Signs

Photo by Mark Williams

I’m beginning to think Ken Holland liked the 2019-20 Oilers. After signing Patrick Russell yesterday, the roster that finished second in the Pacific Divison has 17 signed men from the 23-man roster that ended the season. Three more RFA’s (Andreas Athanasiou, Matt Benning, Ethan Bear) could run that number to 20. Mike Smith and Tyler Ennis remain options, Riley Sheahan and Mike Green appear less likely. Yes, I’d say Holland liked his first Oilers team quite a lot.

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OILERS 50 MAN (43)

Russell doesn’t move the needle in terms of the starting 12, and nothing much changes today from yesterday. Joe Gambardella remains in chase mode for the job Russell owns (extra winger).

There are nine RFA’s remaining, I think Bear, Lagesson, Day and Kuffner get signed, Redmond, Vesey and Hebig move on. Benning and Athanasiou are up in the air at this time. I don’t list Ryan Mantha, he is also technically an RFA.

The signing of Russell means there are 17 men under contract for next year. Edmonton has six more spots and $10,323,835 to work with at this time. Or do they?

PROJECTED LINEUP 2020-21 WITH TWEAKS

This roster comes in with just over $1 million ($1,021,335) in cap room. I traded Alex Chiasson and Ilya Konovalov to Arizona for Antti Raanta, Jesse Puljujarvi to Pittsburgh for Jared McCann, Kris Russell for Eric Comrie. Finally, I sent Matt Benning and Mike Kesselring to Florida for Frank Vatrano. We can argue over the trades and values, I usually underpay on all these funzone deals. I do like this team, six forwards have scored 20+ goals at least once in their careers. Kailer Yamamoto isn’t one of them, meaning that at least one good offensive player will be alongside McCann on the third line.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

A busy morning on the show, we get started at 10 on TSN1260. At 10:20, Hart Levine from PuckPedia will discuss the tweet above and how best Ken Holland can find some roster wiggle room this offseason. There are going to be some tough decisions ahead. AJ Haefele from DNVR Sports will talk Avalanche at 11 and we’ll talk Jays, NFL and more. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!

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212 Responses to "Signs"

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  1. pts2pndr says:

    PennersPancakes: This is directed to you and the original poster but who would you target? I don’t think Kenny will get stuck on the cost he paid for AA but I think the gap will be his assessment of the player versus yours.

    Its likely we disagree on the value of AA but who would you rather have that will realistically have a 2.75 cap hit on a short term contract?

    Hers 5 examples of players 2.75-ish chosen from a 2019 UFA signing list sorted by AAV (this year may be different because Covid but its all we have)

    – Ryan Dzingle – 3.375 – 27 yo – 4 years – 29 points in 64 games. MIA in last 2 playoffs
    – Valtteri Flippula – 3 – 35 yo – 2 years – 21 points in 70 games, old as dust.
    – Richard Panik – 2.75 –28 yo – 4 years – Signed with cup winners, put up 22 points in 59 games
    – Colin Wilson – 2.60 – 29 yo – 1 year –re-signed with team, injured all year
    – Alex Chiasson – 2.15 – 28 yo – 2 year – This board talks about dumping him already.

    AA is turning 27 in less than a week, has history of scoring ES goals (Oilers weakness), will likely have a 1 or 2 year contract, and likely a huge fucking chip on his shoulder.

    Again this year may be different but the cream of comparable contracts are Dzingle and Panik who will have at least double the term who played on very strong teams this year.

    Sorry late to the party. I am saying a draft choice and the cap money to sign Bear long term is better than paying AA 3 million plus if he doesn’t fit on your top two lines. He is a luxury the Oilers can’t afford when they require a top six left winger. It’s not about the player per se, it’s about priorities.

  2. pts2pndr says:

    jp: Fair, you’re entitled to your opinion.

    I think AA would get $3M on the open market, were he to get there (and with a good chance of being worth it). I could be wrong.

    And that is your opinion and you are entitled to it. It’s not that AA is not value it’s that he has not been a fit with either of out top two centres and he is a luxury the Oilers can’t afford on the third line when their two most pressing needs are third line centre and a left winger for McDavid

  3. pts2pndr says:

    leadfarmer: Yes.Exactly
    While the pp is likely to remain a thing of beauty there’s no guarantee that the pk will remain that good
    The black hole at 3c and the third line in general is incredibly worrisome

    I believe if you look at the period when the Oilers with Draisaitl,Nuge, and Yamamoto together there was a very different set of numbers. There is the distinct possibility that with the addition of Benson on the wing with McDavid and a power play quarterback that can score this team can be substantially better. The Euro’s with a year of NHL hockey experience plus the possible addition of JP should also help.

  4. pts2pndr says:

    Darth Tu:
    I realise I’ve been occasionally banging on the Domi drum for a while, but it does sound like Montreal are moving on from him.He supposedly wants to play centre more than wing, maybe he slots into that 3C position for us? Or could be convinced that he’s happy on wing with either McDavid or Drai and that helps us with the plugs being pushed down to an appropriate level issue.Of course if he plays wing then we’re still looking for a 3C.

    Issue as always is cap space, so this is most likely a non starter.Maybe it’s a don’t sign AA, move some bits (Russell)and then it works.

    Thinking out loud.

    Domi depending on assets required to attain would be a great fit either as a top six winger or 3C.

  5. Munny says:

    Bag of Pucks: Hypotheticals, while fun, are a poor proof of concept for management best practices. You’re far better served pointing to real world historical examples as Ryan and I have done here.

    We don’t have to prove the utility of the wheel to skeptics when the wheel already exists.

    Well the examples seem fairly rare. And thus the wheel a massively over-exaggerated analogy.

    And this is a thread, including LT’s article, where people are proposing courses of action.

    You have an actual philosophy. Far ahead of most punters, I’d say.

    So… what’s next?

  6. Munny says:

    pts2pndr: And that is your opinion and you are entitled to it. It’s not that AA is not value it’s that he has not been a fit with either of out top two centres and he is a luxury the Oilers can’t afford on the third line when their two most pressing needs are third line centre and a left winger for McDavid

    You know there’s something to be said for this argument.

    The counter, imo, would be, we haven’t had time to try much of anything and get a handle on it.

    Plus we have the opportunity to rehabilitate his value. Perhaps his agent could be made aware of that fact. The free agent market might do better for AA in sheer dollars… but if it does, is it a better situation than a team with 97 and 29, regardless of starting day line? Would you be willing to sac half a mill to 2.5 to be on a better team?

    Just a couple of years, and if the cap goes up after that and you’ve been a good lad, you’re a UFA and the world is your oyster. Or maybe again you want to stay.

    And that’s the way I’d pitch it to him… we could give you a one year QO, and you could be making way less next year, if you suck again, or… We could give you a two year, give you some security and you’d be getting a new contract as a UFA when the Covid Cap ends. Two years on the same team as the Art Ross Twins…

    I’d also say we can do something about the other two AND sign AA, but something else has to happen, like salary traded out. Not hopeless, but difficult.

  7. OriginalPouzar says:

    pts2pndr: What did AA bring to the table? Granted small sample size but he did not fit with either of arguably the two best offensive centres in the NHL. At his price point he is too expensive for third line given the greater need is a left winger for Connor. It seems very simple to me. Keeping a bolt that doesn’t fit is a fool’s errand when the cap is tight. Wishing it was different won’t make it so!

    but the player scored above 1.8 P/60 (one year above 2.0), with a mix of middle and top 6 linemates, for 4 straight season before this past. He had a crap year and his Oilers sample was 13 games, with a 5 months break.

    His NHL history shows he’s a good bet to pop 15-20 goals playing in the middle six.

    On this team, that has value and is worth $3M.

  8. who says:

    Bag of Pucks: Cap effiency makes any team better. A cap system assumes a level playing field and the team that scores the most goals wins. Do you sense a correlation between goals and cap efficiency? You should.

    If you need pointless hypotheticals as so many on this site seem to demand, i gave you one yesterday.

    Nuge out for Vatrano, Acciari and Weegar in. Added bonus, Weegar enables you to trade one of Larsson or Nurse to go shopping for even more Fs.

    It seems pretty naive to just divide a players salary by the number of goals he’s scored to come up with a cap effiency value.
    Using goal differential would be a step in the right direction but it still leaves an incomplete picture.
    I’m not saying Nuge is untradeable, but your example is just trading 1 good forward for 2 average forwards and a defenseman. And then trading a defenseman to replace Nuge. Why not just sign two average forwards in free agency? Sounds like it’s going to be a buyers market.
    I think we should try to add more good forwards before we start trading them away. I’m all for cap effiency, but Nuges salary is not the problem.

  9. OriginalPouzar says:

    Harpers Hair: Landeskog missed 15 games.

    Rantanen missed 27.

    Stop making things up.

    Nothing I said was made up. He played over 600 minutes with Ladesgog and 200 without.

    His top four icemates are who I said they were.

    I look forward to your apology for accusing me of making things up and posting without being in the know

    https://www.naturalstattrick.com/playerreport.php?fromseason=20192020&thruseason=20192020&stype=2&sit=5v5&stdoi=oi&rate=n&v=t&playerid=8477492

  10. OriginalPouzar says:

    JT Miller is great – he’s had a phenomenal offensive season and has been lights out in the playoffs.

    Of course, his 70 points this season was his second time over 50 points and first time in 4 years. Is it a “career year” or will he revert back, even to the mid-40s that he’s scored in the past?

    He is also seldom used on the PK and a pure winger.

    To compare his contract to Nuge’s next contract and cite division inefficiency between the two is far too early.

    Don’t get me wrong, he’s had a great season but, for now, its a one season outlier – I do expect him to continue to be better in Vancouver than he was in Tampa, as far as production, but its a one-season outlier at this point.

    Given

  11. OriginalPouzar says:

    pts2pndr: Sorry late to the party. I am saying a draft choice and the cap money to sign Bear long term is better than paying AA3 million plus if he doesn’t fit on your top two lines. He is a luxury the Oilers can’t afford when they require a top six left winger. It’s not about the player per se, it’s about priorities.

    The Oilers require a winger in the top 6 but also skill in the middle six.

    These aren’t luxuries, these are holes than need to be filled in order to take the team to the next level.

    Perhaps Benson, McLeod, Lavoie and Puljujarvi are those players but AA has established himself in the NHL as such a player in 4 of the last 5 years.

  12. jp says:

    pts2pndr: And that is your opinion and you are entitled to it. It’s not that AA is not value it’s that he has not been a fit with either of out top two centres and he is a luxury the Oilers can’t afford on the third line when their two most pressing needs are third line centre and a left winger for McDavid

    I don’t think he’s played enough to say he isn’t a fit with Connor or Leon.

    He also has a history of scoring goals with not so much help so he could be valuable on the 3rd line as well as in the top 6.

    If you believe a LW for McDavid is a major need (it’s further down my list) and that AA is not an answer, then clearly moving on makes sense.

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