Brandon Davidson has done his fair share of bouncing around the league over the past couple of years.
He was dealt at the 2017 trade deadline by the playoff-bound Oilers to the Canadiens for David Desharnais, a small-but-gritty centre who filled a need on the team. A few months into the 2017-18 season, the Habs placed Davidson on waivers and he was re-claimed by the Oilers. His return only lasted 23 games as he was dealt to the Islanders for a third-round pick.
Now Davidson is an unrestricted free agent for the first time in his career as the Islanders opted not to give him a qualifying offer. Could Davidson be back in Edmonton for his third kick at the can?
Islanders don't qualify Brandon Davidson. Time to bring Davy home for a third time? -bm— Oilersnation.com (@OilersNation) June 25, 2018
Who is Brandon Davidson?
Bradon Davidson is the great equalizer among Oilers fandom. There isn’t much that Oilers fans all agree on. Some are pessimistic, want Peter Chiarelli fired, want to complain about Taylor Hall, and believe the organization is wasting Connor McDavid. Some are optimistic, want Chiarelli to be praised, think Hall was a dressing room cancer, and believe the team is doing well no matter what.
What’s one thing that everyone seems to have in common? Time for Brandon Davidson. Check out the replies to ON’s tweet above. It’s flooded with an overwhelming number of responses about bringing Davidson home.
The Taber, Alberta native was originally drafted by the Oilers in the sixth round of the 2010 draft. He spent a good amount of time in the minors and finally earned a cup of coffee with the big club in 2014-15. He made the team full-time in 2015-16, logging 19:12 per game and putting up very strong underlying numbers. He plays a simple, gritty, effective game, and always works hard.
One thing about Davidson, though, is he’s had a difficult time staying healthy. His career-high in games at the NHL level is 51, which he accomplished in 2017-18 and 2015-16.
Does he fit on the Oilers?
Barring trades, Edmonton will roll into 2018-19 with Oscar Klefbom, Darnell Nurse, and Andrej Sekera on the left side of their blueline, Adam Larsson, Matt Benning, and likely an off-side Kris Russell on the right side. Perhaps first-round pick Evan Bouchard gets a cup of coffee at the NHL level, but there’s no way he’ll be up for more than nine games.
That gives Edmonton a need for a seventh defenceman. Obviously, the Oilers would love to bring in another right-handed shot as Larsson and Benning are the only two righty defencemen currently pencilled into their roster, but Davidson has played on both sides in his career.
Davidson is coming off a two-year deal worth $1,425,000 annually. The Islanders declined to qualify him, which would have cost them about $2,000,000 for the 2018-19 season. If Davidson could be had at a similar contract to the one he signed with the Oilers back in 2016, he would be a nice, cheap add to the team’s blueline. He’s familiar with the team, plays a versatile game, and it certainly doesn’t hurt that he’s a fan favourite.
BRANDON DAVIDSON’S CAREER SO FAR
|2012-13||Oklahoma City Barons||AHL||26||2||3||5||14||4||17||6||6||2|
|2013-14||Oklahoma City Barons||AHL||68||5||8||13||58||-5||3||1||1|
|2014-15||Oklahoma City Barons||AHL||55||4||6||10||43||10||10||1||1||2||12|
|2017-18||New York Islanders||NHL||15||1||1||2||4||-8||—||—||—||—||—|