Category Archives: Edmonton Oilers
Edmonton GM Craig MacTavish has been the most active this season. He’s finally started to deliver on his promise to make moves. He isn’t done by any stretch. Expect to see left winger Ryan Jones, defenceman Nick Schultz, defenceman Corey Potter and right wing Ales Hemsky moved.
This in from former NHL coach and GM Doug MacLean, now a Sportsnet commentator, his take from Wednesday night’s Edmonton Oilers broadcast on whether or not the Oilers should look to trade smaller, skilled players like centre Sam Gagner or winger Nail Yakupov:
“Gagner and Yakupov have really been a real dilemma for this organization. They don’t know what to do with them. -29 for Yakupov. Talented kid. You know he’s going to score a lot of goals in the NHL before he’s done. Gagner, solid, solid. People don’t know if he’s a #2 or a #3 (centre).
Jordan Eberle hears the rumours.
The Edmonton Oilers winger has seen his name come up as a key to solving the team’s struggles by being attractive trade bait.
With few assets to move in order to improve a roster wallowing at the bottom of the NHL standings, Eberle has seemingly become a hot trade commodity.
In a limited trade market with few competent offensive players, Hemsky’s history of scoring might very well appeal to another NHL team. That potential trade value is certainly something the Oilers have to consider, particularly given the way the player’s skillset overlaps with that of other skaters (Jordan Eberle and Nail Yakupov) on the roster.
But despite the rumours that have dogged the long-time Oiler, a trade shouldn’t be seen as automatic either.
Darren Dreger: Sam Gagner, we know. Ales Hemsky, we know. Ryan Smyth is expected. There’s no dialog between Craig MacTavish and Ryan Smyth. The belief is that Smyth wants one more crack with a winning team to see if he can win the Stanley Cup. He’s still effective, at least in the offensive zone, so I expect his name will heat up as we get closer to the deadline.
Who might be available and who might be on the move in Edmonton?
Dreger: Sam Gagner, we know. Ales Hemsky, we know. Ryan Smyth is expected. There’s no dialog between Craig MacTavish and Ryan Smyth. The belief is that Smyth wants one more crack with a winning team to see if he can win the Stanley Cup. He’s still effective, at least in the offensive zone, so I expect his name will heat up as we get closer to the deadline.
Do you think the Oilers will trade their first-round 2014 draft pick? If not, who are they taking? Sam or Aaron?
No chance the Oilers are dealing away a probable top three draft pick. GM Craig MacTavish was singing a different tune a few months back, saying he was open for business to deal the team’s first-rounder but that was before his club tumbled to the current depths of 29th in a 30-team league. It looks like Buffalo (30), Edmonton (29) and Calgary (28) are in a group for the first overall pick in the lottery. The Oilers won’t take Kootenay forward Sam Reinhart (not big enough).
Edmonton Oilers’ winger Ales Hemsky has sat in a barber’s chair recently and his hair is so short you’d swear he was going for a job interview. Which, in a way, he is, although how his hands look might well be more important than how his hair looks to any rival general managers if they have a hankering to trade for the unrestricted free-agent.
As much as the Oilers have noticed the buy-in from Hemsky, who has had no gripes about being a third-liner this season, often playing with centre Boyd Gordon, with some second unit powerplay gravy, anybody watching Hemsky roar around the best defenceman in the NHL, Duncan Keith, Sunday night in Chicago, had to be impressed. Great rush, and a nifty tuck under the pads of Hawks’ rookie goalie Antti Raanta, who was flummoxed on the play.
David Staples of the Edmonton Journal believes Andrew Ladd of the Winnipeg Jets is exactly what the Oilers need. Staples considers the idea of the Oilers trading Gagner for Ladd, Blake Wheeler or Dustin Byfuglien. With Mark Scheifele and Brian Little solidified at centre on the top two lines, Gagner could have to play on the wing in Winnipeg.
The Edmonton Oilers are likely moving Sam Gagner — to the wing on Friday and, if the buzz is true, out of Edmonton before the trade deadline.
It is only a matter of time before we start seeing casualties of a rebuild gone horribly wrong, and speculation is that it will begin with him.
But it probably won’t end there.
He has to resist the temptation to make a deal, any deal, simply for the sake of doing a deal and trading future for the present to appease the fan base.
That does not mean he’s going to do nothing.
“The next deal is going to be an important deal for us,” said the rookie GM who returned from the World Junior to watch a 5-3 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning and a 5-2 loss to the St. Louis Blues.