It was hinted at yesterday that the Edmonton Oilers would be making an addition to training camp in the form of a professional tryout contract. Today, Igor Eronko reported that it would be KHL standout Anton Burdasov joining the team.
It's happening. PTO https://t.co/kIXRkf8xk0
— Igor Eronko (@IgorEronko) September 18, 2019
Eronko, a reliable KHL reporter based in Russia, said that the Oilers were one of three NHL teams interested in the right winger back in late-August. Since he’s already an established player in the KHL, Eronko suggested that Burdasov would be looking for an opportunity in which he could play top-six minutes. Given the lack of quality depth the Oilers have on the wings, that’s certainly a possibility in Edmonton.
Burdasov, who turned 28 in May, has bounced around the KHL over the course of his professional career, making stops with SKA St. Petersburg, Avangard Omsk, CSKA Moscow, and, most recently, with Salavat Yulaev Ufa. Last season with Salavat, Burdasov put up a team-leading 19 goals in 50 games. Second in goals on that team was former Oilers Teemu Hartikainen. The team leader in points was Linus Omark.
Burdasov went undrafted in the NHL and has spent his entire career in Russia. Back when he was draft-eligible, he was praised for his combination of a large, strong body and an incredible shot (as you’ll see in the video I added above).
He is a very interesting player as his scoring abilities are hard to contain when the ice opens up also because of his good size, that makes him hard to knock off the puck. His excellent wrist shot and reading abilities make him a threat every shift, but he has to work on his consistency and game maturity because he tends not to share the puck with his linemates. – Hockey’s Future
The Oilers badly need quality wingers, so there’s no harm in giving Burdasov a chance to crack the roster. If he shows well at camp, he’ll earn himself a contract. If not, it’s back off to Russia and nothing was lost. He has an interesting skill set, with a large, powerful frame and a wicked shot, so maybe he catches on and thrives alongside one of Edmonton’s quality play-making centres.
EDIT: The Oilers have about $1.5 million in cap room and 48 players under contract. They should be able to fit Burdasov in fairly easily.