BUSY WEEK FOR OILERS…UPDATE ON PECKHAM

Theo Peckham’s future with the Oilers will be decided today. The Oilers have to submit qualifying offers to Peckham, Sam Gagner, Magnus Paajarvi, Colten Teubert, Alex Plante, Teemu Hartikainen, Taylor Fedun, Antti Tyrvainen, Philippe Cornet and Niko Hovinen.

Gagner, Paajarvi, Hartikainen and Fedun are easy decisions. During his end of the season presser, MacTavish stated Ryan Whitney wouldn’t return, and hinted the same for Peckham, but will he stick with that plan.

I don’t expect both Plante and Teubert to get qualified, Plante looks to the be the odd man out, but I won’t be surprised if they let both of them walk. They will have Davidson, Fedun and Marincin in OKC next season, and they will likely sign an AHL veteran. There isn’t room for both Plante and Teubert, and the Oilers could let all three D-men walk, but if you had to pick one of the three to stay it definitely would be Peckham.

I think Peckham can be an effective 3rd pairing D-man. Peckham has quicker feet than people realize, and he moves the puck well enough to stay in the league. When he’s playing with confidence he can be an effective PK guy, play physical and block shots.

He’ll get signed by another team, if the Oilers don’t qualify him.

Keep in mind Peckham played well up until getting Ko’ed by Nathan Horton near the end of the 2010/2011 season. He suffered a concussion, and when he returned he lost some of his swagger. Of course, he is to blame for not being in great shape last January, although his body fat % and other tests weren’t much different than in September of 2011.

Either way he didn’t do himself any favours by electing to stop working out weeks before the end of the lockout. Keep in mind he was in great shape in September, and the Oilers knew that. Will they take that into account when deciding on his future?

It will be up to Peckham to prove that he is ready and willing to be a professional. If he proves that, I believe he can stick on an NHL roster. He is a very good athlete, he just needs to re-dedicate himself. Not being qualified would be a good motivator, and if the Oilers keep him  then should show him they still believe in his ability.

My gut tells me they let him walk, but I know MacTavish likes him…If it was me, I would qualify Peckham.

UPDATE..

***The Oilers have elected to let Peckham, Teubert, Plante and Cornet become free agents. They didn’t qualify them.***

BIG WEEK….

  • The Oilers and the other 29 NHL teams can start talking to free agents at midnight tonight. This year teams will have a 48-hour window to convince UFAs to sign with them, but they can’t "officially" sign until Friday. If a team "unofficially" lands a UFA tomorrow that could lead to a few more compliance buyouts.
     
  • The compliance buyout period ends at 5 p.m. EST on Thursday.
     
  • Teubert’s play away from the puck is good. He’s hard to play against, is physical and his footspeed is decent, but he needs to improve his ability to make plays under pressure. At this point he has more upside than Plante, and that is why I expect the Oilers to let Plante walk. Unfortunately concussions have set his career back, and I’m 50/50 on Teubert. MacTavish talked about needing guys who can move the puck, and considering that is Teubert’s biggest weakness it would make sense if they let him go.
     
  • The Oilers summer prospect camp starts tomorrow, physicals, but the players won’t be on the ice until Thursday. The on-ice workouts will be at Millenium Place in Sherwood Park and they are open to the publice. The first on-ice session is Thursday morning at 9:30.
     
  • Here are my thoughts on Craig MacTavish’s weekend in New Jersey. He’ll be disappointed, but it is way too early to say he failed to deliver on "bold" moves. He has another month before we can rip him for not making any moves. The next three weeks should give us a better view of what the Oilers’ roster will look like in October.
     
  • Fedun had a very good 2nd half of the season, and he will get lots of minutes in OKC next  year. He’s incredibly smart with the puck, and if he continues to regain his footspeed he will get a look in Edmonton sometime in the next few years.
     
  • Mark my word, Greg Chase will be the best late round draft pick in years. Chase was ranked higher, and should have gone higher based on his skills. He’s a shift disturber on the ice, and some scouts worried that he was a bit mouthy. If that is the reason teams passed on him, then they will be regretting it. The kid has skills, but he also is fearless on the ice. He is great at annoying the opposition. He is exactly the type of pest the Oilers need, but don’t downplay his skills. He had 49 points this year as a 17-year-old with limited PP time. He’ll play significant minutes in Calgary this coming season and I see him scoring 35-40 goals. I suspect Oiler fans will really like him.
     

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR

 

  • vetinari

    The 48 hour “interview” window will bring all kinds of wild speculation on the internet and Twitter for the next few days (“I just saw Nathan Horton getting a back massage from Jay Feaster at the airport. Okay, maybe it wasn’t Jay Feaster. Or a back massage.”) Let the rumours and speculation begin!

  • Vaclav

    Pass. With free agency in July and waivers in the fall, there will be more talented and harder working defencemen available to put on the third pairing. You could hope that Eakins finds a way to push Theo’s buttons and get him to work harder, but then you could also hope the same thing for any other player and get better odds. This team needs to improve and they won’t do that by bringing back the same lazy scrubs that got them to 30, 30, 29, 24.

  • Vaclav

    I don’t get the debate on Peckham to be honest.

    If you are prepared to lose him all together then qualify him on the cheap considering he has virtually no leverage based on his fitness boner from last season and give him a chance to prove himself. If he fails to measure up then send him down. So what if someone picks him considering they were prepared to let him walk anyways.

    For too many years the Oiler have overvalued their tweeners. Peckham can play in the AHL next year and definitely help more than Teubert or Plante. Isn’t that path to a strong organization? Having the best players possible to draw from?

  • Vaclav

    With Tambellini and Krueger both gone I wouldn’t be surprised to see them qualify Peckham. If the organization does qualify him and he doesn’t make the team he’d likely get plucked off of waivers or they could put him and his $1.075M salary in OKC.

    Not much risk in qualifying him IMO. Especially if they plan on dumping both Teubert and Plante.

  • bazmagoo

    I think you need one of Peckham or Fistric. If MacT does land Coburn, then yeah, you can let them both walk. But that’s a mighty big IF and time is running out.

  • bazmagoo

    I can’t remember another defenseman who plays with more piss and vinegar than Theo.

    He has never looked out of place playing a 5 or 6 role with the Oilers…….exactly who did he piss off so badly that he has never been given a legit opportunity to make amends?

    It is my belief that we will regret letting this guy walk. THe guy we let go ( Theo if that the case) will be exactly the type of guy we will be looking for to replace him……..makes no sense.

    I’m with you on this on Gregor…….you make an excellent point.

    • oilerjed

      Considering some of the Dmen that have replaced him I have to agree, we have definetly had worse. Makes me wonder if there is more to his story that the team is respectively not disclosing. They could have dropped him at anytime and never looked back but somehow he is still here.