Oilers Trade Ben Scrivens for Zack Kassian


The Edmonton Oilers have traded former starter (and noted Professor) Ben Scrivens to the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for forward Zack Kassian.

For many Oilers fans the name Zack Kassian is associated with a dirty play that broke Sam Gagner’s jaw. Not only did Kassian break Gagner’s jaw, he taunted him for it. This same player is now an Edmonton Oiler – what a difference a couple years can make. As of right now, Kassian has been assigned to the Bakersfield Condors so it’s clear that the Oilers are hoping he can work things out down there before being recalled. 

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Once recalled, it will be interesting to see how Kassian fits in a dressing room that still has some history which his slash on former Oiler San Gagner. Andrew Ference was suspended for taking a run at Kassian after the slash, and Luke Gazdic reportedly challenged him to fights without having the new Oiler answer the bell. Does this even matter anymore? Do guys even care? I guess we’ll find out. 

On the cap front, it looks like the Oilers have retained 24% of Scrivens’ salary in order to complete the deal. Although this move does still save the team a few shekels it is not as much as initially anticipated which has me wondering if something else could be happening. I guess I just can’t see a scenario where both Luke Gazdic and Kassian are taking up two roster spots on this team. There’s a ways to go before a decision like that is to be made though, Kassian hasn’t played a game since last season and surely have to knock off some rust. Until then, we wait.  


Dear Ben,

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I wanted to wish you good luck in Montreal. I know things didn’t exactly work out for you, in your home town, and for that I apologize. After that 59 save shutout I thought that maybe the Oilers had found their goalie of the future, and maybe you thought that too. Unfortunately, the team in front of you wasn’t poorly constructed and you didn’t play as well as maybe you could have so our relationship has to end.

I know these last few months must have been hard for you, in the AHL. I’m sure it wasn’t easy going to work down on the farm when your own personal expectations must have had you playing somewhere in the NHL. On the bright side, you made millions of dollars to play the game you played for free as a kid and that’s a win in my books. Right? Right.

My hope is that this stop in Montreal lands you another NHL contract, and that you continue being the smartest guy in an NHL dressing room for years to come. Before that can happen there’s plenty of work to do in Montreal, and I hope you’re up for it. You’re going to be filling in for the best goalie in the league in one of the biggest fishbowls in the hockey world. No pressure.

All the best in Montreal, Ben. I hear they have excelled smoked meat sandwiches, strip clubs, poutine, and access to unfiltered cigarettes.

Your friend,


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2011-2012 SABRES 27 3 4 7 -1 20 0 0 0 36 8.3
2011-2012 CANUCKS 17 1 2 3 -1 31 0 0 0 18 5.6
2011-2012 ROCHESTER AMERICANS-AHL 30 15 11 26 4 31 2 1 1 94 16.0
2012-2013 CANUCKS 39 7 4 11 -7 51 2 0 1 49 14.3
2012-2013 CHICAGO WOLVES-AHL 29 8 13 21 -3 61 2 0 0 78 10.3
2013-2014 CANUCKS 73 14 15 29 -4 124 1 0 2 91 15.4
2014-2015 CANUCKS 42 10 6 16 -5 81 1 0 3 55 18.2
NHL TOTALS 198  35  31  66  -18 307 4 0 6 249  14.1 

  • #97Train/McDavidCopperfield

    Face it there are lots of mean guys playing in the NHL. This isn’t baseball. Stevens= vicious
    Domi= Samuelson sucker punch
    Dave Brown= cross check to Sandstroms head
    Marchment = low hits
    Kassian can also be given the benefit of the doubt. Everyone loved these guys on their team

    • camdog

      I haven’t seen the love for Kassian in his markets that Stevens, Domi, Brown or Marchment received, not even close. Canuck fans were happy with the trade of Kassian, because they actually got a mean SOB in return in the form of Brandon Prust.

      Most think of Kassian as a defensive liability, who takes lazy penalties and shows up for every second game.

  • Ty Guy

    This move also clears another non PC (principal) signed human. This coming summer has some ufas the oilers are intending to go after and we will need both cap and contract space to sign folks

    • Zamboni Driver

      Looks like poops McGee is doing a mea culpa…..I remember a different tone to your comments a couple weeks when I suggested the oilers may have “use” for such a player……..

  • If this puts Johnny Burrito and Sam Bennett in their places im all for it. They are literally smaller then my left foot yet our boys showed no challenge what soever. I just want to stop hearing about Johnny Wonder Johnny this Johnny that

  • #97Train/McDavidCopperfield

    Yes!! Been licking my chops ever since I heard he pissed off Mtl. Fighting is down in the league and icetime is at it’s lowest for enforcers. Kassian is a hybrid scorer/enforcer. These player types are becoming more popular with the structure of NHL rules.

    This kid will play 12-15 a night with the big club once his conditioning stint is over. I am annoyed by these comments of upset fans because they will bandwagon once kassian shows his skills.

    This guy is potentially the best enforcer hybrid prospect since Luric came into the league. The guy has to overcome his own issues first but all players do and they come away stronger for it.

    Mark your calendars because the Oilers just got tougher for the first time in 9 years without adding a goon.

  • SimmerDownBoys

    And the endless search for another Lucic continues.

    Interesting to note, he plays RW. If I were a betting man, I’d say the writing is on the wall that Kassian will be to Mcdavid as Tikkanin was to Gretz.

    Hall – Draisaitl – Purcell

    Yak – Mc David – Kassian

    Pouliot – Nuge – Eberle

    Hendricks – Letestu – Korpikoski

    With 6 mill to Drai, 3 mill to Yak, a bump down to 2 mill for Purcell, and 8.5 mill for McDavid, this is 50 mill for the forwards. Leaving 20 mill in cap for defense. It’s one hell of a top nine.

      • Burnward

        While Yak prefers to play RW, his ‘natural’ wing is actually left. Though he always seems to struggle on that side. However with proper coaching and a good center, maybe he can turn it around on that side.

          • CDNinATL

            Pretty simple reason, they had Pouliot and Hall ahead of Yak on the depth chart, and on the right side, at least to start the year, they put Purcell, Shlepyshev, and whoever the hell else in front of Yak until injuries demanded Yak be tried on the right side of McDavid’s wing. On that line they also put Pouliot so no reason to play Yak on the left and Pouliot on the right.

            Then Yak got injured.

            Basically they haven’t tried it yet because keeping him on the right was always the better option. But with a completely healthy team, putting Yak back with McDavid makes sense, and putting Kassian on that line, at least on paper could make sense as well. So it’s another case of do you put Yak on the left which is his natural wing, but doesn’t prefer it, and keep Kassian on his natural side, or do you got the blender.

            My line up only moves one player from the position he prefers to the position he’s naturally suited for. If that doesn’t work, well then I imagine they’ll figure it out.

            Truthfully, I doubt it lines up that neatly. I have a funny feeling it’ll look a lot more like this:

            Hall – Nuge – Draisaitl

            Pouliot – McDavid – Eberle

            Hendricks – Letestu – Yakupov

            Korpikoski – Lander – Purcell

            With Kassian on a call up if he turns things around.

      • Spydyr

        On paper it makes a lot of sense. As much as I really hate Kassian, he does have a ton of size and a fair amount of skill. He wins battles on the boards and has a big front of net presence.

        If Yak can figure it out on the left side, which given the way he shoots should be doable, then this could be a pretty impressive line.

        Of course, all this depends on Kassian, and the type of professional he wants to be. Maybe he works it out, turns things around and the Oilers just stole the next Lucic. Or, maybe he doesn’t and becomes nothing.

        Given the types of teams Chi likes though, this could end up being one of his best moves.

      • S cottV

        If Kassian stays clean, gets in shape and takes this new / last chance seriously – he could play top 6 in a complimentary role with either Drai or McD.

        Would work top 9 with Nuge – for as long as the Oilers can justify a $6mm 3rd line centreman.

        Long term – I don’t see Purcell being the best choice for Hall / Drai and Yak being the best choice for McD.

        Purcell, Yak, Nuge, Eberle, Shultz are the obvious small guy expendables “IF” you could get any kind of return for a rh impact dman, a true 2 way appropriately paid 3rd line centreman, or another Kassian – like right winger.

  • camdog

    I also don’t have much respect for his dirty play in the past nor for his recent off ice antics.

    He has a mountain to climb before gaining my support, but I will be cheering for him if he can turn things around.

  • SimmerDownBoys

    Why do ON readers bother engaging the trolls from FN? Such a waste of time and energy. It’s cute that they think their team has any hope of winning a *yawn* second cup. Their current team is certainly better than our current team but to think that they could win the Cup with that lineup? Only a deluded Flames fan would think so. They think their future is brighter than ours? Laughable. Does trolling our site make them feel better about themselves? Typical jealous Flames fan.

    I just hope, REALLY hope, that none of the ON readers are lame enough to retaliate over at the FN site but I’m probably wrong.

    • 5 Cups

      Yup sure are wrong, you should the garbage Train 97 posts on FN. And yeah, the Oilers have won 5 Stanley cups and the Flames have won one, and Sam Bennett has more playoff points then Hall, McDavid, Yak, Nugent-Hopkins, Eberle, Schultz, Klef, Nurse and Drai COMBINED. So how have the last 10 years been? Have 5 cups 25-35 years ago made it feel better?

      • YFC Prez

        You insult your own city in your username. Then expect anyone here to take anything you say even close to seriously? Troll harder. 0 points.

        As for Zack Kassian……


        • Tony Montana

          Alright, alright I’m done. I got sucked into several pissing contests. My Handle wasn’t meant to insult Edmonton, it is meant to be a joke (albeit probably not a good one). I have lived in Calgary as well and while I Hate the sports teams here, I enjoy living in this city way more, the people here are way better. Also I never expect anyone to take anything I say seriously, you can take what I say or leave it. But Kassian….. brutal decision.

      • MorningOwl

        if it makes them feel better to say “we won 5 cups”, when that dates before most of the people here were born – let them have fun.

        yes, before computers, in the days of no helmets and leather pads, when goalies stood up, the team in edmonton won some cups. wow… that makes current fans awesome, the team fun to watch, and all fan arguments legit. that’s about 15 years before i watched my first hockey game and gas was 20 cents per litre.

        but then, Montreal won 23, Toronro won 13, detroit won 11, and the bruins won 6… so I guess edmonton really sucks in comparison to the good old days too if we are going to look back.

        in fact between 1903 and 1911 Ottowa won 6 and the Montreal wanderers won 4 as did the Montreal Amateur Athletic Association (AAA) who won 4.

        So, Edmonton has 1 more cup than the Montreal Amateur Athletic Association… I bow to Edmonton fans.

        Now, for things that matter – this year. edmonton still sucks, perpetually.

        last year is gone – the last century is gone… many of the edmoton cup winners are long gone… and that is the standard, automatic come back hereat ON.

        “Yes, Edmonton holds the modern record in all of sports history for being the worst team ever, and the team oiler fans hate the most has absolutely owned us for more than ten years straight, but way back when my great-grandpa watched on black and white TV the Oilers were good. that makes us feel better than you, We don’t care if they are good now”. was anyone here even alive back then, and if so, were you old enough to remember and appreciate the wins?

        • The Soup Fascist

          I remember that time. The Battle of Alberta decided who was winning the Cup. Calgary and Edmonton were odds-on favorites to win the Cup.

          If you’re not old enough to remember those games, you’ve never seen a Flames team win anything. That’s too bad.

  • GotYouPegged

    So Chiarelli IS MacT but without the charm and vision. With a few notable exceptions he is managing the biggest collection of do-nothing pussies in the history of pro-sport and he brings in some schlub with alleged substance abuse issues?

    Way to go Petey. This Oiler ride isn’t much fun anymore. It’s like boarding a trans-Atlantic flighr and glancing into the cockpit and seeing Fat Bastard at the controls.

    This is getting ugly.

  • GotYouPegged

    I just pray he never gets a call up. And it feels like a safe bet, he has spent more time getting trashed and rehabbing than he has training by a long shot. No way he makes the big team. This deal was a minor league deal. He will be released in about a month.

  • #97Train/McDavidCopperfield

    I am not a Stauffer fan and almost never listen to his corporate BS. But I’m tuning in today to see how his masters have told him to spin this acquisition. The Oil are sinking fast and this is the big fix?

  • Canoe Ride 27.1

    Its worth the small risk. Kassian will be tough to play against. That said, I still think he guy is dumb. I’ve seen a lot of bad decisions and stupid penalties in his game.

    Either way, get Nikitin the heck of the ice!

  • ubermiguel

    Don’t have time to read all the comments (200+?!) so sorry if these thoughts are repeats.

    Kassian could be an amazing pick up if he’s cleaned up and his head’s in the right place. Big kid who’s shown he can play in the NHL. No doubt Chiarelli vetted the hell out of the whole situation. Last thing you need to bring into a room full of teenagers is someone with an active drug or alcohol problem.

    I’ll miss Jen and Ben, they were great in the community and the city is diminished in their absence.

      • ubermiguel

        Perhaps “teenager” was not accurate, “young men” would have been better; although there is this one teenager who is an extremely valuable asset we need to watch out for.

        I’m a dad, I worry a lot about who my kids are hanging out with. If those kids are into drugs and alcohol so much they need rehab I would be extremely stressed. This is the same feeling I’m getting with Kassian. I hope he’s cleaned up, but I would keep him on an extra short leash.

  • Van isl Oiler

    Nobody else wants this guy. Why do we? I understand about limitations on the number of players teams are allowed to have under contract, but he was on waivers two weeks ago and 28 other teams took a pass. I really don’t like it that he’s part of the organization. Being an agitator is one thing, but this guy has not shown much integrity in his career. This trade does not impress me.

    • #97Train/McDavidCopperfield

      Lots of things factor into trades in the cap era. I suppose there were lots of teams after him but it has to work inside your payroll .the oilers passed him by on waivers and waited till they could rid themselves of Scrivens and his contract.

  • BubbaZanetti

    Not too concerned about Kassian. If he gets his act together and can contribute, great if not oh well.
    IMO, this is more about the GM sending a message to certain players.
    The days of soft play are over. Even if that means bringing in a head case like Kassian.
    I believe this is just the start.
    Especially after the Calgary game.
    Everyone said no trades before xmas, well xmas is over…and let the housecleaning begin.
    Bigger deals are coming.

  • MorningOwl

    So, is it fair to say that Kassian represents the “identity” or what the teams hopes to become the identity, of the Oilers? why does he get such acceptance by Oiler fans, who used to drone on and on about how dirty he was?

    I know Oiler fans here have often expressed joy over the cheap shots their team dishes out, while whining endlessly about anyone that touches an Oiler player.

  • Zarny

    Zach Kassian an Oiler; major bout of nausea at the thought.

    If you can get past the fact Kassian is a major league douchebag it’s a decent gamble by Chiarelli.

    So far, I’m not there yet.

  • 5 Cups

    If flames fans think they closer to a cup without McDavid let them. Remember one thing 97 is coming back and he is hands down a far better player than the entire line of Johnny, Monohan and hudler combined.

    Bottom line is right now both teams are not cup contenders. Lots of improvement needed on both teams.

  • Kaiser62

    I don’t get our fan base. Oilers get crushed physically for years and we demand they get stronger while maintaining skill. Oilers are always getting the cheap shots and taking it dry. I don’t want some tough guy to go fight a guy that ran a player. That’s what they want. We need someone with balls to run the other teams player if they want to go that route.

    Now looking at this from the other side

    He has substance abuse problems. Horrible to bring something like that into a locker room of rich young men, but this is kassians last chance to redeem himself or his career is done. I’m 90% sure we are getting this guy when life just smacked him in the face and woke him up.

    Either way how can anyone be so upset over this trade? Way to emotional people. We traded scrivens who has no future with this team and would have left as ufa next year. At least we got a reclamation project rather than nothing. If kassian sucks or relapses he’s out the door and his career is done. No harm done.

    I’m reserving judgement until I see what he does I’m not jumping on a love hate bandwagon when I have no idea what he’s capable of now. Lots of players have resurrected their careers when hit rock bottom.

  • #97Train/McDavidCopperfield

    After watching the past two games and yelling at the tv for someone to fight to spark the Oil. The kassian trade made so much sense to me. Big man who can play and most of all fight and protect the kids. Even if he only had 20 points a season but if he sticks up for the teammates the trade is well worth it.

    • #97Train/McDavidCopperfield

      Kassian is not a fighter. He can fight but the most fights he has ever had in a season is 5.
      He is however very physical and a real dick to play against and he can skate with players anywhere in the top 9.
      I say he is worth taking a chance on. I also think you would have seen some push back from Jujhar against Calgary if he was in the lineup. There has to be room for him in our bottom 6.