First off, credit to Jason Gregor for the great update on Oilers Nation (with it being off-season, I’ll take anything.. but these are some good Oil-related updates).
- Smid contract is close. Smid’s camp wants a 1 or 2 year deal while the Oilers are trying to get a 3-year deal done. Sounds like they at least agree on the money though. But word is the deal will be done soon.
- Cogliano will likely get a look at LW since his faceoffs are utterly craptacular. Does that mean on the first line? Gregor didn’t say, but that might happen.
- Dustin Penner might be tried on RW. This one doesn’t make much sense to me. I wonder if they’re trying this because he’s a left shot… or perhaps they have an idea for a line combination for him. I am thinking that all these thoughts (including more revelations in this post) mean he’s going to be put on line 2.
- Moreau and Pisani will be the book ends on the 3rd line, and Jacques Stortini on the 4th. Not much surprise here, but we’ve got new coaches… so you never know what ideas they might come up with.
- Gregor speculated that Horcoff might get a look on the 3rd line (although he thought it would be unlikely). I’ve suggested this idea a few times this off-season in line suggestions. I’d love to see Moreau Horcoff Pisani.
- Gregor also indirectly mentioned that Gagner might get a look on line 1 (he said he would be one of the top-six forwards.
Personally, with the hints above, I wonder if we’ll see these lines:
Cogliano O’Sullivan Hemsky
Nilsson Gagner Penner
Moreau Horcoff Pisani
Jacques Brule/Pouliot Stortini
The size on that top line scares me though, and I’m not a big fan of Nilsson right now (as I’ve said before, I think there are better versions of him on this roster already). But I’m willing to give him (and everyone else) a chance to redeem himself this year.
A few things I look forward to as possibilities:
- line 1 with a different top line centre on it; either O’Sullivan or Gagner (and this is coming from a Horcoff fan).
- line 2 having Penner on it, giving them a boost of size
- an all vet Moreau/Horcoff/Pisani line
- a solid energy line of Jacques, Stortini and whatever sandwich meat they can find (hopefully Brule… I think he’s a better fit than Pouliot).
One other thing to note, not in regards to this article. Gregor mentioned on Team 1260 that Brule does NOT have to clear waivers to be sent down. This is according to the Oilers and according to the Brule camp. Why that is, I honestly do not understand (if you read the CBA, it makes more sense that he does have to clear waivers). But with everyone fighting for jobs, and not wanting to lose players for nothing.. we might not get a chance to see Brule just yet. I hope that’s not the case though.
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