The Rebuild Part 2: Trade Deadline
“Ales for sure was the primary focus of our trade deadline” – Steve Tambellini
The NHL Trade Deadline is the last time a team can acquire assets before heading into the post season. There can be multiple types of transactions that occur usually ranging from bolstering a team for the playoffs to acquiring futures assets that will help the organization down the road. Either way the organization is trying to improve whether it’s immediate or down the line. Depending on where the organization is heading can have a large impact of the type of deals that may occur on deadline day.
As I mentioned in The Rebuild Part One, in essence the dismal 2009-2010 season, sparked the rebuild in its entirety, on and off the ice. Let’s begin be looking at looking at the deadline after the 2009-2010 season.
Trade Deadline 2011
Last year the Oilers made a minor league deal involving moving Shawn Belle to acquire Kevin Montgomery. The big trade of the day for the Oilers though involved moving a current roster player for future assets.
Dustin Penner (21G-18A-39PTS)
Colten Teubert (AHL)
2011 1st Round Pick (#19, Oscar Klefbom)
2012 2nd Round Pick (conditional)
“It became quite evident that the return was going to fit in what we are trying to do here. We have to give up a good player but the first round pick and the first round prospect of a defenseman that we don’t have a lot of. He’s not ready for prime time yet (Teubert) but he will be but he will be soon. Plus the second pick fits perfectly into what the overall plan is as far as going ahead.” – Steve Tambellini
Trade Deadline 2012
“Ales for sure was the primary focus of our trade deadline. If we were to lose that type of skill from our roster and not able to replace it at the deadline, then we would have had a lot of work to do.” – Steve Tambellini
The direction of the Trade Deadline has changed drastically from last year, this is evident with the recent signings of Andy Sutton (arguably a decent fetch if we traded him to a competing team), Ales Hemsky and the “Hockey Trade” that sent Tom Gilbert to Minnesota for defensemen Nick Schultz.
What do we get in Nick Schultz?
“What we get in Nick Schultz is a dependable, very fit, experienced defensemen… his compete level is hard, he’s a match up guy, he plays a lot against the top lines…” – Steve Tambellini
Nick Schultz is an underrated defenseman who is not overly physical but is great with his gap control and plays a pretty good positional game. In Minnesota he was used primarily in a defensive role being able to calm the waters and racked up a lot of ice time on the penalty kill. He is not the flashiest player; he won’t make big open ice hits, tends to struggle in the corners and physical battles but he is dependable, good at keeping the puck on the perimeter, has a good transitional game and can be counted on him in the dire minutes of the game. Schultz is a great locker room guy, I haven’t heard a negative thing yet, and will be a great addition to the dressing room for character and leadership. He puts in a full effort every night and leads by example on and off the ice.
I would say that the foundation and core of this Edmonton Oilers team and rebuild is more or less established with the possibility of adding another lottery pick in the mix and another strong draft this offseason. This deadline has made it clear that the Oilers are headed in a competitive direction, retaining players (Sutton, Hemsky, mummers of Smyth contract talks) and adding roster players as opposed to dealing players to acquire bullets (draft picks) for Stu MacGregor and his team. I think it says a lot for the organization that the Oilers signed Hemsky, albeit a high price, we are beginning to retain high level NHL talent. The actions of the Trade Deadline this year has arguably made the Oilers a more competitive. With the addition of Nick Schultz we have begun to address our blue-line issues however it doesn’t solve everything. Our defence (among other holes) should be addressed during the off-season and not via the kid we pick at draft.
Next: The Rebuild Part Three – NHL Entry Draft
It’s looking like the draft section is going to be quite immense, I’m deciding how to break it up right now. So far I think it could end up looking like this…
i) The NHL Entry Draft: Introduction – Huge breakdown in scouting, what teams look for in players, how to grade players etc. My goal is for a fan to get good understanding on the whole process, or as much as I can interpret, in fitness, on ice performance and in psychological aspects (mostly, if not all performance related). Example: how characteristics can be adaptive or mal-adaptive to performance.
ii) Draft Primer: In depth analysis on the “top three picks” – in my eyes (I might do more depending on where the Oilers end up in the draft). Player profile analysis, stats, projections etc.
iii) The Rebuild Part Three – NHL Entry Draft – (After draft day) an overview of selections, transactions etc.