Buck Dharma

by Lowetide
Tyler Benson photo by Mark Williams

Tyler Benson has some top flight skills, including great vision and passing ability. Wins battles, good coverage, but those seam passes are his calling card. Benson signed his second contract on Wednesday a one-year, two-way contract that pays him $750,000 NHL and $100,000 AHL. He also gets $150,000 guaranteed salary.

The man chosen after Benson in the 2016 draft, Rasmus Asplund has a two-year, $825,00 deal with a minor league salary of $775,000 in year one and $875,000 in year two.

Asplund played in 57 NHL games during his entry deal, scoring 8-6-14, seven of those goals in 28 games during the 2020-21 season. Benson? 7 career games, all in 2019-20. We don’t know what we don’t know, but everything is a tell and this one has a certain look.


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’s the latest!


Among the dozens and dozens (about 400) of Oilers draft picks since 1979, everyone has a comparable (completely untrue, McDavid among others are unique) from the past.

Benson was signed yesterday, and his comparable was drafted 30 years before him. Kim Issel would play four NHL games, so Benson is already clear of him, but the pro numbers in entry deals for each player are quite similar.

Issel was a right wing with size (6.04, 196) and scoring skill. Issel’s biggest problem was the Oilers RW depth chart during his entry contract: Jari Kurri, Glenn Anderson, Norm Lacombe, Kelly Buchberger. When those names began to move on, names like Joe Murphy and others appeared.

Benson’s competition for LW work has been less than Kurri-Anderson level, but he hasn’t been able to slide past names like Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Milan Lucic, Tobias Rieder, James Neal and Joakim Nygard.

  1. That new contract makes him more vulnerable to waivers. I agree. The contract is both a blessing and a curse.
  2. Why? It’s a blessing because a team needing an inexpensive winger who can add some offense will be able to grab this contract with not a worry in the world. It’s one year, lowest salary and cap total available, and Benson is a good bet to deliver some offense based on his resume.
  3. Why could it be a curse? This is a big training camp for Benson. If he comes in fit and determined as I expect, and does everything he can to make the team (like Kyle Brodziak 15 years ago), gets waived and no one claims him, well that’s a humbling experience.
  4. Do you think that will happen? No, I think his chances are making the team are good, and there will be a team with someone injured and headed to IR. Claiming him is as easy as breathing air.
  5. Who is his main competition? I think Devin Shore makes the team, so it comes down to Benson versus Brendan Perlini, with Dylan Holloway as an outsider who would need to make it as a top-9 forward to stay. That likely means a LW depth chart of Foegele-Nuge-Holloway-Shore-???? and the question marks are Benson and Perlini.
  6. Why isn’t he in the NHL? The pandemic forced the organization to make decisions early and mostly stay with them, although the club did recall Ryan McLeod so if there was truly a need for Benson in the NHL a year ago accommodations could have been made to get it done. Edmonton’s left-wingers last season were Nuge, Dominik Kahun, James Neal, Tyler Ennis, Devin Shore and Joakim Nygard. Benson wouldn’t have played in front of Ennis, and Tippett preferred Shore, so there wasn’t a need for recall.
  7. Why isn’t he in the NHL? Suspect everyone believes he’s NHL-ready and this is the finished product, all he needs is NHL experience. He didn’t get a job in 2020-21 because Nygard and Ennis played in the NHL previously and were better bets. At the time of making the decision, it wasn’t known for certain that NHL teams could recall players from the States. You may recall some teams relocated their AHL clubs to Canada because of it.
  8. Is that the only reason? Hell no. One never knows, but it’s reasonable to assume the organization has some questions about his being able to help them win NHL hockey games. If that wasn’t an issue, he probably makes the team after his fantastic season in the AHL at age 20.
  9. What is the ideal situation? He shows up at camp with low body fat, runs over the first Calgary Flames opponent he encounters during the first preseason game September 26, picks up two assists including a primary on the game winner and the coach notices. Then he does a Kyle Brodziak from there.
  10. Does he have a better chance than Marody? I’d say they are about even. Benson has more range of skills, Marody is more pure skill. We’ll see. It’s possible both get waived.
  11. Will he clear waivers? I think someone will claim him if he’s exposed. He has a solid offensive resume, despite the lack of goals. Benson’s passing is NHL quality, he can make plays that lead to goals.
  12. Does he have any chance of making it? Yes, I believe so. If we make a list of second round picks who didn’t make it past 250 NHL games over the last dozen years (Colin McDonald, J-F Jacques, Geoff Paukovich, Anton Lander, Curtis Hamilton, Mitch Moroz, Marco Roy), Benson’s AHL numbers age 20-22 are better. He has talent, it finds its way.
  13. Will Holland force Tippett to play Benson? I don’t think that captures the relationship between a general manager and a coach. I expect it’s a very rare case when a GM and a coach are far away on evaluating a specific player. If Holland were so convinced of Benson (we have no evidence he is), then parking him at the end of the roster is easy enough to do.
  14. Benson is a hometown boy, popular fellow. Management just traded Ethan Bear, a fantastically popular actual NHL player. I don’t think that’s part of the equation.
  15. Is he is claimed by an NHL team, which one will it be? A building team like San Jose would be a candidate, Seattle needs skill forwards, Detroit claims everybody.
  16. If he is lost to waivers, will Edmonton regret it? It’s rare. Ray Whitney was waived November 5, 1997 and that move (Florida claimed him) bit the organization in the ass for 16 years, including the SCF in 2006.
  17. Final question: Ideal linemates for Benson? Derek Ryan is very skilled, and a guy like Kailer Yamamoto would be terrific in turning over pucks. A finisher would be good, not sure the Oilers have one on right-wing beyond Marody who will play that far down the lineup.


At 10 this morning on TSN1260, we hit the ground running and maybe we get an Oilers signing. I’m thinking it’ll be Slater Koekkoek, but Jordie Benn has been mentioned. At 10:20 today, Marshall Ferguson from CFL on TSN and CFL.ca pops in to discuss Week 2 in the CFL and the feature game this weekend (Hamilton v. SK). BJ DeGroot from The Score Wisconsin will talk Packers and Aaron Rodgers, and at 11:25 we’ll hear from old friend Jared Diamond from the Wall Street Journal about a fantastic and messy pennant race in the AL East. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. Talk soon!


You may also like

4.1 10 votes
Article Rating
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Victoria Oil

Stampeders lose. And there is much rejoicing.


Little bit late.

Koekkoek, Slater
GP   TOI   CF%   FF%   GF%   PDO
18   196:40 41.58  41.84  25.00  0.940

w/ Barrie				w/o Barrie
	63:12	44.44	41.33	14.29	133:28	39.92	41.21	33.33
w/ Larsson				w/o Larsson
	56:43	32.73	37.33	25.00	139:58	45.04	43.48	25.00
w/ Bouchard				w/o Bouchard
	51:40	43.14	41.25	50.00	27:33	45.83	46.67	0.00
w/ Nurse				w/o Nurse
	15:34	40.74	40.91	0.00	181:06	41.64	41.92	28.57
w/ Bear					w/o Bear
	6:58	66.67	60.00	100.00	114:13	40.42	42.26	20.00
w/ Jones				w/o Jones
	1:52	-----	-----	-----	62:49	41.26	41.18	14.29
w/ Russell				w/o Russell
	1:13	66.67	100.00	-----	76:13	41.43	42.71	40.00

He wasn’t very good by the numbers last season, but something that seems to be overlooked is the sample size of 18 games and 196 minutes of total TOI. That would fit in my definition of small sample size.

How was Koekkoek in 2019-20?

 GP      TOI     CF%     FF%     GF%     PDO
42      633:33  51.86   51.61   52.94   1.010

        Most Common     w/ MCDP                         w/o MCDP
GP      D Partner       TOI     CF%     FF%     GF%     TOI     CF%     FF%     GF%
42      Maatta          367:46  53.04   52.31   56.76   209.22  52.31   50.00   46.15

Night and day.

If the Oilers might have a player with Perlini, then they might have one with Koekkoek, as well, IMO. He had by far the worst season of his career, but it’s the outlier at the moment [source]. Otherwise he is/was(?) a decent defenceman.


Of note, most of KK’s games were also early in the year when Smith has hurt and team was, overall, not playing very well.


89.57% On-Ice SV% and 4.44 On-Ice SH% this year, compared to 92.79% and 8.26% the year prior in Chicago.


Kokkoek was on with Reid Wilkins tonight – mentioned that when he came back for the playoffs, the collarbone was only 60% healed and he was relying on metal plates!


But he had Bouchard cheering him on from the hotel room nearby.


Jones and Lagesson as well – the guys that play the same position.


Have you ever heard of 7 D being dressed in a playoff game it has happened before especially when you have banged up D.


So Koekkoek is playing on a 60% healed clavicle, is on for the game tying GA in the elimination game, sits the last 60 minutes of that game. Jones and Lagesson are the in the press box.

If you were holding out any hope at all that Tippett has a clue when it comes to managing D, that sound you are hearing is a puff of smoke. It’s the snap in Infinity Wars. This is the same Tippett that is inexplicably given significant leeway and respected by hockey ops enough that they rebuilt the D for him.

What a completely bizarre decision. You (general audience; not you specifically, OP) may not agree with me, and I very well may be wrong, but I take solace in not being in cahoots with buffoons.


If this season turns into a gong show and they don’t swap Tippett for Woodcroft ASAP, then it’s an all out clown show. Top to bottom.


It is notable that Woody relies on his vets alot down in the Bake.


Shortening the bench in OT isn’t that bizzare of a decision – one would think that Bear/Koekkoek would have got a few more shifts to give the other four a breather but it is worth noting that the series winner was scored after a Bear shift and a tough line change.

In any event – Playfair probably had more to do with the deployment than Tip……

Decidedly Skeptical Fan

I take solace in the likelihood that this is Tip’s last year behind the Oil bench. The fact that it is going to take another first round playoff exit to make it happen pains me but it is what it is.


I truly hope that’s the endgame. It wasn’t just the last playoffs series that’s had me puzzled. Tippett has made more than a few questionable calls in his tenure with the Oil.


Rebuilt the D for Tippet? Not sure it was his fault that Klef has what is likely a career ending injury or Larsson chose to sign elsewhere. That is what drove the rebuilding of the D more than anything.

Scungilli Slushy

Doesn’t explain why he wasn’t good before does it

He needs a physically strong partner

Maybe that’s Bouch?

My goodness it drives me bonkers, there are certain things in physical contact sports that remain true regardless the era or latest flavour

If hitting holding and obstruction are allowed, and you are weaker and especially if you are not as mobile, you better be Datsyuk or Lidstrom or you hurt your team.

Your teammates have to carry you. Work needs to be done, specific work. If you can’t do it someone else has to.

It’s no different than coke machines, opposite spectrum same problem.

Bellichek – do your job, period. Then it works out for the group.

We’ll see if collecting sullied former first rounders pays off on D.

Scungilli Slushy

So if they signed Kooks, I’m sure that is his nick, they all get one, I wager as soon as OMB blows it up

Nurse Barrie
Keith Bouch

They play them more evenly as the puck can move off each pair and there is a balance of size and experience.

Turning Tikkanese

KK CC… and the Sunshine Band??? I keed, I keed…


They could have Disco Night in Edmonton.



They cropped Quinn out but he sure matches Devil Red 🤣🤣🤣

  1. Final question: Ideal linemates for Benson? Derek Ryan is very skilled, and a guy like Kailer Yamamoto would be terrific in turning over pucks. A finisher would be good, not sure the Oilers have one on right-wing beyond Marody who will play that far down the lineup.

Benson / McLeod / Lavoie

That has speed, size, skill and finish. Dont know if it will ever end up but man that would be fun to watch.


Probably the most important thing is that he gets a decent opportunity with more than a few games and more than a few minutes per game. Give him a chance and let’s see what he’s got. Otherwise why do we spend all this time waiting on these prospects with baited breath.


With respect, unless something magical happens during the off-season, Lavoie is nowhere near NHL ready. I expect him to “pop” at the AHL level in his second pro season.


Anyone bored enough to compare 3/4 lines across all teams in the NHL?


Division first, then conference. Lots of time before the eastern teams matter much.


Last year, the Knights had lines 3/4 that were slightly ahead of a break even which is a pretty nice thing to have.

They actually traded picks for many in their bottom six.

It’s an interesting strategy because they acquired big, fast players that play defensively well, but don’t score gaudy numbers… and are inexpensive.

I wish Daily faceoff had an option to check lines by date.

Last edited 2 months ago by Ryan

Yeah, Carrier and Reaves pounded the crap out of every body they got close to in the playoffs while keeping the puck away from their net.

I thought they were really effective when they were on the ice.

Last edited 2 months ago by defmn
Harpers Hair

Interesting question.

The Canucks added a big defensive centre in Jason Dickinson and, with the addition of Conor Garland in the top 6, that will likely mean Tanner Pearson who is also defensively responsible gets bumped down to the 3rd line.

They will likely be be joined by puck hound Vasili Podkholzin who is now listed at 6’4” 220, at least to start.

They brought back Brandon Sutter on a cheap contract to centre the 4th line and he is very good on the PK and won 55% of his face offs last season while contributing 9 goals.

He will be joined by Tyler Motte also on a cheap contract who is also an elite penalty killer and scores a bit.

The 3rd member of that line will likely change according to opponent.

Not a bad group and it should free up the Horvat line from the tough matchups and allow them to focus more on offense.

Harpers Hair

Not sure he is ready but he did score almost a PPG in a very short AHL season.

Likely gets some third/fourth line minutes…a big boy who likes to hit.




So you’re saying basement dwellers


Thanks for this. I’ll read it again if I need something to help me fall asleep tonight.

Last edited 2 months ago by Side

I was going to use it in the washroom to wipe my a……

Last edited 2 months ago by Reja
Ice Sage

Tell it to EP40, he’s looking for a winning team

Bank Shot

They will likely be be joined by puck hound Vasili Podkholzin who is now listed at 6’4” 220, at least to start.

Yeah. You’ll probably be lisiting him at 6’7″ 260 by October.

Victoria Oil

Not saying that this is good or bad but Tyler Benson must have the highest Lowetide blog mentions/comments to NHL games played ratio of any Oiler.


Lol just imagine how popular he’ll be in Europe 😉


Reja leads the parade..:)


Play the kid instead slugs like Nygard, Hass I can’t remember the other slug he tried from the Detroit organization These Tweeners from the garbage pail get rope and a real opportunity while Benson and Marody rot away on the streets of Bakersfield making shit money.


The great Thomas Jurco.


Jurco was able to make it in 8 games for a solid Knights team last year.


He did get as many points in 3 less games as Ron Low did in 1979-80 season.


If you think Nygard and Haas are slugs, you’re going to love watching Schremp arrive late to the party😊


Nygard and Hass – proof the speed/quickness alone is not enough for an NHL career.

Benson has more NHL level skill than those two players combined.


This is Brogan Rafferty erasure.

edit: oh you did say any Oiler, fair enough

Last edited 2 months ago by Durag
Darth Tu

What are the chances of the Rafferbomb pushing Drysdale off the 3RD spot for the Ducks? I’d say pretty high. Man it’s going to be fun cheering him on in the big leagues again next year.

Go Brogart!


I guess we’ll soon find out.


Rob Schremp goes home devastated.


I have not delved deeply into Dom’s model, but I believe the reason why Nurse does so poorly is that he has pretty great offensive stats (but with a McDavid zoom), but his defensive stats are pretty terribad.


He also believes that Nurse is product of his McDavid minutes.

Last 3 years.

Both on. 1830 minute: GF = 53.8%
97 on. Nurse off. 1525 min. GF = 51.6%
Nurse without 97. 2254. GF = 44.5%

Naturally, this doesn’t account for how bad our 3/4 lines have been on this team.

One of the things I commented on years ago here, was that having McDavid is a double-edged sword.

The unfortunate negative impact of McDavid is that he inflates so many players stats, that their contract demands increase accordingly.

Last edited 2 months ago by Ryan

McDavid also “inflates” defensive stats though, does he not?

McDavid had the second highest GA/60 on the team (to Turris).

Nurse playing with McDavid would help him offensively but hurt him defensively, no?


Yes. McDavid will win many awards, but I don’t suspect that there will ever be a Selke trophy on his shelf.

Last edited 2 months ago by Ryan
Harpers Hair

How does it look with both McDavid and Draisaitl off the ice?


Last three season, sans 29 and 97. 5132 minutes. 38.6% GF. 47% FF

Harpers Hair

Oh my.


Sorry, I misread your question, that was just the team with 29 and 97 off.

For Nurse, he played 3515 minutes without 29 and 97.

Results were 40.7% GF and 46% FF.


Miro Hieskanen:

With Pavelski: 72% GF% (297 minutes)
W/O Pavelski 34.69% GF% (757)

Hieskanen is just a product of playing with the top center on his team.

Harpers Hair

Heiskanen had a very poor season as did the Stars.

The had a Covid out break just before the season started, played a very compressed schedule and missed their #1C for the entire season.

How do you think Nurse would have fared if McDavid was out for the entire season and they were forced to play large numbers of games in a very short period of time?


That’s too bad the the Stars – don’t know what it has to do with the position that which forwards a d-man plays with will make a massive difference – in particular on a team with high end forwards but a lack of depth.

Scungilli Slushy

Also should look at who his partners were away from McDavid.

Nurse took a step defensively last season to my eye, mainly in that he stopped chasing like a greyhound after a mechanical rabbit. More in position to defend what counts most.

Still sloppy partners and any lost forwards hoops the defensive scheme and other players get out of position.


The unfortunate negative impact of McDavid is that he inflates so many players stats, that their contract demands increase accordingly

Poor Nuge…


I keep saying this over and over.

That 5 man unit ran in a way that essentially assured nuge wasn’t due for a monster points boost.

McDavid cuts out of defensive side up right wing or through center – either bolts straight up right or generally cuts right then bolts – either burns past on right then cuts in on forehand or just ninja dekes his way through – for a deadly scoring chance.

On the plays where it wasn’t on the rush style and there was offensive zone time – often nurse or barrie sliding in on pinch

Where is nuge?

Either covering for pinching defenseman or catching up to jetting McDavid generally shooting on forehand often rebounding right wing way.

Nuge has never nor will ever be smashing goal mouth type. Look at his 5×5 history and last year. The difference is massive. Way less shots even attempted, almost half his normal shooting percentage…

The wrong guy to use in that role on that line…to maximize value of nuge. But lacking forward depth – they decided he was best option to use to maximize value of a 5 man unit centered by McDavid..

They grasped this and rightly were in hard on Hyman as it should be immensely a better fit and they can get more value put of nuge elsewhere in lineup.

Last edited 2 months ago by maudite


 Reply to  jp

 August 11, 2021 1:03 pm

Conversely, I think it was more intended to raise questions when you see data on a player like Benning. Otherwise, you can end up vastly and incorrectly overrating 3rd pairing defensemen wrongly expecting to acquire these fancy stat studs to play in your top four.

Yeah that’s certainly fair, but I feel like in practice it’s swung entirely the other way.

OTF starts are being used to explain away good results from 3rd pairing D, as you’re doing with Benning.

Yet lots of OTF starts don’t correlate very well with quality on ice results (from my very cursory look).

The metric has value, and as you say can serve as a red flag for good results from depth players. Still, it’s more than a little aggressive IMO to just wash away anything good that happened when a player was on the ice if that player had lots of OTF starts.


Yet lots of OTF starts don’t correlate very well with quality on ice results (from my very cursory look).

Absolutely a good point. The way I look at is that OTF starts usually just means that the coach is trying to hide that defenseman. These are usually 3rd pairing defensemen that aren’t good defensively. Other than having that in common, there will be a spectrum of ability amongst them. Some are players that excel in the offensive zone.

A famous example was Justin Schultz during the year the Pens (first) won the cup with him. They played a cat and mouse game with Schultz and Letang. Letang started almost every shift and when the puck hit crossed the red line, they switched the two.

The metric has value, and as you say can serve as a red flag for good results from depth players.

Ricki’s the poster child for ignoring this effect. He thinks there’s a swath of 3rd pairing defensemen around the league that are among the best d in the league.

Last edited 2 months ago by Ryan

Again, here’s one of my favourite articles with video breakdown showing the effects of OTF shifts and matchups.



Anyone who’s worried about a possible Slater demotion soaking up AHL development time for prospects.

How did you feel about having Gravel or Lennstrom on the roster last year?

How about the fact we also literally had Max Gildon, a Florida panthers defensive prospect on the Condors?


Difference is this year’s team is to add: Samorukov, Broberg, Berglund and already has Niemelainen, Kesselring and Kemp.

Of course, this assumes zero injuries.

Last year, even with Gildon, they played 7D/11F most nights.


Darling, I’ve been traded to that new Seattle team.

Because you are a rich NHL wife, you may choose anywhere in the city to live, and have yourself a great time living in Seattle which is one of the coolest cities anywhere.

signed the Vancouver Canucks

Ice Sage

I used to love Seattle but the urban blight of US west coast metropoli has arrived. Lots of nice suburbs though especially Mercer Island / lake Wash.


Yup. Rotting from the middle.


Watch Seattle is Dying it’s one of the better documentaries you’ll see.


All the major cities down the west coast. Sadly Victoria isn’t that far behind imo.


I think, at the end of the day, a healthy roster has Benson, Shore, Perlini, Turris and Marody competing for two spots.

I think that Shore has the inside track on one but, then again, one of his main uses by the coaches was the PK and, although the head coach seems to trust him at 5 on 5, he was part of the group that got caved.

Shore isn’t “needed” to PK anymore with the likes of Hyman, Nuge, Archibald, Foegele, Ryan, McLeod, Yamamoto and Drai. Of course, we don’t want Drai on the PK more than necessary but that is extreme forward depth on the PK unit.

The point being, the fourth line doesn’t have to be “PK guys” like recent time. There is room for a Perlini and Benson on the roster and Shore in the AHL. I don’t think we’ll see it but it could happen.

Also, lets not forget, what are the chances of the 23 men any of us choose today for the opening roster are all healthy come game 1?

Randle McMurphy

yes. Benson, Perlini, Turris and Marody competing for one spot.


I add Shore and two spots – As I said, I’m sure coach has him there in heavy pencil but it shouldn’t be in pen.


I simply hope if the kid comes into camp, like you say, he gets an honest look in preason on a skill line for a couple games and if he isn’t clearly responsible for an atrocious number of chances going the other way combined with involvement on enough good chances the right way – he gets an honest look.

He’s done everything one could ask of a 2nd round pick to earn that chance. It’s also a good message to send an AHL squad. If you put the work in – you will assuredly get an honest shot if merited.

No instant doghouse for any but the skipper’s favorites type scenarios allowed.

Last edited 2 months ago by maudite

Why are people acting as if Samurokov/Broberg/Lagesson absolutely blows the doors off in training camp they aren’t allowed a shot over 4K?

Meditation, yoga, time off work can all help if this signing stresses you out this much. You might literally be addicted to stress.


Lowetide you should shut the blog down all your doing is causing stress.


This is the angriest I’ve seen Oilers fans during an offseason in recent memory. I’m not saying I am 100% on board with everything management has done, but what I do know is the last 2 years’ versions of the Oilers have been the best regular season teams I’ve ever watched, and I’m pretty confident saying this upcoming year will be better still.

I guess the heightened expectations account for the lack of chill? I swear there was not this much vitriol in 2014.


The team wasn’t half way through the best player in the world’s tenure in 2014 (with 1 series win to show for it). This was the summer of cap space & they largely blew it.


I totally get the concerns. I just find it, I don’t know, funny/odd/interesting that a good team that possibly didn’t maximize the chance to become a great team causes so much more consternation than an absolute garbage team with no light at the end of the tunnel.


You obviously weren’t around in the eighties to watch and party with the team that was voted the greatest ever. Glen Sather was a wizard who won 90% of his trades and maximized every player that went through the organization.


Winning some playoff games wouldn’t hurt. The big reason for the anger is not being able to have Chicago take back salary or Mikko, Turris even Kelfbom never mind losing a 2nd (yes the Oilers will make the final) A 4 year-old could see Holland did his buddy and Keith a cheers the whiskey glass together for old time sake deal.


I really have mixed emotions about the off season. I like our team. I think it’s much better than last year. In fact, I think they will dominate the regular season and have one of the best records in the NHL. Not sure the defence is big enough to go far in the playoffs though.

However, I don’t like the way Holland took care of business. The Keith trade was horrible. No salary retention and giving up
assets is brutal. Yet I like Keith and think he’s a major upgrade at 2LD.

I like the Ceci signing too. He’s a much better option than Hamonic or Savard. My issue though is Holland simply took the best guy available. The team would have been better off trading for a more established 2RD. But again I like Ceci.

The Hyman signing is a train wreck waiting to happen. Again, I really like the player, but when does he go off the rails?

The Barrie signing was a master stroke IMO. With no trade protection, the team can trade him next year and get actual assets in return.

And the Foegle trade was his best move this summer IMO. We lose a good young player with a high ceiling, but someone with a very low floor. But we gain a player with both a high ceiling and high floor.

Weird weird summer.


I have mixed emotions about all the individual moves as well. I’ve gotten to a point where I have decided to not get angry about what might happen and just let it play out.

I’m not opposed to the idea of a revamped blueline. I didn’t want to see Bear and Larsson go, but at the same time I wouldn’t have said our defence was necessarily a strength of ours. It’s a very different defence this year, and I hope that means better, but I completely understand people thinking it’s worse.

One thing I am happy about is the improvement to the bottom 6, which was a joke last year. The Ryan signing might be the one move that Oilers’ fandom is universally supportive of.


My feelings as well

Ice Sage

I don’t get the same cynical vibe as in years past. We’re quibbling about whether this is a good or great PLAYOFF team here and arranging the 10-15th deckchairs.
Not the same tone as watching Yak in his beehive, hoping for Jesse Joensuu or lionizing then ostracizing Omark or Mikhnov… THOSE were vitriolic times


The Ryan signing is great but, unfortunately, as of now, he’s likely asked to play 3C whereas, at this stage of his career, he’s a 4C.

Khaira, Sheahan, Turris, Ryan, Haas – all asked to play above their current levels of ability as 3C.

Of course, the hope is that McLeod becomes that legit 3C but he surely wasn’t back in May – he may be in October or December or October 2022 but he wasn’t the last time he played an NHL game.

Holloway in that 3C picture as well, potentially.

Nuge is photo-bombing while riding a unicorn.


Holloway could also be an outside candidate for 2LW, which would allow Nuge to play 3C. I could see Foegele having a reasonable shot doing that too, with Perlini being the extreme long shot, Cindarella story.


Yup. Looking forward to seeing how much imagination Tippett has during TC.


Indeed – I have little doubt that Holloway will indeed to be a legit top 6 LW on this team. Frankly, his skill-set, to me, is perfect for McDavid (when he’s ready, which may not be the far from now).

He is essentially Hyman, in many ways, but a better skater and, i think, with better skill. It needs to translate but i think it will.

After Nuge signed but before it was certain that Hyman was coming, I questioned if it was the “right” player to commit long term to given, in my opinion, Holloway will duplicate much of what he does and pass Hyman within a few years.

Win now though, of course!


The team would have been better off trading for a more established 2RD.

Trades are still difficult for this team. Most of the roster now has at least credible cover (goal the exception imo) but it isn’t like it is at the point where there are superfluous NHL players with good trade value waiting to be moved because their replacements are ready.

Soon, but not quite yet.

Litke 94

I remember reading comments on this blog, and others, from 2010 to 2015 where we were literally begging for a team to be competitive past Halloween. Despite that, I do think that this is definitely the most outrage I have seen online, even including those days.

By and large though, I think it’s more of a perception thing. A LOT more people are on Twitter and Facebook now than in those years, and generally speaking, I think angry people tend to voice their opinions more.

So I agree with others that I am seeing more angst than ever before, but I think if you looked at the fanbase as a whole, the vast, vast majority are happy with the team and excited for the season. You just get way less, “Nice move!” comments than you do, “Ceci is a pylon!”.

Litke 94

And I’ll be honest, I find the extreme outrage by some absolutely puzzling. I knew it was going to be a different offseason when the Devin Shore signing caused blood vessels to burst, but I was pretty blown away to see some of the reactions to other moves. Especially in an offseason where all we heard was, “I want to play for the Oilers” by legitimate NHLers. Do we forget how absolutely insane a thought like that was as recently as 2014, and even 2018 when we dipped out of the playoffs for 2 years?

Sometimes I wonder if it is just an Oilers/Holland thing. If any other team did a variety of moves in the offseason, and Dom’s model shot them up to 6th in the league in his rankings, would we see this much complaining? I really don’t think so.

I feel like if it was say a Carolina or some other team that had suddenly spiked to 6th, with a younger more analytics-prone GM at the helm, many would praise the team’s work.

Last edited 2 months ago by Litke 94

You’d think the reaction to the Smith signing last summer would give pause to those who are so certain that their model of assessment is the correct one but I guess not.


I think part of the “rage” or the general sense of trepidation and negativity is becuase of the early off-season perception that Holland had so much cap space and that he should be able to improve the team by multiple tiers.

I had stated before that while, yes, there was alot of cap space from a high level, there were also material positions to spend that cap on.

From last season, that cap was needed for 1RD, 2RD, 2D, 1LW, 2LW, 2RW, 3C, 1G.

Yup, tons of space but tons of positions. It wasn’t realistic to go and fill most of these positions externally in the UFA market as that is a very expensive market.

2RD was supposed to be filled internally with Larsson but, through no fault of Holland (in my opinion), it had to be external and it did likely alter the off-season plans. Ceci looks like a solid bet given progression, age, role, pedigree, etc. Some risk but he was a good player last season – much if it as 2LD/1PK for a solid team.

2LD was a big one and Tip decided to fill that short term with Keith as opposed to committing big money and term to a younger 2LD – The Keith trade angers many, and I get it, but, at the end of the day, its a short term stop gap for Sammy/Brogerg – no need to go long term.

Tip got one of the price UFA wingers for a good cap hit – he paid in term but its “win now”.

The fanbase wanted Hyman bad and they got him. Did the fanbase think getting two external high end UFA wingers was reasonable? It wasn’t but getting Hyman and Nuge for just over $10K – that’s good work.

Bear is over-valued by some and under-valued by some – his real value is likely somewhere in the middle and very close to what Foegele will bring. Of note, Bear has struggled in the playoffs 2 seasons in a row – that doesn’t shut the door on his playoff abilitities but its notable. Foegle is a playoff type player. This was a hockey trade and in the name of making the forward group deeper – the pirmary off-season goal.

I’m rambling now but the point was, there was tons of money but there were tons of holes – trading is hard and external UFA acquisitions are expensive – Hyman and Ceci and Ryan are good free agent gets – Hyman is a great cap hit in the immediate and Ceci, I’m bullish on him.

Retaining the likes of Nuge and Barrie, at their cap hits – that’s a good piece of work even if Barrie’s skill-set wasn’t the ideal skill set for this team.

The forwards are going to be among the best in the league – high end skill, deep, fast, tenacious – playoff type forwards.


I stopped reading after, “through no fault of Holland”.

Of course it is his fault that Larsson left.

Quit being obtuse.

Whose fault is it?

You wanna blame this one on Chiarelli, too?

You don’t let important players walk to free agency. Huge failure on Hollands part.

The reason there is so much anger is because Holland made so many poor deals.

It’s not complicated.

The Trade Guy

If I understand this. They don’t even like Nurse at 5.6 million? I’m not sure about that.


Girard is worth almost 8 and nurse not even 5.6. I like Dom and he generates conversation but his model is… interesting


Dom is sniffing model glue.

I don’t believe there is any type of model into which he inputs data, he just spouts ridiculous results for click bait.


Dom’s model doesn’t seem to like Nurse much.

His GSVA projection last year was for 0.9 which was tied with Connor Murphy.

That’s saying a 25:37 minute per game defenseman who had 36 points in 56 games (0.64 ppg) is worth the same as a 22 minute defeneseman who had 15 points in 50 games (0.3ppg).

Murphy’s never had a point per hour.

I can’t defend Dom’s model here.


It’s a hell of a lot better than the JFresh model, but not perfect.

Barrie rates better than Nurse even. Maybe the models should start incorporating TOI (seriously) to smooth out rough seasons by big minutes defensemen (Seth Jones, etc, though he doesn’t fare so poorly here).


“Not satisfied with one terrible defenseman contract on the books, the Canucks decided to collect two more this offseason like they were the opposite of infinity stones.”


Despite colorado having 5 absolute steal of deals they can’t make it out of the second round.

Despite toronto being 3rd overall they can’t make it past the first round.


I find the gap in value between nuge and landeskog comical. I know nuge had a bad last season but I expect that surplus value to change drastically.


The playoffs are a different game. The Avs were built for the regular season.

The Avs were built like a better version of the Oilers last season.

They had better goaltending than the Oilers, better defensemen, and more depth scoring. Though their third pair was very suspect. They didn’t have a lot of big bodies.

Even still, they were a team that depended on the big line. The Knights were a bad matchup for them. They were able to shut down the big line, and control play with an hard forecheck and trap. The Knights didn’t really have any weak links on their team last year.

Losing Kadri didn’t help either.

Still the Knights made it hard for the Avs to execute on their transition game and made life miserable for their modern NHL defensemen.


The Knights didn’t really have any weak links on their team last year.


In the playoffs teams have the time to study their opposition much more closely than during the regular season and use practice time to learn how to exploit those weaknesses.


Offensive center was the Knight’s weak link, no?


The thing about statistical models is that their accuracy and predictability is weakened as the degree of variability widens which is pretty much the norm when assessing human abilities and even less predictive as the standard deviation moves towards the tails.

Or, to be more precise (but repetitive, since I have posted this here before).

Math is a language that allows for precision in describing quantitative relationships between objects where the discrete comparatives essential ontological characteristic is one of sameness. As that sameness decreases its precision erodes.

Statistical modelling is really not particularly compelling in its predictive nature outside of simple comparatives where all of the components have been identified (not common) and their mechanism of action is fully understood (even more unlikely).

In other words, they are interesting as theoretical constructs and even guess correctly from time to time. 😉

Fourier over on HF (an actual math professor) is an interesting person to talk to if you are interested in a more comprehensive explanation of the limitations of modelling.

Last edited 2 months ago by defmn

Gavin Schmidt says hi.


Sorry but I don’t know who that is.


I almost feel bad for Nuge. He signed too early. Wennburg signed for $4.5 mill. I know it’s only three years, but wow


Interesting to note Larssons contract is a negative every year


Yeah, I wonder a bit about that. I had mentioned months ago, that I wondered how the Kraken analytics team would value a player like Larsson.

Defenseive dmen don’t fit well into any advanced stats model that I’m aware of.

It could be a case of Ron Francis just telling them we need one of these.


Nice to see the Larsson contract at -$10.6 m surplus value though.


Although I can’t say I’m “enthused” about the Koekkeok signing (as I think Samorukov at 5LD after Russell and Lagesson is adequate and would like some clean air for Sammy) I get it and don’t have a major problem with it.

He is “good veteran cover” even those he’s just 27 and, while he only played one game on the right side last year, he did play a decent amount (with solid fancies) in Chicago the year before and, right now, 4RD is Berglund or Russell on his off-side.

I presume that we see Koekkoek on the roster over Lagesson which increases the cap by just under $200K – not a big deal likely but, its going to get very very tight to get cap compliant with a 20 man roster including Klef to maximize the LTIR reserves – without waiving Russell or Kass which I don’t think Holland will do.

Elgin R

I would waive Kassian in a heartbeat. Doubtful that any team will take on the rest of that contract.


Yes, I, and many others, agree with that. I don’t think Ken Holland does and doesn’t think he waives Kass.

At this point, the hope is a return to calendar year 2019 Kass – his physical skills are still there so there is a non-zero chance.

It would be great if both Yamamoto and Kass look “top-6 ready” and are competing for that lineup spot (allowing the team to keep the new depth on the left side)

John Chambers

Oilers are mopping up all the Dmen from the 2012 draft:
Reinhart, Ceci, Koekkoek! It’s like we had four first-round picks that year!

I feel bad for Toronto, Minnesota, and Winnipeg – they only got Morgan Reilly, Matt Dumba, or Jacob Trouba.


The Oprah Winfrey of GMs. You get an extra year! You get an extra year! You all get extra years!!!!😄








*runs and hides*😄



Scratch that. That was an extra pick😉


From age 19-22, Konovalov played 111 KHL games and posted a .922 sv%.
From age 19-22*, Sorokin played 132 KHL games and posted a .930 sv%.
From age 19-22**, Shesterkin played 98 KHL games and posted a .932 sv%.
From age 18-21, Samsonov played 73 KHL games and posted a .929 sv%.

*Sorokin also played 32 games at age 17-18, posting a .911 sv%
**Shesterkin also played 9 games at age 18, posting a .903 sv%

Looks like our man is tracking a bit below these guys, but within range. Here’s what each of the players did in their 23-year-old season:

  • Sorokin returned to the KHL, posting .940 in 40 games.
  • Shesterkin returned to the KHL, posting a massive .953 in 28 games (24-4-0).
  • After posting an .898 sv% in 37 AHL games as a 22-year-old, Samsonov posted .913 in 26 games in the NHL in his 23-year-old rookie season.

I expect Konovalov to follow Samsonov’s path to the NHL, he’s a year behind in transition but should do much better than the Washington goalie’s .898 this year.


I love and truly appreciate the work you’ve done here, but these simply aren’t fair comparables from which to draw any firm conclusions. They all have names beginning with S whereas our man has a name beginning with K.


Khabibulin FTW!


Wow, I was a fan of the ‘Bulin Wall’ and don’t have a single memory of him with the Blackhawks even though he (allegedly) played over 200 games for them.

Ice Sage

and I’ve repressed any memories of him as an Oiler


He was in net when they knocked out Cassie and the Flames I believe it was in 2008-09 playoffs made off with a bag full of money on that series.

Jethro Tull

Someone would have to be injured for one of the AHL team to get a shot. Morody or Benson would have to play at a level above who’d they would replace during camp. Even then…

Kenny and Dave seem the kind of guys who pencil people in with permanent marker. It’s up to them to bring the magic eraser.

I know there’s a history of GM’s not being hot on prospects they didn’t draft, but since Ken has traded away a bunch of picks, he may have to adopt some of the waifs and strays he inherited.


Yes, But it appears that is NOT his plan. That is why he keeps filling in the spots that could be taken by Oilers draft and develop (3LW, 4LW, 3LD).

I sincerely hope Tippett gives the kids a REAL chance.

It’s like Christmas morning keeps getting punted…

Last edited 2 months ago by GordieHoweHatTrick

This is a make or break it year for Benson and he knows it. The Oilers have snubbed him for 2 years sounds like this is the quickest way to get out of Edmonton. It’s been so rare a Oiler waiver player catches on and has a meaningful career. The homegrown Benson kid has done everything asked of him played overseas and was a great leader for the giants. I hope he gets picked up out of division and has a fine career.


Kenny with the uncanny ability to be able to tack on extra years. It’s bewildering how other GMs struggle to match this.



What’s the point of complaining about Slaters 2nd year. Can completely bury in the ahl if necessary, same with Shores contract.

The only 2nd year issue was Turris which impacts the team. That being said it takes two parties to sign a contract.

Good teams like Tampa don’t give second years right… they only give 3 years like Bogo


Haha #bodyofwork😉


Who’s complaining?😄


Burying Koekkoek takes precious development time away from real prospects though. It’s not at all inconsequential as you make it out to be.


If Koekkoek is buried doesn’t that mean one of the “real prospects” is in Edmonton and they are just changing addresses?

Last edited 2 months ago by defmn

Not necessarily. I’m concerned that Samorukov and Broberg get proper development time and don’t want one of Koekkoek, Lagesson or Russell taking up space on the AHL bench. Currently, one of them will be:



This does not rise to the level of things in my life that I worry about. I have faith in the coaching staff in Bakersfield and I think they have earned that faith.


That’s up to the GM and AHL head coach to assign directions and ice time. Just because Slater is in the AHL in this hypothetical doesn’t mean he’s playing 25 minutes a game.

1. You want a NHL caliber call up at each position on your ahl team. Imagine being FORCED to call up a prospect who’s clearly not ready because there’s no insurance.

2. AHL vets are a thing. We talk about intangibles, leadership, winning culture in the NHL well you need that in the AHL too. If your entire top 4 is journeyman D that’d be a problem but having a vet who can provide stability is a positive not a negative.

3. Slater is a great candidate to sit in the press box. Doesn’t need development time and makes almost league minimum. Can step in on short notice while the kids get reps in the ahl until they can be called up to actually play. (I acknowledge last season was weird with Bouchard and I hate it but that’s covid baby).


Should have signed him for 3 years😉


Perfect comparison btw😉

Tampa Bay: Stanley Cup 2021
Tampa Bay: Stanley Cup 2020


There are 7 “real prospects” including Lagesson (and Kemp who is a very distant bell).

Lagesson, Samorukov, Bouchard, Berglund, Kesselring, Niemelainen, Kemp.

The only way there is not a lineup spot for all of them is when there are 7 healthy D on the Oilers and 7 healthy D on the Condors – likely a rare occurance at any point in the season.

The likes of Deharnais, Jaxs, Kaldis can sit any night.

Also, Condors used 7D for most of last year and could again.


Tampa has the added value of white-sand beaches, palm trees, and crazy nice weather. Kind of an attractive opportunity for a relaxed lifestyle.


Don’t worry. Global warming is going to tip the balance in Edmonton’s favour. 😉


Haha yep. Keep buying jerseys and other Oiler crap. Who needs Madre Tierra when the bulls continue to run. Mr. Smith had it right. We are in fact a virus😉

Silver Streak

Field of dreams game in Iowa tonight….


Koekkoek back for two seasons with Russell already in place and Lagesson/Samorukov/Broberg in the wings tells you — at the same time — how much influence and how much of a clue Tippett has. Answers: Lots and none.


Personally not a fan of tippet after last seasons handling of Bouchard and in general the playoffs.

While I do believe this shows the organization trust on lagesson I don’t think this proves anything concerning Samorukov or Broberg other than emphasizing the point that neither have played NHL games before.

Slater is a known commodity, who knows what the 2 kids will bring up in the NHL and if they struggle greatly this is cheap insurance the team is familiar with.


If/when Samrukov and Broberg pass Koekkoek (and Lagesson and Russell), they will play in the NHL ahead of them.

For Samorukov, that is very likely this coming season but maybe not for the first few months.

All of those players can be assigned to the AHL for zero cap hit.


Atta boy Kenny. Way to wait him out and grind out that second year😄

Jethro Tull

“He wanted the Nurse package but I ground him down, boys!”


In fairness, I haven’t seen him play since his short recall a couple of years ago but who are the comparables for Benson? It sounds like we’re talking a startling pass-first ratio combined with good board work, skill and puck protection on the good side of the ledger. Average (which means slow) boots and a below average shot and perhaps some defensive deficiencies?

Obviously the very top of the food chain for these player types are Henrik Sedin and Joe Thornton.

Or more recently, David Krejci. A player who controls pace and finds trailers with precision and touch. Ondrej Palat is another one. Perhaps Nick Schmaltz.

The reality is, only the top couple percent of these players make it and most kill it on the power play which doesn’t seem like somewhere Benson will play.

Minister D-

Given their success together, I’d still like to see if Benson and Marody might work as a sheltered minutes 4th line with cherry zone starts. Rotate in a more experienced player to anchor the thing and let’s finally see what’s what.

Last edited 2 months ago by Minister D-
Decidedly Skeptical Fan

Benson, Marody and McLeod.

Randle McMurphy

When is Ron Francis gonna to bust a move??


The expansion has definitely rolled out differently than Vegas and more like somewhere in the middle between earlier expansion teams and what Vegas accomplished.

Just goes to show that the past is not always the best predictor of the future. People (some) learn from their mistakes.

I still think Holland should at least know what it would take to spring Driedger out of there.


It takes time to weaponize – gotta plan – he’s only had a couple of years.

cowboy bill

That’s a great deal for Koekoek . Now I wouldn’t be surprised if Yamamoto gets the same contract (2x$925,000) that’s mostlkely why he isn’t signed yet . That’s how the cookie crumbles .


Forward vs defense, yada yada yada, but here’s both men’s boxcars from the past 2 seasons:

KY: 79, 19-28-47 [+26]
SK: 60, 2-9-11 [-4]

One is a 22-year-old top-6 forward, the other a 27-year-old tweener defenseman. Koekkoek is not a comp for Yamamoto in the slightest.

Darth Tu

I doubt that Yamamoto is signed for less than $1.6 mill AAV.


I have been saying all summer that Yamo was going to have to take much less than the $2 M that seemed to be the consensus contract for him here.

No arb rights, poor season on the score sheet, & a cap crunch all pointed towards two years around $1.5 to $1.75.


I don’t see any way Yamamoto is under $1MM and I would be against Holland squeezing him that tight.

Apx $1.5M X 2 would be my guess – $1.2M/$1.8M – give or take.

Randle McMurphy

Blue Jays pitching staff rounding into form


Predict this team makes the playoffs.


Love the staff. The bullpen not so much. Is Merryweather back? The guy has devastating stuff, but I’ve never seen someone suffer so many injuries. It never stops really.

Eh Team

Jays have Berrios, but Stripling is out for awhile.

Man, that bullpen sucks though.


Hopefully Pearson gets healthy and figures things out enough to factor into the bullpen. He could potentially be a big difference maker.

Darth Tu

Whether they make the playoffs or not, they’re in a great position to build for next year. I want to see even more pitchers taken next year.


Have to sign Ray and Semien.

Elgin R

Benson will most probably play in the NHL this coming season (and its about time). The question is, will it be with the Oilers? The Ray Whitney analogy is a good one, and one that I fear will happen.

Looking at both the Kraken roster, there appears to be room on the left side for a player like Benson. The expansion draft opened up 4-5 LW slots so good luck to Benson and hope me makes the NHL and has a decent career.


It he is waived, it is because we have a better option

There is good competition at camp with legitimate talent


You missed this part of the analogy:

If he is lost to waivers, will Edmonton regret it? It’s rare. 

Last edited 2 months ago by jp
Randle McMurphy

I was looking at the numbers and noticed a comparable for Zach Hyman.

You have to take away the PP points.

But 5v5, the scoring, the possession metrics and two way play have Hyman as a good comparable (even a little ahead 5v5) to Chris Kreider.

Kreider is a little bigger, one year older, has draft pedigree (1st rounder) and scores points on the PP.

Kreider is on a 7 yr contract that started in 2020-21 at age 29 with an AVV of $6.5m


Hyman will get opportunities on the PP too now.

Randle McMurphy

Good contract for “The Bird”

And with that we close the book on summer deals.

Kenny’s off to Kelowna for the month of August.

Last edited 2 months ago by Randle McMurphy

I hope Holland hasn’t forgotten about Kailer.

Randle McMurphy

$1.87m left in LTIR available to Yamo

Randle McMurphy

Nurse Barrie
Keith Ceci
Koekkoek Bouchard
Mike Smith

A sheltered third pairing.

Quite a group of puck movers!

Last edited 2 months ago by Randle McMurphy
Elgin R

This signing does not make sense, Lagesson had better numbers last year playing the same usage for the Oilers. Condors have Broberg, Sammy and Markus that they are developing for the Oilers. Now one of KK or Wild Bill will be sent down and that will impact ice time for the developing LD. In Holland we trust – but this is a hard one to understand.

Randle McMurphy

Dave Tippet begs to differ.

Randle McMurphy

No free rides for the yutes. They have to outplay both Koekkoek and Russell.

Elgin R

Wild Bill outplayed KK last season.
Koekkoek: 18 games / 236:57 TOI / -12 goal differential
Lagesson: 19 games / 268:51 TOI / -1 goal differential

Analytics are only 1/2 of the equation with the ‘eye test’ making up the other half. Tippet must really see something in order to discount the glaring difference in goal differential.


Yes, but they need to have actual at bats in the NHL.

Randle McMurphy

you spelled “earn” wrong


The point of the AHL is to develop players. Loading up on late-twenties tweeners means there will be less ice time in the AHL for actual prospects.

That said, if the org has zero confidence in Russell and Lagesson (Tippett’s usage doesn’t give me that sense AT ALL) I could see KK getting a 1-year deal. Two years? That’s an unforced error, along with the Shore contract.


You need lots of defenceman. Guys get hurt back there. Make rookies jump over vets to get into the lineup. This is a good move and a contract that can be buried. I liked KK in stretches last year, had some ugly moments too.


Mostly ugly moments.


Tough start to season, injury held him back from turning it around. Strong 65 games in Chicago in previous 1.5 seasons. Cheap, cheap. Hopefully turns it around & helps PK. If not, they can bury his contract.

Darth Tu


The ice time splits kind of tell a story there, I was still surprised when he walked back into the lineup for the playoffs.

The positive side to this is that he’s not exactly and insurmountable hurdle to get over for Lagesson. The issue is if Lagesson is waived in camp and then gets claimed.


That’s the problem though – burying his contract affects prospect development negatively. There was no call for that second year.


Why do the Oilers always give the extra year to players who have no leverage at all??

Randle McMurphy

I get your point. It tells me that Holland and Tippett think that Broberg and Samorukov will both take at least 12 to 24 months of development to be full time NHL’ers.

Last edited 2 months ago by Randle McMurphy

surprised it wasn’t 4 years


At some point you have to let the youngsters play and stop relying on replacement level? players. You can’t keep saying they don’t have experience if you don’t afford them the opportunity.


I think all things equal in players you want to give the kids a shot. The upside isn’t there with the mid-late 20s BUT on the same topic…

If lagesson can’t outperform Slater and Benson can’t outperform Shore. Thats on them. If they’re not given a fair opportunity through practice/pre season/call up games thats on the organization. Guess we have to wait and see how it plays out but my panties remain untwisted.

Eh Team

Koekkoek was a nice signing. He’s probably as good as Ceci and is a lot cheaper.


Why on earth is Holland giving out term to replacement level players?? And this guy is a left defense, even if he makes the roster out of camp he’ll be passed by one of the prospects by Christmas.

The mind boggles.


I think the second year in part may be to dissuade waiver claims.

I agree with not blocking prospects too much but think at least one other depth recall option was needed on D, and I feel the same way about the Shore contract. But I don’t think any more depth D are needed after this signing, maybe one more depth forward or euro/college free agent project destined for middle of the lineup minutes in the AHL.

I was a bit surprised it wasn’t for 100k lower and 1 year less but I’m also not worried about it – if they have end of the roster guys they like and they’re cheap and can be buried without penalty, I like that there is continuity. Now if they play ahead of guys on the NHL roster when we think they deserve to sit, then I’ll have something to say.


Assuming Lagesson starts in the AHL (and, lets not forget, that assumes zero injuries coming out of camp), I’m not concerned with the prospect development:


I have zero issue with any of Deharnais, Jaxs, Kaldis or the likes not playing.

Also, injuries at both levels happen and happen often.

Aghhh, shit, I forget about Berglund – OK, maybe one of those guys doesn’t make the lineup but that’s if the Oilers have 7 healthy D and the Condors 7 healthy D – that’s probably rare through the season, no?

Last edited 2 months ago by OriginalPouzar
Elgin R

I believe it will be an issue unless there are long-term injuries. Player development IS the #1 job and having one of Lagesson or KK in the AHL will reduce that development.

Samorukov – Berglund
Broberg – Kesselring
Niemelainen – Kemp


Don’t forget that waivers might claim either Lagesson or Koekkoek.


If Koekkoek doesn’t make the team and is waived and claimed, this becomes a complete non issue.

If Lagesson doesn’t make the team, I would think he sails through waivers as he has in the past given his age, pedigree and amount of NHL games – could be claimed, but I doubt it.


Almost any injury to the top 14 d-man (the 7 in the NHL and the top 7 in the AHL) gets every “real prospect” on the ice – unless we are talking about like less than a week. I think, at any given time of the year, that’s likely the case given past history. The AHL team often (almost always) has multiple injuries.


This seems much too calm and rationale a perspective for what is clearly a significant failure on the part of management that could easily lead to Connor & Leon refusing to report to camp. 😉

Randle McMurphy

Are you saying Benson needn’t fear the reaper?

Or, this ain’t the summer of love?

Is it stairways to the stars or hot rails to hell for young Tyler?

Last edited 2 months ago by Randle McMurphy

We’re burnin’ for you to make the team?