As you’d expect for a team in the league’s basement, the rumours are circling around the Edmonton Oilers. There’s been a lot of names floating about, and now the insiders are saying their piece.
With cap issues coming, everyone has been guessing as to which players will get moved to ease the pressure. Most of us, myself included (?), think that Nuge is the one to move, but both Elliotte Friedman and Bob McKenzie don’t seem to see it that way.
In this week’s 31 Thoughts, Friedman mentions Pat Maroon as being the one that could get shipped out.
“Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is the sexy name, but Pat Maroon is the most likely Oiler to be traded if things continue this way. Wonder if hometown St. Louis would be an option. The Blues are looking for scoring depth, and Maroon can give you exactly that.”
When you think about, the idea of moving Maroon over Nuge does make sense. RNH is a 24-year-old centre that is developing into one of the Oilers’ best two-way options, while Pat Maroon is 29-years-old and likely on the back nine of his career. With all things considered, which guy makes more sense to have around long term when there are finite dollars on the table?
Meanwhile, Bob McKenzie jumped on TSN 1260 with Dustin Nielsen to talk about Nuge and whether or not the Oilers would actually consider moving him.
“I can’t imagine that the Edmonton Oilers have any interest in parting company with him unless somebody comes with – everybody is tradable. If somebody came with a top-pairing defenseman, but who does that?”
I mean, sure… If the Oilers can realistically get a top pairing defenceman then moving Nuge probably makes sense but that’s not something that happens all that often. Like Bob said, most sane teams don’t move their top end guys unless they absolutely have to. Not to mention, isn’t that what the Hall trade was supposed to be?
“Who would call up the Oilers and say, ‘Hey, we’ve got a top-pairing defenseman here who’s going to be great for you and makes the same money and he’s the same age and let’s do a straight one-for-one swap.’ I suppose it’s possible, but I’m not holding my breath for it.”
Okay, Bob. We get it. People don’t really trade top pairing defencemen once they get them. But what about centremen that they’ve developed over the past seven years? The Oilers need to keep the good players they have, but what does that mean for Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. What’s going to happen to my beloved Nugey?
“If I were the Oilers, I’d have happy to have Ryan Nugent-Hopkins in the lineup more nights than not.”
Amen, Bob. Let the Year of Nuge continue. Draft good players, develop those players, and keep them forever. Makes sense, right? What say you, Nation?