Check out the most recent post-trade deadline Oilers speculation.
EDMONTON SUN: Following the recent NHL trade deadline, Terry Jones wondered why Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli didn’t ship out disappointing right wing Nail Yakupov. Jones notes the Oilers didn’t exactly showcase Yakupov during the game before deadline day, leaving him on the fourth line. He speculates Yakupov’s trade value was low, but wonders what the Oilers will do to improve his value in the offseason if he doesn’t get an opportunity to pad his stats by skating alongside Connor McDavid.
TSN 960 (VIA TODAY’S SLAPSHOT): Darren Dreger said he was told by by Chiarelli that Yakupov was in play. Dreger speculates that, like Eller, there wasn’t much interest in Yakupov. Dreger also clarified a report that emerged on deadline day claiming Montreal Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin told Lars Eller he wouldn’t be traded at the deadline. He said Bergevin told one of Eller’s agents that he wasn’t shopping the center but never said he wasn’t going to trade him.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If there was an opportunity to swap Yakupov for a good return, of course Chiarelli would’ve done so. As Dreger points out, there simply wasn’t that much interest in the former first-overall draft pick. You can’t sell what no one wants to buy. So any talk of Yakupov-for Lars Eller or Alex Galchenyuk that sprang up before the trade deadline was nonsense.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jason Gregor believes the Oilers should pass on any opportunity to sign Tampa Bay Lightning superstar Steven Stamkos this summer. He believes Chiarelli will be focused instead on acquiring one, perhaps two, experienced defenders in the offseason. He also cites the Oilers depth at center in McDavid, Leon Draisaitl and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins as a reason to avoid Stamkos.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I have a hunch the Oilers won’t have to worry about the opportunity to sign Stamkos presenting itself to them. It’s not like top free-agent talent have been stampeding to Edmonton in recent years. That’s a dilemma that won’t be giving Chiarelli sleepless nights heading toward July 1.