Oilers trio of Raphael Lavoie, Lane Pederson, and Ben Gleason all clear waivers

Photo credit:© Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
6 months ago
After Oilers fans everywhere were fired up about the possibility of losing Raphael Lavoie on waivers, it was all for not as all three of the players Edmonton placed on waivers yesterday have cleared and are eligible for assignment to the Bakersfield Condors.
In a surprising turn of events, the three Oilers hopefuls who were put on waivers yesterday — Raphael Lavoie, Ben Gleason, and Lane Pederson — have all cleared and are now eligible to be assigned to the Bakersfield Condors. While the waiver wire often brings uncertainty and roster reshuffling, these players’ successful clearing was welcomed news for Oilers fans everywhere, as many of us thought that Lavoie was sure to be claimed after putting up 25 goals with the Condors in 2022-23.
Lavoie, a 23-year-old forward, has been a prospect worth watching over the past few years, earning a reputation for his size, scoring touch, and ability to create offence on the wing. Drafted in the second round of the 2019 NHL Entry Draft, Lavoie took a giant leap forward with the Condors last season after putting up 25 goals, which led many Oilers fans to believe that he was a shoo-in for the opening night roster. But with Markus Niemelainen hurt and the team pressed up against the salary cap, waiving Lavoie was a gamble but ultimately worked out as he slid through the waiver wire untouched.
Ben Gleason’s pre-season performance surprised many Oilers fans as his steady defending style proved effective in the games he played. The 25-year-old defender’s ability to provide depth on the blue line has not gone unnoticed by the Oilers’ coaching staff and management, which was evident by the fact that he remained in camp until the very end. Gleason’s successful waiver clearance keeps him with the organization and allows him to keep working on his game with the Condors until an opportunity arises to give him some NHL minutes. While I don’t think he’s NHL ready just yet, Gleason’s pre-season performance likely put him in line to be one of the first call-ups if needed, which is miles ahead of what most of us would have expected when he was signed.
Lane Pederson is a new commodity around these parts after signing a two-year deal with the Oilers on July 1st. In his short time with the franchise, the 26-year-old forward showed a few flashes of promise during the pre-season, punctuated by the three-point performance against the Flames at Rogers Place. Like so many of his peers, Pederson’s development path has seen him move between the NHL and AHL, and now we’ll have to wait and see whether or not he’ll be able to make the leap to the bigs for good. Seeing as the Oilers very much need reliability on the 4th line, the path for Pederson to become a mainstay in the NHL is there, provided that he can continue to work on his two-way game.
Fortunately for the Edmonton Oilers, we’re talking about three players who successfully slid through waivers rather than getting any of them claimed by someone else. As much as yesterday’s decision was a gamble, many of us are sighing of relief that the Oilers’ cap situation didn’t result in losing any key prospects. Now, we’ll have to wait and see what happens next.

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