Seravalli: Teams are calling about Washington Capitals centre Nic Dowd

Photo credit:Jonathan Dyer
Liam Horrobin
6 months ago
The Edmonton Oilers opened the regular season short a man against the Vancouver Canucks, which is less than ideal for obvious reasons. Granted, the team isn’t unfamiliar with playing only 11 forwards under Jay Woodcroft. However, this time around, it was because of a need more than a want.
The cap situation in Edmonton is tight. The team has $399,158 available to spend, according to Cap Friendly. The biggest issue they are currently running into is the health of 25-year-old defenceman Markus Niemelainen, who is injured, meaning they can’t send him down to the Bakersfield Condors.
Last week, the Oilers were forced to send down Raphael Lavoie and Lane Pederson, two forwards who could’ve played in the horrendous 8-1 loss to the Vancouver Canucks. Would they have changed the outcome of the game? Likely not, but at least the team would’ve had the required players.
When Pederson was signed to a two-year deal on July 1 this past summer, the fan base was under the assumption that he would be the Oilers 4th line centre. There’s still time for him to prove himself, however, there’s also a vacant hole in that spot.
A name that has made its way around social media over the past week is Nic Dowd. Dowd is a 33-year-old, nine-year veteran who’s currently playing for the Washington Capitals. Last season, he scored 13 goals and 25 points across 65 games. While the 13 goals are a bonus, the Oilers would add him for his reliable play as a two-way forward, along with him being a right-shot centreman.
“I’ve been shocked with the amount of the teams that have called and asked me what Washington is going to do with Nic Dowd,” said Frank Seravalli on Oilersnation Everyday with Tyler Yaremchuk. “Teams are extremely interested in him, especially if the Washington Capitals are out of the mix and willing to eat half of his cap hit. That would juice the return, considering he has another year left on his deal.”
Dowd’s cap hit is $1.3 million with two years left on the deal. As Frank mentioned, getting his contract at half that price would be an intriguing cap hit for any team contending for the Stanley Cup.
Last season, a similar deal happened around the trade deadline. Sam Lafferty was traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs from the Chicago Blackhawks, along with Jake McCabe. Leading up to the completion of the trade, the rumours were that the Blackhawks wanted high-end draft picks for the speedy forward, who is also a great penalty killer. Could the value be the same for Dowd, and is it worth it for Ken Holland to spend assets on him?
“He stands out as a fit for the Oilers because they need speed, especially in their bottom six. It’s one thing I noticed from watching the team play in pre-season. You need Dylan Holloway and Ryan McLeod playing because that speed is a factor.”
The Oilers may want to see how their roster looks once Niemelainen recovers from his injury. Once that occurs, Holland will have enough cap space to tinker with his team from within and give opportunities to players like Raphael Lavoie and Lane Pederson. With that, expect the Dowd rumours to linger around for a while. Despite what we all witnessed last night, the Oilers aren’t that desperate to make immediate adjustments to their lineup.

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