There’s a new sheriff in town and his name is Peter Chiarelli. The Oilers new GM was asked about trading the No. 1 overall pick, and replied ‘never say never!’ WHAT?


Mark Scheig of the Hockey Writers had a chance to catch up to Chiarelli tonight before the SSM-Erie game.

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  • THW: “Is there a scenario out there anywhere, in which you would consider trading the number 1 pick?”
  • Schiarelli: “I would never say never. If we decide to take
    this player, Connor McDavid, who is a hell of a player, we would be
    passing up a hell of a player if we did trade the pick.  But in this
    business, you never say never.”


The idea that Edmonton could somehow get fooled and deal the No. 1 pick is noxious I know, but it’s Peter Chiarelli’s job to procure talent and mold that talent for the Edmonton Oilers. It is not his job to entertain us with quotes, give us the road map for the future, or to shut down potential offers from the other 29 NHL GM’s.

Is he going to deal the No. 1 overall selection? Hell no. However, there’s a reason NHL teams send area scouts and scouting directors out to see players, and that has to do with process and making sure you come to conclusions in due time, without overreacting or rushing to something that will bite you in the ass down the line. Chiarelli has a new amateur scouting staff, it might be an idea to listen to what they have to say, as opposed to cutting off a conversation two months before the draft. As a former scout himself, I suspect Chiarelli wants to start as he means to go with that area of the organization.

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Due diligence. Process. THEN pick McDavid.

Also, allowing an open dialogue could get a conversation started and shake loose some ideas. It doesn’t mean they’re trading McDavid, but it does mean the Oilers are open for business. 


I’m not saying ‘calm yourself, silly!” because as an Oilers fan you’ve been through a lot and earned the right to be suspicious. Peter Chiarelli once traded Tyler Seguin, although there were specific pressures on and off the ice that led to that transaction, he said exactly that on Friday. Performance issues, cap issues, other issues.

There are no such issues with the Edmonton Oilers and Connor McDavid, who lit it up again tonight for the Erie Otters. Peter Chiarelli is a veteran GM who will take the time to look at all options available, inform himself as much as possible, and then make the best possible decision for the Edmonton Oilers.

Never say never? We’ll simply have to get used to it.

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  • Oilergasm

    I might consider trading him to Tampa for Stamkos if he was extended for 10 years and Tampa retained 50% of his salary, Hedman, Andrei Vasilevskiy and a boat load of 1st rounders. But even then probably not.

  • Oilergasm

    All you people downvoting me need to learn what depth is… Having multiple solid players in an area the Oilers are lacking in, Defense, is much more important than one superstar…

  • Craig1981

    People keep talking about what hockey trade makes sense for Mcdavid. There is no possible economic trade possible for the Oilers, besides maybe Crosby. Look at the fan base Crosby and Lemiux have made for the Pens. Gretzky ‘ s impact still exists with the fans it created for the Oilers and Kings. Orr fans still cheer and buy sweaters and caps from the Bruins and my dad still cheers for the Candian because of the Rocket.

  • Congo Powerarm

    I’d guess that Schultz’s days in Edmonton are numbered. Past history shows us the type of defence Peter will be looking to construct, unless Justin can radically change his game and adapt to new expectations, I doubt he stays.

    • Anton CP

      Change his game? You mean like play well? Not make a game deciding blunder in 70% of games played?

      We would have had 10-15 more points this season, if Shultz wasn’t in the lineup.

      No doubt he personally caused 5+ losses all on his own.

      I still think he might be worth a look on the wing. His defense might actually be above average for a winger, and he can skate. Just get him hitting on the fore check, and I think he might not be too bad.

      He loves his wrist/snap shot, which he might actually hit the net with, if there was no one in front of him.

  • Craig1981

    He’s not MacT and Lowe. Chiarelli and Nicholson knows better what to do. Better than everyone in this organization for 10 years.

    No breaking eggs – no breakfast for today. I want my team to be playoff contender – I must prepare myself for sacrifices.

    P.S. Chiaro in Italian means clear, clean-cut, light, vivid. Interesting coincidence.

  • Jordan McNugent-Hallkins

    The gallows will ready just in case. I’ll have effigies of PC ready to burn too. Pitchforks you’ll have to bring yourselves.And beer.

  • Kevwan

    Dear Mr Chiarelli,

    Connor McDavid represents hope for the Oiler fan base. Up until April 18 this fan base was as devoid of hope as any in pro sports.

    The next time you are asked that question, for our sake, please answer “Never”

    signed -an Oiler fan

  • Congo Powerarm

    PC wants three things out of that comment:

    1) The Oil is open for business and everyone is on the trading block. This will instil the fear that, if you want to stay here, you will have to play better no matter who you are. Remember Hall’s tweet to CM about where to pass the puck i.e. him. Players are excited and they will be more so when we have an experienced coach.

    2) It opens up trade talks. He will get a lot of calls on CM with teams offering 3 or 4 good to great players. Which tells him which teams are willing to part with what players. Instead of 4 players for CM, how about 2 players for Hall or Eberle or NH or Yak et al and a draft pick etc.

    3) Consistency. You can’t say everyone is on the table and then say CM is not. The fact that he traded Tyler S. means that he has credibility when he says everyone is open to be traded for the right deal.

    Smart. It a new day in Oil country……

  • Jordan McNugent-Hallkins

    It’s not his style to gush over a player like Mac T did, can’t see him trading the #1 pick unless it’s ridiculous. He is showing that he is his own man. He is changing the culture of the team that has been desperate for too many years. McDavid will be drafted by the Oilers and next season will be the beginning of a new era. This time it will be done right. If SSM gets knocked out, Nurse will play in the AHL and hopefully build his confidence and cred up with Oiler management for the beginning of next season. He has played 2 full seasons of junior since he was drafted, to me that’s not rushing him anywhere.

  • Keg on Legs

    Malkin top 5? Not even. (.5 million dollar contract and 0 points in this years playoffs. Can you say Pavel Datsuyk? Kane? Perry? To be considered top 5 you have to perform at the elite level when asked/needed. Malkin is a declining asset. If I am GM in PITT Malkin gets moved this summer.

    McDavid? What is his top end? Who knows. The skills and the intangibles look all to be there. But he has not played a single NHL game. Until he performs at the NHL level we all should just reserve our opinions and comparisons. In 5 years we’ll have our answers.The bet is that he will be a productive player at the NHL level.But until it happens he is just a prospect.

  • freelancer

    Just had a thought. If McLellan does become our coach, and Schultz is still around, is there any possibility we could see him used like a Brett Burns and play forward?

  • Smuckers

    Yeah not likely they trade the pick. First off, the players they would want in return likely have a NMC and would not waive it to come to a team without a potential franchise player. If they didn’t have a NMC they’d be gone once their contract is up.

    Secondly, you need McDavid to attract good players so they would be working against themselves by trading it away. Better to have players wanting to be here than forced to be here because of a trade.

    Not to mention all the merchandising opportunities you’d have by taking him….

    That said, I won’t be ordering my McDavid jersey till his name is called.

  • neojanus

    For crying out loud, we are not trading the pick. Virtually every hockey analyst, scout, executive in the frigging world has said that you’d be crazy not to use the pick and grab McDavid.

    There are tree-dwelling tribes in Papua New Guinea who know who this hockey player is. The kid is averaging almost three points a game right now against arguably the best defenseman in the CHL.

    Yet our brand new President of Hockey would go about about trading the pick as one of his first decisions?

    Ya all on crack.

    Chiarelli merely said what every professional GM should say because not only is it a great sound bite, but it tells teams that the Oilers are open for business. There are probably hockey organizations that haven’t spoken to the Oilers seriously for ten years.

    Besides, suppose for some reason McDavid DIDN’T accept the team (1 in 100,000,000 chance), well then I guess they’d trade the pick. McDavid could also decide that he’s sick of toying with all these average human beings and decide to go back to his home planet where the competition is better. I suppose we might trade that pick then or select Eichel.

    There is nothing to see here.

  • Cheap Shot Charlie

    CM is a generational player and, realistically, is not on the chopping block. Everyone else is. We have some incredible young talent to trade and a S-load of draft picks in a very deep draft year. We don’t need to trade CM. We have lots of currency in others like Hall, Eberle, RNH, Yak – most of whom have proven themselves enough to be of high value (unlike trading, say, Drais.). Make no mistake, one or two of those 4 will be gone by the end of the summer.

    Good times a comin’ …..

    • Reg Dunlop

      Seems like there is a canyon-like drop off after the 1st pick this draft. Eichel? Sounds like Wickenheiser vs Savard. Sabers would have to threw in A LOT more, in fact they don’t have enough assets to balance that deal.

      What about 1st overall for Johnny Hockey? Threw that in for the flame trolls who prefer to lurk here rather than watching their team get crushed by Anaheim.

      • Burnward

        Look man, not trolling. Just generally surprised that people are this deadset against the very idea of trading him. Which is crazy to begin with, I admit.

        Also, in the Eichel vs. McDavid debate. What more could you ask of Eichel? Their NHLe isn’t that dissimilar and if you get two legit top four D as well, that goes a huge way towards solidifying this team.

        Just spitballin’.

        But I would take that deal. It’d break my heart, but I’d do it.

  • Rebuilding the Rebuild

    Watching the ‘Behind the B’ clip – interesting. Chiarelli didn’t seem completely sold on the idea of moving Seguin. My impression is Neely wanted him gone and gave Chia the orders.

    I think it was because of situations like that (higher ups calling the shots), that Chia wanted POHO and GM titles. He wanted to make the calls.

    That said, I don’t think the Seguin trade was that bad. Yes, he’s putting up good numbers in Dallas but his offensive abilities were never really in question. He’s a selfish player and person and I wouldn’t want him on the Oilers either. I’ll take Nuge-McDavid-Drai all before Seguin.

    I like the message that no one is safe. I don’t think Chiarelli will try to build a big bad Bruins 2.0 here in Edmonton, but I do think he’ll expect that level of commitment to playing hard 100% of the time and playing for your teammates.

    Playoff hockey is a battlefield that these guys have yet to see – long way to go before they look like warriors but I think most of them have the fire needed to take it to the next level. Except Jultz. Trade him to Dallas.

    • After listening to that clip, I’d have fired that Bradley guy for sure before Chiarelli. It definitely appears that the call was made up higher than the GM. Sounds like Neely mettles as much as Kevin Lowe appeared to.

      I don’t buy that Kevin Lowe is completely out of the operations side so long as he is still employed by the Oilers. In the interview didn’t Nicholson come out and say he’ll confer with him?

  • BobbyCanuck

    Had a talk about CM with one of the old(er) timers at work, being a 30 yr season ticket holder, I thought he would be over the moon, he was not. Why?

    1) Oilers have been saying this is the player that will make us a contender every year since Hall was drafted

    2) CM is not proven, and all our so called game breakers have not really carried the team

    3) CM is 18 yrs old, possibly will suffer a career ending injury on the Oilers first road trip through California, because, well we have no one that can actually play on the top 6 that sticks up for anyone.

    A lot of talk about CM value in marketing the team, no don’t need it. Sell outs, season ticket waiting lines. Oiler merch. Will fly off the shelves next season, all we need to do is go 6-4 to start the season. Because we are Oiler fans, love our team, would still love them with or with-out CM.

    Let’s use our picks wisely, develop the youngsters properly, look for value contracts, and look for UFA’s to fill specific needs. Let’s be patient, because as irritated as we have been for the last 9 years, it would be folly to make bold, poorly thought out short term moves at this time.

  • positivebrontefan

    Hey…Hey Oilers!

    You want Kessel and Phaneuf for McDavid?

    Pure goal scorer and one of the hardest hitters in the league for this 18 year old kid…yeah? Let’s do it.

  • Serious Gord

    Chia has (almost) autonomy to make all hockey decisions sure. BUT any trade has to be approved by the owner. NO WAY Katz signs over power of attorney to Chia removing his veto power and EXTRA NO WAY Katz EVER signs off on not drafting McDavid. Ever.

  • Kevwan

    The way I see it is no one (or no package) is worth the trade.

    Winning McDavid needs to be treated like winning the lottery (which it is i know). If I just won $50,000,000 and rushed out to spend it all, sure I would have some nice stuff to show for it, but each and every thing i get becomes a depreciating asset. Keeping McDavid is an appreciating asset, and we have already seen the benefit of this Asset. You trade McDavid, you can say Goodbye to any possibility of Babcock or McLellan. While we are at it, we can take our name off the list of O’Connor’s top 4.

    I don’t believe the goal is to win the stanley cup next year or the year after. The goal is to build a team (with plenty of cap room) that can win 2 or 3 cups in the next 5-7 years. It is shortsighted to move McDavid and watch him become a Dynasty in another market.

    It would be Suicide for Chiarelli to move him. the future with McDavid brought life and hope and excitement back to a market that was genuinely starting to be starved. I don’t see any return that provides that same excitement.


      McDavid has a value on and off the ice. If we can get substantially more then he is worth, then you make the trade, it is that simple.

      He is only one player.

      If you could get Eichel, Hannifin, Ekblad, and Strome for McDavid, would you trade him?

      You would be a fool not to.

      I mean, that is an impossible trade, but I would say those 4 players above would definitely be worth more on and off the ice then McDavid.

      • Reg Dunlop

        In a cap world no, you do not make that trade. In 3 years you have to pay all 4 of those guys plus Hall Nuge Ebs and presumably Draisaitl and Nurse. Cap hell.


    Players with Mcdavid’s skill set,upbringing, maturity,and all out passion for the game, are extremely rare. I wouldn’t trade him for any offer, period. I’ll take one Gretzky over three Malkins any day. They just see the game on a higher level.Not to mention having an “A” list celebrity player on the Oilers attracts alot of money and top Players.

  • Borbs

    Deep breaths people! Like Lowtide said, you do your due diligence as an organization, but at the end of the day, of course you draft McDavid!! The fact they won that pick as such a long shot, the talent that kid has, and the fact that the return on his trade would be brutal means you keep him. Chiarelli just got this job, if he doesn’t want to lose it right away then he drafts McDavid!

  • Burnward

    I like this. This could attract trade partners to Edmonton. Usually when teams are trying to trade for a specific player, or pick they also look at what that team has that they can add in with their target. Say PC declines a deal that included one of Eberle,Hall,Schultz,bla bla bla bla. That team could potentially make an offer for that player. I’m not saying this move will get us Shattenkrik for Schultz and Nikitin but it could make teams send us more phone calls at the draft floor