The Edmonton Oilers are struggling with injuries and ineffective play
among their centers at the NHL level. Their prospects on the farm
include Anton Lander and several rookie pro’s or second-year AHLers like
Bogdan Yakimov, Jujhar Khaira and Travis Ewanyk. Their most effective
AHL center is Jason Williams (in photo by Rob Ferguson, all rights
reserved). If we can agree the Oilers need a bridge to the youngsters
who can play NHL hockey until they’re ready, what would it look like?
THE CURRENT PECKING ORDER
|1||Ryan Nugent-Hopkins||No. 1 center and power-play witch|
|2||Leon Draisaitl||Top draft pick trying to find his away against soft parade|
|3||Boyd Gordon||Checking C currently playing out of this world|
|4||Mark Arcobello||Complementary offensive C and a handy checker|
|5||Will Acton||Depth C and a solid penalty killer|
|6||Anton Lander||Proven AHL player, lays an egg under the bright lights|
|7||Jason Williams||AHL veteran, hasn’t played in the NHL since 2011-12|
|8||Travis Ewanyk||Checking C and agitator|
|9||Bogdan Yakimov||Trending player, big and strong with skill|
|10||Jujhar Khaira||Tough player with some skill, projects as a checker|
The early part of the season has shown (in my opinion) the Oilers have a few issues. The injury to the Nuge exposed the lack of depth, and Leon Draisaitl’s considerable skills aren’t enough to convert scoring chances so far in the young season.
The Oilers have depth, but it’s either very young or unlikely to impact the NHL this season.
We know Dave Nonis of the Leafs attended the Oilers—Canucks game last night and the twitter brigade has Edmonton and Montreal checking each other out at the NHL and AHL level.
What would Edmonton be looking for from Montreal? A center for sure and maybe Lars Eller specifically. The Jackets have a ton of centermen, so there might be a fit there, too.
As for the Jackets and Habs scouting OKC? The best available talent there is Oscar Klefbom but the club has several interesting prospects on the farm at this time?
Lars Eller famously trashed the Oildrop and maybe that keeps him from coming to our city via trade. There are other needs and options, but the Montreal—Edmonton connection is always interesting in the trade market:
- Chad Kilger for Sergei Zholtok
- Christian Laflamme for Igor Ulanov
- Scott Thornton for Andrei Kovalenko
- Vincent Damphousse for Shayne Corson and others
- Dan Newman and a 2nd rd pick for Dave Lumley
Are we about to see another?