Most fans believe the Oilers should jump at the chance to bring Ryan Smyth back to town, but do the Oilers have a legitimate reason not to?

When Smyth left the Oilers over an alleged $100,000 contract dispute at the trade deadline in 2007, many fans blamed the Oilers for not stepping up. The relationship didn’t end well and neither side was happy. Smyth was pretty upset about leaving and the Oilers ended up getting Alex Plante, Ryan O’Marra and Robert Nilsson; all of whom have become #15th overall busts.

Fast forward to today and you wonder if the Oilers are feeling pressured into bringing Smyth back. When Bob McKenzie broke the story earlier this week, the majority of fans felt it was a no-brainer to welcome #94 back home. The Oilers had supposedly had talks with the Kings prior to the McKenzie article, so clearly they knew about Smyth’s interest to return home.

Had the negotiations gone on quietly behind the scenes then Steve Tambellini could have surprised his fanbase by announcing the Mullet was returning, but that isn’t the case now.

Suddenly all the pressure is on the Oilers to bring home the Prodigal Son.

I wonder if the Oilers have any hard feelings considering in 2007 the Oilers were the bad guy in most people’s eyes, and now if they don’t bring him back, Tambellini will be the villain.

This might not be an issue at all, but I wonder if the Oilers feel that once again it appears Smyth is holding all  the cards?

  • #94 sized hole where my heart used to be...

    from TSN: “Los Angeles Kings forward Ryan Smyth could be returning to Alberta, but it might not with the Edmonton Oilers. While details have been worked out on a trade that would send Smyth from Los Angeles to the Calgary Flames, Smyth has reportedly not agreed to waive his no trade clause, hoping the Oilers would get involved”

    See Smyth will ALWAYS be an Oiler through and through and if he’s forced to wear the flaming C its because Tambo couldn’t sack up and trade the necessary late round picks

  • BarryS

    Their reluctance to take Smyth back is perplexing? How could you not take back someone who wants to play here and would be an asset in the dressing room.

    Only thing that comes to mind is whether the cap hit is something the oil are worried about. If this was the case, it would point to possible moves oil will be trying to make during free agency, one would think. But given the reluctance of Tambo…..I highly doubt we do anything july 1st aaaaaand Smyth becomes a Flamer 🙁

  • Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things

    Here’s another angle:

    I considered the Dustin Penner contract ‘even money’ because he slacked for half and out-performed for half.

    If Smyth comes to Edmonton, odds are pretty good we take a flyer on him for an additional year after the expiration of his current contract if he doesn’t retire. If he re-signs for 1.5 mil for a second year, call his second tenure 2.75MM/yr in actual money and 3.75MM/yr in average cap hit. I call that a value contract for a 20-goal scorer.

  • Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things

    Brodie wrote:

    I can’t believe the Oilers and Flames are fighting over Ryan Smyth. It’s like fighting over Grampa Simpson.

    I hope to God there’s some kind of fight going on. It’s refreshing to see some interest in a real live NHLer.

  • DoubleJ

    This Smyth trade is odd. Unless there’s another player the Oilers are look into getting. I don’t understand why they wouldn’t be all over the idea of bringing back Smyth.

  • Ned Braden

    Per Rishaug:

    Katz Tambelinni and Lowe having pow-wow on floor right now. Might be talking dinner plans, may be talking deals, but talking. [via Twitter]

    It better be Katz saying

    “WTF Tambi, just GET ‘R DONE!”

    • Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things

      Wow, I guess it’s true. If you spend enough time on the internet you’ll eventually read something so stupid that it saddens you to be human.

  • Ned Braden

    Smyth has averaged:
    75gm and 24G 53PT the last three seasons. That averages 21st for Goals and points by left wingers. A first line LW for 4.5M salary. with the potential to sign in the modano contract range(2.75M) age 36, 37.

    Why would getting him be bad?

  • Sheldon "Oilers Fan for Life!!!"

    A of of people seem to forget that When the Oilers let Ryan go for a measly $100,000$ that Ryan walked away from the Oilers for a measly 100,000$ I do believe that Ryan was devastated to leave but some one on both sides chose not to move on the Dollar amount. If he goes to Calgary he has to make that choice. Tamby has a #1 job this weekend and that is make the Oilers better. If the Flames offered more as far as the kings were concerned then that may be were Ryan will choose to go. Remember He can choose to say “Edmonton or Nothing”. No one is holding a gun to his head to go to Calgary. I love Ryan as much as the next guy! Hang he left his teeth on the ice for this team. But he does have a choice in these things as well.

  • Sheldon "Oilers Fan for Life!!!"

    Look- There are some big Intangibles that come with Ryan Smyth. He could easily teach the kids by example what it means to work and try 100% every shift? Wasn’t that the knock on Dustin Penner? He has the fan base because he tries and has HEART. The news out of Philly says it doesn’t matter how great you are you need some of these Characteristics (Or maybe Bobby Clarke just found Paul Holmgren’s Cell phone) As it has been mentioned his point totals from last year would place him FIRST on the team. Perhaps he could end up being one of the players that represent the franchise after his playing career is over-Think Cam Neely in Boston or Joe Sakic in Colorado. Please just get this Done already!!!!!!

  • Little Buttcheeks

    And on top of that, Ryan Smyth playing for the Flames? You better believe that Tambellini will hear it from the fans. I would like to see #94 back in Oilers silks but it depends on the price. I don’t understand why the Flames would sign him, they’d just be blowing any cap space that they get from moving Regehr and spending it for another 9th or 10 place finish in the West. Spinning their wheels…

  • keilan

    At his current salary how many of the other 29 teams in the league would be interested in acquiring Ryan Smyth? Calgary didn’t have cap room for Smyth and any reported deal was the media speculating on the slightest rumor – let’s try and keep this real!

    Due to whatever reason, Ryan has never won anything as a pro – Captain Canuck was in reference for almost always being available to represent Canada at the “World Championships”.

    And fans believe he can come back and teach the new generation how to work hard and win!! Pass the kool aid. His skill set and upside is somewhere in the bottom 20% of the forwards that will start for the Oilers this year imho……… I really thought the Oilers were serious about turning over a new leaf!