NHL Notebook: Oilers stars helping in push for puck-moving defenceman like Erik Karlsson and Jakob Chychrun healthy scratched indefinitely

Photo credit:Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
Zach Laing
1 year ago
Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl have made it clear: they want someone who can move the puck.
It’s apparent in the way the trade winds have blown in recent months. Not long ago there was talk about Vladislav Gavrikov and Joel Edmundson being the targets for the Oilers. Big, strong, stay-at-home rearguards. Guys who will make life hell on opposing forwards. Now? That tune appears to be shifting.
On Monday’s episode of 32 Thoughts, Elliotte Friedman and Jeff Marek spent a good chunk of time talking about Erik Karlsson, the Edmonton Oilers, and if there could be a fit there. Here’s some of what Friedman had to say:
If you remember, we interviewed Leon Draisaitl at (the) NHL All-Star (game)… He said “we don’t like to talk about these things. There’s people paid to make these decisons. Yes, we give our opinions.”
From what I understand, one of the things the Oilers players have made very clear is if they make a trade, they want to make sure it’s somebody who can get the puck out of the zone. Not just bang it off the glass, but move it. The Oilers feel they’re a better team when they have that kind of player back there.
Now, everybody can debate this. They can say “we think Edmonton should get this, we think Edmonton needs a heavier presence.” That’s the great thing about sports: we’re here to debate. But I believe the Oilers are listening, at least, to their top players who said “we prefer puck-moving” and they’re going to look into that. The best puck-mover available is Erik Karlsson.
Let me say this: from what I’ve heard about Karlsson is he’s trying not to think about it until he’s actually presented with something. He wants to go to a winning situation, but I think the key here is: can the Oilers get him to a $6.5-7-million player, and that means the Sharks, for four years, are going to have to eat somewhere between $4-5-million and there’s only one person who can decide if San Jose is willing to do that, and that is the guy who signs the checks and pays the bills.
The other thing someone pointed out to me Saturday night is you could always do this with a third team. That maybe a third team could get involved, but again — a third team is going to have to get involved to eat money for four years. It’s $2-$2.5-million. What are you going to have to pay for a team to do that? It’s not going to be a fifth round pick.

Chychrun scratched

Days after the Arizona Coyotes scratched defenceman Jakob Chychrun on Saturday for “trade-related reasons,” the club has elected to indefinitely scratch him as a trade looms.
The rumour mill heated up Saturday when it happened, and now, they’re further protecting their asset.
Here’s some of what Arizona Coyotes guru and Daily Faceoff writer Mike Gould had to say:
Coyotes head coach Andre Tourigny made the reality of Chychrun’s situation very clear in his media availability on Monday afternoon: “He will remain out of the lineup until something happens.”
Chychrun missed the Coyotes’ 6–5 overtime loss to the St. Louis Blues on Saturday for what the team called “trade-related reasons.” The same policy will be in effect on Monday evening as the Coyotes take on the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena.
Having been on the trade block since the start of the 2021–22 season, Chychrun’s name has circled the rumor mill with increasing frequency as the Mar. 3 trade deadline nears.
The Coyotes originally selected Chychrun in the first round (No. 16 overall) of the 2016 NHL Draft. The 24-year-old defenseman has seven goals and 28 points while averaging 23:16 of ice time in 36 games with the Coyotes this year
Chychrun is under contract with the Coyotes at a $4.6 million cap hit through the end of the 2024–25 season. His deal does not include any trade or movement protection.
Through 373 career NHL games with the Coyotes, Chychrun has amassed 60 goals and 170 points. He helped the Coyotes reach the playoffs in 2020 and has averaged at least 20 minutes per game in each of the last six seasons.

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@oilersnation.com.

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