Latest Oilers Rumors – March 12, 2018

by | Mar 12, 2018 | Rumors | 15 comments

Looking ahead to some possible offseason moves by the Edmonton Oilers in your NHL rumor mill.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: David Staples doesn’t see the Oilers moving center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, forward Leon Draisaitl or defenseman Oscar Klefbom. Instead, he thinks Oilers general manager Peter Chiarelli could shop draft picks, including their 2018 first-round selection, which will be a lottery pick. He also doesn’t rule out the possibility of Chiarelli dealing away young winger Jesse Puljujarvi.

The Edmonton Oilers could be unwilling to part with young winger Jesse Puljujarvi. (Photo via NHL Images)

If Chiarelli targets a team with salary-cap trouble, Staples thinks the Oilers could get a good veteran player with their second-round selection in this year’s draft. If the Oilers target someone such as Arizona Coyotes defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson, their first-round pick (along with someone such as Klefbom) might make sense. However, if the Oilers win the draft lottery, Staples feels they’ll “almost certainly” retain that pick.

THE ATHLETIC: Allan Mitchell has some suggestions on how the Oilers can improve their roster this summer without breaking the bank. Among them could be pursuing players such as Detroit’s Andreas Athanasiou, Calgary’s Sam Bennett or Ottawa’s Mike Hoffman via the trade market or Columbus winger Thomas Vanek via free agency. Some promising AHL players could include Pittsburgh’s Daniel Sprong, Winnipeg’s Brendan Lemieux, Calgary’s Andrew Mangiapane or Arizona’s Nick Merkley.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Assuming Chiarelli remains the Oilers’ general manager, he’ll be expected to make at least one significant move to improve the roster for next season and beyond. I agree with Staples that Draisaitl and Klefbom aren’t going anywhere. While moving Nugent-Hopkins would clear his $6-million cap hit, they seem reluctant to go that route.

As for Puljujarvi, TSN’s Darren Dreger recently reported the Oilers denied speculation around the trade deadline suggesting they could move the 19-year-old winger. Of course, they could change their minds if they get a good offer this summer, but I don’t see them actively shopping Puljujarvi. I believe they want to be patient with him. 

Their 2018 first-round pick could attract considerable attention if Chiarelli is wiling to move it. Indeed, if Edmonton wins the draft lottery again, that pick could garner them a significant return. The Oilers will likely retain that pick if it becomes first overall but it would certainly be worthwhile to at least listen to offers. I can see Chiarelli shopping his second-round pick as Mitchell suggested to clubs looking to shed some salary.  That pick might help them land a young NHL player or one of those promising AHL players. 

Athanasiou has faced some criticism over his performance. I don’t think the Wings are ready to part with him yet but it certainly could be worth looking into.  The Flames could move Bennett this summer but probably not to their rival in Edmonton, as the last thing they’ll want is to risk seeing him blossom there.

Hoffman carries a modified no-trade clause and might be unwilling to to go to Edmonton. If he is, however, it’s a move that could be worth exploring. Vanek could be an affordable option but his age (34) could be a concern. 



  1. Does anyone watch Columbus with a regularity? Curiuos because I heard a statement that some (media) believe Seth Jones should be in the Norris conversation.
    I’ve only seen them play twice and I know his totals 13g and 33a nice, but doesn’t tell me about his game.
    Darren Dreger tweeted that he has Connor McDavid at or near the top for the Hart. Should a player whose team isn’t in playoff contention be considered for the Hart? For me he isn’t the leading candidate for the hart. My vote (I don’t have one) goes to Nathan MacKinnon. Colorado has a tough schedule ahead of them put if they squeak in and Nathan continue to lead the way with his 1.35 points per games 1st in the league then he should be the hart.
    If Colorado doesn’t make it then either Kucherov, Malkin, Hall, Wheeler and the little spoken about Giroux.
    Lots of talk about Wheeler in Winnipeg for the Hart and I can appreciate his game, I just think you need to have more then 18 goals his 58a are tied for the most, but I want more goals.
    I’m going with Mackinnon if Col makes the playoffs and Kucherov if they don’t.

    • Caper, I agree with you in that McDavid should not be in the conversation for the Hart. Too many other players, such as Malkin and co, have done amazing things to vault their team(s) to successful positions. There is a tendency in the media to consistently find the next person to give all the awards to draw attention tot he game regardless of the performance of others. Here’s a list to consider:
      Freddy Anderson
      Eric Staal?

      I am sure I am missing some, and grant that some of these are long shots, but every player on this list has done as much for their team as McDavid has for his. This is not an indictment on McDavid as I truly believe he is probably the best player today. Maybe it is a reflection of just how bad the Oilers really are?

      • Hard to put Crosby for the Hart when Malkin has done more and Kessel just as much. You can take him out for the season and they still make the playoffs. Hall isn’t guaranteed to make the playoffs and you got Laine in there when Wheeler has more pts.

      • The list of players you have mentioned are all on more competitive teams, however they are not more valuable to their respected teams than Connor McDavid. This year Connor has had Draisaitl and maybe Nuge (missed 6 weeks) as a supporting cast. The rest of the team has been a complete disappointment. Most of the players you have mentioned are behind Connor in points and not more deserving of a Hart Trophy. I do agree the success of your team should play a large part in determining the MVP but the long list of players some of you guys are listing is just ridiculous. Connor McDavid IS the best player in the world. He’s proving it by himself.

    • No a player shouldn’t be considered if he has no chance of making playoffs… Like Hall is fine, MacKinnen is another guy where the teams might miss out but they still deserve to win or be considered. If your only chance to win something is a draft lottery then a player shouldn’t win the bogus Hart ;). You might as well give it to Barzal since he is better than McDavid has been :).

      Those same people who push SEth JOnes probably wanted him taken 1st overall over MacKinnen among others… They want the Norris to be some AA award I guess which triple A is only good related to cars. Seth Jones couldn’t wipe Drew Doughty’s ass :). He isn’t even any better than those on Nashville currently :). Hell PK Subban is better than him if want to talk reality :). That is the problem w/ sham awards that don’t have a clear path to win… Like if you score the most goals you win an award. If you have the lowest GAA as a team you get another award. People would like to talk up Seth Jones or see him win so they can push diversity over reality. Seabrook had numbers not far from Drew Doughty when he won a Norris… Burns won a NOrris when he probably should have prior. Besides they have a goalie who won award for best goalie so that should hurt his chances if he had any :). Its not like they are real weak in net or don’t block shots where could make a case. There least 10 players heads/shoulders above Seth for winning that award… Might as well give it to Suter before him heh.

      • Respectfully, I disagree that players on non-playoff teams shouldn’t be considered for awards.

        I think they should be considered as the awards are individual efforts but making it to the playoffs is a combined team effort.

      • Dude have you even watched McDavid. Head and shoulders above everbody else in the NHL. Its not even close. He has more even strenth points then anyone over the past 2 years. Creates more scoring chances then anyone else. The last 19 games has 18 goals because he’s sick of crap linemate sucking so bad (outside of Dri). then you garbage about Barzal better then McDavid. Wow.Get your head outta the sand man.
        then you talk about the Goalie being good so that hinders Jones chance?? in that case kouch is out he as his team would make the play-offs without him. Stamkos too. no norris for Headman he plays with a world class goalie. Sid and Gino are out aswell because their on the same team. Not saying Jones should win the hart but dont make stupid comments to prove a point.

      • I see McDavid play a lot living in Alberta
        And he is heads above any player I have seen playing today.
        When you are an opposing team you just cringe and hope he doesn’t score or doesn’t set someone up to score.
        It’s hard for the average fan to see all the players play all the time but just using stats and looking only at playoff teams players is not a true assessment for the best player in the league. In my opinion McDavid is heads ands above any other player in the league and I say that objectively because I hate the oilers

  2. If the Oilers win the lottery again or get a high pick they should definitely keep it if they get a player who can step in right away and make a difference. This would be a new young player who can contribute at an affordable rate for three years. Trading Puljujarvi really doesn’t make a lot of sense just yet and if you trade RNH what are you going to get for him? I know you clear out salary but what roster player can you get in return? I guess I am going back to the Hall Larsson deal, which I am still not totally criticizing Charielli for. However, Hall’s numbers in Jersey have almost backfired for Charielli because all he got back was Larsson. Surely, RNH does not bring back as much. The Eberle for Strome deal is not looking great either. The Oilers need roster players, but aren’t really doing a great job of addressing that to be honest. So keeping a young pick might be the best option for now. You also have to think that several Oilers players will have a bounce back season; just look at Winnipeg.

  3. Darn it.

    I was think a big trade around Karlsson and draistle be fun.

    • Jeff Noel,
      Wouldn’t that be interesting?! Doable too considering contracts. Imagine Karlson feeding the puck to McDavid.

  4. Jamie Oleksiak for a 4th is the best under the radar trade of the year. Stud.

    The wording on the Hart confuses people, but I cannot imagine the intent was to award “the best player whose teammates suck”.

    The BEST player is the player most valuable to his team because he’s the best.

    Just give it to the best player.

    • The actual trophy is supposed to be awarded to the player most valuable to his team— not most valuable to the league. Very few writers (voters) actually vote on those lines. If voting true to the intent of the trophy– then making the playoffs should be irrelevant and if this in fact were irrelevant to the writers voting and they stayed true to the intent— I think MacKinnon should win. The majority will not look at it that way— so more than likely they will see the trophy more as an MOP (most outstanding player— CFL does this)— and in that case — as at this very second— I believe that it would go to Kuch or Malkin— Kuch hands down first half— but what Malkin has done lately — Malkin hands down— lets see what happens in next 3 weeks. If just voting on MV to team— Mackinnon— with close second to Anderson— Leafs do NOT make the playoffs this year without him.

  5. if Oilers win the lottery — how would they NOT keep that pick— their whole issue is with D— and this year the #1 pick will be according to most GMs— a generational D man…. Ed getting picks in the 2-5 range — worth the trade.

  6. If the Wings could get that lottery pick from Edmonton in a deal for Athanasiou then go for it! Maybe get them to take Ericcson IF they could. Just don’t move Larkin.