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Should the Oilers be interested in Corey Perry?

The Anaheim Ducks officially bought out the remaining two years of franchise legend Corey Perry’s contract, allowing him to hit the free agent market for the first time in his career.

First and foremost, this is a great thing for the Edmonton Oilers. Perry was arguably the biggest pain in the ass to play against and we’ll never have to watch him wreak havoc in a Ducks uniform ever again. But beyond that, it opens up an interesting possibility. Could Perry be a fit with the Oilers?

In his prime, Perry was one of the best power forwards in the game. I don’t have to remind you of those games during the Decade of Darkness in which he and Ryan Getzlaf carved up the Oilers like they were a minor league team. Of course, the harsh, unforgiving realities of Father Time have slowed Perry down to the point where he’s a shell of his former self. The question now is whether the shell of Corey Perry is still good enough to make a team like the Oilers better.

Perry missed 51 games last season after undergoing surgery to repair an injury to his knee that he suffered in a pre-season game. He returned to a Ducks team in shambles, trudging through the final stretch of an ugly season mired by injuries to virtually every key player on the team. He would end up scoring just six goals and 10 points over 31 games.

I wouldn’t put too much stock into Perry’s numbers last season. Not only was he coming off major surgery that resulted in him missing significant time for the first time in his career, but he also joined a disastrous Ducks squad that finished dead last in the league in goals. Even then, his six goals in 31 games was good for a 15-goal pace over 82 games, which would have put him in a tie for fifth on the Oilers in goals last year.

In the previous two seasons before the knee injury, Perry scored 17 and 19 goals. Also, as we all certainly remember, he played a key role in helping the Ducks beat the Oilers in the second round of the playoffs in 2017. As I said earlier, it’s a shell of the former MVP-winner and 50-goal-scorer, but 2016-17 and 2017-18 Perry is a player that pretty much every team out there would love to have.

The free agent market this year isn’t exactly awe-inspiring. The Oilers obviously aren’t going to be in the market for a big name like Artemi Panarin or Matt Duchene and they’ll probably also going to be priced out of options like Michael Ferland and Ryan Dzingel. That leaves the Oilers with realistic options of Brett Connolly, who broke out for 22 goals with the Capitals last year or re-signing Alex Chiasson, who also had a breakout season last year.

Would you rather gamble on a resurgence from a veteran like Perry or gamble on Chiasson or Connolly’s breakout seasons being the new norm? If the Oilers can move on from Milan Lucic, I would take a flyer on Perry, if the price was right and the term wasn’t beyond two years. Perry, like Lucic, is a big and slow winger, but unlike Lucic, he has skill. He can provide value on the power play and give the Oilers some quality veteran depth on the wings.

I would also much rather have this on my side than be playing against it:

THE 2019 DRAFT PARTY

  • Where? At the Canadian Brewhouse (Lewis Estates – 1320 Webber Greens Dr NW)
  • When? Friday, June 21st, doors open at 4:30 pm
  • How much? $10 per ticket
  • What do you get? Free pizza card from the Brewhouse, $10 Oodle Noodle promo card, Nation stickers, chance to win a signed RNH jersey provided by ATB Financial and draw prizes.
  • Where can I buy? Get your tickets here before they sell out!
  • Why? Because we love to party

Tickets are available here and will be on sale straight through until the date of the party. Thanks so much for the support and we look forward to seeing you there.