Ethan Moreau: where there’s Big Smoke there’s fire?

Edmonton Oilers v Buffalo Sabres


Darren Dreger of TSN had Edmonton Oilers fans buzzing today through the attention-getter that is his Twitter account with the proclamation: "Oilers pushing trade hard. Moreau and others, but deals unlikely unless Edmonton sweetens the pot."

And fans should be talking because Dreger is as connected as it gets when it comes to who’s doing what in the NHL’s executive suites, and he’s bang on with his assessment of the push to move the Oilers captain.

As a follow up to what Dreger stirred the pot with today, the indication I’m getting is that the Toronto Maple Leafs are the team at the front of the line when it comes to talks with the Oilers about Moreau.

The name I’m hearing that might fit in a deal for Moreau, and a name that came up here in the last couple of days in the comments section, is that of defenceman Garnet Exelby.


As Dreger said, the Oilers are going to have to "sweeten the pot" because there’s really no reason for the Maple Leafs to take Moreau for Exelby straight up. What the Maple Leafs are likely looking for is a draft pick as part of the deal because that’s a commodity GM Brian Burke wants and needs.

Moreau, 33, has one more season after this one at a salary of $1.750 million and his cap hit is $2 million. Exelby, 28, is making $1.725 million this season with a cap hit of $1.392 million. He’s an unrestricted free agent after this season.

Would Edmonton GM Steve Tambellini be "sweetening the pot" enough if he were to send, say, a third-round pick to Toronto with Moreau while taking a fourth-rounder back from Burke as part of a deal for Exelby?

Another scenario could see the Maple Leafs take Moreau and a pick for Exelby, giving them an extra asset for helping Tambellini rid himself of an extra year of salary.

In any case, the teams are talking, so we’ll have to keep an eye on this one.


I’m told, as Jason Gregor indicated here several days ago, Anaheim is one of the other teams the Oilers are talking to about Moreau, but I have no indication on the level of interest by the Ducks.

— Listen to Robin Brownlee every Wednesday and Thursday from 4 to 6 p.m. on Just A Game with Jason Gregor on TEAM 1260.

  • Tha Legion

    I think it is a smart trade because it represents the start of change. We can deal without the draft pick because we should pick up at least another through other trades Salary dump should go a long way in re signing rfa's and maybe some good cheap rebuilders

  • Tracie

    Wow! Hot topic! I have spent much of my work time reading thru these!

    With what RB said, if the deal is just to shed salary for us and for TO to pick up a pick, then it doesn't make any sense for us…If there is interest in him, then we should waive him. then he's off our books without having to take on ELB and we retain our picks.

    I know what you are saying about his time and tenure here, but this is also a new era and business is business…I think trading him would be the best option, hopefully to a team that can use him to go into the playoffs…but to give up a pick when we don't have to, just b/c we don't want to hurt his feelings? that just sounds like bad business.

  • OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

    OBJ wrote:
    Comrie signed in September so really how interested was that team?

    Teams do overpay for UFA's all the time, but how many teams over pay on just about every player they re-sign?

    Oh and I don't think it was because the other team wasn't interested I think it was because Comrie wasn't interested in the other team.

  • Chris.

    It's my guess that Burke would just waive Moreau next season should he not legitimately win a job out of camp… That is why he wants an upgraded draft pick for the hastle. This trade rumor, if true, smells like Toronto is just trying to buy picks.

    • Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things

      I do like the idea of trading Staios to a middling team for something that involves a pick, then flipping that pick to Toronto. That way they're not trading what's effectively a low 2nd-rounder.

  • I think the Kings n Blackhawks are about the only teams that have enough to put on the table for Kovi. Who the hell does Boston, New York, or even Philly have that can compare to what the Kings and Hawks have to offer. I bet Waddell is asking for Simminds from LA as part of the package for which Dean L. is saying "yeah blow me".

    • Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things

      I think you're overestimating what it'd take to pry Kovalchuk from ATL. If nobody makes an offer, he walks for free. They're not exactly in a position of power when it comes to screening offers.

    • Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things

      New York could offer up Artem Anisimov, Evgeny Grachev, Michael Del Zotto, Ryan Callahan to name a few

      Boston, maybe David Krejci, Blake Wheeler, a 1st round pick, Joe Colbourne

      Philly, possibly Claude Giroux, James Van Riemsdyk, maybe a 1st rounder

    • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

      Boston has toronto's picks plus I'd suspect Ryder is apart of a deal.

      New York, Dubinsky, Girardi, Gilroy, Asiminov. Not the greatest bunch but they do have enough to make something happen.

      Philly, all kinds of forwards.

      Granted Chicago and LA have the best, but why would LA risk losing players for Kovalchuk? They aren't close to being a contender.

      Chicago might make sense as if they don't re-sign Ilya they do have the depth to cover the lose.

  • OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

    I would rather see the Oilers buyout the Moreau contract than trade off any draft picks in return for a player who goes UFA at seasons end. That's an UGLY deal even if you want to rid yourself of cap space for next year.

  • swany

    Did you guys see the one on HF boards. To Boston Kovie to Atlanta Gagner, Cogs, Ryder and Edmonton second round pick To Edmonton David Krecji and Toronto's first from Boston. So that moves out Gagner, Cogs and our 2nd rounder, and brings in Krecji, Hall, and Seguin would you guys do this deal it's a tough call.

      • Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things

        Absolutely I would. Krejci I'd take over Gagner, Hall I'd take over Cogs, and Seguin I'd take over keeping our 2nd rounder. Looks like a home run for Edmonton on all accounts.

        • Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things

          Yeah I would agree, although I have a harder time as Gags keeps getting better and better of letting him go. Why cant we replace him with Nilsson and Poo?

          • Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things

            My reasoning there wasn't entirely sound. The Oil are not getting Hall as a part of the deal. That's ours whether this deal goes down or not.

            So it's effectively Cogs and a 2nd for a 1st.

            That makes it a tough call. I'd sleep on it, then probably still pull the trigger.

    • Ender

      I don't think I pull the trigger on this either. Gagne for Krejci is almost a saw-off (slight edge to Gagne if anything). Toronto's first may well turn out to be Fowler or worse, so we're talking about a high-chip prospect for Cogs and a second. The high-chip for Cogs straight across I might do, even though I really like Cogs. The second-rounder is a deal-breaker for me though. Overall, I think this would be a very short-sighted deal for the Oil that moves more potential talent out than it brings back in.

      • Bucknuck

        Yes. It was Atlanta in 1999.

        I remember it bitterly since one of my best friends decided that he was no longer a fan of the oilers on that day. He is the guy I had seasons' tickets with for years and that broke him.

        He laughed at me the day Ryan Smyth was traded.

        • Bucknuck

          EDIT – I am getting rid of my last comment and instead I want to tell Archeologdenguy and ODOG to quit bickering. One of you think it's unclassy and a bad move and the other doesn't. Agree to disagree and get over it.

          happy Wednesday

      • Chris.

        Because you were 10… and it was an expansion draft and the team could not protect everybody. If there was an expansion draft today there is not a doubt in my mind that Moreau would not be protected.

        Read the thread. I agree with moving Moreau… and I don't agree with dropping picks to do so. I think it would be a disrespectful, and unprecedented move by Tambellini to place Moreau on waivers. If Moreau isn't moved this deadline, he will probably be traded this summer… If not, and Moreau has a poor camp, we can discuss the possibility of waivers then… Arch, IMO, you are too cavalier with the notion of burying contracts in the minors. It's not your money… and you don't don't know Moreau, the person, or his family. Placing Moreau on waivers before the season ends makes no sense. It probably won't make sense in the fall either.

        • Nice dig at my age. ~Surely I must be young because I completely disagree with you.~

          It isnt cavalier to think that the team should use an option that is available and specifically used for the purpose required by the team.

          • washed up

            You are funny, it's because the situation doesn't present itself that often….would you be willing to bet that it doesn't happen, has never happened, won't happen in the future?

            I'll bet it has, does and will.

            Does Kyle McLaren qualify?….maybe it doesn't happen as much because most teams managements don't screw up as much. The fact you guys seem to ignore is that many vets are being placed on waivers….why is that ok, what does years on the team have to do with it?

            And what's this hissy fit crap you always pull, you don't think your endless tirades couldn't be called hissy fits?

            LOL, you are a piece of work

          • OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

            Basically it boils down to you being fixated on possibility while others base decisions and opinions on probabilities.

            Oh, and I'd classify:

            "WTF kind of comment is that? If you want to be douche go right ahead, but being sentimental towards fringe players is exactly why this team has a Cap payroll and basement results.

            Who cares how many games he's played? The team doesnt want him. End of story. Grow up."

            As a hissy fit.

          • OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

            Good god man, read back through the thread. That was the whole basis of the conversation.


            Chris said teams rarely waive players with a long history with THAT SPECIFIC TEAM.

            You said lots of teams waive veterans

            Chris said lets see some examples of guys waived THAT HAVE LONG HISTORY WITH THAT SPECIFIC TEAM

            It ISNT irrelevant criteria… it is THE criteria of the conversation.

            (Capitalized because I don't know how to bold)

          • Good god man, read back through the thread. I already discussed about why those criteria are false.


            Chris asked for examples of Midget wrestling Crocodile Hunters

            I said that would be pointless

            He said lets see some examples of Midget wrestling Crocodile hunters

            I said his criteria was meaningless

            It ISNT meaningful criteria, Thats why THIS CONVERSATION ISNT MOVING FORWARD

          • OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

            How is it false

            – Their are tenured players in the league

            – Their are players that get waived

            – Their are very few tenured players that get waived

            If it's a coincidence that very few tenured players get wiaved (and that most waived players are relatievely new with their team) then sure, it might be false.

            But I highly doubt it is coincidence.

          • Ok. Finally. We're getting somewhere.

            We can agree that there are players who have played for organizations for a long time. (Tenure is something a Professor gets at a University, I dont know what kind of benefits Players are awarded for being in one place for a long time)

            We can agree that players get waived.

            We can even agree that not many players who have served for a single club over a long time get waived incredibly often.

            Now, explain again why that prevents the Oilers from placing Moreau on waivers or point to the place in the CBA that outlines the benefits awarded to "tenured" players.

          • OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

            Like Chris said, he is eligble to be waived. I never contested that. What we are saying is that it is highly unlikely that he will be wiaved because for whatever reason, NHL teams don't seem to waive long standing members of their team.

          • Ender

            Sometimes, I'm with you. In this case, I think I have to side with the opposition. The criteria isn't meaningless just because you say it is. Several of us think the criteria (that being longstanding tenure with a team) is very relevant to the discussion at hand. You can't just dismiss it because you don't feel it is important. The importance does not diminish simply because it is discounted by a single observer.

            Whether you agree with the importance of tenure or not, the onus lies with you to disprove Chris's theory, not simply say it is irrelevant.

          • Chris.

            I'm not arguing that Moreau isn't eligible to be placed on waivers… I'm saying he won't be placed on waivers… at least not by the Oilers. The hockey world has unwritten boundries that are rarely crossed. (Remember the fuss over offer sheets? Lowe's inability to call nearly half the GM's around the league may have cost him his job even though raiding Penner was a valid, legal play)

            But I get it, point made… (I really got it all along) If you were GM of the Oilers, and a trade wasn't available, you would place Moreau on waivers without understanding, or caring about the franchise (possibly league wide) precedent being set… But this isn't so surprising, after all, these people are all strangers to you, and Moreau is your goat.

          • You are right. I would place him on waivers if I couldnt find an available trade.

            But I dont think it would set a precedent (as players are waived all the time) and I dont think that managing assets displays a lack of caring about the franchise. In fact, I think it's the exact opposite.

          • I could have written the same about you, but we just come from 2 seperate philosophies about what's best for the team.

            I dont have a problem with teams who manage their assets aggressively. That doesnt mean treat players poorly, it means be prepared to do whatever it takes to make the Oilers better.

            This whole discussion started on my end when I disagreed with losing assets to ship out Moreau when there exists an option to avoid that loss. I dont think that I am being all that unreasonable. I didnt say that the Oilers should put him in the minors "just because".

            It's the team that doesnt want him, not me. Let's just remind everyone of that.

          • Chris.

            I'm calling you obtuse because you are deliberately refusing to acknowledge, or disprove my contention that it would be a first time event for an NHL team to place one of their own ten year roster players on waivers.

            This is a simple statement; very limited in scope. Everyone gets it…Nobody has yet provided a suitable example to disprove it. In fact, this is such a simple concept to grasp: I have to believe that you are being deliberatly obtuse… because I don't want to believe that you are colossally stupid.

            You can deflect, and cloud the argument all you want… But, until you provide me with an example of a player that was placed on waivers by his own team, after 10 years or 600 games of service to that very same team: I will hold up my contention that it would be a precedent setting move by the Oilers to place Moreau on waivers… The precedent lies in the specific nature of the theoretical situation.

            I know you know what I'm driving at… You are therfore being deliberatly obtuse… and it is annoying.

          • Ok. Let's play your game. I cannot think of another player being waived after 600 games of service for that particular team off the top of my head.

            It would also be a precedent for a player named Ethan Moreau to be waived by the Edmonton Oilers. No other player named Ethan Moreau has ever been waived by the Edmonton Oilers ever before. It was also a dangerous precedent to Trade Ryan Smyth. Now we have to wonder if the Oilers will trade everyone else named Ryan Smyth from their roster.

            I think you're purposefully refusing to acknowledge that your criteria is so specific that it suits only your purpose and has no meaning beyond that.

          • Eric Johnson

            Thats not entirely true as there are many players who have played 10 plus seasons (600games ish) with one team. There is only one Ryan Smyth. That would be a gross exaggeration of the specified argument.

          • Chris.

            It's troubling when people want specific, relevent examples, isn't it?… Makes making sweeping statements more difficult…Hmmm?

            In my inital response to you I greatly widened the scope. I allowed for you to provide me an example for a player who has played 500 games for a team that placed him on waivers… how about 400?

            I didn't purposely create an unreasonably specific criteria to prove a point… Remember, the point I'm making is that it is: at the very least; incredibly rare for a team to waive a long serving player. What criteria would you apply to an example that would disprove my contention?

            That middle paragraph you wrote is absolute proof that you are being deliberatly obtuse… It's clear your M.O. is to waste my time: and I won't allow you to do that anymore. I'm adding you to my troll list of posters not worth responding to.

          • Bryzarro World

            You ask for an example that is hard to research…is there a list somewhere that contains all the players that have been placed on waivers?…

            The name in recent history that has been provided to you is Kyle McLaren who played 5 seasons with the San Jose Sharks…which means he was with them for close to 400 games (He missed some of those games due to injury).

            But I'm certain you'll have criteria in your head that says well 5 yrs is ok to place a player on waivers and it won't have a negative affect on the team that does it but anything over what? 6 yrs? 7 yrs? or does it have to be 10 yrs before it's not ok and has a negative effect….and how would you know anyway how it would be viewed if in fact it's never been done…you have nothing to go on to say this, no?

            And it's laughable that yourself and "Ogden know it all" don't think that you aren't annoying.

            It's also ammusing that you would think that other players would look at a Moreau being waived as a reason to not come to the Oilers…don't you think it would be even more possible that players would avoid a certain team who waives players not long after they arrive to a team? I mean afterall it's those players that won't likely be with that team for 10 yrs….wouldn't players look at it and say I'm not going to sign in Vancouver cuz hell they put guys on waivers who sign there….Or the NYI who have placed Brendan Witt on waivers or many teams that have signed players only to place them on waivers.

            What is your actual point if it hasn't happened to someone yet that has played 10 seasons with someone?

            And just how long have we had a salary cap in the NHL…has it even been 10 seasons? I think you'll find more and more vet players get placed on waivers during this era

          • Chris.

            Believe me, I didn't research the waiver wires to deliberately set a rigged criteria to my question simply to prove a point… and I bristle at that accusation. I just never remembered a really long serving member of an organization ever being placed on waivers. It's only logical that my criteria for a relevent example would be a player with a similar service record to what Moreau has had as an Oiler… (Logical or diabolical… you decide)

            I wasn't the one who said waiving Moreau would disuade others from signig here…(That was others) I did, however say that I think it's bad practice to waive long serving members of your team. I stand by that and it's okay to disagree.

          • My M.O. is to take your poorly conceived argument and display why it is based on premises that are not accepted nor explained sufficiently. My M.O. is to look at the points you make and display how they have no bearing on the conclusions you make.

            My middle paragraph did the same thing you did. You want me to acknowledge that there will be a dangerous precedent set by waiving Moreau. You want me to acknowledge that without you ever proving that waiving Moreau would be dangerous or proving that the "precedent" set is meaningful in any way. Would it be a precedent for a team to waive a player that played for them for 10+ years? Maybe. Does that precedent actual mean anything? A precedent implies that it would become an act that would be emulated by others. Would every other team then feel that they could waive 10 year vets? Yes. Because they already feel that. They feel that because there has been absolutely nothing from stopping them to ever do it before.

            As far as my troll status goes, I'm usually the only person that ever takes the time to argue with you regarding any topic. I do so generally without snide remarks about your general level of intelligence, age, experience, or other background. Your responses to me are usually filled with references to my "obvious" youth and inexperience but always manage to lack any form of substance.

            Your argument here is based solely on precedent and not whether it would be good, bad, or indifferent. Your only response is "has it been done before?". No. No the Oilers have not waived Ethan Moreau before. However, that does not mean they cant in the future.

            Call me obtuse, make reference to the video game generation, call me inexperienced if you will. But you dont have a point to your argument. You just want someone to say, "Nobody has waived a 10 year vet before."\

            I said it. And that still doesnt change anything.

          • Chris.

            Now that is a constructive response: a straight answer to a simple question. Looking at the Tucker/Ozgood examples, it can be said that it would not be an unprecedented move by the Oilers to put a long serving player like Moreau on waivers. I never heard that Osgood had been placed on waivers… and I had forgotten about Tucker… though Ender and I had already concluded a buy-out wasn't quite as big a slap in the face.

            Why was that so difficult? Was it a difficult question, or difficult people?

          • Eric Johnson

            I agree, chances are that the Oilers will find someone to take Moreau off their hands and this won't become necessary and it will be another example of where a player wasn't placed on waivers but if it comes down to it and the Oilers can't find any takers then I can see waivers come into play if the Oilers don't want a cap hit for a buyout on their hands.

            Another thing to keep in mind when looking at history is how many years have NHL franchises been saddled with a salary cap? This is another reason why you likely haven't seen as much waiver activity as you will be seeing now and as long as there is a salary cap.

  • washed up

    Really. Who would care if moreau were put on waivers. The other players? If i played on the oilers i'd be more pissed with him wearing the "C" than on waivers.

  • Eddie Shore

    In one breath it's time for Tambo to get cutthroat and in the next breath it's Tambo shouldn't waive Moreau because he is a tenured veteran. Which is it?

  • Eric Johnson

    A team like the Oilers tries hard to attract players. They hired a liaison specifically to help players find homes and assist them and their families in getting settled in the community.

    They also went out and spend over a million dollars to renovate the players area at rexall, including world class dressing room and work out facilities.

    Treating players with respect goes a long way when dealing with agents and players. After the debacle around their treatment of Ryan Smyth, combined with the zealot fan base that eagerly wants to run underachieving players out of town, as manager of the Oiler franchise and brand I would want to make sure our organization conducted itself with class.

    They could waive Moreau, yes they could. But there is no point to waiving him this year. It offers them nothing.

    A change in leadership is needed and he will be moved if even for a fourth rounder at the draft.

    But how a team treats it's players is important. The NHLPA is a strong union and players talk. We complain about the Oilers overpaying to get even mid range talent. Well disrespecting the current captain and longest serving Oiler by dumping him on waivers surely wouldn't help matters. Ethan Moreau despite his struggles is a gentleman and has served the Oilers well. THAT means something.

    Tenure and service maybe lost on some of you, but it certainly wouldn't be lost on the Boys club in the Edmonton front Office.

    • The NHLPA is the weakest of Unions and I only suggest burying a player in the minors when there is no room for him and his salary on the NHL club. I am not suggesting that the Oilers put him in Springfield unless they really want him gone and the only trade options involve losing more assets.

      • Eric Johnson

        I agree, but there is plenty of room for Moreau on this team this year. He may have Fringe NHL talent but thats better than some of the AHL talent we have.

        The waiver thing only becomes an issue next season if we cant move him before september.

        He is also easier to trade when the season is over and teams have more room to play with.

        • Bryzarro World

          I also agree with this, I don't think anyone said anything about waiving Moreau this season just that if need be next year then so be it.

          Archaeologdenguy wrote:

          I dont have a problem with teams who manage their assets aggressively. That doesnt mean treat players poorly, it means be prepared to do whatever it takes to make the Oilers better.

          This whole discussion started on my end when I disagreed with losing assets to ship out Moreau when there exists an option to avoid that loss. I dont think that I am being all that unreasonable. I didnt say that the Oilers should put him in the minors "just because".

          And this is the bottom line…doing whatever it takes to make the Oilers better…

  • Ender

    Archaeologdenguy wrote:

    Now, explain again why that prevents the Oilers from placing Moreau on waivers or point to the place in the CBA that outlines the benefits awarded to "tenured" players.

    We believe you when you say you don't understand why the Oilers wouldn't waive him. I don't understand why Pepsi Blue was taken off the market; that was great stuff. In both cases, just because we don't understand doesn't mean there isn't a reason.

    There is nothing that actually prevents the Oilers from putting Moreau on waivers any more than there is something that prevents me from walking behind my colleague's desk and letting a big ripe fart rip. The Oilers and I are both entitled to do what we think we need to do; no law prevents it. But the actions in both cases would stink and would not be appreciated by anyone who heard about it, least of all by the parties affected. Maybe that's why neither of those things happen very often.

  • Wanyes bastard child

    And on this note, I believe the comments from this thread alone equal or better the amount of comments made in the time that both the flames and canucks nations have been up…

    We should all do our part and and help them by blogging on their sites to attract more attention 🙂

    Also RossCreek is one of the flames main bloggers, so it sucks enough for them as it is, the least we could do is inject some cheer and life into their hearts over that fact.

  • Bryzarro World

    Why would you take down some of my posts? Didn't say anything crude or disrespectful. Just told wayne to use a mirror to see wtf was on his back instead of running around in circles trying to chase his tail… LOL

    Just trying to help a brother out….

  • Bryzarro World

    Funny Bob McKenzie is hyping the Kovalchuk trade needs to involve vetran NHLer's to make a deal. Hmm, I'm thinking the Oilers have a crap load of NHler's…. LOL Who cares if the Oiler could resign Kovalchuk…