New Oilers Trade Targets: The Forwards
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9 months ago
Our NHL Insider Frank Seravalli has dropped his latest targets list over at Daily Faceoff and there are more than 15 new names appearing on that list. As Ken Holland continues to sit idle, waiting to make a move ahead of the March 3rd trade deadline, it’s worth noting who these new names are and if any of them could be of interest to the Edmonton Oilers.
I’ll have another piece coming soon that will focus more on the defensemen that are on this list. While getting a defenseman should be an important part of the club’s deadline plans, the Oilers will likely be looking for an upgrade to some extent on the blueline but I fully expect them to try and upgrade their forward group as well.
Frank has talked a lot about the idea of the Oilers being interested in Blackhawks superstar Patrick Kane. The reason the Oilers like the idea of adding a player as offensively gifted as Kane is because they feel it would allow them to run McDavid and Draisaitl together on the top line and have a second line that could still consistently outscore the opposition. Putting Patrick Kane on a line with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and either Zach Hyman or Evander Kane would give the Oilers a really solid one-two punch in their top six.
The latest on Kane however is that he will apparently only present one team to the Blackhawks as a potential destination, which is his right since he has a full no-trade clause, and there is word that the New York Rangers have emerged as a potential suitor. A few weeks ago, when the Rangers acquired Vladimir Tarasenko, Kane came out and said he was disappointed because that was a spot he viewed as a potential landing spot. If the reports are true and the Rangers are indeed interested, then that seems like a move that could happen and some reports suggest that it could happen soon.
With Kane off the board, there really aren’t any other impactful players on the market that could slide into the Oilers’ top six. Holland may be forced to just find ways to improve the Oilers’ bottom six instead. That would ultimately be very disappointing, but it may become reality. More and more options are being scratched off the board and we are just eight days away from the deadline.
Blackhawks forward Sam Lafferty is a player they could be interested in. He would help on the penalty kill and would make them tougher to play against in their bottom six. The cost is apparently high, but I think I would be willing to part with a second-round pick for Lafferty simply because he’s under contract for next season at a reasonable cap hit.
He does only have ten goals on the season, with four of them coming short-handed, and he’s shooting 12%. He likely won’t ever be a 20-goal guy in a team’s bottom six, but he can help you win games in other ways.
Some other names I like as bottom-six options are Max Domi, Nick Bjugstad, Nick Bonino, and Lars Eller.
Domi would be number one on my list. He can win faceoffs, produce offence, and can be a real pain in the ass during a seven-game playoff series. I’d take that guy on my team for a few months.
I like all three of the other players as potential options down the middle. None of them should cost as much as a player like Lafferty. There are also some younger players like Tanner Jeannot and Noah Gregor who I think could be of use. A player like Gregor, who Frank revealed quietly asked for a trade earlier this season, could be a player who benefits from a change of scenery. He moves well and his offence might pick up as he gets more comfortable at the NHL level. Jeannot is tough as nails and is having a down year after potting 20 goals last season. He would cost more than Gregor to acquire but would make the Oilers tougher to play against, which is something they want to accomplish before the deadline.
I also understand that hearing a lot of talk about the Oilers acquiring a bottom-six forward can be frustrating but just look at the Colorado Avalanche last season. Yes, they made big adds in Arturri Lehkonen and Josh Manson but they also made a lowercase move, bringing in Andrew Cogliano. He was a really impactful piece for them throughout their playoff run.
Yes, the Oilers need to make a big splash. I really do believe that and I still think they will, but don’t scoff at some of these potential depth adds. They could end up being impactful.
If you want to hear more about my thoughts on Frank’s trade targets list, you can watch Oilersnation Everyday here:
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THE DAILY FACEOFF TRADE DEADLINE SHOW
Join us on March 3rd for the Daily Faceoff Live: Trade Deadline edition as Frank Seravalli and the panel break down all of the latest rumours, news, and rumblings from around the NHL. The show will be live on YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter from 10 AM – 2 PM MT to keep you up to date on all things trade deadline no matter where you’re watching from.
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