Grand Larsson-y


The talk of the town is Milan Lucic and Jason Demers being in Edmonton and there’ll be a little bit of that today but we’re also going to chat about the mystery dman Bob Stauffer was talking about yesterday. I’d like to touch on Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins as well.

So if you haven’t heard the latest edition of Oilers Now, Bob Stauffer sent the Oilogoshere on a wild goose chase for about 20 minutes before being sussed out my Mark Spector.

Stauffer was teasing the listeners with talk of a right shot defenceman that nobody has been talking about. A rearguard that plays about 22 minutes, has an affordable contract, comes from a team that needs scoring and can handle the tough minutes. But there was one last caveat, there would be another piece that would have to be included that circles back to last year, about 15 months ago.

  • Adam Larsson, 23 years old
  • Shoots: right
  • 22:30 TOI
  • New Jersey had league worst 184 GF
  • $4.16M per year with a NTC that kicks in at the start of 2018 and runs until 2021

Player Usage Chart & Table(3)

So we can see here that Larsson and Greene took on all the hard starts and opposition. They didn’t quite keep their heads above water to say the least but New Jersey was a terrible team nonetheless. This is an Eastern Conference team that could really use a player like Taylor Hall. More on that later.

Let’s take a gander at Larsson’s HERO chart and Passing chart.

Player Chart(2) Story 1

I’m not completely certain as to when the last time Stimson’s passing project was updated, so don’t quote me on the results of that chart but there’s one piece of data there that is interesting. Larsson’s SC SAG/60 Rank is nearly breaking through the top. Ryan Stimson’s Passing Project glossary tells us this:

  • SC SAG – Pass sent into Scoring Chance (home plate) area and leading to a shot attempt

So I’m assuming that Larsson is very good at finding the open man in the offensive zone. Correct me in the comments below if I’m wrong.

As for his HERO chart, it’s actually nothing much to write home about. It places him in the shut down role as opposed to the offensive blueliner. But his playmaking is quite high. Could he be considered a playmaking shutdown defender? Great puck mover, not a shooter, very good at playing actual defense?

Well I went over to and looked at the CA/60 for defenders over the last four years who’ve played at least 3000 minutes. The following resulted:

  1. Brendan Smith – 44.1
  2. Jake Muzzin – 44.23
  3. Drew Doughty – 44.85
  4. Andy Greene – 45.31
  5. Marek Zidlicky – 46.31
  6. Anton Stralman – 46.39
  7. Adam Larsson – 46.61
  8. Mattias Ekholm – 46.72
  9. Kevin Shattenkirk – 47.5
  10. Brian Campebell – 47.66

So there you have it. Apparently he’s good at defence.

I know that Stauffer had spoken about the Oilers possibly acquiring a top pairing defender AS WELL AS a PP specialist. Getting a guy like Larsson would definitely speak to that possibility which takes us to the Ryan Nugent-Hopkins for Matt Dumba proposal.

Mark Spector said that this was the offer Chuck Fletcher was proposing and nothing more. Take it or leave it. Personally, I’d leave it. Nuge is worth far more than Dumba himself. But it does open up the notion that IF Milan Lucic signs there’s a higher chance that a guy like Taylor Hall is moved. If he isn’t signed, then that means Ryan Nugent-Hopkins could be moved.

Or Both could be moved…

Are you warming up to this idea yet? Ha! It’s not as if Rishaug is lying here. This is a fact and the closer we get to July 1st, the more real it gets.

So what if the Oilers land Lucic AND Demers on a discount? Whether that discount be on term or salary, I could care less but for it to work plus deal Hall and/or Nugent-Hopkins, sacrifices would need to be made.

The deal Stauffer was talking about with regards to Hall/Larsson went something to the effect of Larsson, a prospect and a draft pick AT LEAST for Hall. He noted a few things:

  • Hall and Adam Henrique played very well together in Junior
  • Devils have a lot of prospects down the middle
  • At some point, Chiarelli is going to acquire a 2nd rounder.

So if we take all of that into consideration, would Stauffer be happy with a return of:

  • Adam Larsson, local product John Quenneville, and a 2nd round pick?

I’m not sure I’d be happy with that. Larsson would fill an organizational need, he’s young, his contract has some “permeance”, and they’d be getting that 2nd round pick back which might give them the option of sending out an offer sheet… I don’t know much about John Quenneville right now. So I won’t touch on that.

For me, Pavel Zacha would have to come back in that deal.

Now before you roast me, there’s no team in the NHL that is going to trade their top defenceman for Taylor Hall, even the post I wrote yesterday is blue skying it in hindsight. But trading Hall for Hamonic or Barrie, Spurgeon or Larsson wouldn’t make any sense on the Oilers end. The other teams would have to add. Hence the above proposals. But to counter that, if you’re dealing 1 for three, you’re losing the trade. That being said, I’ve always believed that the Oilers might need to make a deal that is perceived to be one that has been lost on paper.

A team that employs Milan Lucic, Pat Maroon, Zach Kassian, Darnell Nurse, and possibly Eric Gryba is a vast difference to the cupcake teams iced in the past. In specific roles and gauged ice-times, these players can be very effective.

But everything is fluid as Stauffer stated on the show. A lot of balls are in the air right now and it’s going to depend on who decides to sign here on Friday.

Lastly, I’m not completely sure if everything has been “signed” yet since the teams aren’t allowed to talk shop before July 1 but rumours have Lucic and Demers already having “handshake” agreements with the Oilers and Jordan Eberle being sent to the Blues for Kevin Shattenkirk who’d then sign a 6-7 year deal.

Take it for what it’s worth, I was told Del Zotto, Alt, Raffl, and a draft pick for Hall and a 3rd before the draft, so the rumours are flying high and they’re flying hot. It’s silly season again folks so buckle up! Let me know how you feel about all of this in the comments below!

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Beer League Hero Written by:

I'm the Beer League Hero! I am from Camrose, Alberta but I make my home in Taipei City, Taiwan. I've been through the ups and downs and the highs and the Lowes, the Bonsignores and the McDavids, the Sathers and the Eakins but I'll never leave my Oilers, no matter what! They're with me until the end and then some. GO OILERS GO!

  • Michael Gerber

    I’m warming to it a little. Getting quality D is near impossible and if all options have been exhausted and these type of deals are all that’s left then you can at least live with the fact that Larsson had a good contract and fills a huge gaping hole. Losing Hall is crappy, beyond crappy bit adding Lucic and Puljujarvi on the wing in the span of a week definitely softens the blow.

    • Beer League Hero

      Yeah, I agree. For me, if lucic signs then Hall goes to strengthen the D and the LW is still deep. But if Eberle is gone, the RW is weakened w/o cover. If RNH is traded, we’re not deep at centre anymore…

      • Michael Gerber

        Yeah if they sign Demers too it has to be without a NMC or they’re done adding to the D this offeason, no way you can be forced to protect Sekera and Demers with Klefbom still expect to trade for a guy like Larsson. If they did trade Hall though I guess you could just protect 8:


        I honestly think Hall I worth way more but a depth Chart of the following would be super good:





        • Beer League Hero

          That depth chart looks not too shabby to me. Playoff contender-ish!

  • Kane Adamson

    “warming up” might be better described as “coming to terms with” but yeah, assuming it all happens anyways, not just part a or b. Moving Fayne and rolling with Klefbom – Larsson / Sekera – Demers / Davidson – Dumba is exceptional for sure, and we can live with Lucic – McDavid – Puljujarvi / Pouliot – Draisaitl – Eberle / Maroon – (Coyle?) – Yakupov as a top 9 is fine, but … if they don’t all happen it doesnt look so pretty. We need to have a strength, a real position that is better than the people we play against. Right now thats center, and looks like we may be able to expand that to forward. If we sacrafice all that we MUST have defence be our new strength

    • Beer League Hero

      Yeah, those are good points Kane. As far as losing someone via expansion, if Chia can get Demers to sign without a NTC/NMC, then perhaps they’d be willing to lose him. Especially if Dumba and Larsson were part of the squad. And it’s only cash in, cash out, right?

      • Kane Adamson

        True, and I mean thats certainly possible and at least we would know exactly who will be picked up haha, it just seems… odd. Why not just keep Fayne the extra year then? He gets more hate than he deserves and can slowly fade into the night when dumba is ready for top 4. But your right, they could definatly do that too

    • superdutyfan

      Trading RNH is not a help. Having the depth at center is more important as stated by Oprah above. I value RNH more than Dumba in a trade. Aside from last yr RNH has progressed nicely in his two way game and I would expect that to continue to excel this up coming season. Of the three 6 million dollar men I see RNH here the longest. Signs a lower cost contract at the end of his current contract. He will be 28 at the end of the current contract sign him to 6 to 8 yr at 4 mill per yr would be fair for a number 3 center.

      • Kane Adamson

        I’m sorry, sometimes I forget to include other people in my thoughts. RNH for Dumba would never be a 1 for 1, Minisota can’t afford the cap anyways. I’m talking about a Dumba+Coyle return. Coyle is a large 40pt centre to play as our 3C. Doubt Nuge gets both himself so there would be an add on our side but it shouldn’t be huge. I also don’t like betting a player will sign a smaller cap hit- why would he? He deserves what he makes.

        My point is if we start breaking up the forward core we can’t just do a half ass job about it. We need to make the backend a strength. Plus in my (however unlikely) scenario, we still run McDavid-Draisaitl-Coyle down the centre which is very strong

        • Beer League Hero

          Yeah, I dig that scenario but I really wonder if the Oilers could sign a veteran on a short term deal like Eric Staal. Obvious downgrade from RNH but that leadership and experience is something you cannot track. He’d be a perfect no.3 centre. Left handed albeit, so that’s kinda shitty. What do you think?

          • Kane Adamson

            I don’t know, he’s free falling from a cliff. Cheap on a 1 year? Maybe, I wouldn’t hate Chia for it but i would hope it’s not plan A.. yeah, I could get behind that. He does have a lot of experience, I think the concept of what it represent bugs me more. It’s like hunting in the old-and-used bin, I want the message being “we are putting a core together that will contend for the next 5 years”

          • Beer League Hero

            True and I totally get what you’re saying. That being said, every winner has the old horses. Remember what Bill Guerin and Gary Roberts along with guys like John Leclair, Mark Recchi, and Mario Lemieux did for Sidney Crosby?

          • Kane Adamson

            Yeah, no your right, that’s for sure, and I bet he would be a good presence. As I say I wouldn’t hate it but, I just hope it’s not plan A

        • superdutyfan

          Maybe in your scenario add Reinhardt. I don’t know much about Cole so I can’t comment on his game. But I like RNH and he might do 4 for 8 yrs and have the possibility to stay an Oiler. 32 million over all carrier earnings 68 million. But I know it won’t happen.

          • Kane Adamson

            Yeah that would be awesome if he did! But we do still need to keep an eye on Cappegeddon. McDavid needs a lot of room. I personally am deciding to be blissfully ignorant and ignore his agent and pray he signs 7-8 years @ 8-9M

            Coyle is a 6’3 200+lb centre, right handed, with 3 years experience leading up to a 42 point year last year. I believe he also plays some wing. Costs 3.2M. I envision him as a 40-45pt 3C who can slide into the top 6 if needed. I believe he is very much a “Chiarelli forward”. And yeah, I agree that would be fair price I think

      • Beer League Hero

        I also value RNH more than Dumba… by a lot! Oprah Sucks makes a damned good point and that’s sort of where analytics loses me sometimes. You need a lot of numbers to make a good assessment or else it’s not clear. So a 30 game stretch last season where Hall was eating shit, we can’t say much about that because there isn’t enough data…

  • oprah sucks

    The best value on a trade for a top d man would be hall. Two yrs ago when hall missed 30games, Rnh and ebs were the two most point producing players in the league during that timeframe. A timeframe which included no Mc David or Puljujarvi and the firing of Eakins and hiring of Neilson. Just one example that there isn’t a point reduction team wise when hall is out of line up. Oilers would miss hall but not his offence. Speaking in terms of value by position, it doesn’t make sense to trade Rnh. Two reasons 1) even though it appears that draisaitl and mcdavid can handle 1-2 centre positions, after yrs of watching young players thrusted into roles to early, do the oilers really want deploy two kids as there centres that barely have two yrs experience between them? Again not saying they can’t do it but should they. Rnh did it but doesn’t mean that trend should continue. 2) oilers have the perfect coach to manage ice for all three centres, Rnh being the veteran centre out of the bunch and Draisaitl does fine rotating centre and winger.
    Still speaking of value by position, that is where oiler fans need to prepare to lose a trade on paper for a top dman. They may have to put a package together with a first round pick and hall for that d. This would be the difference of being in the basement or competing for a playoff spot and I would take that trade no matter what a Taylor Hall trade might look like!!

    • Beer League Hero

      We’re two peas in a pod man! I’m on board with you here all the way. I’ve been saying since last year probably that fans are going to have to be prepared to disappointed with a deal on paper but that very well may open up possibilites down the road to make other moves or the “lost” deal would act as a safeguard for something we’re (fans) not seeing.

      • oprah sucks

        Well maybe we do know what we’re talking about!lol It’s not the packaged deal I thought with Taylor nor is it the top d man in return from a package deal. But it is a good d and it will help this team. Oilers are better today than yesterday even if we lost the trade. Maybe more of an indication Lucic is signing with oilers.

        • Beer League Hero

          yeah, that was pretty good prognosticating eh?

    • Kane Adamson

      Yeah, we can’t move centres without a veteran in place to protect the 2 kids. Easy to forget after last year but they are 19 and 20