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Peter Chiarelli has no loyalty to any of the players procured before he arrived and if we’re going to see mid-season turnover chances are those men are vulnerable. One way to make an educated guess? Check out TOI per player and compare it to a season ago.

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  • Benoit Pouliot 2014-15: 16:37, including 2:02 on the powerplay

  • Benoit Pouliot 2015-16: 16:11, including 2:37 on the powerplay

Pouliot has been effective (11GP, 3-4-7) on the McDavid line, although I read here and there that he isn’t cashing all his chances. He’s on track for 20 goals and about 50 points, plus McLellan is running him on par with a year ago (lots of LW injuries last season).

  • Teddy Purcell 2014-15: 17:09, including 2:16PP and 1:06PK
  • Teddy Purcell 2015-16: 15:43, including 2:43PP

Purcell has fallen off in terms of minutes—striking if we consider Jordan Eberle’s injury meant more free minutes floating around. He’s off the pace on the McDavid and Nuge lines, unable to keep up with the speed demons. McLellan has given him some extra power-play time but has not been rewarded for it in the first 11 games (1-1-2 at evens, nothing on the PP).

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  • Mark Fayne 2014-15: 17:56, including 2:29 on the PK
  • Mark Fayne 2015-16: 16:07, including 1:52 on the PK

This is a player who is currently going through a difficult period with coach McLellan, suspect Fayne isn’t delivering the kind of play required to remain in the lineup. Years of experience tell us Fayne could be suffering from injury, trying to adjust to a new partner/system and various other maladies. We do know, that at 28, he is not eroding because of age.

  • Matt Hendricks 2014-15: 13:09, including 2:10 on the PK
  • Matt Hendricks 2015-16: 15:20, including 2:42 on the PK

Injury derailed his impressive start to the season, but Hendricks has performed extremely well when healthy this season. McLellan moved him up to give the Nuge line a digger and some grit, and the possession numbers were solid. Major upswing in fortune.

  • Rob Klinkhammer 2014-15: 11:04
  • Rob Klinkhammer 2015-16: 10:44, including 0:49 on the PK

Another winger who got a push because of injury, Klinkhammer added a penalty-killing role under McLellan.

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  • Justin Schultz 2014-15: 22:36, including 2:47 on the PP
  • Justin Schultz 2015-16: 21:46, including 3:20 on the PP, 2:03 on the PK

His EV TOI is off over three minutes a night but increased PP time and a new role on the PK have Schultz playing monster minutes again. There’s no doubt McLellan sees value in his play but it does seem he’d like to have Schultz in a feature role on special teams. He ranks No. 3 among regulars in EV TOI per game (Oscar Klefbom, Eric Gryba).

  • Andrew Ference 2014-15: 18:52, including 1:52 on the PP
  • Andrew Ference 2015-16: 14:50, including 1:19 on the PK

A tough season for Ference, who played on the 2011 Stanley Cup champion Boston Bruins (playing over 20 minutes a night during the playoffs). The contract is signed and both sides will honor it, but this looks like a tough road ahead for the veteran.


I think there’s a good chance Benoit Pouliot and Matt Hendricks hang around for most or all of their contracts. Justin Schultz is getting a major chance to show his stuff, either for a trade or that big contract that is probably out there (just a matter of what team signs it). Rob Klinkhammer may also get another contract, he’s a free agent at the end of the year.

Teddy Purcell and Mark Fayne appear to be on the outs, with Fayne’s fall especially sharp considering he was top pairing opening night. Andrew Ference has his contract and his no movement clause, suspect we’ll see a buyout in the summer.

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  • Only way Purcell, Fayne, Ference are going anywhere is when their contracts run out. No team is taking those contracts on unless we’re taking a worse one back. Stay the course, let some of these come off the books naturally. It’s the only way. Chia was absolutely right not to buy out contracts this year. All who are saying he should have, must have some belief that extending the length of years on your problems for a 2/3’s break on the money of your problems is somehow a good idea.

    Imagine, instead of paying Ference to not play for 2 more years, we could be paying him for four! Genius!

  • Tanker

    Remember when the advance stats gurus said that the Hendricks trade was awful and that they would be buying him out in a year…reinforces how little they know about the actual game of hockey.

    • The_Angershark_Lives

      Huge Hendricks fan here. But one player not being bought out though some of the advanced stats crowd predicted he would be reinforces how little they know about hockey?

      Do I have to point out maybe that’s a bit of a reach or are we just saying crazy things for crazys sake?

      If we’re just being crazy I’ll join the fun

      • vetinari

        Last I checked Advanced Stats guys were right a reasonable amount of time. I suggest they would have put together a better team than Tambo or MacT did in the years of dispair.

        Are they going to be wrong of course they are! But so are professional GMs.

        The best approach is a marriage of the two. Such that guys like Gregor, Willis and LT are doing.

        No one has the monopoly on being right or being wrong.

    • finn_fann

      Two things wrong with what you said:

      1) Hendricks never really played more than a fourth line role on his previous teams. The advanced stats didn’t predict him to be this good, but neither did his past history with other teams.

      2) The reason advanced stats gurus hated the trade? We shipped out future Vezina-nominee Devan Dubnyk to get him. Keep in mind, this was at a point where all the people who knew better than the stats gurus were dumping on him for failing to stop 50 pucks a night behind an AHL-calibre defense. Regardless of Hendricks’ present performance, that’s still a difficult trade to call a “win” given what Dubnyk has done with Minnesota (I might personally call it a saw-off though).

      3 (bonus point!) I don’t know of any advanced stat gurus who dislike the player. They all called him as a good 3/4 line player who can chip in the occasional goal, which is what he is. What they don’t like is – as I’ve already pointed out – we sold low on Dubnyk to get him.

    • Dan 1919

      And then a few articles ago when Willis was asking what the point of signing Gryba was because I guess his advanced stats weren’t good enough?
      Gryba has been a perfect 5/6 guy, who has even shown good enough to move into the 4 slot if that’s what the team needs for a brief time.

      The truth that we all knew about advanced stats guys is finally starting to show. Sure there’s plenty of interesting info, but it was how they presented their data in a way that suggested they were some sort of hockey guru’s… When really, most of us could tell that they actually had a little less of a grasp on the game than the average avid fan, and hiding behind advanced stats was just a defence mechanism to hide that.

      Glad to see people sobering up around advanced stats. The truth is, good teams will produce good advanced stats and good basic stats, period. You can’t just focus on Corsi and wonder why the team doesn’t get better. I think Eakins confirmed that for us.

  • Tanker

    Shipping out Fayne and/or Purcell is music to my ears at this point. ChiaPete can hopefully broker a deal for a better D man using one or both. For the first time in too long I can actually see how a good coach and GM are able to really separate the wheat from the chaff within the roster. Sure it also exposes the poor decisions of the previous regime…but most fans had that figured out long ago.

  • YFC Prez

    In the next CBA I hope the NHLPA and NHL come to a better agreement on contract buyouts or introduce terminations. A player like Andrew Ference is a perfect example of how the current workings of NHL buyouts being bad for both player and team.

    If the oilers buyout Ferrence next season they have a large portions of his cap hit over 2 more seasons I believe. Bad for the team.

    If the oilers just sit on the contract and keep Ference upstairs the entire season, well that just really sucks for the player.

    I’m not too sure how to work this, so that teams are still wary about signing players to large terms, but also so that contracts are not handicapping all parties involved before completion of term. Maybe lower portion of, or term of cap hit remaining on contracts upon buyout.

    A player and team in oilers and Ferences situations should be able to move on. Ference should be able to look for employment elsewhere without handicapping the oilers in the process.

    • MillHoodsHockey4Life

      It looks like GMs are finally learning and solving this issue themselves when you look at the FA contracts signed this summer and all the vets fighting for a contract as camp invites. In a year or two the deadweight contracts will be gone from around the league and shorter term contracts will be the norm aside from the top end players.

    • D

      The termination idea would enable bad GMs to cover their poor decisions with cash, in much the same way rich teams did in the pre-cap era. It’s way more fun seeing dunce GMs get punished by forcing teams to keep overpaid players on the books.

    • Craig1981

      Eliminate no trade/movement contract terms in the next CBA. It’s the new scourge of the NHL. The roster of readily movable players in the NHL, and especially top end players, is greatly diminishing, thus trading is a less viable means to improve any team. A year or two ago Canucks had 11 or 12 of these contracts. Kesler and Luongo had no trades yet they broke their word and demanded out, then limited the Canucks to a team or two to trade with and the Canucks got spare parts in return. Bieksa allowed a trade, he was agreeable when it suited him. No trade terms are basically a one way street for the organization and a two way street of entitlement for the talent.

  • srelio

    I dunno, you could probably get something decent for Fayne. His value is down but he has been a solid player for most of his career and at 28 he should be pretty near his prime. Plus when he’s playing well his contract isnt unreasonable (length or cap). Its ridiculous to say no team would take him after 11 poor games.

  • Shit bitch cunt fuck

    God damn it would be nice to be free of Ference, Fayne, and Korpikoski. THEY TOTAL OVER $9,000,000. Add Niktin, Purcell, and Scrivens and that’s $20,000,000.

    • Craig1981

      I personally think Korpikoski has played very well on the 3rd line with Lander overall. A descent 3rd liner IMO.

      And at 2.5M its right in line what a 3rd liner should be making

  • Oilfaninvan

    The whole Fayne situation is very disappointing. At his age, with his experience and that contract, you expect more, especially considering all of the issues the team has at that position. I’m surprised by his performance this year. Is it a confidence issue? Lack of perceived ability? New coach/system?

  • MillHoodsHockey4Life

    I think Mark Fayne for Dan Boyle is a trade that works for both sides. Boyle is a a UFA at end of season who isn’t contributing to a veteran Rangers team. He might have some experience to teach our D men. Fayne would secure the Rangers a bonafide Top 6 D who can move up and down the lineup in New York.

  • Dan 1919

    I don’t see Ference or Purcell as players teams need, cause even if you retained half their salary, no one would take them. Both players are too slow for the modern NHL.

    If you trade Hendricks, then who do replace him with. If you trade a gritty, responsible, 2 way vet, and penalty killer, who can win faceoffs, then you need to find the same player. He is in excellent shape, and contract is not a problem. He seems to make these list when if you look at it, why would he be on this list. If he was available at the deadline, there would a long line of suitors.

    Fayne is needed. He had a bad week, and slow start. If paired with a good puck mover, then he can do what he does and protect the net. He is a subtle player defensively, I don’t want them to replace him cause this team needs veterans. Seems to be that on a team like the Oilers with deficiencies his mistakes get pronounced. Depends where the Oilers are at the deadline I guess.

    Klinkhammer is one guy I see traded at the deadline for sure. Great contract, can skate and hit, with a contract that absorbible for many teams in need just under the cap. The replacement player is Pitlick.

    Korpi should be traded. Still a silly move to trade Gordon for him. Another year of contract of a player who has been declining. All I see with the player is he is good in a system, and is where he should be. Last year we had a contributing 4th line, this year we have no 3/4 line thanks to trading Gordon.

    The one player that is not on the list to me that should be on the list is Lander. I am hoping for improvement, but he is inconsistent. He has great intangibles, but skating is not one of them. I’d like to see him get a push with an offensive player or two. I still think a Hall, Lander, Drai type line is a possibility, cause I think they got the horses the Oilers have, we will see a 3 scoring line attack. Just get healthy Eberle, we wait with baited breathe.


      To have Lander play with Hall,that would mean Nuge or McDavid would have to play on the 3rd line. Sorry, that will never happen.We are too deep at centre and top two spots are taken.

  • billythebullet


    I know this keeps you awake at night and part of me understands it. Taylor Hall is a really exceptional talent that when on can change a game in a huge way. These players come along rarely (first overall… Once a year). But no matter how many times I challenge myself or someone else to come up with a way to significantly improve our D core, there seems to be no viable answer. While Nurse appears to be heading for minimum top 4 calibre future with an upside of a top pairing guy, I’d say there’s room for speculation on the rest of them. Oscar has a good toolbox, though not sure he’s got the head for a top 4 D on a contending team. We’ll see. But banking on it, I would argue as a mistake.
    We can not rely on the draft for immediate help(next 3 years) and this time period extends beyond MacDavid’s ELC.
    So I ask you. How do you add TWO TOP FLIGHT D onto our squad to make us dangerous? Sorry, but Fayne and Purcell aren’t going to get that done. We have to face the fact of giving up quality to get quality and the only solutions is to trade away either Hall or Eberle. I won’t entertain the Nuge (That would be a treasonable act on Chia). I love watching both of those kids play but I truly think that Given Hall’s style and injury trouble as well as his cache makes him the best candidate. We need a legit 1and 2 now more than ever and the clock is ticking.

    • db7db7db7

      This would be great except Hall or Eberle won’t get you a true #1 Dman like Subban, Doughty , or Karlsson. Maybe if you offered both you could land 1. As much as I love Nuge, he’s a coveted center, and he could land you a true #1 D. That is the great thing about having deep depth at center, you can trade 1 to sure up another area.

  • BabyNugeMonitor

    The NFL got it right by not having all contracts guaranteed for the life of the deal (need to make the roster for the contract to remain valid). The NHLPA will never agree to that change since it puts the veteran players (who have influence) at the greatest risk when age impacts their ability to compete.

    • D

      The next collective bargaining contract needs to include some form of performance criteria. Currently there is no need for the player to perform other than to work for his next contract. All businesses have some form of performance expectations, players who fall off the ledge like Nikitin or Ference or Purcell should not be compensated for non performance. GM’s seem to be staying away from the overpay which they created themselves but its a performance business and should be treated that way

  • BabyNugeMonitor

    So if the demand for defencemen exceeds supply, what does Fayne bring back in a trade?

    Assuming Chiarelli is looking to improve the roster for this year and magic beans are not desired, are there any other foolish GMs who are willing to part with a Dougie Hamilton type and who is the new Dougie Hamilton type?

  • TartanArmy

    There’s no way you can move these players and expect back an upgrade unless they are part of a sweeter package. My worries are that the sweeter part of these packages may include an important piece of the core or the prospects. With that in mind, you have to stay the course for the most part this season.

  • Shit bitch cunt fuck

    Lets go Oilers give the Flamers a s67t kickin. Flame fans you know what I am talking about,Big game boys.And while were at it go Esks wrap up first.

  • YakCity1039

    Purcell is a UFA at the end of the year. A playoff team will take him on for a push. We could get a 3rd rounder for him. Fayne’s contract isn’t bad. We could net a decent return for him. Ference is the one that’s going to be tough. $3.25m for one more year. That’s most likely a summer trade (hoping) or buyout.

  • YakCity1039

    If I recall correctly the advanced stats nerds starting with you Lowetide, were talking up Fane big time when he was signed. I wish that just once the tunnel-visioned advanced stats devotees would step up and wear their cock-a-mamee sure-fire predictions when they are off the beam. Fane, Lander, Purcell and Ference are soon to be gone. If Chiarelli had listened to advance stats people Yakupov would have been mailed out of YEG in pieces a year ago.

    Advanced stats on that. Of corsi!

  • billythebullet

    Fayne to a playoff team looking for affordable depth on d with injuries might net us another player similar in situation to Griffian Reinhart. A solid older prospect that cannot crack a roster spot due to current depth. Maybe a bolder move is to move someone like dria for a d prospect of equal value. Ferance is with us until his contract runs out imo. Scrivens and purcell play out this season and move on replaced by internal options (liro the hero). This is my best guess at a fate for these current players falling out of favor.

  • Dan 1919

    I love Eberle. But if Draisaitl keeps performing on the Nuge line, Eberle becomes expendable. Fayne and Eberle for ? That might be able to pry a solid D man in his prime from another GM.

    I’m not hating on Eberle. I think he is a great player, and it would hurt to trade him. But if Draisaitl, Hall, and Nuge turn out to be a good line. That line gets bigger, and Eberle becomes a valuable trade chip. He is the player with the most value you can(might be able to) replace immediately with Draisaitl. No gaping hole left in the lineup by making a trade to improve the D.

    My personal preference would be Byfuglien.(if he was available). He is FA at the end of this season. But if he is willing to resign, I would make Eberle part of a trade for a player like that. Imagine that behemoth on the blue line.

    And I really hope Nurse can stick. He is one of our best D at the moment in my opinion. He has and will make rookie mistakes. He brings speed and fierceness with his play. He likes the physical play and can shoot the puck. I think he is needed here, and his development might be best served in the NHL at this point in time. He benches 525 lbs!!! He’s a beast.