So MacTavish wants to be bold? Well here’s some targets being thrown around right now:
Sean Couturier or Brayden Schenn
Rumors say that the Flyers are looking for a defenseman. They also say that Brayden Schenn and Sean Couturier are names that have come up in those discussions. However, word is that the discussions were with the Phoenix Coyotes, and the player being targeted was Keith Yandle. That’s tough competition for the Oilers, but my thoughts are perhaps we could offer Jeff Petry plus (a 2nd? another lesser prospect like a Toni Rajala? toss in first rights to talk with Whitney?) for one of these young, big centres. Would it be enough? Hard to say, but I think MacTavish should really be working the phones. If names like this are available, he should be talking, as these players would very potentially address our lack of centre depth.
With the asking price being a young center and the deal STILL isn’t done, I’m not sure the Oilers can compete here… but Keith Yandle definitely would be a nice pickup, even though his contract is pricey. He isn’t a guy I’m sure I’d give up our #7 pick for (unless we landed Couturier or Schenn or another centre first). And I wouldn’t give up one of our big four for him.. so it’s not so likely there is a deal to be had here.
Alex Pietrangelo / Kevin Shattenkirk
Word is, the St. Louis Blues are looking to pick up a 1st round pick, as they’ve traded theirs away to Calgary. Our #7 should be good value to them. It definitely isn’t enough to lure away Shattenkirk, let alone Alex Pietrangelo, but we could pad that deal with prospects or other players to make that happen. Without including the #7, I would give up Eberle or even Yakupov to bring Pietrangelo here. I’m not sure the Blues would be interested in moving him, but he is an RFA and due for a big raise that they might be ready to pay.
There’s always talk about trading for Bernier. I’ll keep those discussions going. I would like him because I think he’d be exactly what we need to pair up with Dubnyk. It would work for him too because he finally wouldn’t be hiding behind a big star. What would it take to get that done though, I don’t know. It should also be remembered that the Oilers and Kings will play in the same division next year, so a trade becomes less likely due to that.
A bring his name up, because it was mentioned earlier in the comments as a trade target for our #7. Now I think that’s overpay, but I mentioned him mainly because it sounds like there is a good chance the Penguins will buy him out. If that’s the case, he should be an excellent signing to add to this team that perhaps would allow us to find another home for Nick Schultz.
Nathan Horton / David Clarkson / Ryan Clowe
This would be a UFA signing. Of the names mentioned above, Nathan Horton would the most expensive, and hardest to land. I can’t see him wanting to leave the Bruins organization, especially if they win the cup. And I would think they would more more than happy to retain him. I think he would cost us over $6M to acquire. Would it be worth it though? I definitely think so. But I have a hard time believing we can do it.
David Clarkson would be my next choice of the names here. He also wouldn’t come cheap, but he’d be a lot cheaper than a Horton. He would be a stellar 3rd liner for the team and a good 2nd line winger.
Ryan Clowe is the oldest of the 3 (not by much, however), and some feel he is on the decline. I don’t quite believe that. But it still would be hard to offer him much more than he made on his last deal ($3.625M cap hit). But it would be nice if we could add him and say Maxime Talbot to make up 2 parts of a 3rd line of hard working, ball-busting grit.
I am mentioning him because of the last paragraph. The Oilers actually almost acquired him at the deadline this season, but Talbot broke his leg. If he’s fully recovered, I’d revisit this. This might have been one of Tambellini’s last good decisions before he was canned.
This would be another singing, rather than a trade. His name has been brought up quite a bit. Word is he’ll be asking for big money ($6M I think?) for about 3 years. That’s probably too rich for my blood though, mainly due to the length of the deal and his age. I think he’s a good d-man though, so if I could get him for 2 years, I would do it.
The future of Shawn Horcoff and Ales Hemsky
This obviously isn’t a topic about acquisition, but rather about moving them. MacTavish already gave them the kiss of death when he said the ideal situation would be to move them. I’m not sure who is out there for trade targets. Ales Hemsky should be a bit more of a commodity to teams, but we may need to eat around $1.5M to make a better trade happen. As for Horcoff, I have a tough time believing anyone other than a floor team would be interested in his contract. If he can’t be traded to a team like the Islanders, I think the Oilers should buy him out. Complicating matters worse, it’s being reported that Horcoff is going to exercise his NTC (can list 10 teams he won’t go to, I believe) to prevent a trade to rebuilding teams. Some out there (ex. Jonathan Willis on Oilers Nation) are very opposed to a buyout. I see their point, and I myself really respect Horcoff, but I think this would be a very good move for both sides. The Oilers drop that cap hit that they could be using for some solid names to help fill this line up, and Horcoff gets the opportunity to test the UFA market. I firmly believe that if he is willing to take a shot with a Scott Gomez-like contract (he earned $700k this year), he could EASILY prove in a heart beat he’s a very valuable player to a team.