petry common33

We’re one month away from the NHL trade deadline and the deals are picking up in pace. The Edmonton Oilers have made only one deal—a major one, David Perron to Pittsburgh—and will make at least one more (or so it seems) before time expires March 2nd. Jeff Petry is leaving town.


Ken Holland and the Red Wings spent years and years building and making few rental moves.

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  • Holland: “I’m not doing any more rentals,
    because Detroit’s system is about getting players from Europe, college
    and junior into minor pro and then you’ve got to get them into the NHL.
    If I acquire rental players I don’t have enough picks—like when we went
    to the draft in 1999 in Boston with no first pick, no second pick, no
    third pick and no fourth pick.”
    Source: Behind the Moves

When they exited their third “Golden Era” Detroit started to add via deadline style trades. Kyle Quincey
came back that way in Feb ’12, the team dealt Calle Jarnkrok, Patrick
Eaves and a third-round pick for David Legwand last in March a year ago.

Jeff Petry is a very good fit this deadline for the Red Wings in several ways:

  • He’s a righty and Detroit’s defense (and team) is the ‘Leftorium’ brought to life.
  • He is a capable NHL defenseman who can play in all disciplines
  • Detroit probably has as good a chance as any team to land the player in free agency (he’s from Ann Arbor, Michigan and his father was a successful pitcher for the Detroit Tigers)


detroit defense vollman

Since they’re all lefthanded, I think the easiest way to view the pairings is via the Vollman sledgehammer. All of the bubbles are blue—Detroit is an exceptional possession team—but the heavy lifting belongs to Kronwall and Ericsson. The secondary pairing, Quincey and young DeKeyser, are facing easier (but significant) opposition and the others are getting a zone start push and facing the soft parade.

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If Jeff Petry was a Red Wing, where would he play?

  • Kronwall (who leads the team’s blue in TOI, 23:36) and Ericsson play 17 minutes a night at evens and another 2.5 on the PK. Kronwall’s 3 minutes on the power play have been very effective (1-13-14) so Petry might be able to give him some time off on the PK.
  • Petry might be able to form an effective third pairing with (I’d guess) Brendan Smith.


red wings possession stats

This is crazy good, everyone is 51.5 or better and the top four (tough minutes) blue are excellent. Detroit could probably head into the playoffs with this group, if they were all healthy and experienced:

  • Jakub Kindl has an elbow problem and hasn’t played since December 27.
  • Xaxier Ouellet is 21 years old and played 19 minutes (-3) against Tampa Bay.

I think we can safely slot Petry with Brendan Smith on a third pairing, with Kindl and Ouellet as support.

petry screen shot 3


  • Kronwall—Eriksson
  • DeKeyser—Quincey
  • Smith—Petry

The addition of Petry gives Detroit six solid options and allows them to give Kronwall less time on the PK (should they choose to do so).

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Jim Matheson of the EJ, still connected after all these years, mentioned Ryan Sproul as a possible option and also threw the name of Tomas Jurco as a target (in a bigger deal). Source. 

Signing Jeff Petry is, as always, the better plan.


  • bradleypi

    Why is oilersnation so intent on keeping a guy that would be a bottom six guy on any other team in the league?? We have plenty of bottom six guys. I’m not even sure if petry cracks detroits defense at all if everyone is healthy. Only thing he has going for him is his right handed shot. The fact that it’s taken this long to move petry should give oilersnation a clue about how the rest of the league values him. Oh and I noticed he had another invisible night against buffalo the other night. Guy is getting worse as the year goes on. Oilers will be better off without him. Mact will be lucky to get “magic beans” for this bum

    • Jordan88

      Do you want Nikitin’s? because this is how you get Nikitin’s.

      Seriously its your line of thinking that gets us in this mess because the Oilers have SO MUCH defensive depth we should move Petry. lets rank the Oilers defensive prospects in order of good to crap.

      Nurse, Marincin, Klefbom = good

      Petry Fayne = ok

      Aulie = meh

      Nikitin Schultz Ference = oh dear god no.

      There are other names but you get the idea now.

      • Serious Gord

        Nurse and marincin are far from sure bets to be “good”. And klefbom looks like he might be decent but probably a second pair guy.

        Aulie is not nhl caliber.

      • bradleypi

        What is exactly my “line of thinking”? According to you? My line of thinking is get rid of dead weight on the team so it can move forward. And by dead weight I mean 48gp 10 measly points and a whopping -24 that keeps rising every game. By far the worst on the team! And I didn’t sign nikitin, so why do you even bring that up to me? I don’t agree with every move Mact makes, but I certainly agree with him that to improve this team, “soft as peanut butter” petry needs to go. Guy has been the defacto number 1 dman for years on this team and they have been in the basement every year.

        One more time in case you missed it
        48gp 10 points -24 sign him quick Mact before someone else gets him!! LMAO!!!!

        • Jordan88

          seriously we still care about +- these days?


          Who has been Jeff’s linemates.

          In Order from most to least played with.

          Ference. I would play like a turip truck too if he was my partner.

          Klefbom. Too young but will be solid player next year.

          Nikitin. If you looked up defensive boat anchor you would see this man.

          Schultz. Nothing needs to be said.

          Also in the PK he is 3rd in icetime on a team with 2 goalies who cannot stop a beach ball.

          Now you understand WHY he is -24. I need a smoke.

          • bradleypi

            So it is perfectly ok to use a stat to say one player is terrible, but when I use that exact same stat for another player it is meaningless. #LOGIC

            How much is Kevin Lowe paying you to post on this site?

          • bradleypi

            How many awards has petry won in his NHL career to justify being terrible and soft year after year. I would take an ovechkin with the worst +/- in the league over a petry with the worst every day. Ovechkin had 1 bad year. Every year is a bad year for oilersnation golden boy petry

          • bradleypi

            How many awards has petry won in his NHL career to justify being terrible and soft year after year. I would take an ovechkin with the worst +/- in the league over a petry with the worst every day. Ovechkin had 1 bad year. Every year is a bad year for oilersnation golden boy petry

          • bradleypi

            I knew it wouldn’t be long before someone started blaming someone else for how bad of a defenseman petry is…. obviously you don’t care about +- but I sure care about a Stat that shows the puck goes in your net more than the oppositions. And his +- is THE WORST out of that bunch you listed so maybe petry is the reason Schultz is having a tough year… how’s that logic for you.. classic oilersnation.

      • camdog

        Marincin has the worst stat line of all the d-man in Oklahoma. Previously another individual pointed out that they are trying him on the right side as an experiment. I haven’t read anything else about him playing a different position. All I know is when Edmonton starts tinkering with players positioning it often doesn’t work.

  • Zarny

    I say good riddance to petry. Why does everyone keep using buzz words like “he’s our best dman”? The guy has the worst plus minus on the entire team at minus 24!! Worst +/- of all the D by a large margin.

    Getting rid of him free’s up room for an upgrade which is desperately needed.

    Simply no room for an over paid petry behind nurse, Klefbom, Schultz, Fayne and hopefully 2 significant upgrades

    • Zarny

      You must be watching a different team ………..Petry is our best defenceman! He may not be the Shea Webber of defenceman, but he plays the toughest minutes and never complains about anything.

      Exactly who do you think can replace him???

      • Zarny

        They’re gonna have an extremely valuable pick plus another first round and a low 2nd.

        Eichel pick for OEL

        Pitts 1st pick plus Marincin for Gudbranson

        Haha I know I’m dreaming but come on, lets get good NHL players for once. Not pay a minus 24 dman 5 mil because he’s the best of the worst

  • Reg Dunlop

    How does trading a guy that may end up as a bottom pairing guy in Det. qualify as a major move? That is like calling the Oiler’s acquisition of Aulie a major move. Nothing to see here, move along.

    • Zarny

      It wouldn’t be a major move for Det. They are acquiring a 4/5 D.

      The Oilers are trading away their best D. Just a matter of perspective.

      Sort of says it all though doesn’t it. Especially when you back it up with the worst SV % in the league.

  • Elgando

    He should have been locked up to a multi yr deal and we wouldn’t be having this conversation. How were losing a young right handed shot defenceman entering his prime and finally figuring out how to play defence is beyond incompetent. And signing him to a one year deal that takes him to UFA status was idiotic. Its so bad, all I can think of is that he wanted out last year but agreed to a one yr deal only and has committed to keeping his mouth shut.

    • toprightcorner

      I actually think the Tambo Contract is to blame, a contract ending with only 1 year before becoming a 27 year old UFA is a recipe for the player to want a big over pay contract or wait to cash in on the market.

      MacT didn’t really have a choice, it has been said that Petry was looking for $5 mill last year and he likely would have wanted at least 4 years to not want be a UFA. MacT would have been raked over the coals if he signed Petry to a 4 year $20 mill contract, he had no choice but to sign him to a 1 year as he already knew that since he wasn’t going to grossly over pay Petry that he would become a UFA.

      If Tambo left 2 years of restricted status for Petry, the is a lot more risk to Petry to risk 2 years before becoming a UFA and MacT probably could have gotten him for a $4 mill cap hit long term.

      a GM should always try to leave themselves in a position to negotiate the last restricted contract with 2 years of control if he wants to buy up free agent years because 2 years is a lot harder for a player to wait for a big pay day with risks of injury or a down year.

  • sportsjunkie007

    The Oilers’ defense isn’t going to improve if we can’t hold onto our best defensemen. Petry isn’t an incredible defenseman, but he’s definitely one of the best that we have right now. MacT needs to find a way to keep Petry around, even if it’s just for a couple more years.

    A blockbuster trade for a true #1 shutdown defenseman is extremely unlikely. Our best chance for improvement is continuous upgrades throughout every season until we have the defense that we need. Losing Petry would be a substantial move in the wrong direction.


    Man, if I was Petry I would be stoked to play for a storied franchise like the Red Wings. As much as I like him and wish the Oilers would re-sign him, I hope he goes to a better team…he deserves it.


    It’s obvious that Petry is on his way out of town and Marincin won’t be too far behind him. The organization will choose to keep Nikitin and Shultz instead. If this is the direction the management wants to go, then they ought to be fired. I don’t know what ever happen to the forensic audit that was being done on this team, but if everyones job is being scrutinized, why are they making decisions that will further hurt this team in the long term. The Oilers can not just take for granted that the guys the would like to acquire will come here, and the order of the 1st pick they get will be in the top three. Petry is definitely not a stud defenseman, but he is the best the Oilers have at the moment. They should be doing everything they can to get Petry signed. That starts with a conversation that apparently the managers have no interest in having with his agent.

  • S cottV

    Pretty sad – that this far along in the rebuild – with 3 first overalls and the whole bit, that Petry can’t be blamed for wanting out of here.

    There is a serious lack of credibility that continues to brew.

    The only reasonably quick way out of this mess, is key player retention, trades involving players with no trade clauses and ufa’s.

    With Edmonton not being the sexiest place to live, the organization has to be perceived as being in the top 10 percentile in the league and poised to make a run at the Stanley Cup.

    Being perceived in the bottom 10 percentile, in 29th place, quirky owner, lame duck president, rookie gm, rookie coach?

    Big long term problem…

  • Reg Dunlop

    Why does an Oiler fan care about what is good for Detroit in terms of them getting Petry?

    At this point, the only valid move for MacTavish to do is to pay whatever to keep Petry.

    The Oilers need to make a statement about continuity and competence.

    What franchise doesn’t retain its actual players?

    Who has this insane fetish about “prospects”?

    Just as we have seen with Draisatl and Yakupov, having expectations that prospects are actually NHL players is a totally dubious approach, especially given the experince of the last ten years in Edmonton.

    Ask yourself, what would George Allen have done?
    Not more draft picks.

  • paul wodehouse

    draft…groom…nurture…bring along slowly…produce after many years of waiting for a decent Dman that seems to be efficient and of value…AND TRADE HIM?…nice work…are Nurse and Klefbom ready to be traded?

  • Zarny

    I suspect Petry is 3rd ish on Detroit’s wish list behind Myers and Green.

    Jurco and Sproul are interesting returns. Not the cream but at least NHL players with potential to be more. I like it more than a draft pick.

  • Zarny

    Petry has finally come into his own……..and just when he has a complete game going, we are talking about trading him?

    Very bad asset management Mac T! The number rule of business is value what is good ………you can’t build a good business if you are constantly letting your best people go!

    Let’s see we are willing to take a chance in landing Clarkson with stupid dollars, a guy we barely know………but a guy we know and have developed since he was sperm, we are going to let him walk………truly confounding.

  • Deke Rivers

    If 18 months ago we locked up Petry and overpaid significantly for him, would the pro Petry comments be the same?

    I’m going to guess they would be more along the line of blaming the Oilers for continuing to overpay for talent and somehow magically expect them to play better than they really are. Because we all know the Oilers have been guilty of this in the past. 18 months ago Petry was a descent Dman who was soft and probably didn’t fit into the Oilers plans nor was he what the Oilers really needed. This has not changed. We should have traded him last year and go more in return.

    Is it better to bid him goodbye. Or sign him to to top pairing Dman dollars so we can complain later that we overpaid for a soft player who should be a third pair Dman.

    The issue isn’t Petry it’s why the Oilers don’t have legitimate top pair talent. You don’t go out with the least ugliest girl thinking she’s pretty. At the end of the day she’s still ugly and you’re committed with no opportunity to land the pretty girl.


    So Detroit’s going to pay $4.5+ (ish) for a 3P RH D? Not really sure about the math here, it sounds more like a Oilers way of going about things than a Detroit way. I mean if I were Petie I’d be on it like a dog on a bone but it just doesn’t seem like how a successful franchise is run.

  • camdog

    I wonder what Petry’s +/- will be on another team where the forwards especially the C position know how to play the game, and his quality of competition isn’t the best players in the game. I’m guessing he’ll do just fine.

    The people that think Petry isn’t a good d-man are the same people that thought DD was would never play in the NHL again after he left E-town.

    • bradleypi

      Again blaming other players for petry being not very good. Maybe the centers are no good because petry can’t get them the puck….. 48 games 10 points = not very good

  • toprightcorner

    The Oilers need to find a trade partner that would have Petry play in a top 4 position. If a team wants him for a 3rd pairing they would probably offer a 4th round pick, possibly a 3rd. Petry should get a 2nd pick at the worst and for that he needs to go to a team that needs him in the top 4.