn’t transition the puck well enough for my liking.

    I’d still do the Hannafin deal for Nurse, but I’d bet Nurse and his agent want more.

    Nurse’s agent can go suck eggs,
    I’m sure he will get more at the end of his bridge deal then he would today. whaa whaa
    5 is more then 4.95 incidentally

  77. Gerta Rauss says:

    I wonder if there would be a fit for Russell in Winnipeg

    It’s in western Canada the last I checked

  78. Wilde says:

    Lowetide:
    Would you sign Nurse to that deal?

    no

  79. godot10 says:

    Lowetide:
    Would you sign Nurse to that deal?

    Yes. I’d prefer eight years though. But 6 years under $5 million is pretty good.

  80. OriginalPouzar says:

    Gerta Rauss:
    I wonder if there would be a fit for Russell in Winnipeg

    It’s in western Canada the last I checked

    The Jets are not swimming in cap space, not when you factor in the performance bonus potential for Connor and Laine and they need to sign Morrissey.

    Not to mention that, if Russell agrees to waive to go to WIN (or anywhere), presumably he requires the team to agree to allow his NMC to continue which I assume would be a deal-breaker for any team.

  81. ArmchairGM says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    First prospect update of the season, a one-timer PP goal from Persson:

    https://youtu.be/FdyaTrr0zeE

    I can hardly wait until training camp 2019. Right defense will be the strongest position, the one with the most depth, in exactly one forever. Larsson, Benning, Bouchard, Bear, Berglund and Persson – 6 skilled young men vying for 3-4 spots. Fun times!

  82. London Jon says:

    ArmchairGM,

    Except we’ll all be complaining about the ‘Rightorium’ 😀

  83. London Jon says:

    BTW, I have two tickets for the Gothenburg game and my +1 has just pulled out.

    Upside: they are great tickets
    Downside: you’d have to sit next to me

    I don’t know how people communicate offline. PM me if that’s an option (?!) or my email is an iCloud one and it’s jonathanwaeland@

  84. OriginalPouzar says:

    London Jon:
    ArmchairGM,

    Except we’ll all be complaining about the ‘Rightorium’

    Throw Berglund on to the rightorium for training camp 2019.

    Leftorium:

    Klefbom, Nurse, Sekera, Lagesson, Russell, Jones, Samorukov

  85. frjohnk says:

    Lowetide:
    Would you sign Nurse to that deal?

    Coming out of ELC, I would say that Nurse is ahead of where Klefbom and Larsson at the same point of when they came out of their ELC. I think Klefbom and Larsson contracts are good deals

    Id rather do 8 years at that cap hit, but would do that deal.

    I do believe if the Oilers had the room, they would have given Nurse a long term deal already.

    But there is only enough room for a bridge deal

  86. Pescador says:

    London Jon:
    BTW, I have two tickets for the Gothenburg game and my +1 has just pulled out.

    Upside: they are great tickets
    Downside: you’d have to sit next to me

    I don’t know how people communicate offline. PM me if that’s an option (?!) or my email is an iCloud one and it’s jonathanwaeland@

    Oilers in Gothenburg w/ London Jon, followed closely by:
    Divorce from current wife, hmmmm tough call.
    Can I get back to you?

  87. OriginalPouzar says:

    Well, there is room, technically.

    They could sign Nurse and put Sekera on LTIR prior to the start of the season.

    The amount of cushion we get to go over the cap is determined on the date the player goes on LTIR. In the above scenario, it would reduce the LTIR cushion (the amount we can go over the cap) versus if we get close to the cap (but not over) for day 1 and then put Sekera on LTIR (we’d get $5.5M minus how far we are below the cap).

    So, technically, they could probably make it happen but it would reduce the LTIR cushion for the year.

  88. HT Joe says:

    Rebillled:
    Anyone else notice Barzal ranked higher than Leon on the Sportsnet list?

    Oh David Spade, why did you leave Farley in charge of the

    Both of them filled the role of 2nd line centre last year.
    Barzal had 85 points, Leon had 70 (leon played 4 fewer games)
    Barzal has a cap hit of ~ $900k this upcoming year, Leon has a cap hit of $8.5M

    I would rank Barzal higher based on those numbers too (Draisatl is a great player, but cap hit is a huge deal)

    EDIT TO CLARIFY: Ignoring cap hit, I would pick Draisatl over Barzal every day of the week, especially in the Western Conference. But even if Chia seems to at times, we can’t ignore cap hit.

  89. Melvis says:

    Lowetide:
    Would you sign Nurse to that deal?

    Yes and no. Which is why these things end up so protracted.

  90. Gerta Rauss says:

    OriginalPouzar: The Jets are not swimming in cap space, not when you factor in the performance bonus potential for Connor and Laine and they need to sign Morrissey.

    Not to mention that, if Russell agrees to waive to go to WIN (or anywhere), presumably he requires the team to agree to allow his NMC to continue which I assume would be a deal-breaker for any team.

    I was thinking more into the future-the bulk of the discussion above was in regards to the Seattle expansion, something that hasn’t even been announced yet.

    The Jets never did replace Enstrom(although they probably see Morrissey as just that) and we haven’t heard the last of the Trouba drama-Trouba and Myers both need contracts next summer

    Assuming a NMC is a deal breaker is just that, an assumption

  91. Gerta Rauss says:

    OriginalPouzar: So, technically, they could probably make it happen but it would reduce the LTIR cushion for the year.

    You’re overlooking contracts for Upshall and/or Garrison and any other trades/transactions ie:waiver claims they might make before the season starts

    The Oilers need to be as tight to (under) the cap before day 1 as possible, or if they go over, spend like drunken sailors to get as close to $5.5M over

  92. leadfarmer says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    Well in that scenario we had a lockout and bought him out with a compliance buyout

  93. leadfarmer says:

    Rebillled:
    Anyone else notice Barzal ranked higher than Leon on the Sportsnet list?

    Oh David Spade, why did you leave Farley in charge of the

    I dont think there is anything wrong with that. He’s dangerous every shift like Hall. Mckinnon. and other amazing skaters that have a ton of skill

  94. russ99 says:

    Still a bit bummed that we gave significant raises to Strome, Benning and Caggiula to keep Peter’s plan going to acquire players with 1994 birthdates to minimize the bad post first round drafting we did around that age group.

    Would have rather moved them for high picks/AHL skill prospects and used the capspace for a quality shooter and a NHL veteran who’s proven to perform in those roles.

    Hope Peter is right by sticking by these players, we’re in trouble if they can’t handle things this year.

    A two year bridge to Nurse is a smart move, next summer is looking very thorny cap-wise.

  95. russ99 says:

    Scungilli Slushy: Why not just trade him? He might even be willing this season if they are o*t *f t*e pl*y*ffs at the deadline knowing he can and likely will be moved the next summer.

    To me he and Sekera are tradeable because they can still play (yes there is some uncertainty with Sekera) and as UFA signings any return is acceptable to free up cap.

    Drafted players and those acquired by trade had an acquisition cost above cap cost, so a move needsto restore the value spent on them, at least.

    ** LT and his sneaky ways beat me to it

    The tricky part is that their NMCs change to partial NTCs on July 1st, also anyone trading for Sekera would need some assurances on his health, and that he can still skate at an NHL level with two major leg injuries the last two years – which we probably won’t be able to do at the deadline – and it’s a bit iffy in July.

    Obviously it will be much easier to move them in July than at the deadline.

  96. Clarkenstein says:

    Side: How many unsubstantiated rumours can one fit in a post?

    Nurse says “these guys are like brothers to me, I want to be here”

    Fan says “Nurse wants to go to Toronto and wants to leave after the “incident””

    You can call it “unsubstantiated rumors” but you’d be wrong. It is only speculation, conjecture et al.

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