The Edmonton Oilers have been connected to the Boston Bruins many times since 1979. Some very famous playoff series, a few trades of note and the two clubs have some executives in common over the years, too. This week, the two teams have been associated with trade talks involving names like Ryan Whitney and Ales Hemsky. 

Is there a match? What could Boston offer?

Watching the Bruins last night, it’s pretty obvious they need some blueline help. Their top 4D is solid, led by state of the art defender Zdeno Chara and including veterans Dennis Seidenberg, Johnny Boychuk, Andrew Ference and the young and talented Dougie Hamilton. 

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Whitney could slide right into the 5-6 role and help on special teams. Although he’s not playing at pre-surgery levels, his competition for that job (Aaron Johnson, Adam McQuaid, Matt Bartkowski) isn’t terribly stout and Whitney’s a good bet to play in front of them.

If the Oilers deal Whitney (and they’re playing well with Whitney playing big minutes), Boston could certainly use his talents.


Edmonton has a few things to gain in dealing Whitney. They could finally carry the normal 7 defensemen, and allow Theo Peckham out of the doghouse. They could also shave a few dollars off the payroll, always a nice item for the owner. And of course, there’s the asset they get in return. That might be a draft pick, a prospect (the Oilers have a lot of graduating prospects, suspect they’d prefer one in Europe, college or junior).

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  • D Matt Barkowski: AHL defender with average size, he was reportedly part of the package for Iginla. He wouldn’t be a top 6 option in Edmonton any time soon (unless I’m missing something) and aside from being LH I don’t think he has a lot of appeal for the Oilers.
  • R Jordan Caron: AHL winger, 6.03, 204, spent much of the 2010-11 season with the Bruins and is 81, 10-14-24 in his career with Boston. Caron’s size and skill set make him an interesting possibility for next season, I could see him being a contender for bottom 6F duties in the fall. Someone to follow if the trade is made.
  • G Niklas Svedberg: Tall, stringbean goalie from Sweden has been outstanding in Providence, and frankly I think the Bruins are more likely to make their current NHL backup (Anton Khudobin) available before this fellow. Currently boasts a .923SP and should be considered an outstanding prospect based on his current season.


Trading Whitney for an asset who doesn’t need to be added to the big league roster would allow the Oilers to add Dan DeKeyser to their roster without having to move anyone/risk waivers. DeKeyser is going to make his decision sometime in the next 24 hours (based on reports) so it’s a consideration. The Oilers have made a presentation, and now they’re waiting along with Detroit (considered the favorite) and a few other clubs. 


Ryan Whitney can help the Boston Bruins, and I think there are players in Providence that could make the Oilers system stronger. There’s also a certain logic in trading Whitney for a draft pick, and Boston may be in acquisition mode after the events last night.

There’s also a growing feeling that the best destination for Ryan Whitney is Edmonton. If that’s the case, the Oilers at the deadline could be quiet for the first time in years.


  • Eddie Shore

    Wouldn’t the Oilers be better off not cleaning house and making a push into the playoffs? I think getting these kids the experience is far more valuable than getting a couple extra 2nd and 3rd round picks.

  • Nuge&Connorvs.Sam&Sean

    On another note, it feels kind of cool to look at the standings and see other teams behind the Oilers instead of having to look up. That first pick at the moment would be number 10.

  • a lg dubl dubl

    I still think the Oilers should trade their 1st round pick this year along with Whitney to get a better player than Caron. Ive never seen him play but to me he’s a guy that cant really stick with the big club, Oilers dont need that, if they do trade Whitney they should get a dman back that can stick with the club.

    A little over payment now can go a long way in pushing this rebuild to the next level.

    It still irks me that Murray went for 2 picks and Mr. Dithers, as far as we know didnt grab him.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    To even include the names Hemsky and Paajarvi without something tangible coming back the other way is what put us into this mess. All those prospects are just that, prospects. No gaurantee they’ll even be a regular NHL player. Whitney and Tuebert/Plante for the Bruins first rounder maybe.

    Puck Boston, if a Hemsky and Paajarvi package is available, they should be going after Dale Tallon for Erik Gudbranson, or a more desireable target like that. Chiarelli is screwed already, he’s waited too long to better his club.

    • Bucknuck

      I agree with this 100%. If you want to trade away NHL players at this point in the “rebuild” (Gads I am hating that word), then you better get NHL players in return.

      Any trade that involved MPS better have a big skilled forward coming back. no exceptions.

  • Concur

    not sure if someone else might have mentioned this earlier as I have only read half the comments so far, but pairing Whitney with someone else than Potter or Fistric would probably improve his stats. I know his defensive game is not the best but if we had a true number 1 defenseman or he could fit there until J Shultz arrives and then he should fit on the second pairing.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    Package Khabby , Whitney and Hemsky might get us a first round pick from Boston , but not much more . Whitney alone might not even get us a second rounder or usable body .

  • I don’t think Boston really has much to offer outside of their NHLers. They’ve got Dougie Hamilton and Malcom Subban (neither of which would be moved), and after that, it drops off severely.

  • Bucknuck

    If I’m the B’s, I steal a page from the Flyers who got the Pens to fight a brawl rather than play a game of skill. Add defensive assets to your 5/6 pair and your 3rd line such that you’re somewhat comfortable with a match up against Malkin or Crosby.

  • Bucknuck

    Of course I’m assuming a B’s – Pens matchup. Can’t discount the fact that the Habs always seem to have the B’s number. Took them to G7 overtime the year the B’s won the Cup.

  • Bucknuck

    It only makes sense to trade expiring UFAs like Whitney & Khabi. You’re not going to get value for players with rights or contracts through next season and beyond. Teams are only tinkering and not willing to trade useful players off their rosters. There is no point to dumping a player like Hemsky for a draft pick. Better opportunities for significant trades should happen before the draft when teams are looking to reconfigure their rosters. If need be a player like Hemsky could be a tradeable asset next year at the deadline.