Apr 11, 2010 - Anaheim, California, USA - Edmonton Oilers' center Marc Pouliot follows the puck after a failed shot by the Anaheim Ducks during the first period an NHL Hockey game at Honda Center.

The Edmonton Oilers have declined to tender qualifying offers to restricted free agents Marc Pouliot and Ryan Potulny, meaning they’ll be free to shop their services to other teams July 1.

Oilers assistant GM Rick Olczyk confirmed Pouliot and Potulny won’t get offers by the deadline of 3 p.m. local time today on Oilers Lunch with Bob Stauffer. Also not tendered offers by the Oilers were Josef Hrabel, Geoff Paukovich, Slava Truhkno and Bryan Lerg.

Ten restricted free agents did get offers — Gilbert Brule, Andrew Cogliano, Colin Fraser, Sam Gagner, J.F. Jacques, Jeff Deslauriers, Devan Dubnyk, Theo Peckham, Ryan O’Marra and Liam Reddox.

Pouliot, 25, selected 22nd overall by Edmonton in 2003, is the big news as the Oilers finally put an end to his tenure, once that saw him manage 21-32-53 in 176 games since his debut in 2005-06.

With the arrival of Colin Fraser from Chicago via trade at the Entry Draft in Los Angeles, not to mention Pouliot’s failure to excel in a bottom-six role, the writing was on the wall.


— BRULE: He earned $800,000 last season was qualified at $840,000, or 105 per cent of his 2009-10 salary as per the CBA. Because Brule has salary arbitration rights, I can see him ending up with a two-year deal that pays him in the range of $1.3 million to $1.5 million a season.

— COGLIANO — Earned $850,000 in salary and had to be qualified at $935,000. Doesn’t have arbitration rights. I’m thinking he’ll get a one-year deal at $1 million or so.

— FRASER: He earned $700,000 last season with Chicago. He does have arbitration rights, so I’m expecting Fraser will get a two-year contract at $850,000 to $900,000 per season.

— GAGNER: He made $875,000 in salary, so his QO has to be at least $962,500. My best guess is Gagner will sign a one-year deal at $1.2 to $1.4 million and take his chances at the table next summer.

— JACQUES: Often-injured fourth-liner made $500,000 last season and had to be qualified at 110 per cent of his salary, or $550,000. Don’t see more than a one-year deal at right around that amount.

— DESLAURIERS: He made $700,000 last season, so he had to be qualified at $735,000. With the Oilers having to waive either Deslauriers or Dubnyk to get them to the minors this season, he likely won’t end up with more than a one-year deal at less than $1 million. Deslauriers does have arbitration rights.

— DUBNYK: Also made $700,000, so he needs the same $735,000 QO. If Dubnyk gets more than one year, that pretty much telegraphs that he’s in the plans ahead of Deslauriers.

AND . . .

— I’m not expecting pending UFA Fernando Pisani to get a contract offer by the Oilers by July 1, meaning he’ll be free to shop around.

— I do expect the Oilers to try to re-sign UFA Mike Comrie, as well as Jason Strudwick, Aaron Johnson and Ryan Stone.

Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.

  • Let's Rebuild

    On Potulny

    I believe it was Mark Spector on the Jason Gregor Show when asked about Potulny having a good year said something similar to “Does this mean that Potulny is a good player or is this an indication of how bad the oilers are this year.” I think this indicates how bad the Oilers were.

    Perhaps some of you can remember a young Robert Nillson a few years back. Had a great end of the season (contract year) on a very bad team and he was rewarded with a nice chunch of change (6 mil over 3 years) how did that work out?

    I hope that the new mantra in Edmonton is “show me you can do it for a few years in a row then you will get your $$” And especially when you have an uncharacteristic good year when you need a new contract.

    Those who have commented on Potuny’s size as a reason to keep him, did you not see what they did in the 2-6 rounds of the draft – size, size, size, size and more size. Granted most of those won’t turn into regular NHLers but if one or two do we will be just fine.

    Potulny isn’t technically young either he’s listed at 25 years old. There will be plenty of UFA that age who we could pick up at the same price who have a lot more crust that Potulny to play on the fourth line.

    • MrCondor

      Next Captain?

      Show committment to Sam? Give it to Horcoff cause we know he’ll be around for another 5 years? Give it to Hemsky or Penner to try to get them to stick around? Interm captain until MPS, Hall, or Eberle steps up and shows their leadership potential? Cogs to make up for the fact that we tried to trade him 14 times (joke)?

      I don’t think there is a clear choice.

      • Ender

        I think you’re missing a key part of the equation here. A captaincy isn’t a party-favour that management hands out to the players they like the most. It is an office that is bestowed by management (usually with the input and blessing of the players themselves) to the players who are the most likely to inspire and mentor their teammates. If a player doesn’t give a rat’s ass about the other guys on the ice with him, he’d be a lousy captain whether he scores 9 points or 90. Similarly, a stay-at-home defenceman that scores a point every 10 games can still be a great Captain if he motivates everyone around him to try harder and produce more than they otherwise would. Leaders in the dressing room are the way they are because they want to be that way naturally, not because someone sewed a letter C on the front of their shirt.

        Do I like the fact that Hemsky is an Oiler? Hells yeah. Do I think that Eberle will put in a better effort than normal on any given night because of anything that Hemsky does? I have my doubts.

        The players know who makes them better. People like us who don’t sit in the room have a harder time seeing it, but I think even some of us can see who the players admire in their post-game quotes and which players are about as inspiring as a big old clod of dirt.

  • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

    So help me out…..19, 18, 12 all waived……….so what happens? are they AHL bound unless picked up? if they are not picked up what happens?

    • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

      If they aren’t picked up there is 3 options.

      1. Nothing happens.
      2. They get bought out.
      3. You put them on re-entry waivers hoping that someone takes them at half their salary, which leaves you on the hook for half their salary as well.

      If they are picked up then as far as the Oilers are concerned we are done with them.

      • Dyckster

        Just heard on Oilers lunch that the process is as follows:

        -Placed on waivers with a team having 24 hours to claim the player.

        -They can be bought out only after the 24 hour period passes (if not claimed).

        -They said the plan for the 3 players is buyout if not claimed.

  • Milli

    Man I cannot wait for hockey, I’m not sure why. I mean, I not thinking we are gonna contend this year, but there are some fun names in play. It will be a real interesting camp this year. I’m on my way to Etown in about half an hour and I think I’m gonna jump all over the Hall bandwagon and buy a new jersey!!!!

  • Next Captain?

    Anyone but Horcoff. The last thing that guy needs in the road to rebuilding his career is the added pressure of being Captain. He’s signed to a contract that the fans have soured on, the team’s Captain shouldnt be someone with strikes already against him.*

    If they arent going to give it to a difference maker on the ice then they should wait.

    EDIT: *Not to mention the Captain should probably be a good hockey player

      • Dyckster

        Other than the fact the Captains are the only ones who are suppose to approach the on ice officials, being a Captain has been entrenched as a sense of power since the players were playing Atom AA. They grew up having “the captain is the best player” drilled into them.

      • Just a personal preference of mine.

        Detroit, Pittsburgh, Chicago, Anaheim, Carolina, New Jersey, Colorado. These teams have won Stanley Cups in the last decade and all had difference makers as Captains. The last questionable Captain was Andreychuck in Tampa Bay.

        So once every 10 years a team whose Captain isnt one of their best players wins it all. I’d prefer to emulate the other 9 Championship teams.

        We’ve just played a few seasons where the Captain was a 3rd or 4th liner, I dont like the results.

          • I dont have a time machine. All I know is that those Championship teams ran their club with that philosophy, and I dont see a reason to re-invent the wheel.

            It doesnt have to be the best player, but he needs to be able to contribute on the ice IMO. Scott Stevens wasnt the best player on the team (not even the best defenceman, that was Niedermayer) but he was a force on the ice. If the team was in a situation where something needed to happen then Stevens could be counted on. The last thing we counted on Moreau doing was taking a late 3rd period penalty.

    • MrCondor

      I Agree 100% Except the oilers haven’t gotten the “Captain should be your best player” memo since ’01

      I think the main reason they bought out these players was for team culture. I’ve personally hated their attitude and inconsistant play for a while. Some could argue the smarter move would have been to hold on to O Sully and Moreau to increase value, but I think they wanted to make a point.

      I’m betting on interm captain until someone clearly establishes themselves as a leader. The guy who gets the next C needs to prove he bleeds Copper and Blue.

  • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach


    That’s hogwash anyone can approach the officials. What happens when your captains are on the bench, someone else has to talk to the offcials. If you are a true leader you can lead the team without a letter.

    We might as well give Hall the C if we want are most talented player to have the C.

    • Dyckster

      A) I prefaced my approach the officials statement with “are suppose to”. Meaning that’s part of the entitlement of a captain, but it’s not necessarily practiced. I’ve witnessed lots of occasions where a coach sends a captain off the bench (during a stoppage of course) to talk to a ref.

      B) I was simply trying to put some credibilty to the best player as captain mentality, doesn’t mean I agree with it.

  • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

    Horcoff would be the obvious choice for captain as he and Hemsky are the guys that have been around the longest and Hemsky does not seem to have the personality for it. However, I am fully on board with not having a captain this year, or picking one after Christmas IF THEY LET THE TEAM KNOW THAT IS THE PLAN.

    The last thing I want is for the team to pussyfoot around and pick someone for the wrong reasons (ie just to have a C) or say they won’t have one and then give it away halfway through the year. Say what you mean, and more importantly, do what you say.

    Let’s have a true leader step up on his own. The captaincy should be an acknowledgment of what is already there, not an attempt to create something.

  • It is Curious to me that all three players were bought out – I figured one for sure maybe two. But in a way maybe finally Tambo is living up to what he has said at the end of the last 2 seasons. The culture change is long overdue.

    I am also Curious as to what Sather is up too…whenever it gets close to July 1 they always seem to be ready to make the Big Splash. I hope for the sake of the league that there arent the ridiculous free agent contracts thrown around like in years past

  • Dyckster

    I looked this up only because I was second guessing myself –

    Directly from the 2009/10 NHL Rulebook –

    “Only the Captain, when invited to do so by the Referee, shall have the privilege of discussing any point relating to the interpretation of rules. ”

    Again, this is suppose to be the case but…..

    • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

      Funny I never seen Luongo do any of this. What happens to the teams that have no captain or the captain gets injuried during the game?

      Also does it really matter to you who get the interpetation of the rules?

      • Dyckster

        That’s the goofy thing about naming a goaltender as your Captain…he’ll take a penalty if he leaves his crease unless a timeout is called.

        “Also does it really matter to you who get the interpetation of the rules?”

        I guess this avoids all 5 skaters on the ice bombarding the ref at the same time?

        • Dyckster

          Back when I played minor hockey it was the Captain or one of the Assistants that could approach the ref (the Assistants only if the Captain wasn’t on the ice).

          Also, as far as the Captain having to be a good hockey player….. wasn’t Bucky the Captain for a season or more before he left here?

          The Captain has to be a leader both on the ice and in the dressing room (somewhere most of us have no knowledge of).

  • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

    Interesting on Brashaer, completely forgot he was over 35 when he signed his deal so he is a cap hit no matter what. Seeing as we should have cap room maybe we should make a deal with Sather to take one of our buyout players.

    I don’t think we need a fighter like him, but would it not be a decent idea?

  • Quicksilver ballet

    If i had my choice of a couple UFA’s to bring in this summer i’d target Here’s Johnny! (Scott) and Zenon Kanopka. We’d only be about 144000 minutes away from seeing one of these guys slewfoot Regehr sending him crashing facefirst into the boards.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    Would a cheap transition man like M. Modano be good for captain , and mentor for youngster over next season or two ? He has no contract as yet , but might prove usefull here for a short term. E. Belanger another one to mentor ?

    • cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan

      why, oh why, oh why, would mike modano finish his hall of fame career with a team that just finished dead last in the NHL?

      do you not think, that just maybe, taking a lower salary and having a shot at winning might be a tad more enticing to a guy at the end of his career?


  • striatic

    “Why do you think the Oilers will re-sign Comrie? Small forward, can’t we find a similar guy but larger frame in Free Agency?”

    Comrie doesn’t really play small. He’s resilient, works well around the net to score opportunistically, and even fights from time to time. He’s entertaining, productive and not a liability. He seems to actually like playing in Edmonton and is a very decent 3rd liner for the size of his past contract.

    You re-sign Comrie because he’s an inexpensive but productive player. Hopefully he’ll play better this year than last, as he was ill for much of the season.