Welcome to the OilersNation UFA preview. Over the next 15 days, I’ll be profiling the top 30 players in this years UFA class, as listed by TSN. Contract information is from our friends at Puckpedia. Analytics provided by hockeyviz.com and naturalstattrick.com. Contract projections are done by evolving-hockey.com with the presumption contracts are signed between Aug. – Oct. 11. Full UFA list via puckpedia.
Today, we’re looking at the 30th ranked Carl Soderberg and the 29th ranked Thomas Greiss.
Soderberg, 34, just finished his seventh season in the NHL and his first, and so far only, year with the Arizona Coyotes. He joined the team last June after being traded by the Colorado Avalanche for Kevin Connauton and Colorado’s 3rd round pick in this year’s draft.
In his final year of a five year, $4.75-m AAV deal, Soderberg scored 17 goals and 35 points in 70 games this year scoring the slightest shade below at his career points-per-game average at .51. This year he played in a second-line role with the Coyotes with a four percent impact above average in the offensive zone and a nine percent below average impact in the defensive zone, as listed by hockeyviz.com.
He saw time on the powerplay scoring six goals and 11 points, while also playing 64 minutes on the penalty kill. At 5v5, Soderberg struggled to control play with a 46.35 CF% and an xGF% of 47.34, but posted a solid goals for rate of 55.36%.
Contract projection: One year, $1,897,000
Should the Oilers be interested? Soderberg is an interesting case and is likely a cost-effective bottom-six centre for the Oilers. His 45.3 FO% this past season isn’t very impressive, but he could be a decent third-line option for the Oilers. Despite his age, Soderberg is still showing his ability to be a productive offensive forward. His addition would be a big step towards creating a third scoring like.
Greiss, 34, just finished his fifth year with the New York Islanders and is coming off a three-year deal paying him an AAV of $3.33-million. He joined the organization in 2015 signing as a free agent. This last year, Greiss played in 31 games for the Islanders posting a 16-9-4 record.
He posted a solid .913 save percentage, just below his career average of .915, and he posted a 2.77 GSAA. That .913 is fifth among pending UFA goalies behind Anton Khudobin (.930), Robin Lehner (.920), Cam Talbot (.919), Jacob Markstrom (.918) and Corey Crawford (.917).
In the playoffs this year, Greiss found himself in four games going 2-2. He posted a .929 save percentage. He was in timeshare as a 1B to Semyon Varlamov’s 1A throughout the season, with the club clearly favouring the latter in the playoffs. . This past week, Greiss’ agent Ray Petkau said he would be heading to the market, Petkau told The Athletic’s Pierre LeBrun. As noted above, Greiss joined a congested group of UFA goaltenders this year.
Contract projection: Goaltender projections are unavailable.
Should the Oilers be interested? Yes. Greiss would be a very serviceable goaltender to split time with Mikko Koskinen next year. I can’t imagine the Oilers wanting to spend much on their backup goalie, but I could him getting a deal in the $2-$3-million range. If Greiss is signable in that contract range, the Oilers should be trying to bring Greiss to town.
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