I’m sure you’ve heard or read these quotes from former GM and TSN hockey analyst Craig Button regarding the Edmonton Oilers’ recent woes but if you haven’t, enjoy…
“They need a lot more horse power. Speed, speed and more speed. In a 100 km league, they’re going 95 km/h and it’s not good enough.”
“When you are slow, you are always going to be chasing the puck and they are slow. I know Peter Chiarelli has talked about we need to play fast — playing fast is the new buzz phrase in hockey. Well… they can only play at a certain speed and, quite frankly, that speed is not up to the competition.”
“Until they address their speed problems, they are going to be chasing the puck all night long, giving up grade ‘A’ scoring chances. Outside of Connor McDavid, there is no other player on the Edmonton Oilers who threatens with speed.”
I don’t necessarily agree with Button on this one because last year when the team was playing into the 2nd round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, speed wasn’t a concern. Not only that but last I checked, Jordan Eberle, Benoit Pouliot, and Matt Hendricks weren’t winning races.
So I went ahead and asked one of my sources what the deal was with this supposed team speed problem and was there a player the Oilers were looking at to address it? I was offered these thoughts,
“Well, the Oilers are looking at a guy like Carl Hagelin, He’s had a rough start (this year) in Pittsburgh but he’s quick, moves well, and thinks the game fast, supports the puck fast, has the wheels, and a quick release.”
“The team is constantly chasing the puck because they are slow and Hagelin is the kind of player who would help there.”
“With adding a speedy player, I think that hockey IQ is just as important as everything else when it comes to grading a player on ability. Hagelin isn’t a star in my opinion but if the Oilers could get him for a young winger, it’d help the Oilers be faster AND quicker.”
Very interesting, no? I love his speed and if that is truly the reason for looking at him, I don’t have any qualms about the Oilers picking him up. He doesn’t score a lot (either did Maroon before coming to Edmonton) but he might be part of a very select group of players that can keep up with McDavid. He makes $4M per year this year and next before going UFA in 2019.
Only 3pts this year but the Penguins are not having a great start scoring-wise either. Here are his career stats.
I asked if Pat Maroon would be the kind of guy that could go the other way because of all the players that are probably the most tradeable but wouldn’t hurt the Oilers as much, it’d be Maroon… Having Maroon, Lucic, and Khaira all on that left side is a tad redundant I feel.
“Maroon is definitely a possible trade chip. Word is, he’s looking for $3.5-$4.5 for 4 years and the Oilers aren’t wise to that.”
Now from what I’ve gathered, the Penguins are looking for scoring too but I’m not confident that Maroon would be that guy. That being said, Maroon has shown a propensity to score with generational players and the Pens might want to rid themselves of Hagelin’s contract…
How do you feel about Carl Hagelin? Do you think that he’s the kind of player that would help the Oilers?