THINGS I THINK I THINK

nurse williams2

We have reached the point in spring where the regular season performance is settling in our brains, where trade talk has been exhausted once (and will be again). Two weeks from the draft lottery, we don’t know a lot for sure. We have opinions, and here are mine.

THINGS I THINK I THINK

  • The Oilers may trade out of the lottery position after their slotting is known. Ideally, Edmonton wins the lottery, but if they do, I think there is at least a chance the club deals down. No. 2 prospect Patrik Laine could be a better fit for Edmonton, and securing another draft pick—or a defenseman—might involve trading down. If the Oilers end up No. 3 or worse, trading down has some appeal.

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  • Peter Chiarelli’s ‘no-trade’ list is probably smaller than most of us would hope, or imagine. Connor McDavid is on it, suspect Leon Draisaitl and Darnell Nurse are as well. I have mentioned this in the last few days, some pushback but for me the this trio is likely part of Chiarelli’s heart of the order. This is your future, Oilers fans.
Peter Chiarelli on getting defensive help: “I am reasonably 
confident I’ll be able to address it in a meaningful way, yes. If you 
asking whether in a trade or not, that’s probably the most effective 
way.” Source
  • There are tons of Oilers fans running around saying ‘they won’t trade the Nuge’ but at some point you have to give in order to get. RNH is my favorite Oiler, full stop. I think he could be dealt this summer. Same applies for Jordan Eberle, although increasingly I wonder if his trade value (contract length, price point, value delivered) may not be enough to satisfy the ask from another team.
  • I don’t think Taylor Hall is being shopped, but if one of these big names (Subban, Karlsson) shakes loose, you never know. It is also possible that an NHL team loads up an offer (Sami Vatanen, Nick Ritchie, Frederik Andersen) in an effort to acquire him. Note: This is not my preference.
  • Although the possibility of trading down exists, I do not think Edmonton trades out. Why? The sheer number of picks dealt in 2014 and 2015 means adding selections (and using them) is imperative. Consider the picks who have been traded in the last two drafts:

2014

  • No. 33 (Ivan Barbashev) to the St. Louis Blues in the David Perron trade.
  • No. 63 (Dominec Turgeon) to the Los Angeles Kings in the Ben Scrivens trade.
  • No. 93 (Nick Magyar) to the Toronto Maple Leafs in the Mike Brown trade.
  • No. 123 (Matthew Berkovitz) to the Anaheim Ducks in the Viktor Fasth trade.
  • No. 137 (Tyler Bird) to the Columbus Blue Jackets in the Nikita Nikitin trade.

2015

  • No. 16 (Mathew Barzal) to the NY Islanders in the Griffin Reinhart trade.
  • No. 33 (Mitchell Stephens) to the NY Islanders in the Griffin Reinhart trade.
  • No. 57 (Jonas Siegenthaler) to the NY Rangers in the Cam Talbot trade.
  • No. 64 (Dennis Yan) to the Anaheim Ducks in the Viktor Fasth trade.
  • No. 79 (Sergey Zborovskiy) to the NY Rangers in the Cam Talbot trade.
  • No. 86 (Mike Robinson) to the San Jose Sharks as compensation for Todd McLellan.
  • No. 94 (Adam Musil) to the St. Louis Blues in the Magnus Paajarvi trade.
  • No. 107 (Christian Wolanin) traded to the Ottawa Senators in the Eric Gryba trade.
  • No. 184 (Adam Huska) to the NY Rangers in the Cam Talbot trade.

This list becomes a bit misleading, as Edmonton did acquire some picks who can help in the future. From the listed trades above, Edmonton procured picks and players (the No. 15 pick that became Mathew Barzal was part of the David Perron and Griffin Reinhart deal). I would list Zack Kassian, Zack Nagelvoort, Griffin Reinhart, Cam Talbot, Caleb Jones, Ziyat Paigin and other picks as part of the return from the names above.

That does not change the overall point: Edmonton must spend their draft picks instead of trading them this year, and must make them count in a big way.

PROJECTED 2016 OILERS PICKS

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  1. No. 2 overall
  2. No. 32 overall
  3. No. 62 overall
  4. No. 85 overall (Florida pick)
  5. No. 87 overall (Pittsburgh pick)
  6. No. 122 overall
  7. No. 148 overall (St. Louis pick)
  8. No. 152 overall
  9. No. 182 overall

Nurse photo by Mark Williams


    • Spydyr

      Good teams keep their latter round draft picks and develop their own players. The Oilers trade their late round draft picks for players other teams have developed and deemed tradeable.

      Missing the playoffs for a decade does take effort.Only one other team in the history of the NHL has been able to accomplish that feat.

      • Scratch

        S

        Still burns my ass we have to pay compensation for fired coaches and GM’s. Did this get resolved at the gm meetings recently ? I sure as hell would not comply to something that makes no sense, this has to be the only league in the world when you pay for someone who has been fired, wonder what Anaheim gave us for Eakins would pretty well sum up the stupidity of the rule….

        • a lg dubl dubl

          The Oilers went with that theory since Hall. Hasn’t worked out so well. This is the year to trade an early pick for better dmen on the backend, enough with waiting on prospects.

        • Butters

          It might just be me, but in hindsight, once the Oilers “decided” they were rebuilding, they should have stockpiled as many draft picks as they could. The more they had, the better chance some would pan out.

          Then, they might have been in a position to trade veterans for more picks when their AHL players were ready to take over. Rinse and repeat.

          This is why the GR trade hurts a bit. I would rather have Kyle Connor and possibly Oscar Kylington in the system. Although GR hasn’t been too bad as of late.

      • Hockey Buddha

        The team has to get to a level where it can do that. Once it has a solid NHL line up as a foundation, then it can draft and develop players. Until then, it needs to work to acquire a solid NHL line up through any means available to it. Giving up later round players for useful players now or further along in their development (Reinhart) is the cost of doing business when you’re working from a position of weakness.

        The vast majority of late round picks never play in the NHL, so moving a fourth round pick for a player like Maroon makes a ton of sense.

        • Spydyr

          It makes more sense when you win the trade like the Maroon one but trading away tomorrow for today unless you are the cusp of winning the Cup is how you manage to miss the playoffs for a decade.

          The argument that not many late round picks never play in the NHL is weak. The ones that do can be exceptional and put a team over the top for years. Just look at the Red Wings late round draft picks during their 25 years in a row in the playoffs.

          • RJ

            The Red Wings are a difficult example to match.

            I’ve read articles that Datsyuk could have just as easily washed out of the NHL, but he had solid support from older Russian players in Detroit, and their management actually believes and practices player development. The current Oiler model for player development is to trade picks for players developed elsewhere.

    • BornInAGretzkyJersey

      It would be nice to see a comparison of the prospects in Boston’s cupboards now versus Edmonton’s. Could provide insight into the direction ChiaPete intends to go with the team.

    • Glass

      If we draft no2 or no3 overall I think we should keep that player. We need RH scoring wingers badly, especially when Eberle is deemed the most tradeable of the 3 players from the old core.

      • Señor Frijoles

        It’s not done very often, but (assuming the Oilers win the lottery draft), they could go ahead and draft Matthews and still trade him later this summer or after he has a year of NHL experience and is even more valuable.

    • camdog

      From everything I have read the Oilers would really like to draft Laine and have him start the year in Edmonton. The roster next season (aka who gets moved) is very dependent on which pick the Oilers get.

    • 2centz

      I think Chiarelli will sign Lucic,trade Hall for one of Pietrangelo,Subban or Karlsson. Swing the deal with the Islanders for Hamonic,with either Nuge or Eberle going the other way. I could see Klefbom and Eberle going for Hamonic and Okposo, if he can be extended…
      I can also see him trading Pouliot plus,to get Vatanen,and all of a sudden the right side is disgustingly stacked,and Peter looks like a genius. I also wouldn’t be shocked to see Yakupov back,especially if they trade Eberle,if for anything to boost his value,and net a bigger return later,if need be.
      The results of these in theory trades,is one helluva team,that is gritty,and tough to at against. There would be some tinkering to do on the bottom six,but with the rest of the roster being completed,there is a lot of options to do so.
      I’ve taken a lot of heat for suggesting the above moves,but they are without a doubt the type of players Chiarelli covets,and none of them are that unrealistic. The Oilers will be scary in their new building,with their curse being left behind at Rexall.

        • Word to the Bird

          Is there really any point in having Lucic on the team anymore now that Maroon is on the team? Would Lucic even at 5 million be worth an extra 3.5 million over Maroon?

          The team has a solid offensive core IMO. If Nugent-Hopkins and Eberle are traded, that leaves a top 6 RW spot (can be filled through FA) and a 3C capable of filling into the 2C role in the event of injury. All of the energy should be put into upgrading the D.

        • 2centz

          Lucic is 27 not 37… Had 20goals and 244 shots this year,he is far from washed up. It’s not just his point totals that make him an asset,he is mean and nasty,and I would enjoy watching him punish little Johnny,Monahan,Bennett,and everyone on the Canucks. How long has it been since we had somebody that our biggest rivals feared,and could still put up 60pts? I hear what you’re saying,if those are the numbers he’s looking for. But he would make everyone on the team play bigger,and without fear. I for one,would love to see Lucic and Maroon as our top 2 LW’s. Add Kassian and Nurse into the mix,and we could finally watch the Oilers truly punish people,instead of getting punished. How many goals do you think Lucic could score riding shotgun with McDavid,and parking himself in front of the net?

    • madjam

      Lowetide – I believe we have no second round (32)pick this year , because we still owe for either Chia or McLellan for signing them . Can you clarify if we do or don’t .

    • madjam

      I do not see any viable reason we should trade our first pick even if it be number 5 . The return would have to be phenomenal and I have not seen one in over a decade . Any big trade will come from staff already on team , and maybe other rounds beyond our first pick in draft .

    • madjam

      One site says Oilers owe Boston a second round pick this year or next year – our option . I would think we will put it off till next year , where it should be higher than second in second round . Doing so maybe our second round pick may be in play for a trade where our first will probably not be . .

      • Butters

        I agree, don’t trade the pick that doesn’t have to be protected in the Expansion Draft for a player who likely will. You can trade that player after the expansion draft if you like.

    • Speed Junky

      Okay Ebs HATERs

      look at this stat

      Hall = .34 Goals per game

      Eberle = .34 Goals per game

      There Job is to SCore Goals !!!

      so riddle me this:

      97 and 14 = 60 goals total

      29 and 4 = ?? goals

      • Spydyr

        Last time I looked a hockey rink had goals at both ends and keeping a goal out of yours was just as important as scoring one in the other.

        Eberle is not very good at one of them.

    • Jay Arrr

      “Edmonton must spend their draft picks instead of trading them this year, and must make them count in a big way.”

      Why? Especially when this is mentioned in the same breath:

      “RNH is my favorite Oiler, full stop. I think he could be dealt this summer.”

      I don’t know how or why it is imperative to spend a high pick on a young player, and at the same time it is considered reasonable to trade away one of the league’s premier two way centres. If the Oilers draft in the top three that player is not being drafted to stock the cupboards, so to speak. He is in Edmonton in October. So what is the reasoning behind trading a vet (and a damned good one) for a defenseman and keeping the 18 year old, rather than doing the opposite?

      • camdog

        There are 16 teams currently in the playoffs. I’d say at least 14 have real aspirations of winning the Stanley Cup either this season and/or next season. Now riddle me this if a team thinks they have extra d-man and need goal scoring why would they want an 18 year old kid for their stud d-man when they can get a proven player?

        Generally non contending teams make moves for high end draft picks, teams ready to win now, generally want proven players. Half the teams the Oilers will be negotiating with would want the pick the other half would want a proven player. PC needs to explore all options and make the deal that is best for the team.

          • camdog

            Sure, but some would want a Hall or RnH even more. Contrary to the negativity on Eberle, there would be a few teams that would be heavy on him as well.
            It largely depends on what the opposition GM’s think their window is too win and how long they expect to be gainfully employed.

        • Jay Arrr

          A couple of things:

          1. I think the reasons for preferring the 18 year old (from perspective of the other side) are many. Salary cap, contract control, impending expansion draft, etc. Any of the top three picks this year should have big value to teams in need of scoring, that have defensemen to trade (ANA, NYI, OTT, CBJ, VAN, BUF, MON etc.).

          2. I think we need to lower expectations of the defenseman that Edmonton gets back, whether it is trading RNH or the first round pick. Edmonton is very unlikely to land Subban, Karlsson, or someone of that ilk, IMO.

          My primary position is that the Oilers are not better off trading away RNH rather than the first round pick if the return is similar, which I think it would be. (Keep in mind that RNH’s value has never been lower).

          I understand that LT is not advocating a trade involving RNH – he loves the guy. I just cant wrap my head around the idea that it is so, so important not to trade the first rounder outright. I’d rather trade the first round pick outright than trade away a vet.

          All of the above said, I firmly agree with the sentiment that trading away 2-7 round picks is not an optimal use of assets. We do need to stock the prospect cupboard after the first round.

    • Hockey123

      I don’t see the Oilers trading Laine if they got him, I do see the possibility Oilers trading the #1 pick for the #2 pick or a top pairing Dman.

      I don’t see the Oilers taking a D in the top 5. No Ekblad in this draft. Perhaps if they got #5 they would trade down for Dante Fabbro.

      We wait till April 30th

    • Word to the Bird

      Theres too many pieces moving in a Taylor Hall trade. If we come to this time next year and the team is in the same spot then we can revisit that position. For now though, he can stay barring a huge offer from another team (don’t count on it).

      I’ve said it many times here before that Laine is a better fit on the Oil than Matthews is. I’m of the belief that Eberle is good as gone already, and if Laine comes into the fold then he’s definitely gone.

      Nugent-Hopkins is a weird one for me. On one hand, he would be great on the team and there is still a spot on this team for him. But I think he would excel on teams like the Islanders, Minny and the Blues, teams that could all offer some great defensemen if they wanted. Not my first choice but when push comes to shove I won’t lose any sleep if Chiarelli trades him.

      Should be a fun offseason

    • RJ

      My personal No Trade list – McDavid. That’s it.

      There’s one superstar generational player on this team, so I’m ok with them trading any one else.

      That being said, they need to make sure that they get value for any players going out.

      You don’t trade Hall for Wideman, but if a perennial Norris candidate like Karlsson is available, then you definitely explore it.

      You don’t move Nuge for picks, but if a good offer comes in, Bon Voyage Nuge.

    • FISTO Siltanen

      For you basketball fans, when i think of Lucic I think of Jermaine O’Neill. Raptors traded his expiring contract to the Heat which subsequently freed up the cap space Heat used to sign Bosh away from Raptors.

      Let Lucic stay in LA. Let them tie up cap space with declining assets and eliminate one more team that could potentially offer sheet McDavid. Don’t tie your hands unless it is a reasonable contract. Which it won’t be