Every deadline it’s the same: NHL teams enter into a feeding frenzy over NHL capable defensemen.

No matter how many cobwebs an NHL defensemen possesses, he’s worth something at the deadline. The Edmonton Oilers last two deadlines prove it, with the transactions going so deep AHL level blue were involved both seasons.

  • Deadline 2010: Oilers add D Ryan Whitney and D Aaron Johnson, sending away D’s Lubomir Visnovsky, Steve Staios, Denis Grebeshkov and minor league D Cody Wild.
  • Deadline 2011: Oilers add D Colten Teubert and minor league D Kevin Montgomery, sending away D Shawn Belle. Oilers also used the draft pick acquired in the Dusitn Penner deal to acquire D Oscar Klefbom at the draft.


I imagine the Oilers would be getting all kinds of offers for Andy Sutton now, but they signed him to an extension and he’ll be an Oiler in 12-13. The one thing about deadline deals for defensemen that remains true all down the line: overpayment is a given.

The reason? Defensemen can get hurt by the dozen, and a team without enough depth can be extremely disadvantaged by it. Vancouver had trouble a year ago with injuries and suspensions, and famously Buffalo went beyond reason 2006 spring.


NHL teams are always looking for aggressive defensemen who play with determination and intensity. 

Theo Peckham, a crushing blueliner with low mileage and plenty of crust might be the most likely candidate for trade at the deadline. I can see an NHL team making a move for Peckham as insurance and then signing him as a low risk 5-7D next season. We’ve seen him long enough to know that along with the warts (coverage, going out of position for the big hit) there are positives (the young man hits like a sledgehammer, and has been effective on the PK) and he could have a solid career in the NHL.

Cam Barker is a young man who has had some struggles this season, but NHL general managers have a history of giving former lottery picks plenty of chances. You can see the reasoning: Barker was good enough to go very high in his draft year but has been unable to convert that ability to the NHL level. The temptation to "buy low" and find a role for the player to flourish and grow must be very strong.

Taylor Chorney was once a highly touted Oiler prospect but has fallen away with the development of Jeff Petry. He was lost to waivers earlier in the year and is an RFA this summer. Edmonton doesn’t talk about him as a legit NHL option, and there’s a stampede of kids on the way. Chorney might be in the mix this deadline for a team looking for increased NHL/AHL depth. The Oilers have paid great attention to the OKC defense, so his availability for trade may depend on Alex Plante’s ability to play in the AHL post-season (Plante is out with a concussion at this time).


Maybe. The Oilers do have a track record for addition on defense at or near the deadline. There was a rumor earlier in the week that Edmonton was interested in Blue Jacket defender Marc Methot a tall tree with toughness and experience. He is on IR currently with a broken jaw, but the Oilers may not consider that an issue–they’d be acquiring him for next year’s team.


The last time I watched the Oscars was to make sure that Marisa Tomei won–and that was 20 years ago! No sir, give me the trade deadline anytime and the truth is the deadline is on now and will continue until Monday afternoon. Steve Tambellini has already had an exceptional deadline, getting Ales Hemsky signed does more for next year’s team than anything else he’s going to get done in the next 48 hours.

Mr. Tambellini has suggested the Oilers won’t be terribly active this deadline, but he said the same thing about free agency on  June 30.

Up next: the deadline wraps up with a look at the forwards.




  • Reg Dunlop

    Too soon to give up on Peckham.Not enough toughness/meanness back there now, we would lose much of that in addition to losing a kid who may harden into a solid 5/6 option. Also, I hope Thumbellini doesn’t send Omark packing. In the right situation he could be an entertaining and contributing 3rd line/pp guy… remember Kent Nillson?

  • Reg Dunlop

    LT – Terry Jones said something over the weekend about Kreuger leaving at the end of this year to return to Europe. No one else has said anything. Do you know what’s up?

    Could this be an indication that Renney is not being renewed at the end of the season?

    • Lowetide

      Well Terry certainly has the connections to suss out that sort of thing. I do think there’s pressure on Renney–Jason Gregor and Robin Brownlee have mentioned it here previously–and he said yesterday “we need wins.”

      If I had to guess? I’d say Tambellini gets a two year extension and ST gives Renney a one year extension.

  • Toro

    I wonder if there’s a chance we deal Gags for a young dman like Schenn, I’d rather draft a forward at the draft then a dman and if we do that then Gags is expendable and his trade value is pretty high right now, jus saying

  • I posted on my twitter account about a month ago a possibility Kreuger could be gone as well. I overheard a conversation among Oiler Brass that it was highly likely he would not be returning.

    Just a rumour nothing else. However now that Jones has brought it up, it kind of gets me concerned. I really like Kreuger myself just like I was a big Rob Daum fan as well. Those guys to me are great assistant coaches but seem to keep more of the YES men for coaches in the organization.

    Really interested to see what happens with our coaching going into next season.

  • Dipstick

    I wonder if Peckham would get the team a mid 1st round pick. I worry that his waiver ineligibility makes it hard to continue his development. He is too inconsistent to play regularly at the NHL level and there is no safe way to get him AHL time that is desperately needed.

  • Lowetide

    Dipstick: It’s a good point, but I think there’s an NHL team that would be willing to take a chance on him. I don’t think he’d be close to 1st rd value, but if the Oilers are really interested in Methot perhaps there’s a framework for a deal there.

  • RexLibris

    Were Peckham, or Chorney for that matter, moved along with an extra forward or L.A.’s 3rd round pick then that might be something that could net Methot.

    My hope is that between today and tomorrow the Oilers can nab at least one more pick in the 2nd or 3rd round and try to grab either Cody Corbett or Henrik Samuelsson at the draft. Either one would be a very nice addition to the prospect group.

    As for the Nash moves, if Scott Howson is doing his homework he should ask not only for Tim Erixon (rumoured), but also Michael St. Croix. Their organization needs some serious improvement in prospect depth if they are going to rebuild quickly.

  • Trading for a Dman further along the development curve = good idea. I’d much rather do that than draft the Dman personally. However I’m not sure what we give up to get that dman.

    I wouldnt do Gagner for Schenn myself. BTW drafting Grigerenko (spelling) does NOT make Gagner expendable. It makes having a 1-3 centerman punch a great luxury. Just ask Pittsburg how thats working for them. There isnt a team in the league who says “we only want two good centermen, the bottom two lines dont mean anything anyways.”

    • Terran


      We don’t know which players will be our ‘top 6’ at this point, though there’s a pretty good guess on 4 of those.

      So if we deal a Gagner or Omark now, we’re not trading from a position of stength, we’re only hoping it’s going to be a strength, and trading for today’s needs and not for the needs of our contending team 2 years down the road.

      It’s best to sit tight and trade the players we know won’t be a factor 2 years from now (Jones, Eager, Peckham, Barker, Khabi, etc.) and slowly build up the roster strength.

    • Lowetide

      Totally agree.

      I believe trading GAGNER would be a huge mistake. Interesting how we always seem to feel that someone else players are supperior to ours.

      GAGNER is 22… Highly unlikely has has hit his peak yet. If he is a 50-60 point producer that puts him as a top 90 forwards in the league (2010-2011 season). Thats top 6 and arguable top line material.

      I wouldn’t rade GAGNER unless it is for a top pairing Dman.

  • RexLibris

    I hope we could get Carlson out of Washington. It would be a good step in the right direction for the Oilers D. Also I think he is a better player than Schenn and I don’t want to see Gagner in Toronto. That’s where washed up veterans go to retire.

  • RexLibris

    Toronto should be calling about Peckham. Cripes they were soft last night against the Capitals.The knock is in the tending but from what I saw last riemer was hung out to dry more often than not. Shenn? Cam Barker 2.0? he reminds more of Smid 1.0. He will ever be a 50 point guy. He will be like Smid.10 point guy who plays the opposition hard.If Toronto wants to trade him I would take him for Colton Tuebeurt, Same player but Shenn is further along in his development.

    Bulin should find a home in Chicago come Monday. If not Chicago will be one and done. Crawford is done. Mentally he looks worn out.

    Gagner to Washington?First I think washington does not Semin this summer. Second they need some offensive help. Third. Gagner centering Ovechkin? Maybe what Washington sees is a FA market with little to offer them in terms of centermen.Gagner’s recent 8 point game and 38 points in the last 39 games may have turned a few eyes in Washington Edmontons way.The only way I do that deal is if Washington gives us thier 2 first round picks this year. We may have to sweeten the pot a little but thats where the conversation starts.But that is a coversation that for us can wait till draft day. Washington on the other hand may not be able to wait.

  • Semenko and Troy

    Gagner to Washington seems to make sense given that Hunter was Gagner’s junior coach.

    Past history and emotional attachments by coaches to former players no matter what the sport, are highly influential in decisions made.

    • John Chambers

      I doubt the Sens give him enough games down the stretch to ensure he avoids free agency this summer. Could just be an insurance against an injury to Anderson unless Ottawa re-signs him.

      A second rounder is fair, but when you pick 32nd it can be steep.

  • Lowetide

    If Tamby has proven anything, it’s that he is afraid to make trades. Dustin Penner was an aberration, but to find talent to address our long term issues, he is not the man.

    It would be nice if we had a GM who could give the fans a sense of knowing exactly where he is going…….in other words a vision of the promised land!

    Instead we get cliches, and silence.

  • Lowetide

    I think we can safely say ST is very careful on trades, and that can be good at times. The Bishop addition was a nice item, but there are others. And the organization may want to see Dubnyk down the stretch before making a bigger (than Bishop) move for a goalie.

  • John Chambers

    Stauffer is connected but he isn’t always right either. If Washington comes calling and offers thier 2 first rounders this year I would do that trade in a heartbeat. Hunter. I forgot he was Gagners coach. Washington is not going sign Semin or they would have offered him a contract by now don’t we think.

  • Aendayana

    Why trade Peckham. Only 24, we all know it takes longer to develop some dmen. We all remember Matt Greene. It’s taking Smid years to figure things out but thankfully he’s doing it still here. You need these guys, sometime they develop into a top4 guy, sometime a captain i.e. Jason Smith, sometime a great d who stays with the club plugging whatever role needs to do so like an Igor Ulanov..

    Trading Gagner? Only if you get a ready top2 guy into your fold. Maybe a Weber ready to sign for an extension. But those trades take a certain amount of creativity which unfortunately I’m not sure ST has the necessary balls to pull off.

    And the rumor about Mr.Vodka maybe being traded? That’s highly unlikely given the extra year on his contract. A team would have to be pretty desperate to make that deal and the return would’t be much probably which is fine obviously. I just hope there is a plan on who to pair up DD with. Even though I like him and he has a chance of him being a very solid goalie for the future we need a great help in net even on at least a shorter 2-3 years term.