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Photo Credit: © Sergei Belski | 2017 Sep 18

Edmonton Oilers sign Keegan Lowe to two-year contract extension

According to the Twittersphere, the Edmonton Oilers have signed depth defenceman, Keegan Lowe, to a two-year (two-way) contract extension with a $675,000 AAV at the NHL level.

Lowe, a third-round pick in 2011 (73rd overall), has a fresh contract with his name on it that will keep him with the Oilers franchise for the next two years. Lowe, formerly in the Hurricanes and Canadiens organization, has bounced around a fair bit in his not-so-young career before landing with the Oilers last summer, a move that raised some eyebrows based on his last name. Since 2013-14, Lowe has played with three different AHL teams but has been unable to make the jump to the NHL level outside of a cup of coffee with the Hurricanes in 2014-15 and last season with the Oilers. Signed to a one-year deal with the Oilers last summer, Lowe played in 52 games with the Bakersfield Condors last season, registering two goals and 12 assists for 14 points.

Last summer, Lowe achieved Group 6 free agent status as a 25-year-old as he had played more than three professional seasons but with less than 80 of those games being played in NHL. That CBA quirk allowed him to sign a show-me deal with the Oilers on July 1st, 2017, which gave him a chance to make a case for further employment, something he was granted with this new two-year deal in his pocket. Lowe will now remain with the franchise that made his father a Stanley Cup champion several times over, which will certainly cause some debate in the comments section.

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As for the man himself, Keegan Lowe made his way back into the NHL last year with a pair of games with the Oilers, but will most likely serve as an AHL fixture and emergency depth option if things go off the rails. Looking at the depth chart right now, Lowe has a decent chance of competing for the 7th or 8th spot on the depth chart with guys like Eric Gryba, Ryan Stanton, and Ethan Bear. While we don’t know what kind of offers Lowe would have received elsewhere, this extension affords him the chance to continue playing for an organization with close ties to his family and the potential for a call up in case of injuries. At this stage in his career, that opportunity is likely enough to give him some satisfaction.

THE WRAP…

While I know a bunch of people are going to be annoyed about this signing because it’s Kevin Lowe’s son, I don’t see much harm in what amounts to a depth move for the Oilers. Lowe is an experienced AHL defenceman and the Condors need some of those if they hope to get back into the playoffs next year. From what I’ve read, Lowe also has some excellent leadership qualities and those are important traits to have when you’re surrounded by NHL prospects that are hoping to make the leap to the next level.

Sure, we can talk about Kevin Lowe getting his son a job or something salty like that, but I’d rather look at this as a depth move that adds another experienced d-man to a Condors team that needs more of them. If he plays well enough to earn a call-up with the Oilers then that’s great, if not, the Condors have a hard-nosed player on the farm that can play reliable minutes and help that team get itself back into the playoffs. Frankly, it would be nice for this franchise to see some kind of success at any professional level and I’m hoping Lowe is part of the solution for the Condors.

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What do you guys think?

LOWE’S PROFESSIONAL CAREER SO FAR

Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM +/-
2013-14 Charlotte Checkers AHL 63 2 10 12 86 -7
2014-15 Charlotte Checkers AHL 58 2 9 11 106 -16
2014-15 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 2 0 0 0 10 -2
2015-16 Charlotte Checkers AHL 67 3 11 14 75 -4
2016-17 Charlotte Checkers AHL 49 3 9 12 53 4
2016-17 St. John’s IceCaps AHL 22 3 3 6 21 8
2017-18 Bakersfield Condors AHL 52 2 12 14 65 14
2017-18 Edmonton Oilers NHL 2 0 0 0 0 -1
NHL Totals 4 0 0 0 10

Source: Jim Matheson, Verified Twitter Account, 6/3/2018 – 9:24 am MST


  • Heschultzhescores

    So we’re signing guys to improve the Condors? Isn’t the objective to sign guys that will help the Oilers at some point? Geez, we are doomed with this thinking and leadership, if you want to call it that.

    • crabman

      @Heschultzhescores,

      The two aren’t mutually exclusive. Lowe will be a young veteran on the Condors and a possible injury call up. As long as they don’t sign too many players of his type and block playing time for more promising prospects there is nothing wrong with this signing. What are you expecting at this time of year? He can’t sign any UFAs until July 1st and I doubt there will be much if any trades by any team until the week of the draft.
      This is just a bit of house keeping in June.

      • The Ghost of Alex Plante

        The problem is they already have players like Lowe under contract for Bakersfield next year. Gryba and Stanton both already fill the role that Lowe does. Why bring him back again if you already have the players to fill his role?

        The Oilers lost a viable prospect because they couldn’t get him playing time last year. Playing time that was going to guys like Lowe, Simpson, Gryba and Stanton should be going to young guys so they can develop. That’s why the AHL is called a development league so, you know, guys can actually develop.

        The Oilers already have Bear, Jones, Mantha and Lagesson as young D-men on Bakersfield next year who all need as much playing time as they can get. Now with this signing the Condors already have 7 defensman under contract for next year, so which young defensman is going to lose his minutes so Lowe can add some veteran leadership to a defense group that already had veteran leadership in Gryba and Stanton?

        • crabman

          @The Ghost of Alex Plant,

          Martha is probably never playing again after losing sight in one of his eyes, so my guess is he will be the young defenceman to lose playing time.
          until a 7th defenceman is signed 1 of the AHL veterans may fill that role, I hope that usn’t the case.
          I could see Gryba being lent out to another team, just like they did Fayne last year, if they need to open up a spot for the younger defencemen.
          Injuries to the Oilers will have Condors being called up at times as well as injuries will happen in Bakersfield. At this point the Condors don’t have too many defencemen. If they sign Simpson and another AHL veteran then it starts getting crowded and development may start to be effected. But considering they hired Woodcraft as coach and all the verbal around the move is how he is there to develope the young players with the same system as the Oilers so they are ready for the jump to the NHL I am more confident that he would sit a veteran of he had to get a young prospect more ice time.

          • The Ghost of Alex Plante

            Did not know about Mantha, that really sucks. But regardless of that, resigning Lowe wasn’t really necessary. He counts as an AHL veteran, so he will take up one of the 5 veteran spots in the line-up. If you’re playing him, Stanton and Gryba, that’s 3 of your 5 spots taken up already. Signing Lowe signals that they plan on dressing the max number of veterans every game. I get that we might not have the depth required to only play 2 or 3 vets every night, but I think you’d be better off having some more veteran offensive talent in the lineup as opposed to 3 veteran defensman who all play the same style of game.

            At then end of the day I really don’t think this signing will doom the Oilers or anything, I just think there were better options available to them. The optics are poor given his last name and to me he’s kind of irrelevant as long as Stanton and Gryba are around.

          • crabman

            @The Ghost of Alex Plante,

            I’m happy I could teach you something, Mantha’s injury/condition which does indeed suck for the man.
            And thank you for teaching me something. I had no idea there was any such veteran player rule in the AHL and you have me researching what exactly the rule is and how it will effect the Oilers next year.
            I come here to read articles, and have discussion in the comment section and love when someone can add to my hockey knowledge. Thanks again

          • crabman
          • crabman

            @The Ghost of Alex Plante,

            after reviewing the current 50 man NHL list and Condor roster for next year I’m not too worried about complying with the AHL’s development rule. They currently have 5 players, 3 D and 2 F, that qualify as veterans. But none of them played in every game last year and intact Gryba only played in 24 AHL game. albeit he spent 20+ games in the NHL but I would expect the veteran defencemen to each spend some time in the press box next year and as I said in another comment, Gryba could get sent out on loan to another team like Fayne last year if more room/icetime needs to be made for actual prospects. But as it stands today going by the depth chart over at lowtide the AHL D depth chart looks like this at the moment;

            Lowe Bear
            Stanton Gryba
            Jones
            Legesson

            I left Mantha off based on his futures uncertainty but as it stands the Condors only have 6 defencemen with NHL contracts next year as of right now. I wouldn’t be surprised if Chiarelli signed a couple defencemen from a combination of, college, CHL graduates, or a late round overage draft pick just to round out the farm.

    • Jordan McNugent-Hallkins

      Nothing wrong with improving Bakersfield, as long as it’s not hamstringing the Oilers. Having a playoff-calibre AHL team would go a long way to instilling a winning culture in the young guys, plus it would give them more games to play in the spring, which means more ice time.

      • BrandieBear

        This is why the oilers have been so terrible for years and it’s because of thinking like this. If we do not have a good AHL team our young talent doesn’t have a positive place to grow and develop. Starting young players off in a winning enviorment breeds a winning culture from the bottom up. It also allows the young players the ability to make mistakes and learn from a veteran presence. You’re a fool if you think having a good AHL team is a bad thing

  • The Chad

    I agree – sounds like he had a pretty good year in the AHL. Who cares what his last name is. If he like visibly like could not play at that level then yeah obviously there is a problem. But depth guy/ahl vet – i see no issue

  • OilerForLife

    He’s just another hockey player. A fringe utility player who can play well enough as a backup whenever injury trouble arises.

    PS. I’m really tired of this OBC BS fantasyland talk everytime things go wrong.

  • OTOF2

    Nepotism at its finest. The optics are terrible. This team is a perpetual joke. Does Howson have any kids? Lace ‘em up. Or maybe all of his family members work in the front office to keep it better hid.

    • OilerForLife

      So, you want the Oilers to fire everybody and start over. What do you want to happen? I don’t think Lowe is being played over his head in this organization because of his dad – get real.

        • OilerForLife

          What was your point of the nepotism post?
          If Kevin actually has say in his sons signing nepotism, would mean something. I would be interested in your reason for the post? Do you think it will harm or help the Oilers?

          • MessyEH!

            Harm. It is a poor use of the spots on the 50 man list. Better playersveould be passing through waivers in Sept. Can’t claim them if you don’t have room on the list.

          • crabman

            @MessyEH!,

            As of this signing the Oilers only have 40 players under contract with 3 of them slide contracts back to junior, so essentially 37 players. They have 4 NHL RFAs to sign leaving 9 spots left on the 50 man roster. They will probably be signing a 7th D, top6 winger, and 2 bottom of the roster forwards. that still leaves 5 spots on the 50 man roster. I would expect 2-3 more 2way deals to play in the AHL signings leaving 2-3 open spots on the 50 man roster for trades and waiver pickups. This signing wasn’t hurting the 50 man roster. If it wasn’t Lowe it would have gone to a similar player being signed July 1.

  • Serious Gord

    Simple question: does anyone think he would be signed for two years at this kind of money at this time of year when there are far higher priorities if he wasn’t Kevin Lowe’s son?

    The Justin Trudeau of hockey.

    • LAKID

      And the Beat down goes on. This was a bad signing unless you think he makes the team and they could flip him at the trade deadline. #1 if Lowe makes the Oilers we don’t make the playoffs. #2 this is another sign Chia has no control of the decisions being made or he is just stupid plain and simple.

    • OilerForLife

      Actually it’s very simple, at this time of year they are working on signing Nurse, Benning, or a new player to one of the vacant positions.

      So you want the to advise you how the negotiations are going. Sorry you’ll have to wait for the announcement like everybody else.

          • OriginalPouzar

            It seems more undeniable that you have done no research in to the situation and know nothing about last year’s performance.

            Keegan Lowe has a great year in Bakersfield last year. In particular, from all accounts, he was a great mentor to the kids and a fantastic leader – this was essentially what he was brought in for – an AHL veteran to help the young prospects. He happened to be the team’s best d-man through the year as well – a bonus.

            He earned this contract on merit. You don’t think if this contract was given out because of his father it woudln’t have been a one-way contract so he’d made some actual money while in the minors, where he’ll spend the vast majority of the year?

            Keegan Lowe will once again be 11th/12th on the depth chart, will play night in and night out in Bakersfield and being a veteran AHL mentor to the real prospects and provide cover just in case injuries do pile up in the NHL and the team is forced to call him up – cover to allow the likes of Lagesson and Jones to remain developing the proper league.

    • crabman

      @Serious Gord,

      After a brief look at cap friendly, some comparisons;

      Ottawa – PATRICK SIELOFF
      Washington – TYLER LEWINGTON
      Colorado – MARK ALT
      San Jose – RADIM SIMEK
      Columbus- DEAN KUKAN

      All signed this offseason to 2 year 2way deals with a large amount of guaranteed money to play in the minors. Kukan is the most NHL battle tested with a career 18 NHL games.
      There were many more similar 1 year deals I didn’t want to include. As well as similar 2 year deals signed last year and similar 1 year deals signed last year that have ended with players waiting for a new deal, many to be signed in the next couple of weeks.
      There is nothing out of the ordinary about a player like Lowe getting signed to this type of deal.
      If his last name wasn’t Lowe no one would care.

  • Sammy27

    AHL veteran leadership is ok, I would of preferred a veteran righty to provide leadership on the farm, 675k -2 way is fine, but the term is too long. He’s not a 7/8 NHL guy- sorry.

  • OTOF2

    So Lowe’s kid gets signed to a new deal before Bennings. I’m sure this will be the main discussion at the next Red Wine Summit. “Should competing nepotism include a tie breaker weighting of on ice performance or be solely based on dads hierarchy in the company?” Tough decision.

  • ComeAtMeDog

    Kevin “ well son your just not good enough for the show “
    Keegan “ but dad “
    Kevin “ let me talk to katz”
    Katz “ how about 2 years guarantee 450,000 for your son ?
    Kevin “ cheers buddy , what kinda wine u like darryl ?
    Nepotism 100%

    Hes taking up playing time and he aint moving the needle at all .

    Garbage signing

  • crabman

    The negativity surrounding such a minor deal is astonishing.

    McCurdy has a good article over at Edmonton Journal, the cult of hockey. It talks about the optics and then the merit of the signing. If you look at the signing with an open mind there is nothing nefarious about it.
    here is a link.
    https://edmontonjournal-com.cdn.ampproject.org/v/edmontonjournal.com/sports/hockey/nhl/cult-of-hockey/keegan-lowe-signs-two-year-contract-extension-with-edmonton-oilers/amp?amp_js_v=a1&amp_gsa=1&usqp=mq331AQCCAE%3D#amp_tf=From%20%251%24s&ampshare=http%3A%2F%2Fedmontonjournal.com%2Fsports%2Fhockey%2Fnhl%2Fcult-of-hockey%2Fkeegan-lowe-signs-two-year-contract-extension-with-edmonton-oilers

  • Corbs

    I am astonished at how stupid most of you commenters are. You complain that he only got a contract because of his name but the only reason you don’t like him is because of his name. He has zero effect on the cap if he’s in the AHL and if he’s a 7th D up here then it’s a good contract. Who cares what his name is. He’s a good depth guy. And if he’s playing in the AHL for the love of God, who cares which way he shoots.

    The team makes it embarrassing enough to be a fan…do you have to make it worse by being so dumb?

    • OTOF2

      Perhaps you have been exposed to the stupidity of this management for so long you don’t see it any more. It is called nepotism. Look it up. You can’t tell me there isn’t tons of other d-man who could fill this spot and are not the son of management. You can accept it all you want, but I won’t stoop that Lowe.

        • OTOF2

          “No nepotism here” ? And you calling other people a moron? Regardless of whether you think his play is good or not this is nepotism. Try a dictionary and you will see. I learnt the definition in grade 5. Maybe you never made it? Not sure.

      • crabman

        @OTOF2,

        Sure there are plenty of players that could fill that role. Every team has a young AHL vet/tweener they could sign. But are they available and any better than Lowe to fill the same job?He was signed last year and filled the role he was signed for including a 2 game cup of coffee at the end of the season where he didn’t look out of place as a depth defenceman. If your only reason to not like the move is his last name fine you are entitled to you opinion. But hating on a guy because of his name seems a little foolish to me. just my opinion, which I am also entitled to.

        • OTOF2

          Fair enough. I actually have nothing against Keegan. It’s his father that I have no respect for. If Keegan is worthy to cut it on his own at this level he should try to sign with any team other than the one that employs his father.

          • OilerForLife

            Who wouldn’t want to play for the Oilers.
            He initially asked the Oilers not to draft him. He tried to avoid playing here, because somebody might not like his dad. Poor kid! Just like everybody else, he has to earn his way into the NHL.

          • Cowbell_Feva

            Poor kid?
            Seriously?? No the kid just signed a deal for what most people would consider ridiculous money.

            What bugs me most, is that he was horrible in the WHL. Yes, horrible. Every time I watched him I thought, well, he’s there because of his dad. He was the worst player on his Midget AAA team here in Edmonton. But he made the WHL!!
            For him to be brought back here after Montreal and Carolina had no use for him does look bad. Regardless, his dad is still a part of the organization. He was way over his head in his only 2 NHL games. To my mind he is a fringe AHL player that was passed along because of who his dad was. Poor kid??
            Nope. Rich kid that has had connections made for him his whole life by his dad. Don’t feel bad for him for a second.

      • Corbs

        I don’t care if it’s nepotism. He’s capable of doing the job. Find me a place in the real world where nepotism doesn’t exist? Why not sign the guy you know over someone you don’t know? It’s called smart business. Now if he is thrust into a #1 dman role in the NHL you should complain. They signed him to do a job he can do. No issues there.

  • camdog

    I’m not a fan of Kevin Lowe being a member of the Oilers management team. That said Keegan based on performance deserved another contract with the organisation. On a poor AHL roster he brought it every night and was one of their better players.

  • Mike Modano's Dog

    Last year they signed Keegan Lowe and let Jordan Oesterle go – who is a massive find for the Chicago Blackhawks. So they let an actual NHL player go to sign Kevin Lowe’s AHL son. This year it’s likely between Keegan Lowe again and Dillon Simpson. I’d rather have Dillon Simpson and – what a surprise, they sign Kevin Lowe’s son, again. I am so sick of the nepotism in this organization and having Kevin Lowe be a part of it, at all!

      • Big Nuggets

        He is indeed. I just felt Simpson was better than Lowe. Though I could be wrong, I didn’t watch much Bakersfield last year. Lowe had a better plus/minus apparently. Which sounds good, but I don’t want to draw any conclusions from that until I know their zone starts and quality of competition.

        My main cause for concern is where can we stick with Stanton and Gryba, and does this count on the 50 man roster?

        Also just in general what will the Bakersfield depth chart look like next year on defense? Are either of Lagesson or Berglund coming over from Sweden this season?

    • camdog

      Last season Lowe was better. Simpson didn’t step up. Keegan’s the type of guy you want on your AHL team. He plays the game like his old man, just not as good. He’ll battle to help the younger guys rather than trying to pad his numbers. As to Osterle, big fan, I would have had him on the team instead of Auvitu.

  • Oiler GM

    I’m legitimately embarrassed to be an Oilers fan. Nepotism. Even if he is good enough to be an AHLer, it looks terrible on the Oilers signing him. This organization is a Joke.