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Saturday, February 1, 2014

"Sifting through the Edmonton Oiler trade rumours"

With a trade just recently completed again by MacT, I figured a blog to discuss trade rumours would be interesting. Now these rumours I am about to post come from a variety of sources. Some are absolutely terrible and throw stuff out there hoping something will stick , while others are somewhat credible and yet a couple others have good merit. So before you read on, no need to crucify me and act like I am trying to get hits on this blog and throwing garbage to the wind. It is just tossing out rumours (and they are only that) and walking through even remote possibilities.

Here are rumours that have been floating around by over 15 sources in one way or another, just take it all with a grain of salt;

1)RUMOUR:Sam Gagner and Oscar Klefbom for Jack Johnson:
MY THOUGHTS: Scott Howson is the one who brought him to Columbus and has now returned with Edmonton. Don't be mistaken with the bad rap Scott got in Columbus. Most the players they have doing well and their current success has more to do with what Scott was putting together then the newly appointed President and new GM. The Blue Jackets do a great job in development of other d-men (See Jan Hedja) They also have bigger players so Gagner is not just another of the same kind of player. Fans are split on Jackson, some think he brings what we need while others think he is utterly terrible and slow. It's a mixed bag but I am one who thinks as a second pairing defensemen he would fit perfect into what we need but that is me.

Jack Johnson salary is about $4.36 million/year and after this year has 4 years left on his contract at that rate. He averages about 35-40 points a year on the back end. Is 6'1 and 231 pounds of bruising defensemen and is 27 years old. Gagner has about $4.8 million per year hit for the next 2 seasons, averages about 45 points per year playing in the top 6 for forwards. Stands 5'11 and is around 198 pounds. I actually think this trade could work well for CBJ as they get potential in a good draft pick that is developing and big with Klefbom but far from a NHL player yet. Gagner who could fit well if playing with bigger, heavier players on a team that is not all about run and gun hockey. Salary is a wash pretty much but if needed they can exchange a small deal in this to help send another player CBJ way and one more player with a additional 1 million extra to the Oilers. CBJ are close to the cap so it may need sweetened on that part. This deal could be something that could have some wheels if the parties both like it.  (P.S. I would rather keep Klefbom and throw in another player but he may be the player they want)

2)RUMOUR: Ales Hemsky to the Detroit Red Wings, Toronto Maple Leafs and/or the Columbus Blue Jackets.
MY THOUGHTS: Ales Hemsky is a $5 million salary and a UFA. That means he is a rental player but his next contract will likely be more in the 3.5-4 million mark. There is also discussion that Hemsky could be resigned, unless its a 2 year $3.25 million/year deal, the Oilers will not be wise to resign Hemsky. He is young enough still to serve on a few teams as a complimentary 2nd line player. I see Detroit as a good possible landing spot and/or CBJ. I do not see Hemsky a fit whatsoever in Toronto though. If they could trade Hemsky to Detroit I would push for Thomas Jurco or Martin Frk in the prospects department. We could use some higher skill forward prospects in the system.

3)RUMOUR: Gagner and Ryan Smyth, and defenseman Nick Schultz, are also on the trade block.
MY THOUGHTS:We already know Gagner's name is out there and with N.Schultz becoming a UFA at year end may be a great bet for a depth defenseman to a team looking to make a long playoff push. My best guess would be Chicago, Detroit,Anaheim, St.Louis, San Jose or Montreal. In regards to Smyth, unless he gets a opportunity with a team like Pittsburgh, Boston, Chicago or San Jose I highly doubt he is moving. I think you are looking at Ryan playing out the year in Edmonton and maybe signing a 1 year contract for less then this years $2.25 million he finishes this year at.

4)RUMOUR:Sam Gagner. Ales Hemsky and Ryan Smyth are expected to be possibly moving out before the trade deadline day expires.  
MY THOUGHTS:From some reports there’s been no dialog between Craig MacTavish and Ryan Smyth. Those same reports say their belief is that Smyth wants one more crack with a winning team to see if he can win the Stanley Cup. They believe he’s still effective, at least in the offensive zone, so they expect his name will heat up as we get closer to the deadline. I am not so sure but see RUMOUR #3 re:Smyth thoughts.Re: Ales Hemsky see RUMOUR #2 thoughts.

5)RUMOUR:  The Oilers won’t take Kootenay forward Sam Reinhart (not big enough) in the draft if available
MY THOUGHTS:I take this inside rumour of information with a grain of salt. Before many fans start drilling me, you need to know the hockey world looks at Sam Reinhart as a player much in the same mold as Ryan Nugent-Hopkins with Hockey IQ and his defensive awareness at the same age (not to mention his experience)is greater then what we got in RNH. He could make the perfect #2 Center on this team behind RNH and at 6'1 and 183 pounds is actual the same height as RNH but 5 pounds heavier at the same exact age. Not a big center but won't be a small one either.If the Oilers draft 2nd or third overall and Ekblad is gone, Reinhart will be their 2nd choice. They have the chance to give him a extra year in jr and if he shows continued promise could be ready in only a couple years. You don't pass on a player this high end and with incredible hockey IQ and skill for a lower chance % of a bigger size center or even a trade for a established roster player unless they are a long term contract fit and a top 6 forward to top 2 defenseman.IMO the Oilers won't be trading their #1 pick unless a top #2 defenseman is valuable in the trade.

6)RUMOUR: - The Edmonton Oilers are likely moving Sam Gagner
MY THOUGHTS:See Rumour #3 thoughts 

7)RUMOUR: Hemsky to Ottawa for Zack Smith
MY THOUGHTS:Mike Cammarelli is becoming a UFA and could be moved and it's known that he is a good friend of Spezza's so he is likely a better target. Ottawa needs to find a winger for Spezza so it is a possibility they could consider Hemsky. He has 3 more years on his contract at $1.9 million/year so Zach Smith could be a great fit moving forward as a 4th line center and good cap hit. Was a confirmed conversation last off-season but not sure why the deal didn't go further.


8)RUMOUR: Ales Hemsky and Sam Gagner will find their name being tossed around by the Oilers.
MY THOUGHTS:Craig MacTavish is hoping to get a top-six forward, a top-four defenseman or a starting goalie in return for Gagner’s services, anything less and it's highly unlikely he makes a deal

9)RUMOUR:  Gagner for Andrew Ladd, Blake Wheeler or Dustin Byfuglien. 
MY THOUGHTS:With Mark Scheifele and Brian Little solidified at centre on the top two lines, Gagner would have to play on the wing in Winnipeg. Andrew Ladd has 2 more years at $4.4 million/year and is a big boy at 6'3 and 205 pounds. His salary is manageable for what he can bring to a top 6 in Edmonton and if available you would think that Edmonton would feel he could fit perfectly with what they are looking for. Personally I would move quite a bit to make this happen. Ladd brings more grit, size, skill and experience to a team that continues to go in that direction. Blake Wheeler is going nowhere and Dustin Byfuglien.has very little interest in Edmonton among Oilers brass IMO as he is a player in the Penner mood. Fans would eat him alive with complaints that he takes nights off. 



    10)RUMOUR: trade talk is happening between the New York Rangers and the Edmonton Oilers(players discussed are unknown)
      MY THOUGHTS:A report came out of New York speculating trade talk between the New York Rangers and Edmonton Oilers sparked lots of considerable buzz in hockey circles. This could have been just a media spectacle finding something to write about but many various sources for some time have stated that Edmonton wants some size in a power forward and the Rangers would like to add some high end skill. Reports say Ryan Callahan but the guy while playing big (Like Andrew Ferance) is only 5'10 and 187 pounds. Not a player who you would think would be on the Oilers radar, not to mention he will be a UFA next year and is rumoured to be seeking 6-7 million/year on a new contract. The only two likely players of interest to the Oilers are Chris Kreider or Marc Staal. Neither one of those players would be likely available so chances are there is no deal to be made with the Rangers.

    11)RUMOUROilers will NOT trade 1st round pick unless they drop below top 3 picks in case Ekblad could be available to select.
    MY THOUGHTS:MacT has been on record as saying 'Ekblad is a right hand shot, Nurse is a left hand shot,that would make a pretty good pairing for years to come'. I would have to agree with MacT's statement and say, those 2 players are a incredible foundation to build a team on, for the next decade of hockey in Edmonton. MacT did not believe they even stood a chance of selecting in the top 3 in the 2014 NHL Entry draft but now that it's a 90% chance they select top 2, Ekblad can be had and in no way do I see them trading their #1 pick before the trade deadline or before they step up to the podium in June.

    12)RUMOUR: Yakupov and a top prospect defensman for LA Kings 1st round 2014 pick and Kyle Clifford
    MY THOUGHTS:Kyle makes just under $1.1 million/year and has 1 additional year on his contract and at 6'2, 209 pounds he is the big forward they may be looking forward. The Oilers have expressed interest in him before but his point totals do not show he is capable of playing top 6 so he would not be worth more then a top prospect out of Edmonton's system. That would mean Yakupov for the Kings mid round 1st round pick. What is the best that would be. 20th Overall? Not a chance there is anything to this rumour whatsoever.

    13)RUMOUR:The Oilers will likely trade Sam Gagner, with Nail Yakupov and/or Jordan Eberle possibly next in line if a deal presents himself.
    MY THOUGHTS:See RUMOUR#3 re:Gagner. Nail Yakupov could very well be on the block but there is no way he is traded unless equal or greater value is sent back and don't think that means his current value but his #1 overall value and potential to be a pure goal scorer as evidenced last year and in the KHL and jr. With Jordon Eberle, it's always possible but unless it's a top 3 big power forward with lots of contract or a top 2 d-man, Jordon is going nowhere.

14)RUMOUR: Ales Hemsky to Pittsburgh as rental player for a prospect forward
MY THOUGHTS:This could be a very legitimate rumour especially since Pascal is lost for the year and they already were going to look at picking up 1 more player at the trade deadline. Now with needing 2 players, Hemsky could be had if the price is right.For quite awhile it's been thought Ales may do well playing with Crosby. Being a UFA they can unload Hemsky if they don't want to resign him. On the other hand Hemsky's contract could still make this a difficult trade unless they eat some salary in this someway.

15)RUMOUR:Jon.Gibson and Davante.Smith-Pelly for Sam.Gagner and a 5th round pick
MY THOUGHTS:As unlikely as this sounds to some, this could be a trade that could make sense.Gibson is a highly touted goalie of the future(which the Oilers are still looking for in their system)and Smith-Pelly is a bigger power forward (in weight)who likes to throw his weight around and could be a long term potential fit if he can lift his game in the NHL to what was originally hoped. The last two years he has been floating in the system up and down but Anaheim is a tough team to crack. Not sure Anaheim does this deal but Gagner could fill a winger role where Selanne is likely retiring from next year.His size will not be a issue in Anaheim.

16)RUMOUR:Cam Ward to Edmonton
MY THOUGHTS:The Hurricanes and Oilers have denied that they talked about Cam Ward. Rutherford denies any interest in moving Ward but a Scrivens/Ward combo could be a nice blend in Edmonton to cover us for a few years while we develop a goalie in the system. With 2 more years and $6.3 million/year on his contract that might be too steep of a price to pay. The dollar figure tells me, the Oilers will not be interested in the slightest.

17)RUMOUR:Eberle + 1st 2014 for Weber + a prospect
MY THOUGHTS:This rumour keeps getting mentioned by MSM but from those closet to the organization Weber is going nowhere at no price as he is the face of the franchise. Unless the owner wants to drop salary and take a huge loss from his bonus, it's not happening.

18)RUMOUR:Oilers 2014 first round pick in a package deal with a roster defenseman for Nashville Predators captain Shea Weber and a roster player
MY THOUGHTS:see RUMOUR#17 thoughts

19)RUMOUR:Sam Gagner to the LA Kings
MY THOUGHTS:See RUMOUR#15The Kings could use some scoring and could look at pending UFAs in Matt Moulson, Thomas Vanek and Mike Cammalleri. Gagner could be an option, but he has two years left at $4.8 million, something the Kings may not be thrilled with. Some insiders think the Kings will go the rental route.
20)RUMOUR:From Ottawa, Methot, Craig.Anderson, Zach Smith, and a prospect (not Lazar) for Nail.Yakupov and the Oilers 1st round pick 2014 
MY THOUGHTS:So potentially the Oilers trade Nail Yakupov and Aaron Ekblad for a #1 Goalie, #4 d-man, #4 center and a prospect. Not likely even close unless that prospect is Lazar.

21)RUMOUR:Jon.Gibson+ Anaheim's 3rd round pick 2014 for Nail.Yakupov 
MY THOUGHTS:Not a chance they trade Nail Yakupov unless more is added or upped from this offer. Chances are this rumour is one just thrown out by MSM.

22)RUMOUR:Sam Gagner, Nail Yakupov & Kellen Jones to Toronto for Nazem Kadri, Jake Gardiner, Connor Brown and Toronto's 1st round pick 2014
MY THOUGHTS:One Toronto source suggests that both teams are in need of a shakeup; and that Gagner and Kadri have been rumoured to be moved and are unhappy with their teams. He believes that the Leafs need more help in their top 6 forwards and Edmonton needs defensive depth; he believes the draft pick and prospects balance out the value gap that Yakupov has over Gardiner. I find this proposal utter nonsense and is not even close to a deal Edmonton would make. A mid round draft pick means nothing and Gardiner is another Justin Schultz style player. The Oilers don't need defensive depth they need top 2 d-men. Don't see a fit with a trade out of TO at all.


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