Expectations... Volume 2!

Jason Strudwick
February 19 2013 08:10AM

Wow! I love the feedback in the comments section of my last post "Step back from the ledge". You guys are fired up. Even my buddy Brownlee was moved so much he posted on my posting! I love it!

I want to clear up where I was coming from. I wasn't talking about last year or ten years ago. I wasn't talking about how this is taking too long or what should have been done is the past. I was simply saying that for this season expectations were set to high. This is not a playoff team.

The younger players need time to grow, to develop and to learn how to play the game. Skill is great to have but other teams are skilled at stopping skilled players. Until they learn the value of soft chips at the blue line instead of turning it over their game to game success will fluctuate. Puck management is a huge part of the game now. You can't just trade chances with every opponent, that is too dangerous and unpredictable.

There are holes in this lineup. Depth on the back end and size in the top nine forwards won't be easy to address but by the end of next season it needs to be. Hard decisions face this management group. The sit and wait, passive style which has helped the team acquire top young talent must now be shifted to a more aggressive mode. Can they do it? Time and success will determine that.

I got a posting from MAC932 on my last entry. This is what he had to say.

So Mr Strudwick- explain to me exactly why the Detroit Red Wings have maintained their standing in this league for so long. How many years has it been now.The Oilers have sucked for years 2006 the exception. Lower my expections ? Give me a break, make the moves to fill the voids this team needs without sacrificing the future, it can be done and you know it. You can’t fill all the voids at once i understand that.
Also, tell me from your heart if you feel Oilers Management have built the team to the point they are at now. No they didnt, we sucked for so bad for so long we acquired 1st round picks, and J. Schultz picked us. Put me a list togeather of moves that have improved us. Ryan Smyth- Nope. Belanger- Sorry- Eager- so-so.
Dont pee in my ear and tell me it’s raining Struds.
Takes time- they have had time. We will lose our stars as usual if this 10 year plan continues. Make a Move, show some balls Again, I know it all cant be done at once, but there has been nothing, Fistric is the only decent move to increase team toughness i have seen.

Good stuff from MAC. He covers a whole bunch of topics. I have a question for the whole Nation. MAC writes about making a move. So let’s hear some examples. What moves would you all make? Make them real though. You can't trade Peckham for Weber. Before you submit ideas ask yourself if you would make the trade if you were both teams.

MAC also says that moves can be made now without sacrificing the future. It is hard to predict how players will mature and improve at a young age. When I look at the players in OKC I would suggest the value of many of them has gone down due to their lack of development. Is that the group that will bring back what this team needs? Do you trade Oscar Klefbom? He has value, do you trade him? Do you move a roster player? Hard to see a big return from the players in the bottom six so then who goes from the top lines? How about future draft picks? Next year's first rounder could probably get you something, is that worth the risk?

If I was the GM of the Oilers I would not be very aggressive this season. Obviously you are always looking for opportunities to improve but I would not sell the farm. After the season when I know what position I am drafting I start making plans to fill the holes. No more waiting.

It is easy for us all to sit around and say the team needs to make moves. Let's see what you guys come up with for options.

The best options will get free hugs from both Gregor and Wanye.

The Mighty Kings cometh!!!

I always liked to play the top teams, especially the defending Stanley Cup champions. It was a great way to figure out how close you were to being a good team. I think the game between the Oilers and Kings will be a good measuring stick for the Oil.

The Kings are not the team they were last year due to a couple injuries on the back end. Both Willie Mitchell and Matt Greene are out. I know for a fact that without both those players the Kings would not have won the Cup last year. That is a fact. Their back end is not the same without them.

Up front they are still a handful. Big, skilled and determined (most of the time). How will the Oilers match up against Richards, Kopitar, Carter, and Stoll at center? Could the game be won and lost simply by faceoff domination?

The grit on the wings is impressive... Brown, Williams, King and Nolan all are strong down low on the puck? How will the Oilers defence match up? I haven't mentioned Kyle Clifford. This kid has been their best player many nights this year. He is rugged, strong and can score some.

This game will be a very good test for the Oilers. Will the Oilers be able to out skate the Kings? Will they use their speed to get in on the forecheck? Will faceoffs be an issue especially on special teams?

Quite a few questions heading into this game. They will be answered during the game and the Oilers will know where they stand.

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Jason hosts the Jason Strudwick show from 9pm to 12am, weeknights on the team 1260. He is an instructor at Mount Carmel Hockey Academy and loves working with the kids. Having played over 650 games in the NHL, Jason has some great stories and unique takes on life in the NHL. He loves Slurpees and Blizzards. Dislikes baggy clothes and close talkers.
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#101 Taylor Gang
February 19 2013, 02:31PM
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Cody anderson wrote:

Actually I would be cureous how many people would do this trade if Montreal would. I would guess it will be well over half.

Moen is a LW with a huge amount of grit and Galchenyuk is a centre with size. plus Galchenyuk already has established chemistry with Yakupov.

I like Gagner and I have argued his value and against trading him unless you are actually getting a centreman that you think is an upgrade.

This years his value is high, but he still cannot win a faceoff. Faceoffs are not the be all and end all, but I am sick of having to have a 3rd or 4th liner on the ice for every important faceoff.

This makes our top 6 a lot scarier to play against.

Moen - Nuge - Eberle

Hall - Galchenyuk - Yakupov

This is another thing I don't get. Why would you move Hall to the second line? He is by far the most comfortable of the kids in dealing with top competition. He is also better on the draws than Nuge.... And in regards to your Galchenyuk comment, he has far too much value for Montreal to even consider such a proposal, how about we trade Yakupov for Jakub Voracek while you're at it? Galchenyuk is the same as our other dynamic wingers, only they're futher into the process. Forget getting younger people! We have the youngest team in the league! Players who I would go for if they were available: David Clarkson, Dustin Brown, Milan Lucic, Scott Hartnell, Shane Doan. We need capable scorers who can lay a hit or two.

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#102 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
February 19 2013, 02:38PM
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Maybe Lombardi's getting a little itchy. There's never a bad time to inquire about Dustin Brown. Heck, even take back Penner along with him.

Hemmer, Paajarvi/or Jonesy and Whitney in exchange for Dustin Brown and Dustin Penner. Ole Deanno has to be searching for options by now.

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#103 Curcro
February 19 2013, 02:51PM
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I think I would go for some subtle moves. I like the top 6 as it is.

(1)I would trade Potter & 4th to the Leafs for Steckel & 3rd.

It is a little nickel and diming, but actually think it needs to be done more, upgrading lower round picks so that your chances of getting an NHL player are improved.

(2)Hordichuk would never again see the light of day, so I would trade him or completely drop him.

(3)1st Round Pick, Omark, Tuebert & Eager to Islanders for Thomas Hickey & Kyle Okposo Islanders keep 1.4M of caphit.

I think the NYI will resign Streit. Hickey is NHL ready, but has been victimized by bad luck. I think an NHL ready player is worth a 1st round in the bush. I see him as a future top 4. So basically 1st & Tuebert for Hickey. Then Omark & Eager for Okposo. I see Okposo as a younger Eager with more talent. But his traditional stats this year are quite horrible(advanced stats show he is playing reasonably), and I think Omark has enough value with how he is playing in Switzerland to swing this deal.

(4) Not resign Whitney.

(5) Trade 7th for the rights to RFA Steve Mason. Then before the deadline to offering a qualifying offer resign him for $1M. If he doesn't accept, then he goes UFA. A worthy gamble for someone who has the potential to be a capable backup.

(6) Not resign Khabi

Hall-Eberle-RNH Yak-Hemsky-Gagner - Sign Gagner 4M Okposo-Smyth-Horcoff MPS-Jones-Belanger - Re-sign Jones 1.5M, MPS 1.0M Lander-Hartski-Steckel-Petrell - Re-sign Hartski 1.0M, Sign Steckel 1.0M

Schultz-Schultz Petry-Smid - Re-Sign Smid 2.7 M Hickey-Fistric - Re-Sign Fistric 1.5M, Sign Hickey 1.25 M Peckham-Klefbom

Dubnyk-Mason - Sign Mason to 1.0 M contract

That puts the Oilers on the cap. It means the Oilers have 1 extra D, and 2 Extra F. Which as this year injuries have shown is a wise precaution to have.

This gives the Oilers the flexibility to keep Horcoff or to use compliance buy out. Also the option not to sign Jones & Peckham.

It is very similar to this year, but it strengthens the bottom 6 of the Oilers forwards, and it brings the future forward on D.

It maybe nice to have an experienced stable D instead of Horcoff, but I don't think other teams would make that trade.

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#104 Cody anderson
February 19 2013, 03:06PM
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Taylor Gang wrote:

This is another thing I don't get. Why would you move Hall to the second line? He is by far the most comfortable of the kids in dealing with top competition. He is also better on the draws than Nuge.... And in regards to your Galchenyuk comment, he has far too much value for Montreal to even consider such a proposal, how about we trade Yakupov for Jakub Voracek while you're at it? Galchenyuk is the same as our other dynamic wingers, only they're futher into the process. Forget getting younger people! We have the youngest team in the league! Players who I would go for if they were available: David Clarkson, Dustin Brown, Milan Lucic, Scott Hartnell, Shane Doan. We need capable scorers who can lay a hit or two.

I would move Hall to the second line to add balance. That second line has the skill but is often giving up the chances like crazy.

For the record I feel Hall is our best player.

When you questioned this deal the first time you asked why we would do it. I agree that it would not be taken as is from Montreal. What do you think we would need to add to get it done?

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#105 Smokey
February 19 2013, 03:09PM
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The Other Ron Burgundy wrote:

You mean we get to be Eklund for a day? Nice! Actually, how about I make this somewhat realistic.

Ottawa is hurting after losing their elite center and super-elite D-man, but may still have playoff aspiration this season (they are currently 7th in the East). Gagner and Whitney are knockoff versions of the guys they lost, and do not lock them into anything long-term cap-wise. Maybe you throw in a minor league piece on top of that (is Omark still tradeable? OTT have shown the willingness to take a chance on a reclamation project or two in recent years). Seems like they would be a willing partner in any case.

They also happen to have what we need - big centers. Zibanejad would be my choice - big, skilled and the same age as the rest of the core. Plus just starting his EL. Add a D prospect of some sort (Borowiecki has some grit), but don't get hung up on that - Whitney has only played half the games and is at least partially responsible for some of our losses so its not like you're down a key piece - it seems apparent to me that he's not an oiler in 2014 anyway so may as well get something for him.

You are losing a key piece in Gagner - I've always been in his corner but you have to give to get, plus he's going to need a raise and probably some term this summer and I'm not sure he's a guy you give 4 million to for 5 years. Its a bit of a risk as Z-Bad is by no means proven, but our current collection of smaller guys goes nowhere in the playoffs (WHEN, not if we make them).

The other move that makes some sense to me is Hemsky to Pittsburgh for Sutter and one or more of their top D-man prospects. Sutter becomes the new Horc, Yakupov takes his rightful place at RW2 and Despres and Schultz would make a nice pair (on paper anyway -no idea what side Despres plays) but they've got Morrow, Pouliot, Dumoulin also. Pitt finally gets an elite RW to play with Crosby or Malkin.

Anyway, those are my thoughts, not yours. I'm (not) Joe Sports. Apologies also if these are similar to something someone posted already - didn't scroll through all of the posts.

Ottawa not sacrificing assets or future cornerstones like Zibanajad. You definitely sound like Ecklund 2.0. Ottawa trucks along and will fall outta the race in a few weeks. Bryan the evil genious GM he is will get assets outta a goalie or two, probably sucker someone into giving him a mid first round pick where he will find a gem, and they will get a top five pick which will turn into Barkov or Monahan who will be there 1st line center for the next 15 years. Ottawa is the one team that knows the writing on the wall and is preparing for next year.

I see them either trading Anderson for a good pick or Anderson getting injured and this team nose diving to a top 5 pick which I hope does not happen. If they get Jones or McKinnon I'll plan the parade route next year when Spezza and Karlsson is back.

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#106 Smokey
February 19 2013, 03:38PM
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Curcro wrote:

I think I would go for some subtle moves. I like the top 6 as it is.

(1)I would trade Potter & 4th to the Leafs for Steckel & 3rd.

It is a little nickel and diming, but actually think it needs to be done more, upgrading lower round picks so that your chances of getting an NHL player are improved.

(2)Hordichuk would never again see the light of day, so I would trade him or completely drop him.

(3)1st Round Pick, Omark, Tuebert & Eager to Islanders for Thomas Hickey & Kyle Okposo Islanders keep 1.4M of caphit.

I think the NYI will resign Streit. Hickey is NHL ready, but has been victimized by bad luck. I think an NHL ready player is worth a 1st round in the bush. I see him as a future top 4. So basically 1st & Tuebert for Hickey. Then Omark & Eager for Okposo. I see Okposo as a younger Eager with more talent. But his traditional stats this year are quite horrible(advanced stats show he is playing reasonably), and I think Omark has enough value with how he is playing in Switzerland to swing this deal.

(4) Not resign Whitney.

(5) Trade 7th for the rights to RFA Steve Mason. Then before the deadline to offering a qualifying offer resign him for $1M. If he doesn't accept, then he goes UFA. A worthy gamble for someone who has the potential to be a capable backup.

(6) Not resign Khabi

Hall-Eberle-RNH Yak-Hemsky-Gagner - Sign Gagner 4M Okposo-Smyth-Horcoff MPS-Jones-Belanger - Re-sign Jones 1.5M, MPS 1.0M Lander-Hartski-Steckel-Petrell - Re-sign Hartski 1.0M, Sign Steckel 1.0M

Schultz-Schultz Petry-Smid - Re-Sign Smid 2.7 M Hickey-Fistric - Re-Sign Fistric 1.5M, Sign Hickey 1.25 M Peckham-Klefbom

Dubnyk-Mason - Sign Mason to 1.0 M contract

That puts the Oilers on the cap. It means the Oilers have 1 extra D, and 2 Extra F. Which as this year injuries have shown is a wise precaution to have.

This gives the Oilers the flexibility to keep Horcoff or to use compliance buy out. Also the option not to sign Jones & Peckham.

It is very similar to this year, but it strengthens the bottom 6 of the Oilers forwards, and it brings the future forward on D.

It maybe nice to have an experienced stable D instead of Horcoff, but I don't think other teams would make that trade.

Are you talking Hickey, the fourth overall draft bust outta LA who got picked up by Captain Wangliner and the Snowshow.

If he had any value don't you think Lambo would of kept him as hes down two valuable defencemen. Heck I think Teubert passed him when he was with the Monarchs.

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#107 IATS
February 19 2013, 04:08PM
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Will wrote:

That's an interesting move. I still think we run into a problem with veteran leadership.

Does anyone think we could do a hockey trade, Hemsky RW for a LW with some size and maybe a bit less skill that can play in our top six?

That means Yak shifts over to the right side, maybe we have more of a gritty veteran on the wing on that line, then we can afford to wait till this centre develops in order to use Gags as a tradable asset to plug a different hole.

I think if we are still in the hunt for a playoff spot, a trade like this would make sense. We set ourselves up for a balanced top six in the future, while getting something and giving something to strengthen two different teams. Is there a team out there where this would be beneficial for both parties? (i.e a team that is stocked on LW, but needs some more skill?)

THIS! But wait until next year.

See how things shake out this year with the current roster. Let Yakupoc mature in his first season before you rush him into 2nd line RW role. We finally have the chance to do that now.

Don't forget we're down two "truculent" players right now with Horcoff and Jones. Having them back will make a bigger difference than people think.

Next year, if it looks like Yakupov can take on the role of a top 6 RW, then you look to make that hockey trade. Hemsky for a LW with size, and puck possession skills who can complement Gagner and Yakupov. Don't expect this player to score like Hemsky though. You're trading Hemsky's skill and point production for a LW with size and grit.

See how the team looks HEALTHY this year, then try to make a sensible trade.

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#108 Mitch
February 19 2013, 04:16PM
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Well I have liked Rupp but that is no longer a option. Maybe you can bring in a Derek Englannd from Pitsburgh for a younger prospect. I have also liked Dustin Byfuglien from Winnipeg but I would play him as a forward. Maybe a Hemsky for Martinez from LA if Martinez was healthy.

A complete long shot maybe a guy could take a run at Corey Perry. My thinking is we need a veteran up in the top 2 lines just to give a bit of stability.

The price tag on some players who knows the most important thing is the chemistry that they would bring to the lineup. Mitch

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#109 Phixieus666
February 19 2013, 04:26PM
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If I was running a NHL team I would hire a mind control/brain washing expert.

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#110 Phixieus666
February 19 2013, 04:34PM
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Also what kind of an impact would a coach like Kruger have on a guy like Penner??????

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#111 Dog Train
February 19 2013, 04:43PM
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I would agree that this season is probably not the season to make a big move. In the off-season however, I am wondering if the Kings and Oilers might not become trade partners again. They could use more speed and skill while we could use more size and grit. Should be interesting if they miss the playoffs because they were only an 8th seed last year and they could use a player like a Hemsky or something. Just throwing it out there.

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#112 Will
February 19 2013, 04:53PM
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@IATS

Absolutely I don't expect as much skill, but that's what I mean about having some balance. Our top 6 is nothing if not skilled, so why not sacrifice some of that for some size? I think a trade like this will make the most sense for both the Oilers, and another team out there looking for a skilled winger, who isn't really soft and can likely add some point production in a playoff run.

However, if you wait till next year, then Hemsky is just a rental player, but this year he still has another year on a decent contract. A trade at the deadline if we are still in the hunt I think nets the most return.

However I do agree that trading away something proven is not the best plan when you plug that hole with potential.

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#113 27Ginge
February 19 2013, 05:19PM
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I would overextend big time for Lucic. Hemsky, Gagner, Klefbom whatever spare parts they might want (not hall, schultz, nuge, ebs, yak or hartikainen or 1st rounder). Would look awesome riding shotgun with nuge and ebs. Second line could be hall between yak and hartikainen. Thats a bigger top six.

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#114 nunyour
February 19 2013, 05:44PM
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maybe you could trade some offence for some defence-Hemsky to philly for Coburn? Magnus and 1st pick to colorado for O'reilly and there second pick? he's not happy in colorado.

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#115 Wax Man Riley
February 19 2013, 07:11PM
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Skidplate wrote:

What are you thoughts on spooning?

Wanye likes being the little spoon

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#116 ralph_u
February 19 2013, 07:26PM
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Thanks Struds for making me GM for now.

1)Trade Petry and Musil for O'Reilly.(Need to get a 2nd center with some bite and still score this guy fits)

2)Whitney and 3rd rounder for Streit.(Both expiring contracts and coach knows this player well)

3)Gagner to Columbus for a 1st.(Hang onto Gagner till draft if worried about Nuge's health)

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#117 @Oilanderp
February 19 2013, 08:18PM
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Hmmmm.

I move that we change the name of this article to, "CONTEST: Type some stupid sh** and then will all laugh at you and point out how absolutely shitaneously out of touch you are with reality." ™

It certainly brings traffic though... the wrong kind.

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#118 a lg dubl dubl
February 19 2013, 09:52PM
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Stephen Wiess for Oilers 2014 1st if Wiess resigns,2014 2nd round if not and Tyler Pitlick.

Buyout Horcoff.

Move Gagner to the 3rd line to replace Horcoff,Wiess 2nd line center.

Petry and Musil and for Letang.

See if I can get at least a 3rd round pick for Whitney if not let him go.

Ben Scrivens for this years 2nd round pick

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#119 That Guy
February 19 2013, 10:12PM
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a lg dubl dubl wrote:

Stephen Wiess for Oilers 2014 1st if Wiess resigns,2014 2nd round if not and Tyler Pitlick.

Buyout Horcoff.

Move Gagner to the 3rd line to replace Horcoff,Wiess 2nd line center.

Petry and Musil and for Letang.

See if I can get at least a 3rd round pick for Whitney if not let him go.

Ben Scrivens for this years 2nd round pick

Petry and Musil for Letang? Get your head of the sand, buddy. Letang is going nowhere. If Edmonton has Schultz as their untouchable defencemen, Letang is the Penguin's. Here's the thing though...Letang is proven.

Love all the Omark trades, no NHL team would trade a bag of frozen peas for him.

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#120 gcw_rocks
February 20 2013, 09:42AM
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These are trades I would explore:

NYR - very weak on the RW after Gaborik, so Hemsky and Whitney for Del Zotto and Kreider. The Oilers get another puck moving defenceman and a big left winger with size and upside. Yakupov moves into hemsky's spot. This is a "next year" play but addresses a long term imbalance in the roster.

NYR does the trade because (a) not afraid of skilled players with injury history, not afraid to trade young players, and Del Zotto's name has come up in trade rumours this year.

BOS - Hemsky and Whitney for Hamilton and a depth player. Boston only does this deal in they believe they are a little more offense away from winning it all. Also a "next year" deal for the Oilers.

COL - Hemsky and Lander or Belanger for O'Reilly and a pick. COL is fielding offers and they are weak on the right side with Parenteau and the fading Hejduk as the top 2 options. Hemsky gives the Avs a skilled player to play with Stastny, who clearly misses having a skilled player to play with since Stewart left. Oilers do this deal because O'Reilly is a possession demon with some offensive upside.

If you get O'Reilly, then you have to consider a second trade of Gagner for a top defenceman. Maybe to the Rangers for a Staal or McDonough?

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