Elliotte Friedman was on Oilers Now yesterday and with Bob Stauffer they were talking about what the Oiler should do going forward. I’m paraphrasing but Friedman said something to the effect that he wouldn’t do anything to add to the team this year because the team is in shock about where they are and that the young core of this team is still something to work with.
And that led to what Pat Maroon could fetch the club on the trade market this year.
Stauffer said that he thought the Oilers should be able to bring in a 2nd round pick and a prospect for Maroon or possibly a pretty good player instead. Stauffer then hinted, as he does around this time of year, that there might be an organization out there that’s got a guy that needs to be qualified as an RFA but they’ve got to save some money elsewhere.
The Detroit Red Wings are in quite the situation regarding their cap as they have ZERO dollars available according to Capfriendly.com. I really feel that there are some players on that team that would be able to contribute and make a difference immediately for the Oilers. Let me explain.
RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS
This summer Detroit has 5 RFAs that need qualifying and of those 4 of them are vital cogs in the Red Wings future:
- Dylan Larkin
- Andreas Athanasiou
- Anthony Mantha
- Martin Frk
- Petr Mrazek
PLAYERS WITH NO-MOVEMENT CLAUSES/NO-TRADE CLAUSES
Detroit has multiple veterans who have clauses in their contracts that would make it problematic for Ken Holland to move them:
- Frans Nielsen
- Gustav Nyquist
- Justin Abdelkader
- Darren Helm
- Mike Green
- Danny Dekeyser
- Trevor Daley
- Jonathan Ericsson
- Niklas Kronwall
- Jimmy Howard
LONG-TERM INJURY RESERVE AND UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS
Two players are occupying Detroit’s LTIR, Johan Franzen and Luke Glendening whilst Mike Green and David Booth are the only UFAs this season for Detroit.
So to put it all together, the Red Wings do not have any room to add players this season, not that they would be given their record but the only significant contract they’ll have coming off of the books is Mike Green’s.
Now if the salary cap goes up to $80M (I’m not sure that it will go that high) then the Red Wings will have a bit more breathing room but I do not believe for one second that those RFAs mentioned above will be taking any hometown discounts. I mean, Athanasiou was willing to play the whole year in Russia to get what he wanted.
According to Capfriendly, Detroit will have around $12M to sign 8 players. I think that Athanasiou will be looking for closer to $4M, Mantha will want around $3M, Larkin is definitely going to be asking for something in the range of $6M. So right there with those three players Detroit is over their cap without getting Frk or Mrazek signed or having someone fill in for Green like Vili Saarijarvi.
My thought is that this is a near perfect storm to take advantage of for the Oilers and their $8M in cap space. If I had a Christmas list of players that I’d love to see Chiarelli go after, this would be it:
- Henrik Zetterberg – I know, he’s got 3 seasons after this one to go on his contract that pays him a shade over $6M a season until 2021. So the only way I’d take him is if DET ate half of his contract.
The reason I like the idea of adding Zetterberg is that he’s got that experience the Oilers are lacking (I also like Nik Kronwall for that same reason but his boots left him a few years ago). Don’t get me wrong, Lucic and Sekera and Cammalleri all bring their own flavors to the team but Zetterberg has that little bit extra AND he can still perform. He lacks a clause in his deal too 🙂
- Tomas Tatar – He’s probably the perfect candidate to help the Oilers on the PP. He’s a sniper’s sniper and he’s been brought along the right way in the Motor City. They marinated him like mad as he’s only been a FT NHLer since 2013/14. He’s only getting $5.3M for the next 4 seasons.
But you’d have to give a bit more for TT because he’s only 27 and he’s right in his prime. He’s contracted until the end of the 2021 season BUT here’s the kicker, his NTC kicks in for next season. So that means if Detroit wants to move him without having to get permission first, this year’s the year to do it.
I’d be willing to pay a bit more for him. Kailer Yamamoto I’d surely send over in a package to get Tatar. Plus I could make a few more creative t-shirt designs with Tatar’s name 🙂
- Andreas Athansiou – One of the few players in the NHL that can keep up with Connor McDavid. He’s got offence to his game but I think he’d really shine on the Oilers PK with that speed and tenacity.
I think a factor in including him on my list is the contentious contract negotiations he had with Detroit this summer. There’s probably some sour tastes in mouths on both sides and I imagine Edmonton could offer something up like Matt Benning because it’s obvious that somebody is going to have to fill in on that right side. Not that Benning is anything close to Mike Green but just being right-handed and having nearly 2 NHL seasons under his belt would allow the Red Wings to keep players like Saarijarvi in the minors to get some more seasoning.
I really like Gustav Nyquist and Martin Frk too. Nyquist is a very competent complimentary winger who’d probably put up career numbers alongside any one of McDavid, Draisaitl, or Nuge. Frk’s an RFA and a Tatar-like player. Shooter from the wing. So if you were willing to “grow” with him, he might come along a bit later but could turn out to be that 15-20 goal man.
I still feel like I’m forgetting something or overlooking something with the Red Wings though. Everything seems too right with them when picking a trade partner. What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.