The beauty of this spring for Oilers fans came in the playoff experience. It meant we didn’t have to spend three months talking trades and draft, but it’s been 20 days since G7 versus Anaheim and time’s a wasting. Today George McPhee said his Vegas Golden Knights plan on announcing trades, possibly right after the NHL combine (Source: TSN).
McPhee talked about draft picks, adding to the seven already allotted to the expansion club. The Oilers don’t have their own second-round draft pick but have an extra third this year:
OILERS 2017 DRAFT PICKS
- First Round: No. 22 overall
- Third Round: No. 82 overall (FROM ST. LOUIS—this is payment for Nail Yakupov)
- Third Round: No. 84 overall
- Fourth Round: No. 115 overall
- Fifth Round: No. 126 overall (FROM Vancouver—this is payment for Phil Larsen)
- Fifth Round: No. 146 overall
- Sixth Round: No. 177 overall
- Seventh Round: No. 208 overall
If the Golden Knights are going to announce trades next week, it’s likely that picks will be involved and we may see the return of a sports phrase that appeared hundreds of times in the 1970s and 1980s: “future considerations”. I don’t see the Oilers being a large player in terms of 2017 draft picks, but 2018 selections might be in play. There’s a (slight) chance we could see Edmonton trade a young prospect to LV before the expansion draft for a pick, while an underlying part of that deal could be an agreed upon expansion player who would be chosen during the formal portion of the draft.
We’ve been down this road so often the names are known by rote. If we ask ourselves what Vegas might be interested in (aside from draft picks), I think the answers are three-fold:
- Useful roster players for next season
- Useful roster players for next season and beyond
- Young players who are not vulnerable to waivers
Useful roster players might include overpriced veterans like Benoit Pouliot and Mark Fayne, and that acquisition might be accompanied by a sweetener (draft pick or prospect). It’s also possible the Golden Knights will ask after a player who is not available via the expansion draft (Anton Slepyshev, Ziyat Paigin, et cetera), and that would qualify under the third category.
EDMONTON’S SHOPPING LIST
One other item we should be on the lookout for is Vegas drafting a player and flipping him to Edmonton. The Florida Panthers, as an example, have three righty defensemen (Jason Demers, Alex Petrovic, Mark Pysyk) and all three would be of some interest to the Oilers. Although the timeline for such a trade would have to wait for Florida’s final list (the Panthers are no doubt trying to make a deal to get value now) it does show how many options are available in this expansion window.
George McPhee’s pick from the Oilers? I still think it’ll be Griffin Reinhart, but other options are out there, including Laurent Brossoit. I wonder if it might benefit Peter Chiarelli to make a trade for another goalie with similar resume. Idea being even if one goalie goes, Edmonton is still covered. If no goalie is chosen, the Oilers have a trade chip to send away over the rest of the summer.
Note: Pierre Lebrun of TSN interviewed Peter Chiarelli today, and he talked about several subjects including the expansion draft, Kris Russell and discussions with Vegas. The interview is here.