FROM WHERE I SIT . . .

Robin Brownlee
May 21 2013 09:08PM

When I started with the Edmonton Journal back in 1989, columnist Cam Cole would fill days that didn't provide him with enough meat to churn out a full rant or rave with a bit he called "Items that might grow up to be columns, Volume XVI" etc.

This, with the Edmonton Oilers scattered all over the place during a seventh straight post-season out of the playoff mix, the draft and free agency still many weeks away and new GM Craig MacTavish settling into the job, is that. I'm stealing it from Cole, with credit, of course.

In no particular order of importance, some of the thoughts that have crossed my addled mind in recent days, grabbing my attention at least as much as the Stanley Cup playoffs and trying to fix my busted Biscayne (don't ask) have.

THE WAY I SEE IT

. . . We already know that Jonathan Huberdeau, Brendan Gallagher and Brandon Saad are finalists for the Calder Trophy as NHL rookie of the year and that Nail Yakupov of the Oilers is not.

Outside of, perhaps, Yakupov's bonus structure, that oversight doesn’t mean a damn thing – if I had the pick of any of the four as an armchair GM, I'd take Yakupov in a heartbeat (insert "and trade him for David Clarkson" smart guy remark here).

Don't get me wrong, the Calder Trophy is a terrific bauble to have in the trophy case at home and a nice personal accolade, but it's not always (some would go as far as to say seldom) an indication of who'll have the best career, and there's lots of examples of that in just the last decade or so.

Would you rather have 2011 Calder Trophy winner Jeff Skinner or runner-up Logan Couture? Steve Mason won it in 2009 and can't stop a beach ball today, while the runner-up was Bobby Ryan. In 2003, Barrett Jackman was rookie of the year ahead of Henrik Zetterberg. In 2001, Evgeni Nabokov got the nod over Brad Richards. You get the idea.

Yakupov, of course, won’t even be a runner-up because PHWA voters somehow left him off the list of three finalists, but it says here he'll be the best – certainly the most dynamic – player three years from now.

WHILE I'M AT IT

. . . I did an item several days ago extolling the (obvious) virtues of pending UFAs Bryan Bickell, Nathan Horton and Clarkson as forwards MacTavish should have an eye on and I said I'd take a swing at defensemen who might not only raise the compete level but the talent level on Edmonton's back end.

I don't see a lot in the UFA pool in terms of blueliners, so it looks to me like MacTavish's best bets will come via trade. That of course, raises countless possibilities, ranging from tweaks to landing proven top-two talent, but I'll just offer four names. Not-shoot-for-the-moon stuff necessarily, but do-able deals.

If the Oilers are willing to spend a tall stack on their top two (and I think they should consider it), I'd be looking at Keith Yandle, 27, of Phoenix and Alex Edler, also 27, of Vancouver. Neither name, of course, is a revelation.

Yandle, who has three years remaining on a contract with a $5.25 million cap hit, can play the minutes required (22:14 this season) and brings some edge (54 PIM) and the ability to generate offence (10-20-30 this season).

Edler, who inked a six-year deal with a $5-million cap hit, might be pried out of Vancouver if they're looking to tweak a line-up that again fell short this season. Edler produced 8-14-22 and had 37 PIM this season while logging an average of 23:50 a night.

On the cheap end of the salary scale, at least as of right now, I really like Travis Hamonic of the New York Islanders (the former Wheat King who almost ended Taylor Hall with a wicked check in the CHL post-season). Hamonic, 22, an RFA, played 22:48 a night for the Islanders. He bangs.

I also like Brenden Dillon, 22, of the Dallas Stars, but who doesn't? The big blueliner, six-foot-three and 228 pounds, averaged 21:22 a night for Dallas this season. He's got one year left at $900,000.

AND . . .

Kudos to Jason Gregor and everybody at TEAM 1260 for raising almost $10,000 with their king and queen of karaoke tilt at On the Rocks last Friday . . . on a personal note, thanks to the readers of Oilersnation and fans of Gregor's show who've brought their business to my Crackmasters Southwest shop since we opened. The business, especially in the first year of start-up, is very much appreciated . . . sat around talking hockey for a couple of hours in the shop with Oil Kings coach Derek Laxdal last week . . .

STREAKCRED

Don't forget to play StreakCred the new playoff pool game from the Nation Network. You can win a trip for 2 to Oktoberfest in Germany among the awesome prizes up for grabs. Only $20 and a portion of the proceeds go to Edmonton Charities. Sign up here.

Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.

Aceb4a1816f5fa09879a023b07d1a9b4
A sports writer since 1983, including stints at The Edmonton Journal and The Sun 1989-2007, I happily co-host the Jason Gregor Show on TSN 1260 twice a week and write when so inclined. Have the best damn lawn on the internet. Most important, I am Sam's dad. Follow me on Twitter at Robin_Brownlee. Or don't.
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#1 Citizen David
May 21 2013, 09:26PM
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I would love to get Hamonic. Would the Isles part with him other than an overpay?

Also Jake Gardiner, and Jack Johnson.

Yak will be a beast.

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#2 RED DRAGON
May 21 2013, 09:32PM
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Congrats on your first year Mr. Brownlee and thank you for all of your words throughout the years!! I have read your articles since I was in school reading the sports section before heading out to start the day. Your articles have always been and continue to be insightful and informative.

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#3 ketchup chips and dip
May 21 2013, 09:36PM
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Any of those D sound great, except I'm a little weary about Yandle. He plays mostly in the offensive zone, never PK's, and basically seems like the left handed Justin Schultz.

The other options seem much more appealing, but also probably much less obtainable.

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#4 T__Bone88
May 21 2013, 09:36PM
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Would Seabrook be a possibility? Chicago might want to shed a bigger contract this off-season. It might take the 7th plus gagner or petry but it would be an improvement on the back end.

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#5 OilersBrass
May 21 2013, 09:43PM
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Funny how Brenden Dillon was a whopping 5 foot 6 his draft year and went undrafted. Look at him now!

Also this is only speculation, but I feel like the Oilers management went to the world tournament in Sweden to take a closer look at Brenden Dillon and Mike Smith.

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#6 Walter Sobchak
May 21 2013, 10:00PM
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I don't care what kind of flack I get, and Brownlee feel free to give me the business too.

I still think the Oilers go after Weber, I also think a lot of fans will be pissed off at what the Oilers give up.

Yandel would great runner up, no complaints here.

The big fish of the summer belongs to Weber.

I'm pre ordering my new # 6 home Jersey.

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#7 Rocket
May 21 2013, 10:06PM
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^ Webernation returns!

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#8 OilersBrass
May 21 2013, 10:16PM
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^ Ohhhhh no!

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#9 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 21 2013, 10:17PM
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@Walter Sobchak

Could I get in on that with you as well? might get a better deal if we buy 2.

Pass on Yandle, Wasn't big on Edler till he took a run at Eric Staal. Ah, still pass on Edler too.

I would overpay for Hamonic though. I'd give up Hemmer (retain half his salary) or even Gagner with his warts and all for him. Hamonic and the Isles third for Gags. Homonic could make Smid or the elder Schultz expendable. Oilers could sure use a future Bryan Marchment light in Hamonic. Like the violent nature in some of his collisions.

Give them 2/3rds of the Oilers triple H line. Give them Horcoff and Hemsky. Maybe the Isles would like that 10.5 cap hit for only 8 million. Lol, that would set their rebuild back 5 yrs with those two....

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#10 David S
May 21 2013, 10:24PM
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Weber? Sheesh.

They really should dial down the trade possibilities on NHL 13. Just because the 'puter says you can do it doesn't mean it happens in the real world.

And in some other desperate fan base, far, far away someone is saying on the internets...

"The big fish of the summer belongs to Hall.

I'm pre-ordering my new #4 home Jersey."

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#11 Wax Man Riley
May 21 2013, 10:26PM
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Weber is not coming to Edmonton.

4 first round picks and a $100MM contract wasn't enough to get Weber out of Nashville, there is not much the Oilers can give up because I guarantee it will not be 4 1st round picks.

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#12 Rocket
May 21 2013, 10:26PM
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I don't think The Oilers will be able to pry Travis Hamonic off the Island. They need him for next years playoffs.

Edler is interesting though.

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#13 Wax Man Riley
May 21 2013, 10:37PM
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David S wrote:

Weber? Sheesh.

They really should dial down the trade possibilities on NHL 13. Just because the 'puter says you can do it doesn't mean it happens in the real world.

And in some other desperate fan base, far, far away someone is saying on the internets...

"The big fish of the summer belongs to Hall.

I'm pre-ordering my new #4 home Jersey."

Yes, I'm sure someone in Jersey is arguing trading Matt Read for Hall straight up will right all wrongs. Maybe throw in their 2012 2nd rounder.

Also, Nashville has MORE cap space than Edmonton next year.... more.

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#14 Jeffff
May 21 2013, 10:39PM
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Yandle is a second pairing Dman. Edler played with the best group of Dmen in Vancouver and excellent goaltending. He has a back problem and is overrated.

Given this if you still want them at least you will know what your getting and yes offensively they are better than anything Oilers have .

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#15 John s
May 21 2013, 10:47PM
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Can't win without a Selke type center on your top 2 lines.

You wordsmiths can go on and on with your articles won't help

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#16 TigerUnderGlass
May 21 2013, 10:49PM
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I wish management wasn't so risk averse. I would rather risk a shot at a possible star before he breaks out than spend what a lesser but already established star costs in trade.

You might fail, or you might have gotten Subban or OEL if you took a shot at it early enough.

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#17 TV6
May 21 2013, 10:54PM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

I don't care what kind of flack I get, and Brownlee feel free to give me the business too.

I still think the Oilers go after Weber, I also think a lot of fans will be pissed off at what the Oilers give up.

Yandel would great runner up, no complaints here.

The big fish of the summer belongs to Weber.

I'm pre ordering my new # 6 home Jersey.

Pre-Order that jersey ALL you want...

But you'd damn well better put Klefbom on the back of it & not Weber, or you are going to look a little silly come October...

x6

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#18 Desmond
May 21 2013, 10:55PM
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7 seasons out of the playoffs 3 #1 picks and a gift Justin Schultz. Look at the core what have the Oilers been drafting?

Why should anyone think things will change .

Better get use to disappointment. Or lower your expectations close to reality and you will expect Oilers to lose. And when they do well it's expected.

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#19 djc
May 21 2013, 10:55PM
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I think I would rather read a DSF blog than another Weber to Edmonton trade proposal.

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#20 a lg dubl dubl
May 21 2013, 10:58PM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

I don't care what kind of flack I get, and Brownlee feel free to give me the business too.

I still think the Oilers go after Weber, I also think a lot of fans will be pissed off at what the Oilers give up.

Yandel would great runner up, no complaints here.

The big fish of the summer belongs to Weber.

I'm pre ordering my new # 6 home Jersey.

well...who are we going to get pissed about getting traded to get Weber

*grabs popcorn*

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#21 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 21 2013, 10:58PM
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With TV6 in now, that's three #6 Weber jerseys already, and we're not even on page two yet.

Wanye needs to get into jerseys as well, aggressively expand that hoodie business he started..

When did Weber start taking up fishing?

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#22 Bushed
May 21 2013, 11:11PM
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Hamonic would be a great addition who could be around for a long time and add some toughness. Ditto Dillon, but he seems a lot less likely to be available, even for an overpay.

How about starting with getting Huddy back into the organization. He did a good job in Dallas, and might be the guy to find or develop us some hidden diamonds in the rough.

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#23 FSD
May 21 2013, 11:11PM
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Seven years out of the playoffs, with three #1 overall picks plus three more top tens in Smid, Gagner and Paajarvi plus Eberle, Dubnyk, Justin Schultz, Petry and Hemsky and still management has shown that they have no idea how to build a team.

Over the last seven years there has been no worse team in the NHL. And still Kevin Lowe is employed.

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#24 Josh Oiler
May 21 2013, 11:13PM
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Here's an idea???

LET'S TRADE THE ENTIRE OILERS ROSTER FOR SHEA WEBER. WE WILL INCLUDE 7 1st round draft picks.

Then we call up the whole OKC team to play with Weber.

Then we move Stockton players to OKC.

Then we win the Stanley Cup.

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#25 719
May 21 2013, 11:16PM
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Mr. Brownlee, first of all congratulations on your first year in business. I know from personal experience that the first year in business is by far the hardest.

Secondly, to me the most plausible trade scenario is Hemsky for Blum. Polie said he wanted to replace to Erat with a similar player, Hemsky is a similar player.

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#26 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 21 2013, 11:18PM
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Check that, that's 4 now, with Josh also having an ultimate D'man crush on Weber as well.

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#27 Shaun Doe
May 21 2013, 11:25PM
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I would voice a big no on Edler. He started out really well with Vancouver but about a season ago his game just imploded. He is as streaky a player as they come. He can dominate a game and then disappear for a stretch. He can play this song and dance out within a game as well. Its as if his confidence is completly shot. there is a reason the nucks are ready to ship him out after signing that contract earlier in the season. Worst of all, he completely melts down in the play offs... I guess that shouldn't affect the oilers all too badly.

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#28 Taylor Gang
May 21 2013, 11:25PM
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Next up, is Connor McJesus. wrote:

Check that, that's 4 now, with Josh also having an ultimate D'man crush on Weber as well.

Kill yourself

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#29 clyde
May 21 2013, 11:32PM
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Next up, is Connor McJesus. wrote:

Could I get in on that with you as well? might get a better deal if we buy 2.

Pass on Yandle, Wasn't big on Edler till he took a run at Eric Staal. Ah, still pass on Edler too.

I would overpay for Hamonic though. I'd give up Hemmer (retain half his salary) or even Gagner with his warts and all for him. Hamonic and the Isles third for Gags. Homonic could make Smid or the elder Schultz expendable. Oilers could sure use a future Bryan Marchment light in Hamonic. Like the violent nature in some of his collisions.

Give them 2/3rds of the Oilers triple H line. Give them Horcoff and Hemsky. Maybe the Isles would like that 10.5 cap hit for only 8 million. Lol, that would set their rebuild back 5 yrs with those two....

If you would overpay for Hamonic, take these joke offers off and offer the overpay.

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#30 Josh Oiler
May 21 2013, 11:32PM
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Next up, is Connor McJesus. wrote:

Check that, that's 4 now, with Josh also having an ultimate D'man crush on Weber as well.

If you spell Shea Weber backwards... You have Eahs Rebew.. Translated to the Austrian Language mean "WINNER"

Aren't you tired of the Oilers losing!!!!

They've sucked for years.

And will continue to suck unless we get Mr. Hockey Rockstar Shea Weber.

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#31 Josh Oiler
May 21 2013, 11:36PM
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Another thought:

Since all of his teammates in MTL hate him anyway.

Lets pry PK SUBBAN out of Montreal.

PK has so much upside and is a true quarterback on the back end.

Mac T are u listening??

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#32 Jordan Eberle
May 21 2013, 11:42PM
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Hello everyone

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#33 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 21 2013, 11:46PM
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@clyde

Hamonic is a 10 mill over 4 yrs on his next deal. Aren't you getting ahead of yourself a little?

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#34 Taylor Gang
May 21 2013, 11:47PM
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If saying Horcoff sucked is beating a dead horse, saying we should trade for Weber is beating a stillborn. When are you guys going to get it into your heads that this trade will NEVER happen, first of all is because of the shear price of him. It's borderline insane to suggest that Poille would trade arguably the best defenseman in the league for a second line centre, a #7 pick and spare parts. One if not two kids would have to be involved. Secondly, do you have any idea how much the kids will cost to keep on the team in salary? Do you truly believe that they could afford what is basically an albatross contract which will haunt us for 13 YEARS. 13. Years. No thanks please. The only trade I could see working without involving one of the fab 5 is for Yandle or Edler. Shattenkirk is a stretch but hey, Petrangelo and Stewart alone will ask for a lot, not completely out of the question. Suddenly the Gagner and/or #7 overall package isn't so bad

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#35 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 21 2013, 11:47PM
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Jordan Eberle wrote:

Hello everyone

Hey Jordan

What do you think of the situation in the middle east?

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#36 Jordan Eberle
May 21 2013, 11:47PM
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I read this stuff often, but never really get to post anything. I am the real Jordan Eberle by the way. Just wanted to comment on this whole Weber thing. Met Shea a few times, awesome guy! Wish we could have got him without giving up too much but that won't happen. I believe we have many talented guys on defense. 2013/2014 is our season. I think Taylor will score 100pts next season. As for myself... I hope to get 90 pts with 30 goals! Met Oscar Klefbom at practice. Serious talent! Wow!

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#37 Jordan Eberle
May 21 2013, 11:49PM
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Next up, is Connor McJesus. wrote:

Hey Jordan

What do you think of the situation in the middle east?

Always mind boggling!

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#38 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 21 2013, 11:57PM
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@Jordan Eberle

Belated Happy Birthday BTW.

How's that whole restraining order thing working out with that Wanye character?

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#39 Taylor Gang
May 22 2013, 12:01AM
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Jordan Eberle wrote:

I read this stuff often, but never really get to post anything. I am the real Jordan Eberle by the way. Just wanted to comment on this whole Weber thing. Met Shea a few times, awesome guy! Wish we could have got him without giving up too much but that won't happen. I believe we have many talented guys on defense. 2013/2014 is our season. I think Taylor will score 100pts next season. As for myself... I hope to get 90 pts with 30 goals! Met Oscar Klefbom at practice. Serious talent! Wow!

Is this real life?

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#40 Taylor Gang
May 22 2013, 12:04AM
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Side by side in big boy beds, they're best friends it's Hall and Ebs!

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#41 Rocket
May 22 2013, 12:09AM
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Jordan Eberle wrote:

I read this stuff often, but never really get to post anything. I am the real Jordan Eberle by the way. Just wanted to comment on this whole Weber thing. Met Shea a few times, awesome guy! Wish we could have got him without giving up too much but that won't happen. I believe we have many talented guys on defense. 2013/2014 is our season. I think Taylor will score 100pts next season. As for myself... I hope to get 90 pts with 30 goals! Met Oscar Klefbom at practice. Serious talent! Wow!

If Hall can get 100 points next season, that would be incredible. He certainly has the talent. I'm cautiosly opptamistic on Klefbom. I hope he turns out well but people on the interwebz seem to hype him a bit too much.

Some AHL seasoning might help.

BTW, can you get 120 points next season? I would really clean up in my hockey pool.

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#42 Rocket
May 22 2013, 12:10AM
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Taylor Gang wrote:

Side by side in big boy beds, they're best friends it's Hall and Ebs!

Totally awesome!

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#43 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 22 2013, 12:31AM
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Hey Wes

Looks like Ebs is a Weber enthusiast as well. Make that 5 Weber jerseys (on the first page alone) in total. Maybe Ebs can get them auto'd for us, no?

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#44 Taylor Gang
May 22 2013, 12:56AM
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Next up, is Connor McJesus. wrote:

Hey Wes

Looks like Ebs is a Weber enthusiast as well. Make that 5 Weber jerseys (on the first page alone) in total. Maybe Ebs can get them auto'd for us, no?

At the end of the day you could have an entire army of "enthusiasts", but it's not going to happen. Why put all of your eggs in one basket? Why does this top pairing defenseman HAVE to be Weber? If you're shooting for the stars, why don't you look at Petrangelo, or Karrlson, or Subban? The reason people are so sick and tired of hearing the Weber trade talk is because it's the same sh*t different day. You seem like the type of person who walks into a dealership and buys a car without looking for a better price anywhere else. Like seriously man, why are you so fixated on him?

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#45 pelhem grenville
May 22 2013, 05:38AM
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...said it before...sell the FARM IMPLeMENTS for Weber!!! that's 6 for #6 jerseys

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#46 madjam
May 22 2013, 06:55AM
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Taylor Gang wrote:

If saying Horcoff sucked is beating a dead horse, saying we should trade for Weber is beating a stillborn. When are you guys going to get it into your heads that this trade will NEVER happen, first of all is because of the shear price of him. It's borderline insane to suggest that Poille would trade arguably the best defenseman in the league for a second line centre, a #7 pick and spare parts. One if not two kids would have to be involved. Secondly, do you have any idea how much the kids will cost to keep on the team in salary? Do you truly believe that they could afford what is basically an albatross contract which will haunt us for 13 YEARS. 13. Years. No thanks please. The only trade I could see working without involving one of the fab 5 is for Yandle or Edler. Shattenkirk is a stretch but hey, Petrangelo and Stewart alone will ask for a lot, not completely out of the question. Suddenly the Gagner and/or #7 overall package isn't so bad

The reality of the NHL is those types of contracts for special players like Weber , Suter , Parise , Ovechkin , Kovalchuk , Crosby, Malkin , etc., are now becoming commonplace . Wasn't that long ago we paid Gretzky an unheard of Million dollar a year contract . Times have changed , and it's time we got back in the game to keep up . Will our Oilers make such a splash ? Maybe or maybe not , but a definite possibility no doubt .

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#47 oilabroad
May 22 2013, 06:55AM
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Wax Man Riley wrote:

Weber is not coming to Edmonton.

4 first round picks and a $100MM contract wasn't enough to get Weber out of Nashville, there is not much the Oilers can give up because I guarantee it will not be 4 1st round picks.

I am not saying we could or should go after Weber, but the reason 4 first round pics were not enough is because they do nothing to help Nashville now, they are IOU's.... After losing Suter, there is no way Nashville could completely blow up the team by letting that happen. I guarantee you if you offered up Yak, Klefbom and this years #7 (Monahan), Nashville would would be listening. They cut back on salary and can at least sell HOPE (we have been buying this for years) to their fanbase... 4 pics in the #25 range every year from Philly would have been a brutal trade for Nashville and set them back years

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#48 Walter Sobchak
May 22 2013, 07:08AM
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Wax Man Riley wrote:

Weber is not coming to Edmonton.

4 first round picks and a $100MM contract wasn't enough to get Weber out of Nashville, there is not much the Oilers can give up because I guarantee it will not be 4 1st round picks.

Remember though, that was to retain Weber, would you trade Weber for a bunch of prospects only?

That doesn't make sense, especially if there coming from the Flyers, you might be getting mid to late picks.

Sorry Wax Man, if you were a GM you would have been forced to match that as well.

@ Has Taylor Hall asked to be traded, yet? Hahaha #6 Weber. Live the dream!!

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#49 15w40
May 22 2013, 07:29AM
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Would Gagner plus the 7th get you to the #4 spot to select Barkov?

The more I read the more I think he may be gone even sooner than Drouin.

These things are interesting because some will say there is no way that is enough and some will say that its too much giving up that much experience and consistent production in a player that is only 23 or 24 yrs old plus a "higher" 1st round pick for a prospect.

There are still glaring holes down the middle and on the back end and after watching the Bruins play, it is even more obvious how many holes remain on this roster to be able to compete into May or June.

More on theme with Robin's original thread; if his foot speed is good enough another young dman that may add to the mix for more abrasiveness is Dylan McIlrath from the Rangers.

Spent most (all) of his time on the farm this year. He is a nasty piece of business and is a big boy.

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#50 oilslick
May 22 2013, 07:30AM
Trash it!
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trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

In the words of Steven Tyler "Dream On" as big a fan as I am I don't forsee the Oil acquiring Weber the pricetag would be way to high. Mark Streit will probably end up here. I don't think Think the Isles will part with Hamonic given their push back against The Pens and as far as Edler goes that is an interesting possibility but I'm not sure that they would trade him within the conference. MacT has his work cut out for him this summer. Tyler Bozek Bryan Bickell & Nathan Horton should be some of the targets up front & maybe Mike Smith to tandem in goal with Doobie Doobie Do!!! God Speed MacT!!!

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