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Photo Credit: Tom Kostiuk

Monday Mailbag – Chiarelli’s summer to-do list

Nation compatriots, it’s that time of the week where we all gather round cross-legged on the floor and learn a little something about hockey and about life. As always, I’ve passed along your Oilers-related questions (sometimes not) to our panel of wise men and waited for them send nuggets of brilliance back my way. It was a busy week in Oilers land so this edition of the mailbag could get spicy. If you have a question for the mailbag, you can email me at baggedmilk@oilersnation.com or hit me up on Twitter at @jsbmbaggedmilk. Enjoy.

Email sent from: “Grant, Rob” rgrant@thestar.ca Subject: gettychiarelli Date: 12 April, 2015 8:14:40 PM EDT Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli LOS ANGELES, CA – JUNE 25: General Manager of the Boston Bruins Peter Chiarelli attends the 2010 NHL Entry Draft at Staples Center on June 25, 2010 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

1) Clay asks – What were your first thought after finding out Peter Chiarelli would return for another year as President and GM? How much leash do you think he has?

Jason Gregor:

Not surprised, and I think his leash should be incredibly short. When Nicholson spoke of the plan, he mentioned drafting, and yes they have been better there, and players are trending. Ethan Bear, fifth rounder in 2015, has already played so that is a step in right direction, but that shouldn’t excuse losing big time trades. Why can’t they be good at scouting and make solid deals? I understand you won’t win every trade, but losing one as horrifically as Chiarelli and his scouts did on Reinhart is hard to overcome. If the Oilers are a middle of the road team by January, I don’t let Chiarelli make deals at the trade deadline. I would move him out before then.

Robin Brownlee:

I can’t say I was surprised. Not because Chiarelli did a terrific job, but because 2017-18 was a season in which virtually everyone not named Connor McDavid had a season to forget compared to 2016-17 and that makes evaluating one component — the GM — of the team difficult. That doesn’t give him a free pass, but it was a factor. Chiarelli should be on a short leash, but he shouldn’t be alone in that.

Matt Henderson:

My first thought was that Bob Nicholson is a charlatan and a grifter who is refusing to take responsibility and stewardship of the Oilers. Katz should fire him, hang up, and fire Chiarelli 30 seconds later.

Cam Lewis:

Not surprising. The Oilers value continuity right now given the fact they’ve burned through like 10 coaches and general managers in the past decade so, for better or worse, they’re sticking with this guy. I’m guessing the leash is pretty short. He inherited an obscene amount of assets and he’s pissed through a lot of them very quickly. It’s worrying to think what kind of nonsense he’ll pull when he’s desperate and I think (hope?) that ownership isn’t going to let us find out.

Christian Pagnani:

Unsurprised. They’d have plenty of reason to fire him but I didn’t think they’d do it. Very short. A bad start next season and he’s gone.

Chris the Intern:

I think if he screws up ANOTHER year then he’s definitely at risk at losing his job, so yes I think he has a shorter leash than normal. I would love to see someone else sitting in the GM chair right now but honestly I’m buying into the concept of you know, not changing the General Manager every two years?

Baggedmilk:

I was disappointed but not at all surprised. I think missing the playoffs in two of the three years you’ve been GM should have been enough to get the boot but that’s not what happened so we must move on. As for how much leash he has, I really couldn’t tell you. Like I said, I thought he did enough to get himself fired but the Oilers don’t seem to think that way. What can you do?

2) Max asks – Based on the season ending interviews from McLellan, Chiarelli, and Nicholson, what would be your best guess at what happens with the coaching staff?

Jason Gregor:

Same as I’ve been writing for the past three months. Jim Johnson and Ian Herbers are out, and I’d also not renew Jay Woodcroft contract. They will hire a new AHL coach as well.

Robin Brownlee:

I think Jim Johnson is definitely out and it’s more than likely at least two of the three assistants get sacked. It’ll be framed as McLellan’s call but my guess is it’ll come from Chiarelli or higher. Every indication is the Oilers will make a change in the AHL. I think the Oilers will make a pitch for Manny Viveiros from Swift Current. I think the offer to Viveiros, at the very least, will be for him to be the head man in Bakersfield but I wonder if they might look at him as an assistant here. Would he even want that?

Matt Henderson:

Jim Johnson will get sacrificed. Jay Woodcroft will skate because Oilers. My guess is this team will make those actually responsible for the issues to take as little accountability as possible.

Cam Lewis:

I would guess they keep Todd and some of the assistants get axed. Paul Coffey will probably step in, because Oilers. Meh.

Christian Pagnani:

Assistant coaching changes. It’s a weak move to me. Lacks meaningful change.

Chris the Intern:

I truly think Todd will stay to man the ship. The assistant coaches around him however I think are on their way out. Maybe not all of them, but something definitely needs to change on that bench.

Baggedmilk:

I wrote about it the other day, but I think Jim Johnson is going to get the boot. I’ve heard from a source that Johnson wasn’t overly popular with the players and that his personality wasn’t necessarily a fit with the group. Fair or not, that’s my bet.

3) Layne asks – What does Peter Chiarelli have to do in the offseason to ensure a year like this does not happen again?

Jason Gregor:

Stop losing downgrading in talent, and have a proper succession plan. Don’t have $6 million in free cap space hoping to use it at the trade deadline. Have a good enough roster so when the trade deadline comes your team is in the playoffs, not floundering in 25th place.

Robin Brownlee:

No more trades where you give up more talent than you get in the name of filling a positional deficit. Do not go into the season counting on Jesse Puljujarvi and Kailer Yamamoto as top six forwards or on Ethan Bear to be the RHD answer on the blueline for the power play.

Matt Henderson:

Gain some hockey sense, remove his head from his rectum, and go against every natural instinct he ever feels.

Cam Lewis:

Build a time machine.

Christian Pagnani:

Resign.

Chris the Intern:

Last offseason he made moves that left us “hoping” that things would work out and people would perform out of their minds like they did last year. I hope he makes some solid moves that won’t leave us counting on Lucic scoring 30 goals, or Ryan Strome having a career year with 70 points, when they’re not the type of players to do that.

Baggedmilk:

Don’t make any trades? Mostly because his track record of losing deals would probably make this team worse again. Let someone else do this job? I don’t know.

Feb 1, 2018; Edmonton, Alberta, CAN; Edmonton Oilers goaltender Al Montoya (35) makes a save on Colorado Avalanche forward Alex Kerfoot (13) during the second period at Rogers Place. Mandatory Credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

4) Carl asks – If Chiarelli wanted to get a new goalie to push Talbot, who do you think it could be? Is there a name you can think of that would fit the bill?

Jason Gregor:

I don’t buy the theory he needs to be pushed? Who pushed him last year when he started 70 games? He just needs to play better. If you want a better backup, in case he struggles, that is fine, but I’m not getting someone to “push” Talbot, because if they think he needs to be pushed, which I don’t, then he isn’t that motivated. The Oilers have a proven track record of making incorrect evaluations on player’s characters. Maybe the organization should just evaluate them on skill and production.

Robin Brownlee:

Chiarelli doesn’t need  goaltender to push Talbot. Talbot had a bad first half to the season, nothing more than that. Talbot’s career tells me he’s better than what we saw early.

Matt Henderson:

There are a few options out there as FAs but it’s early in spring and a lot may still be re-signed by their clubs. The backup has to be a decent bet to support Talbot but Edm cannot spend big money on their 2G. It’s a non-answer, I guess, but the team may need to gamble on Talbot again vs focusing on their backup.

Cam Lewis:

He didn’t need to be pushed in 2016-17 when he played 70 games. Why does he suddenly need to be pushed now? He had a bad year, as did most of the team. It’s fair to bet on a bounce back from Talbot as he’s never really been bad in his NHL career. That said, I can get on board with a better backup than Al Montoya, though the goalie market isn’t all too inspiring.

Christian Pagnani:

A younger backup that could challenge for the starters role or older guy with a good track record. Maybe Jaroslav Halak has something left or one of the Leafs’ stellar AHL goalies. Montoya is absolutely not that guy.

Chris the Intern:

I never really thought of the goalie coach as the issue behind the goalie problems in Edmonton… honestly I’ve always liked Schwartz and really wouldn’t consider getting rid of him until we see how Talbot performs this season.

Baggedmilk:

How sad is it that we’re talking about finding a backup that can push Talbot when Chiarelli went out and spent assets on acquiring Montoya when he could have had better goaltenders for free through the waiver wire. It’s maddening.

5) Tasha asks – The Oilers will likely pick in the 9-12 range at this year’s draft and I’m curious to know if there are any prospects that you could see them looking at with this pick? Should they try and trade the pick for a more immediate need?

Jason Gregor:

Evan Bouchard. He is a right shot D-man with great offensive potential. Also Bode Wilde, another right shot D who moves the puck well.

Trading the pick…Here are recent trades involving a pick in that range…

2011: Columbus trades #8, Jakub Voracek and a 3rd rounder to Philly for Jeff Carter.
2012: Carolina trades #8, Brian Dumoulin and Brandon Sutter for Jordan Staal.
2013: New Jersey trades #9 to Vancouver for Cory Schneider
2017: Arizona trades #7 and DeAngelo Esposito to Rangers for Antti Raanta and Derek Stepan.

New Jersey and Arizona won the deals by getting good goalies. Carolina and Columbus lost the deals. Right now I’m more confident in Oilers making a good pick than I am making them making a good trade. So I’d keep the pick.

Robin Brownlee:

If they are in that 9-12 range, they’ll have an opportunity to draft a right-shot D-man — there are five or six who could go in the first round. Ryan Merkley isn’t big, but he had 67 points with Guelph this season. As for trading the pick, you listen, but it’s tough to say without knowing if the Oilers believe they can get a player they are really hot for 9-12.

Matt Henderson:

I think Chiarelli will sacrifice the pick for immediate help BUT let’s see the lottery play out first.

Cam Lewis:

Hopefully they keep the pick. I mean, trading it could work, but Chiarelli doesn’t exactly win trades, so that’s probably off the table. The last thing we need is another Griffin Reinhart situation.

Christian Pagnani:

There are a lot of highly-skilled defenceman in that range. I’ve read Ty Smith, Quinton Hughes, and Evan Bouchard could all be there.

Chris the Intern:

I would LOVE to see us trade up for a higher pick but can we trust Chia to do that successfully without losing the trade? Likely not. The draft appears very deep this year so if we drafted like normal in the 9-12 slot I think we’d end up with a solid prospect, whoever that shall be.

Baggedmilk:

I wrote about the Draft Lottery odds last week and included some of the most common names that are ranked within that range. Personally, I’d be interested in right-shooting defenceman, Noah Dobson, that has some size (6’3″) and can also put the puck in the net. Last season he had 69 points (17G, 52A) in 67 games. Admittedly, I don’t know much about this year’s draft so this is just me guessing based on things that I’ve read. I don’t know if trading the pick is the right move with an expansion draft coming up.

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  • bcoil

    Ok folks I have a different spin on this and it involves the “Red wine Summit “boys .I think there is a better then 50/50 chance that the Rhienhart deal was directed by McTavish and Lowe as Peter C and just arrived and relied on them for direction.And Hall and Eberle yes i have suspicions that they where meddling in those moves also .. We have a old boys club made up of a man that has a drinking issue a man that has a anger management issue and another voice that has always thought he was the smartest man in the room who are all bending the owners ear and i am a long way from thinking they are NOT impacting Peters moves.

    • camdog

      Mactavish was never fired, Peter was transitioned into the job. Klefbom contract was negotiated by the Mactavish team. Many fans were scared that the deal would be off the table when Mactavish was fired, everybody was relieved that PC was able to get it done. Oiler fans at the time were scared when Mactavish was GM that he would trade a first round pick for Talbot. Everybody (on Oilersnation) was happy when PC got the deal done for secondary picks. As to Reinhart, the Mactavish team were all in on Oil Kings players, we all know that everybody from that Memorial Cup team was on their wish list. However said the trade itself was negotiated by PC. Mactavish wanted Reinhart, PC made it happen. Lowetide, a big fan of Reinhart, was extremely disappointed with the trade because the Oilers gave up way too much.

      In the first month or two during the transition of power Mact was PC’s right hand man. As PC and Keith Gretzky became familiar with the organisation they have taken over their respective roles within the organisation, however Mactavish is still there offering input as Vice President of Hockey Operations. If that isn’t enough now Mactavish and company want one of their guys in a coaching role…

      • Glencontrolurstik

        Pretty much bang on. I vividly remember PC saying that Mactavish “was really high on Reinhart” in the presser after the draft.
        One revealing You-Tube Video on PC, when he was with Boston, shows Neeley basically strong arming Chia to get the Seguin deal done.
        Chia makes the phone call, but it’s Neeley that is the decision maker.
        Chia gets the blame for basically what his boss is telling him to do.
        How many times does he say to Neeley, “Are you sure” Are you sure you want to do this?”
        Chis had a very perplexed look on his face when he made that call to Dallas.

    • Slipknot 8

      Chiarelli is the GM, he has final say. If he Approved the trade then the trades belong to him same as the NMC he gives out, you can’t have one without the others.
      Also, these trades go hand in hand with what trader Pete has done in the past.

  • Rama Lama

    I can just see it now at the upcoming 2018 draft…….”we have a trade to announce, Edmonton trades it’s first round draft pick, plus Connor McDavid, Ryan NUgent Hopkins, and Oscar Klefbom to New Jersey for Taylor Hall.

    I think it’s fair to say PC could have been fired for almost all of his trades!

  • Jaxon

    Offseason to-do list:
    1. Try to sign KHL goalie Pavel Francouz to be the backup and possibly takeover tandem duties with Talbot. If he plays well, maybe he can get steal some games from Talbot. If Talbot stinks it up, Francouz can possibly take over the starting position. If they both have decent years it gives Edmonton more leverage when negotiating Talbot’s next contract. Without a solid backup or tandem goalie, Talbot will rake Chiarelli over the coals on the next contract. Chiarelli, seemingly, does not have the stamina to say no to unreasonable contracts.

    2. If they win #1 in the lottery draft Dahlin (or even Svechnikov), or draft trade down to #2 and draft Svechnikov (but I think Dahlin is the right move, unless #2 offers you something substantial to draft ahead of you. At #2, you draft Svechnikov. At#3, you draft Svechnikov if #2 drafts Zadina. At #3, if Svechnikov is gone, you trade #3, #40, plus an asset (Caleb Jones?) to NYI for their #9 and #12. And then draft Veleno and Merkley. Or draft Veleno at #9, and trade #12 plus an asset (Caggiula?) for #28, & #29. Will Merkley fall far enough to draft him at #28 or #29? Also, Serron Noel could prove to be the big sleeper of this draft his primary points per 60 in Canadian Junior is the 3rd highest in the draft after Svechnikov and Zadina and he’s 6’5″!

    3. Sign Nurse. 4.167M x 6? Or 4.5M x 8? Or 3.5M x 3? Not sure but he needs to be signed and without breaking the bank.

    4. Sign Slepyshev. I still feel he has more to give. He had success in certain situations and then was very little in those situations again.

    5. Sign Strome. He shouldn’t cost much and should, in fact, take a bit of a haircut as 3C who never stepped up to a top 6 role. 2.75M x 3?

    6. Sign Benning. Shouldn’t cost much as he had a decent but not great year. 1.5M x 3?

    7. Extend one of Elis or Brossoit on a cheap deal.

    8. Sign Derek Ryan (rumours make it seem like a potential reality) to a cheap cover for 4C position.

    Chia’s job being in jeopardy is so worrying. If he feels he has to make a big change to keep his job he could make some incredibly stupid moves. He loses trades without intense pressure. I shudder to think what he might do with his job on the line. I wish they’d either fire him or secretly give him a guarantee that he’ll keep his job for another two years or more. Ugh.

      • crabman

        Most of the time the GM gets at least 1 coaching change. Unless he was told he lives and dies with his decision to keep McLellan as coach he probably thinks he has the option to fire McLellan if the Oilers start slow next year and still keep his job.

      • Jaxon

        What do you mean? Are you agreeing with me? Are you disagreeing? A goalie on an ELC? Nurse on abridge or equal to Klefbom long term? Strome at a discount form current cost? cheap Derek Ryan? Caggiula let go? Slepyshev cheap? Benning cheap?

    • Big Nuggets

      let’s not try to make an offensive 4th line when we don’t have any line that can actually defend. I would try to sign Brodziak, or someone similar, Jay Beagle perhaps, and make a fourth line that can compete against good NHLers in the defensive zone. Anf are capable PKers. With the rest of the cap space get a scoring winger, but not if it means signing a stupid long term deal with a washed up player. Plan to peak in 3 years, not next year. There are limited ways to improve for next season but if we don’t eff things up we could be in great position in a few more years.

  • Slipknot 8

    I think Chiarelli gets 20 games and if the Oilers are at 500 he gets axed.
    If Chiarelli wants to save his job he needs to trade Sekera – Russell and Lucic.
    He needs to use that money on getting Driasaitl help a bonified RW, Chiarelli needs to land a RHD badly and definite help on the F/O dot and the 4th line center postion, he has to sign his RFA’s. and get a legit back up who can play 25 games like Philipp Grubauer. (will cost a bit)
    Anything short and the Oiler will again piss away another year of McDavid.
    Regardless of where the Oilers pick the pick is being used to get something important. The return better have term to off set the ELC and cheap years the pick would have provided.

    • Oilman99

      Your dreaming if you think he can unload three guys with no trade contracts,it won’t happen. The only way to have a chance to trade Lucic is to eat half his salary,we have to hope he trains like hell and returns to some form of the player he used to be.

      • Slipknot 8

        Show me a GM that’s loyal and I’ll show you a loser…..
        Tell me, how did Phaneuf get traded with a NMC and 6 M contract?
        How about Datsyuk’s trade or Horton trade…
        Contracts move all the time bad or good.
        If Chiarelli has the balls to tell Lucic there’s no room on this team for him and if he comes back he’ll be in a 4th line role you don’t think he’ll wave his NMC to play somewhere else?

        • crabman

          @Slipknot 8,
          Ottawa are $1.75M of Phaneuf’s contract and also took on Gaborik’s $4.875M. the only way this deal works for Ottawa is if Gaborlik retires or goes on LTIR. Phaneuf also only had a MNTC so options were available without him needing to waive a full NMC.
          Datsyuk was leaving the NHL forever but and wouldn’t need to be paid by his team but his cap hit went against the cap to start the year and this helped Arizona get to the cap floor without actually paying salaries to the amount of the cap floor.
          The exact same thing with Horton except he is LTIR and will never play again. His contract goes against the cap to start the season but insurance pays for the player not the team owner and once the season starts his contract moves to the LTIR and opens up that cap space to be used by his team if they wish to use it.
          Each of those trades benefited the team taking on those contracts. Whether it was getting assets for taking the contract, saving money, or riding themselves of a bad contract themselves.
          Whether Lucic would waive his NMC or not I don’t know. But I do know he has all the power. If he thinks he will bounce back and play 2nd line why would he waive. And if he doesn’t bounce back as long as he doesn’t play as bad as the 2nd half of the season but can still be counted on for 35pts he would still be our best option in the 3LW spot. If Lucic doesn’t think he will bounce back he will just end up playing the same roll on another bad team. Because good teams aren’t going to trade for him or be able to afford him.

  • Spydyr

    1) Get a young goalie that could be a starter. Look at Pittsburgh .
    2) Try anything to move Lucic.
    3) Improve the bottom six drastically.
    4) Keep your draft picks. One second round pick every four years is a fire-able offense.
    4)Last but not least and most of us have been saying this for years. Get a top paring offensive defenceman to bump everyone down a spot. This will be next to impossible this summer as the Oilers have no expendable assets.

      • Glencontrolurstik

        Aren’t you the “whatever” that wanted Eberle & Hall gone too?
        I say that Talbot isn’t a bad goalie. He’ll be much, much better when the Oilers fix their defense and Special Teams.

          • crabman

            @Slipknot 8,
            Grubauer would be my choice if he cost nothing but money. And Chiarelli should still inquire what it would take to get him out of Washington. He could be the goalie of the future the Oilers are looking for. Even if Talbot bounces back I can’t see him signed any longer than another 2 years. Talbot will be 32 to start the season of a new contract. Grubauer would be 27 turning 28 in season. If the Oilers were to get him he could be a longterm solution.

    • crabman

      @Spydyr, It is easy to point out team needs but much harder to give solutions. Do you have any suggestions how the team could make improvements with the cap room the team has available as well as keeping their draft picks?

      1- Pittsburgh drafted their young goalies.
      2- even if you could get Lucic to waive his NMC you would need to retain salary and move an asset with him to even have a hope to move him.
      3- Free agency isn’t very deep this year in the cheap bottom 6 department. Not sure how much improvement can be made there. And to trade for bottom 6 guys will take assets, probably draft picks. Ideally we would have cheap ELC players filling those roles and if we trade away draft picks to fill those positions now we will continue to have this problem in years to come.
      4- I agree keep as many draft picks as you can but it will be hard to keep them all and upgrade the roster with good players.
      5- we always need a top pair offensive defencemen but have limited assets and cap room to get one.

      The team won’t be able to do all of these this year. And any major upgrades will more than likely involve trading away some picks.

  • Serious Gord

    1. The issue is much higher up the chain of command than chia.

    It’s katz. Either he signals the end of the old boys by firing Nicholson and hiring someone with a mandate to clean them all out. This team is “…just jerking off.”

    2. Same as #1. There will be some assistant firings (people katz couldn’t pick out of a line-up) and that’s it.

    3. Chia has to do very little and hope that the team rebounds. Perhaps he could pick up a few depth players on the cheap but that would require excellent pro scouting to succeed and we have seen almost no evidence of that.

    4. If Talbot’s a pro he will push himself – the team needs whatever resources it has available to be spent elsewhere. And BTW has brissoitt been sent to the gulag? Never hear about him becoming a nhl starting goalie anymore.

    5. Should be keeping the pick if this team hadn’t fallen off the rails. I think chia trades it in an attempt to get immediate help to save his own neck.

    And the traded pick will become a first ballot Hall if famer of course.

    • Slipknot 8

      Number 4.

      It’s were we differ. I think trader Pete goes balls out….He has no choice, he’s been backed into a corner by the BOTB and he ether makes the playoffs or is done. So, naturally to save his job, I think he goes all in, what choice does he have?
      This much we do know….
      The Oilers need a RHD – A winger for Driasaitl – A back up or close to starter goalie – A third line player – A 4th line player that can take F/O and PK.
      Plus he needs to sign RFA’s………Trader Pete is going to be busy.

      • Serious Gord

        What I would like to see chia do (see above) and what he will do are probably very different.

        It is entirely possible that he takes a ‘damn the torpedoes’ approach to save his job.

      • Glencontrolurstik

        Hold on, hold on… Why did basically this same team hold onto average 10th spot overall in the NHL to finish 8th in the 2017/18 season?
        And now, we want to blow it up, dismantle & start again.
        I believe that there was a few game stretch after the Calgary game to start this past season that we all STARTED to say, that “the Coach has lost the room”? We can all remember that time period. This is basically the same team that gave us 10th overall in the NHL. But for some reason, the coach had lost the room. And the PK as an example became the worst in NHL history for the majority of the season.
        The biggest part if this is the Coaching Staff. The talent is there already, things won’t change by changing players in this instance.

  • TKB2677

    Thank god Gregor and Brownlee contribute to this weekly mailbag article so there is actually some decent content to discuss.

    When asked what Chia needs to do to avoid another season like this. Instead of giving something to discuss, we get answers like:
    – Get hockey sense.
    – Pull his head out of his butt.
    – Resign.
    – Build a time machine.
    – Let someone else do the job.

    Wow, great answers!! I’m not a fan of Chia these days and I am pretty pissed off but come on, be better.

    • Hemmercules

      Agreed. We get it, everybody hates Chia and wants him fired, I see it enough in the comments over and over and over and over…………

      I only pay attention to Gregor and Brownlee in this weekly article most of the time anyway.

    • crabman

      I miss Lowtide and Willis in the mailbag too.
      My only issue with Gregor and Brownlee was their answer for the goalie to push Talbot question. If the question was asked better maybe we would get an answer but simply saying he doesn’t need to be pushed was a non answer to me. I would have preferred them say I don’t think he needs to be pushed but a backup I could/would like to see them get is…….
      Free agency doesn’t have many I would consider a big upgrade on Montoya and still be cost effective as a backup.
      I would look at Hutchinson from the Jets farm, or Carter Hutton if he is reasonably priced, but he had a good year and probably prices himself out of the job here.
      I would have liked to see the Oilers make a deal for Calvin Pickard with Vagas before Toronto did. Toronto got him for almost nothing. I wonder what it would take to get him out of Toronto now? He would be a good backup that could give us 20 starts and could hold the fort if Talbot got hurt.

  • percy

    Would have been nice to see Montoya start some games at the end, but that would make to much sense I guess. Montoya could be fine as our backup going into next season. Finding a RHD or a winger or both in the off season should be the focus. But who knows with PC. Scares me to think what he might do.

    • LAKID

      Talbot is the backup, he earned it! Montoya is not a #1 or #2 and he was going on waivers before Chia gave up a 4th for him, waiver wire is in his future……….and another nice addition by the Chia group.

      • Kneedroptalbot

        All they have to do is look at Vegas.
        Great goaltender, speed throughout the line up. Forwards that can take and give a pass well. D-men who zone exit really well.
        Delete: Chiarelli, Lucic, Kassian, Talbot. ASAP

  • JimmyV1965

    I don’t know how anyone can be comfortable with Talbot as the starter. He’s horribly inconsistent. In the three years he’s been here, he’s been awful to start the season twice. Who cares if he has a .920 save percentage to end the season if it’s .890 in November and you’re out of the playoffs. There’s about eight UFA goalies I would be happy to get as backup and I’m sure a couple of them will be cheap. Even Halak would be a good investment.

  • CalOil

    Jason and Brownlee should ask for a raise. The balance of this team adds very little value to a hockey discussion.
    Click bait and fire GM has lost its orginality months ago.

  • HardBoiledOil 1.0

    Noah Dobson , a RD, should be the guy they take at likely #9 if he’s still there . But not only do I not trust that this forward centric team will actually take a d-man, I also don’t trust that we can get a difference maker should we trade the pick. Why is that? #becausePeterChiarelli, #becauseOilers

  • LordRuggles

    What could ChiaPete get for 9oa? Compared to what the player chosen at 9oa could develop into? I think if he trades the pick, in two or three years time we will have surely lost the trade.

  • Consultant

    Chiarelli’s summer plan is to do as little player movement as possible in order to avoid the big screw up for the fourth summer in a row…
    For back-up goalie I thought we had an eye on Mikko Koskinen, 29 years old, 0.937 last year in the KHL. I would like them to try and get a goalie that is also a strong puck handler, not sure if Mikko is…?

    • Father of Arius

      Weren’t the Oilers one of the favorites to win the cup this season? They’re were picked as such by most of the “experts” and bookies.
      So the roster appeared to be fine and dandy until Todd got a hold of it.

      P.S. the Oilers already have a back-up goalie, his name is Cam.

    • percy

      I agree. Keep 1st rd unless it’s a home run. Up grade with a seasoned def and pay the bucks for a top line winger to play with Dri or McD. Never thought I would be saying that. I always figured #1 Dman was the answer, at this time I don’t think so.

  • Ginbaby

    DeAngelo Esposito is not the name of a professional hockey player. Anthony DeAngelo is.
    A 4th rd pick is not wasting an asset 95% of the time so spending that on an NHL backup isn’t a fatal error.

  • russ99a

    Chia has to make moves. We can’t come back with the same team and expect to be better. He needs to be proactive with the RFAs we don’t bring back, and find some good inexpensive players in FA after the first week or two when everyone is overpayed.

    And yes, he may need to make a deal, and fans may not like it, but we can’t be stagnant, we need more NHL level talent.

  • Moneyball

    Ah yes, let’s try to trade our way to a cup, that kind of thinking hasn’t happened since 2006. It’s just not possible with today’s cap. Chiarelli has done the only smart thing we can do to improve the team. Draft better and get better prospects on the farm. You will always downgrade talent in a trade to Edmonton. Who wants winter in may?

  • Snoop Scottie Dogg

    One thing that I have noticed about Talbot is that he is slow starter. I say let him start MOST of the preseason games so hopefully he is ready to go when the games matter.

  • Snoop Scottie Dogg

    My magic 8 ball told me that Chia will trade the pick for a third pairing Dman that will be expected to run the PP. Unfortunately, the Dman will have a terrible year and the draft pick will win the Calder. Rinse and re-pete.

  • Arfguy

    Keep the pick. Don’t trade the pick. I realize the urge to try and win now, but in the cap-era, I think the most success that can be had is building through the draft.

    As far as needs…any chance the Oilers can try and get Tim Heed from San Jose? Maybe for a 4th or 5th rounder, if the urge to get a right-shot defenceman is that high. Maybe look at the KHL? Vojtech Mozik seemed to have good numbers in the AHL a couple of years ago and from the few highlights I saw, he looked like he had a pretty good shot and he shoots right. I don’t know what his contract situation is with the KHL, though.

    Oilers have to get creative, IMO. Stop trading draft picks