ARMCHAIR GM XIV: LET’S TALK HEMSKY

Seeing as Steve Tambellini and Dean Lombardi have decided to let bygones be bygones, might moving on include sitting down and talking about a trade involving Ales Hemsky?

I don’t know if Tambellini and Lombardi have planned to talk when the Los Angeles Kings come calling on the Edmonton Oilers Sunday, but I have a hunch they will and I most certainly think they should.

Having buried the proverbial hatchet on the mess that was the Ryan Smyth for Colin Fraser trade of last summer, I’m thinking there might be mutual benefit in Tambellini and Lombardi chatting about if Hemsky might fit into the needs of the Kings.

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Further, what No. 83 might yield between now and Feb. 27 in terms of the defenseman the Oilers desperately need to bolster a blue line punched full of holes by injuries to Ryan Whitney, Tom Gilbert and Cam Barker.

I’m thinking Hemsky might be a fit alongside Anze Kopitar or Mike Richards — I’m told by someone I trust Lombardi expressed interest in Hemsky last season — and that somebody like Slava Voynov would certainly represent more than filler for an Edmonton defensive corps that us undermanned and overmatched right now.

Seeing as Tambellini and Lombardi are on speaking terms again . . .

WORTH A DISCUSSION

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I listened with interest to Lombardi’s interview with Mark Spector on the TEAM 1260 today, and it sounded like there is all kinds of potential for Lombardi and Tambellini to see if there’s some business to be done.

"I think we were able to work that out. That’s something that I have to apologize for," Lombardi said of the fuss that followed after Fraser arrived in Tinseltown as damaged goods.

"I was certainly frustrated, you know, having to lose a player like Ryan Smyth and then getting in a bind with trying to replace him and then, you know, there was a little grey area as far as what we go back.

"The bottom line, I should have never said what I said publicly. It was the wrong thing to do. I apologized to Edmonton as well as the NHL that that wasn’t the way to handle it.

"Once we sat down we were able to come to some resolution, but the bottom line, I was wrong in the way that I handled that and we move on."

Could Hemsky be the missing piece to bump the under-achieving Kings up Western Conference standings where many people expected them to be? Would Lombardi, having already sent Tambellini Colten Teubert and a draft pick that turned into Oscar Klefbom in the Dustin Penner trade, be willing to part with the 21-year-old Voynov as part of a package?

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THE RIGHT PLAYER

"You’ve still to put the horse before the cart here," Lombardi said of any potential trades. "It’s got to be the right player.

"If it’s the right player, there’s enough ways to get creative to get that player in here, you know? Either create the space or, I do have players coming off the books next years, so I’ve got some flexibility there.

"Even though we’re up against the cap a little this year, this is the other thing about this team – it’s not locked in. We do have people coming off and we do have some pretty favorable contracts.

"So, I don’t think I’m going to the marketplace and saying, ‘I want a guy whose contract’s up or so many other things . . . I think we’ve got to focus on the right player."

"I think it’s critical that I get the right fit. I’ve got to be careful with our assets. I’ve already traded some draft picks here to try and help this team now.

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"But, it’s not like I’m under the gun where I have an old team that I have to take a run at it now. Not that I don’t want to, don’t get me wrong. I do think we have to be more selective and try to do a better job at finding the right fit.

"You look at our team defensively, we’re one of the better teams in the league again. I think we’re strong down the middle. But part of getting those wingers to go in there, they better fit or, you know, you’re just spinning your wheels. So, I’m certainly going to try, but I am going to be very concerned about fit as well as price."

WHILE I’M AT . . .

I can’t say for sure what Tambellini’s approach will be between now and the trade deadline regarding his blue line. Might he make a minor move for a body to provide relief for what’s left of his defense right away and then look for a bigger move, like Voynov, later?

No matter which approach, maybe both, Tambellini takes, I’m thinking he should also be getting on the phone to Phoenix GM Don Maloney, if he hasn’t done so already.

The Coyotes have organization depth on the back and. If I’m Tambellini, I’m asking about 24-year-old Edmonton native David Schlemko for the longer term or maybe Rostislav Klesla as a quick fix.

— Trade rumor-monger TreenasOil, made almost-famous by David Staples over at The Cult of Hockey, was throwing a lot of stuff up against the wall last week, including the suggestion there was a lot of interest in Hemsky by Nashville. She (he?) went as far as to say the Predators had asked to take a look at Hemsky’s medical records.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Music City GM David Poile has some interest, but I don’t know it to be any greater than that of Lombardi or other potential suitors like San Jose and Pittsburgh, in a dogfight to make the playoffs.

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


  • a lg dubl dubl

    Raised fist to Chuck Norris!!

    If Hemsky does get traded I hope its to a Eastern Conference team, just so he has less of a chance to come back and bite us in the a$$.

  • Wanyes bastard child

    Also, with RNH and Eberle out right now, does it really make sense to move Hemsky at the moment?

    I know we are hurting for D but not at the expense of scoring in my opinion…

  • vetinari

    Maybe Hemsky to LA isn’t as far fetched as I first thought? Lombardi would need to dump salary and Edmonton has some cap room to burn in a potential trade. I wonder if Hemsky to LA for a dud contract like Penner (who would be a UFA on July 1st), and Voynov (the real trade target) would fly? Hemsky clocks in just under Penner’s cap hit (so that would almost be a wash) and the Oil could either live with him for the rest of the year or try to flip him (like a pancake) for a pick or a depth defenceman?

  • Travis Dakin

    OOOOOORRRRRRRRR, Tambo could sit down with Hemsky and sign him. Why get rid of Hemsky and leave a whole on the Right side? HOW STUPID DOES HE HAVE TO BE NOT TO SEE THIS?!?!?!?!?!?!

    There is 2 good RWs on the team. Keep them both.

    Quite honestly, This inevitable trade of Hemsky is going to be a true test of my fandom. I think I might actually take a long break from giving a f*ck. However, If Tambo signs him, I will become the biggest Tambellini supporter in the world and defend him to the death at every turn.

  • Starving Student

    Hey Brownlee,

    With Cammalleri going to the Flames (who lack much needed cap space), any chance Tambi makes a play for Sarich and a draft pick?

    To CGY:
    Chorney + 4th rnd.

    To EDM:
    Sarich + 3rd rnd.

  • Semenko and Troy

    Subtract Hemsky. Add Voynov, Gleason (UFA), and draft Grigorenko to center Hall and Omark.

    That leaves Horcoff-Smyth-Jones as the third line next year.

    Hemsky won’t be missed.

    • Shapeman

      I honestly would rather trade Omark for d-help or a reasonable pick and have Gagner centering Hall and Grigorenko if we’re looking at drafting that high(which it does look like we will).

      • Semenko and Troy

        Grigorenko is a center with great size, vision, a scoring touch, and the ability to kill penalties. I only put Omark in as a stop gap RW. We may need another year to replace him with a talented, physical presence on the wing.

        Gagner doesn’t belong.

  • Poolanov

    @ Robin Brownlee;

    Who might we have to sacrifice to get one of the big gun D-men out of Nashville ( Suter or Weber ) That big fat first rounder we have coming up, perhaps, packaged with Hemsky ???

  • Poolanov

    2 top 6 forward off the market with the deadline 6 weeks away. ST is the happiest man in Edmonton tonight. Calgary and Montreal just set the bar for the 2012 deadline day.How many other top 6 forward will be available o that day? Less than 2 I’d imagine. Tambo has to think that he might have 2 top 6 forwards to deal if Smyth agrees to a trade and sign deal. A team like the Rangers or Washington could use a guy like Smyth.Ryan could do this team a world of good if he agrees to a trade.

  • Oilers4ever

    Has to make you wonder for sure with the timing on this… but good on Lombardi for realizing he was an ass with his comments over this.

    Btw.. is it just me.. or is the whole allstar game just a big joke now. Tell me how the only Oiler picked is RNH when Ebs was in the Top 10 when he got hurt for scoring. I don’t by Shanny’s BS on why they didn’t take Ebs. His return date is sooner than RNH’s for frick sakes. Such pure BS. I thought every team is supposed to be represented by a player who can ACTUALLY PLAY. The allstar game is such a BS joke now… I definately will be finding something better to do if RNH cannot play. Biggest f’in joke in history. Hallsy should have been allowed to play… all three of those guys will make the team next year if they are healthy. Also.. should Edmonton just about be due to host one of these? It’s been since what.. 1989 or something since we hosted last?? I guess we will be due right around the time the new arena opens…

  • Smytty ain’t going anywhere. Far too much blood, sweat and tears expended in his name to make that mistake again. He’s too valuable to the team and when the kids are healthy again and he’s back to his regular minutes, he’ll buck up.

    Now I understand that a Hemsky-less Oil is probably on the cards, I watch him with a kind of nostalgia already. I was REALLY hoping he would pot one last night and he played very well. I remember, like Travis does, when he WAS the youth movement up front. How quick we all are to dump perfectly good hockey players when they hit a rough spot. I’ll hold Gags and Hemmer and wait for reinforcements on the blue. Horc, however, can leave anytime, taking his contract with him.

  • Mitch

    Robin I do think Hemsky will get moved I’m not so sure it’s for a dman prospect, I do think Tambi is going to want someone that can play now. With the Calgary trade the value of Hemsky is going to be extremley low, given his UFA status.

    Treena’s oil I thought at onetime might be onto something now I think the guy just makes stuff up. Somehow got the Sutton deal before it was annouced though.

    If I can go out shopping I want a 3rd line guy that hits everything that moves in a differnt color jersey. There will be no major moves because if you want to be a big player your not moving 1st rounders or any Highend player/prospect.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    So Tambellini must now be acting on what he knows for sure. Ales isn’t at all interested in extending with Edmonton and will act to protect their interests. Where are the Capitals in this equasion, give them 83++ for that top 10 Colorado pick.

    Yakupov AND Murray or bust.

      • Quicksilver ballet

        Amen brother.

        If that pick is in play, i’d let George Mcphee have anyone not wearing 4,14 and 93. I’m so bloody pumped right now, anyone have Mcphees phone number?

          • Quicksilver ballet

            Hode da foan der big guy…..

            We need to save sumfin for the Predators and one of those gringos who play in front of the goalers der. 91,89,5 and the Oilers first rounder in 2013.

            We cannot achieve the impossible without attempting the absurd.

            This Weber to the Oilers rumor that has in fact been confirmed on Mythbusters.

          • Wow, there is something we disagree on! I was thinking you were my wife playing me incognito like!

            I think Webers a pipe dream, the GM of the Preds has gone on record as saying no deals, having said that I think the Oilers should offer a nice long deal to Suter. Leaving 91-89-5 for something or someone else.

            There’s nice D-man UFA’s out there next year. Boychuk-Jackmen-Carle-Oduya

            Without having to give up a one of those there players, partner.

          • Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things

            As an oil fan in Winnipeg, I can tell you that you most certainly do NOT want Oduya wearing the copper and blue. He has been beyond brutal this year.

        • A lot of deals “make sense” and that’s how trade rumours get started.

          I’m sticking to possibilities based on what I hear about who is talking, where the pro scouts are travelling and who they are tracking and established interest, such as past inquiries and discussions between GMs. Even then, getting a handle on what’s likeliest or to the stage of being in the works is difficult.

          • I completely agree Robin, but something about trading an established player for a prospect that may still take sometime developing to me seems like a backwards or at the very least a lateral move at this time. I’m also aware trading for the Capitals pick could be thought of as the same, unless you could move that pick into the top 5 which I think is in the Oilers best interest going forward. IMO

  • Oilers4ever

    I think if RNH is healthy he actually plays in the big game.. but I know in reading what he said he is not going to rush himself back just to play in that game and rightfully so… because its just a big fricking clown show now anyways.. seriously.. i know the game is in ottawa.. but four senators… what a joke.

  • RPG

    an actual NHL ready D-man in the 22-25 yr old range would be nice as 18-20 yr old D-men are simply not ready and we need D-Men that are on the same timeline as the young guns, not 2 years behind

  • Newj

    Detroit may pick up Lager Hemsky for the play-off run.

    Are not a lot of teams taking a significant risk of trading for Hemsky only to lose him to the UFA market this summer. Or will all trades be conditional to signing Hemsky to a contract prior to the trade?

    Fill me in cuz I cant see significant offers for a player in that situation?

    Flames traded for the rights to sign/talk to Bouwmeester but they were not GUARANTEED to sign him when his contract expired in the summer they acquired him.

    Confused & skeptical of the trade rumours.

  • 1) I would prefer to see Hemsky stay and re-sign.

    since that doesn’t seem likely,

    2) Shouldn’t they trade him, like, NOW? Or at least VERY SOON? Odds of re-injury seem higher than odds of getting a better deal at the deadline, don’t they?

  • If I were Kamikaze Steve I would hang on to the inevitable lottery pick and take someone like Grigorenko or Murray. After this years draft I would be looking for roster players to come via trade or free-agent signings.

    This mumbling BS by Tambs citing how hard it is to make a trade is obviously nonsense. Clearly though you do need a pair to do it. Feaster is no brain surgeon and I think the Flames are clear winners in that deal.

    Maybe Tambs could puruse the Canadien’s roster for anglo names of players who don’t parlez-vous. That might a good place to start if your imagination is challenged.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    The Oiler administration offices are being extensively cleaned this week i noticed.

    This can only mean one thing.

    The Boss is coming by for a visit. Watch things get done once Daryl shows up and starts telling people what to do.