Draft Week Post No. 6: Europe on $5 a Day

by Lowetide
Photo by Rob Ferguson

This is Mark Arcobello. He signed an AHL deal back in 2010, went to the ECHL Stockton Thunder to earn his way to the AHL, and then proceeded to play so well once there (Oklahoma City Barons) that the Oilers had to sign him to an NHL deal.

In 78 games with the Oilers, he scored 11-19-30 and then Edmonton traded him for Derek Roy. You probably don’t remember him, but he was relentless on the forecheck and his wingers included David Perron and Jordan Eberle. I don’t know how the next 10 days are going to turn out, but it looks like there’s a chance Edmonton will make fewer than five draft picks in the 2020 selection. That means procurement via free agency, the old fashioned “Charlie Huddy” way. The Oilers need marcobellos!

THE ATHLETIC!

I’m proud to be writing for The Athletic, and pleased to be part of a great team with Daniel Nugent-Bowman and Jonathan Willis. Here is our recent work.

UNDRAFTED FREE AGENTS

RC Brett Neumann is a small (5.09, 176) center who just wrapped up his junior career with the Oshawa Generals (OHL). He is 21 now, posted 45-38-83 totals in 62 games in 2019-20. He is fast and has a great shot, 298 shots total. He’s a good prospect.  

LC James Hamblin is already signed to an AHL deal, but his skill level is at a level where that may one day morph into an NHL contract ala Arcobello. He is on loan to a Swedish league team at this time.

KLEFBOM

Extreme disappointment in hearing the news yesterday. I went back over my notes and did get a tip from a friend on Klefbom being in pain (this would have been February) but planning on toughing it out. Chronic pain anywhere is not good when you’re 27, and the first thing to do is make sure Mr. Klefbom can spend the rest of his life without pain. Hockey comes after. Selfishly, I hope he’s only away for one year but that’s his decision and we wish him the best.

OEL

Is this deal going to happen? What are the assets out? Great questions, I thought I would chime in with some thoughts on it.

Ken Holland and Dave Tippett brought in their first Oilers team to a second place finish in the Pacific Division. That’s a damned good result. The two old bulls used kindling, string and crooked nails to build enough support for Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl and now the brick-by-brick building can continue through the offseason.

Holland is one year away from having real money to wheel, but will also have Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Ethan Bear and Adam Larsson to sign.

If he can use the Klefbom LTIR to bring in OEL for this year, things look a little better in terms of cap for 2021-22 and after. There are limitations of course, Edmonton has to be cap compliant in time for opening night but that can be managed any number of ways.

The price sounds severe based on reports and I have no reason to believe the media is lying about No. 14 overall and Evan Bouchard being the nut on this deal. I don’t see that as a reasonable price, even if you include Arizona taking on James Neal or Kris Russell.

So, if Holland makes the deal as stated then it’s an overpay on the face of it. Holland and Tippett are weighing their window here, just as Peter Chiarelli did in 2015. You can get mad as hell and I get it, but the Chiarelli plan was to send out high picks on less than sure things. That isn’t what we’re talking about now, today. OEL is a very good NHL defenseman. If Arizona retains and takes on a salary, then Ken Holland might deem that to be worthwhile. I’m about building through the system, and Holland’s past suggests that’s part of his plan, too. He has McDavid and Draisaitl entering their prime. That has to be a consideration.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

Hell’s a poppin’ in Edmonton, and Frank Seravalli from TSN will join us right at 10 this morning to chat about it on TSN1260. Nuge news, Klefbom news, OEL and more, right at 10. Afterward, we’ll be reading your comments and discussing the last 24 hours and what it might mean moving forward. Matt Iwanyk joins us at 11 for NBA, NFL and MLB talk and then Laura Armstrong from Toronto Star will chat Blue Jays at 11:25. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!

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jp

Unfriendly Regional Arachnid Individual:
With the OEL thing no longer likely and Klefbom likely out (a-fucking-gain), here’s a good time to resurface my Russell for Goligoski suggestion from a ways back. Arizona saves 2.5mil and Edmonton fills the hole left by Klefbom for one year at a net cap increase of 1.475mil. He has an 8-team NTC, but it’s possible we wouldn’t be on that list.

That would be a nice move for the Oilers if the Coyotes/Goligoski/Russell were all willing.

Considering Russell was playing 2RD last time the Oilers were on the ice though I wonder whether Holland/Tippett see the need to make a move.

Unfriendly Regional Arachnid Individual

With the OEL thing no longer likely and Klefbom likely out (a-fucking-gain), here’s a good time to resurface my Russell for Goligoski suggestion from a ways back. Arizona saves 2.5mil and Edmonton fills the hole left by Klefbom for one year at a net cap increase of 1.475mil. He has an 8-team NTC, but it’s possible we wouldn’t be on that list.

Harpers Hair

Ryan:
Ryan,

This kid is good.

https://theathletic.com/2108562/2020/10/01/does-an-oliver-ekman-larsson-trade-make-sense-for-the-canucks/

He’s very good.

But, if the Canucks can move Eriksson’s contract, the net increase is only $2.5 million.

Can you get a top pair D anywhere for $2.5 million for the next two seasons?

And, after next season, Edler’s $6 million comes off the cap so then it becomes an issue of how OEL ages.

Earlier, I linked to an article by Jon Willis who took a deep dive and came to the conclusion it would be a bet he would make.

Harpers Hair

Ryan: Forget about OEL for a minute, what do you think it would cost to move the Eriksson contract? Be honest…

Considering Covid-19, the flat cap, he can’t skate or play hockey anymore, and that he has signing bonuses in each of the last two years rendering it buyout proof, I don’t there’s a realistic deal out there.

Maybe there’s another team that would do it for a first in the last year of the contract, but that was the price before the pandemic.

The hockey news has Juolevi at #10 on their list of worst draft busts in the past ten years recently. Now, i haven’t watched him play…

But that looks like a laughable trade proposal.

Lots of questions there.

Eriksson is actually a very good defensive player and penalty killer but his contract is WAY over his value.

If he was being paid $2.5 million, he would be worth it.

For the Coyotes, they won’t really care about his cap hit since he’s owed only $5 million on the final two years of his contract.

Juolevi missed pretty much an entire season due to hip surgery but has since regained his mobility and actually got into a game in the playoffs on the third pair.

He just turned 22 in the spring so has some time to recover his value.

He did manage to score 25 points in 45 games in his comeback season so there appears to be a pulse. Not a bad bet to make as a throw in on a deal.

pts2pndr

Harpers Hair: Can the Oilers afford a $7.5 million winger fir the next 8 years?

The question you should be asking is can Vancouver afford to be paying an aging performance declining D 8.2 per year for the next seven years in a flat cap world.

Ryan

Harpers Hair:
The latest spitballing from Rick Dhaliwal.

2021 1st.

Loui Eriksson

Jake Virtanen

Olli Juolvei

For OEL.

Forget about OEL for a minute, what do you think it would cost to move the Eriksson contract? Be honest…

Considering Covid-19, the flat cap, he can’t skate or play hockey anymore, and that he has signing bonuses in each of the last two years rendering it buyout proof, I don’t there’s a realistic deal out there.

Maybe there’s another team that would do it for a first in the last year of the contract, but that was the price before the pandemic.

The hockey news has Juolevi at #10 on their list of worst draft busts in the past ten years recently. Now, i haven’t watched him play…

But that looks like a laughable trade proposal.

Harpers Hair

flyfish1168: That’s good. I don’t want him

Somehow, I don’t think he’s going to miss you…at all.

Harpers Hair

jp: What jerking happened this season?

He’s played 11 KHL games (1-3-4) this year and none is any other league.

He’s being outscored by Samorukov, defenseman, 3rd round pick.

Everything’s on track though?

Very limited minutes in the early going.

Harpers Hair

jp: Their regular season numbers are Koskinen .909 and Demko .906 (NHL.com). And Koskinen is .911 if you exclude his 4 games from 2010.

Did Demko’s number go up that much on 4 playoff games?? I guess he hasn’t played 40 regular season games yet.. Still surprising.

Also, where can you find regular season and playoff numbers melded? That would be useful but I’ve never seen it.

Hockey DB player’s page.

OriginalPouzar

Its interesting, he played almost 15 min/G in 4 playoff games last year but is under 12 min/G during this year’s regular season. Averaging 1.3 shots per game.

Heck of a fight he had though.

jp

Harpers Hair: Yes.

His KHL team jerked him around all last season and has done some of that this season as well.

What jerking happened this season?

He’s played 11 KHL games (1-3-4) this year and none is any other league.

He’s being outscored by Samorukov, defenseman, 3rd round pick.

Everything’s on track though?

flyfish1168

Harpers Hair: Doesn’t matter what Oiler fans fanaticize about

OEL doesn’tt want to play for the Oilers.

That’s good. I don’t want him

jp

Harpers Hair:

Demko has a career save percentage of .914

Koskinen has a career save percentage of .909.

Their regular season numbers are Koskinen .909 and Demko .906 (NHL.com). And Koskinen is .911 if you exclude his 4 games from 2010.

Did Demko’s number go up that much on 4 playoff games?? I guess he hasn’t played 40 regular season games yet.. Still surprising.

Also, where can you find regular season and playoff numbers melded? That would be useful but I’ve never seen it.

OriginalPouzar

There were a few games last season where Podkolzin was given like less than a minute of ice – really tough for an 18 year old to get much ice in that league. I thought he was gaining more traction this year – at least early (haven’t heard about lately).

OriginalPouzar

Harpers Hair: You don’t know that.

In any event…

Demko has a career save percentage of .914

Koskinen has a career save percentage of .909.

When not being spot-started as a back-up and playing a pseudo-starers role in an NHL season, he is .905 and over 3.00.

Harpers Hair

jp: You mean Podkolzin?

Yes.

His KHL team jerked him around all last season and has done some of that this season as well.

Harpers Hair

OriginalPouzar:
The current Canucks starting tender had a .905 save percentage and a GAA over 3.0.

In his first opportunity to take the starting reigns for a bit in the NHL, due to injury, he failed.

Not sure how the Nucks have better tending given it looks like Markstrom will not be re-signed.

You don’t know that.

In any event…

Demko has a career save percentage of .914

Koskinen has a career save percentage of .909.

Material Elvis

I’m really glad that the Oilers have apparently dodged the OEL bullet. I wouldn’t sign him to that contract today if he was a UFA, never mind give up additional assets for the right to do so. Management needs to keep their focus on the weaknesses: 3C and goalie. That $8.25M is better spent elsewhere.

jp

Harpers Hair: The KHL often punishes young players who are on an NHL track.

You have to take their stats with a huge grain of salt.

You mean Podkolzin?

leadfarmer

Harpers Hair: But he didn’t.

The Canucks are set at centre.

Their winger depth is far superior.

Their goaltending is better.

And, if he is able to join the Canucks, their top pairing D blows away the Oilers.

And they have a long tradition of Swedes in the organization.

Pettersson, Edler, Markstrom, Hoglander as well as players like the Sedins who have played with OEL at international tournaments.

While the Oilers have some Swedes coming, it’s likely OEL hardly knows any of them.

I can just see the look on their face when they get offered Erickson a first and Juolevi, when I’m sure Boston started the negotiation with a 1st Debrusk and a B level prospect

TheGreatBigMac

rocket:
Ethan Bear RFA – isn’t there a deadline to sign him?why hasn’t it been done yet –I assume parties are ‘apart’ on the negotiations.

Oil don’t have cap to sign him for term. Now that Klef is out, waiting to sign him might help to stay under the cap until Klef is on ltir.

OriginalPouzar

The current Canucks starting tender had a .905 save percentage and a GAA over 3.0.

In his first opportunity to take the starting reigns for a bit in the NHL, due to injury, he failed.

Not sure how the Nucks have better tending given it looks like Markstrom will not be re-signed.

Harpers Hair

Scungilli Slushy: That’s a first (late round and next if possible season, if they are the bomb you say)and their fails, and a useless player getting paid.

No different than any Oiler fan fantasy scenario:

Doesn’t matter what Oiler fans fanaticize about

OEL doesn’tt want to play for the Oilers.

Harpers Hair

Scungilli Slushy: To me that means he can’t read the tea leaves.

Pass.

Bruins are done.

Canucks are fine but anybody that has an eye for the future wouldn’t pick the Dys over the Oilers.

But he didn’t.

The Canucks are set at centre.

Their winger depth is far superior.

Their goaltending is better.

And, if he is able to join the Canucks, their top pairing D blows away the Oilers.

And they have a long tradition of Swedes in the organization.

Pettersson, Edler, Markstrom, Hoglander as well as players like the Sedins who have played with OEL at international tournaments.

While the Oilers have some Swedes coming, it’s likely OEL hardly knows any of them.

OriginalPouzar
pts2pndr

Harpers Hair: The issue arises the following two seasons when he is due $10.5 million a year in cash

Obviously, the Coyotes want to move this contract now or we wouldn’t be having the discussion.

Trying to move him next year with those massive cash outlays coming would eliminate many teams…and of course OEL has a full NMC so he controls where he goes.

Assuming he still wants to play in Vancouver in a year, the leverage would shift dramatically in Vancouvers favour since the Coyotes will be desperate to dispose of the contract before those payments become due.

With your trade pieces they would actually have to spend more in the first year. The object of the exercise as I see it is financial survival. The team is about to sink but the player salaries you have going forward sink their boat before they pull away from the dock. Longer term it works. If what you believe is true and they get a partial 20/21 season a number of teams survival will be tenuous. If they lose money for the 20/21 season and or the 20/21 season is canceled with a reset to Oct start for a regular 21/22 season you will see a couple of teams declare bankruptcy. Interesting times ahead. Much of the world is already adjusting to a new reality without pro sports as we used to know them and are developing different ways to occupy their spare time.

Scungilli Slushy

Harpers Hair:
The latest spitballing from Rick Dhaliwal.

2021 1st.

Loui Eriksson

Jake Virtanen

Olli Juolvei

For OEL.

That’s a first (late round and next if possible season, if they are the bomb you say) and their fails, and a useless player getting paid.

No different than any Oiler fan fantasy scenario:

jp

OriginalPouzar:
I missed it earlier but Maksimov has 1G/2A giving him 4 points in 3 MHL games (the second tier Russian pro league).

He’s been yo-yo’d between the two leagues.

Hopefully he get in to a rhythm in the VHL and then earns a call up to the K and sticks – Yamamoto style!

Those are good numbers for Maksimov.

Only 7 players scored 1.0 P/Game in that league last season and 3 of them were KHL/VHL tweeners.

If he keeps up 4 pts/3 games he won’t be in the VHL for too long.

Lewis Grant

Harpers Hair: They will do a Canadian Division with all games played within the division.

And the Stanley Cup can be awarded to the best hockey team in Canada!

(The American division can content itself with the Avco Cup)

leadfarmer

godot10: Boston can top that easily, with a first round pick, Debrusk, and Carlo.Or even Lauzon instead of Carlo.

Why are the Bruins so quiet??
Are they just being giddy that OEL is available?
This has them written all over it.
A top LHD that can qb a pp is exactly what they need
They have Mcavoy and Carlo on the left side

OriginalPouzar

rocket:
Ethan Bear RFA – isn’t there a deadline to sign him?why hasn’t it been done yet –I assume parties are ‘apart’ on the negotiations.

No deadline to sign him. A deadline to submit his qualifying offer (to keep his RFA rights) which is on October 7 – that will happen in normal course and the two sides will continue to negotiate a deal marginally over his QO.

Scungilli Slushy

Harpers Hair: OEL is controlling the agenda by only agreeing to waive his NTC for Boston or Vancouver.

That gives those teams leverage.

To me that means he can’t read the tea leaves.

Pass.

Bruins are done.

Canucks are fine but anybody that has an eye for the future wouldn’t pick the Dys over the Oilers.

godot10

Harpers Hair: It comes down to cash.

Eriksson is only due $5million spread over two seasons.

Virtanen is a RFA…likely around $2.5 million.

Juolevi is on an ELC.

That’s three players for less than one season of OEL.

And a first round pick for the trouble.

Boston can top that easily, with a first round pick, Debrusk, and Carlo. Or even Lauzon instead of Carlo.

jp

godot10: One would think GM’s would know that, but apparently not. Yandle and Shattenkirk all over again.

Agreed that Krug’s is going to be a tough deal (assuming he gets more than the $6.5M the Bruins offered).

And Shattenkirk stopped scoring after he signed, so that didn’t go well for a sheltered D.

But Yandle, is his such an awful deal? He’s still scoring 50-60 points a season for $6.3M. For sure he’s generally been sheltered, but wtf, did you know he faced 51% elites in 17-18?? (and 35% in 18-19).

Anyway, yeah, Krug and OEL are not the same player at all.

Kinger_Oil.redux

Jaxon:
If there was ever a time to keep your powder dry, it is when going into a season that is not guaranteed to even happen. It may not start until late, it may start but not finish, it may start and stop all year long, it may be a weird hybrid of bubbles, and moving to the US for a while and not being home for months. This is not a year to say, “We’re in win-now mode”. It is a year to say, “Fuck it, let’s roll with what we’ve got and see where it takes us while we keep building for the future. Let’s not add older veterans, but youngsters who will be maturing as the NHL gets back to normal, even better youngsters that we won’t have to protect in expansion or cheap vets that we’re not afraid of losing and won’t cost much in assets”.

– Concur: Your dead cap goes from $3.8 to $1.5 after whatever the 2020 “season” looks like

– By 2021, Larsson + Russel $8MM is freed up, Chiasson gone, Neal buyout way cheaper

– Goalies are cheap this off-season

– Bring Pool back,

– Get a bunch more Ennis/Archebello types (I liked that LT reverted to his “This is” intro of players)

– See what you’ve got with the next crop of draft and develops.

– Do hockey trades

– If a team is desperate, use your balance sheet for a steal. Have total information, and max flexibility, then give ‘er

– This was a very good team that was getting better as season went on (as good as Dallas). You don’t know what we need to win the Cup. Just get better, and plan

Jaxon

Offer Nugent-Hopkins $6.5M x 5 if he signs now, or $7M x 8 if he signs after the expansion draft.

leadfarmer

OriginalPouzar:
Feel free to read Gregor’s article an ON.

6 mil per???
What is he smoking??

rocket

Ethan Bear RFA – isn’t there a deadline to sign him? why hasn’t it been done yet – I assume parties are ‘apart’ on the negotiations.

Jaxon

If there was ever a time to keep your powder dry, it is when going into a season that is not guaranteed to even happen. It may not start until late, it may start but not finish, it may start and stop all year long, it may be a weird hybrid of bubbles, and moving to the US for a while and not being home for months. This is not a year to say, “We’re in win-now mode”. It is a year to say, “Fuck it, let’s roll with what we’ve got and see where it takes us while we keep building for the future. Let’s not add older veterans, but youngsters who will be maturing as the NHL gets back to normal, even better youngsters that we won’t have to protect in expansion or cheap vets that we’re not afraid of losing and won’t cost much in assets”.

OriginalPouzar

Feel free to read Gregor’s article an ON.

Harpers Hair

OriginalPouzar: Nope, the quote was related to his ability to play both the wing and center – not his desire to play one over the other. I think he’s just fine lining up on the wing with McDavid or Drai and playing with them both on the PP.

Can the Oilers afford a $7.5 million winger fir the next 8 years?

OriginalPouzar

Harpers Hair: Read the last paragraph again…

He wants to play centre.

Nope, the quote was related to his ability to play both the wing and center – not his desire to play one over the other. I think he’s just fine lining up on the wing with McDavid or Drai and playing with them both on the PP.

Material Elvis

Harpers Hair: Read the last paragraph again…

He wants to play centre.

I read that as a negotiation tactic. The fact that he can play center makes him more valuable (i.e. higher AAV). No matter where he signs, it is up to the coach to decide where he plays, not RNH or his agent.

OriginalPouzar

TheGreatBigMac: The preds have prospect cupboard is empty at LD, Sami could get it done but that seems too rich for 1 year of Bonino.

and I only want one year of Bonino – not interested in a re-sign….

OriginalPouzar

Chris:
I’m quite surprised that there hasn’t been much for prognosis for next season. My guess? Canadian government will not allow US teams into the country, thereby forcing Canadian teams to find US homes next year. Fans will be allowed in to some degree to help offset costs and not totally lose fan revenue.

Bakersfield Oilers anyone?

Could be true but, of course, the border situation could very well be vastly different come January.

Just one example, the Edmonton airport is going to be testing an almost instantaneous testing method and, if it works out, it is likely to change the mandatory 14 day quarantine.

I’m sure its just one of countless trials being implemented.

Crossing the border is a massive issue to be resolved but 4-5 months is a long time to find resolution.

OriginalPouzar

Shit, maybe Broberg continues to play top pairing minutes and put up points in the SHL (rare for a teenager) and then dominates the World Juniors (which I expect) and simply doesn’t head back to Sweden after ——– seems unlikely but, if camps are starting up in January, the timing……

OriginalPouzar

leadfarmer: I think you are very strongly overrating the NFLs ability to operate with fans so far
https://www.google.com/amp/s/dknation.draftkings.com/platform/amp/nfl/2020/8/21/21396123/nfl-schedule-2020-stadiums-without-fans-team-status-covid-19-pandemic
And these are mostly large outdoor stadiums

I acknowledged its not been perfect and I acknowledged the difference between outdoor stadiums (except Dallas) and indoor arenas.

I was also very clear that it was just one piece of a swarth of information that is going to be coming to the NHL from the NFL, the NBA and many European hockey leagues.

Harpers Hair

OriginalPouzar:
Its interesting to note that Willis’ pro-OEL story wasn’t referenced at all when the Oilers were potentially in line to consummate a deal but, now that they are out and the Canucks are a front-runner, its important reading!

Why didn’t you post a link earlier?

Harpers Hair

leadfarmer: Sure but dumping Erickson would cost them a first rounder by itself
Juolevi and Virtanen for OEL is bad

I’d demand a 1st and Podkolzin at the least

It comes down to cash.

Eriksson is only due $5million spread over two seasons.

Virtanen is a RFA…likely around $2.5 million.

Juolevi is on an ELC.

That’s three players for less than one season of OEL.

And a first round pick for the trouble.