‘I think they considered some subtractions from their team,’ but nothing was close for Oilers, says insider

Photo credit:Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
Zach Laing
1 month ago
As the dust continues to settle on the NHL’s trade deadline, we start to get an idea of what could’ve been for team.
For the Edmonton Oilers, the deadline was largely underwhelming, even with solid moves to acquire Adam Henrique, Sam Carrick, and Troy Stecher. Sportsnet’s Elliotte Freidman has reported that Oilers players had told general manager Ken Holland that they preferred to keep Cody Ceci around, something that, if true, would’ve seen Holland contradict himself.
But in another report from Friedman on Monday on the 32 Thoughts podcast, he said the Oilers were willing to subtract from their lineup, but that there wasn’t anything that came their way they felt comfortable enough to do.
When this year is over, I’m going to be very curious about what Edmonton did not do in terms of I think they had a few irons out there. Obviously, they were around on Tanev, but I think there were a couple others. I think they considered some subtractions from their team, ultimately decided not to do it. I know everyone is talking about Ceci, and I mentioned on the Spittin’ Chiclets pod last week that I think some players had indicated they preferred to have Ceci kept around, but I don’t think he was the only one. I think there were others they considered subtracting.
The thing is too, I heard that Calgary veterans, they made it pretty clear they didn’t want Markstrom traded anywhere. At the end of the day, I think occasionaly teams, organizations will listen to their players, but not always. I think if there were really things that could’ve happened, that these two teams could’ve done, they probably would’ve done them anyway. What it says to me is there just wasn’t anything put in their way they felt the need to do that for.
There isn’t a long list of players that the Oilers could’ve viably moved at the deadline. Ceci is the obvious one, as the club was exploring an upgrade over him, given that they offered him and their first-round pick to the Calgary Flames for Chris Tanev. Brett Kulak, as a cap casualty, is another defenceman who could’ve moved, given his $2.75-million cap hit.
Up front, Warren Foegele was a likely candidate to be moved, and Friedman had reported last week, too, that the Oilers “might have considered doing something” when it comes to Evander Kane. Conversations about the latter, however, could’ve been setting things up for a summer in which the Oilers will have to make some difficult decisions about their roster construction.

Zach Laing is the Nation Network’s news director and senior columnist. He can be followed on Twitter at @zjlaing, or reached by email at zach@thenationnetwork.com.

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